Monday, February 20, 2012

Hidden Treasure

Look what I found hidden (amongst the weeds actually! LOL) right near the ground as I was admiring all the new baby eggplants coming along towards the top. Yum yum! And I have a few quite large green capsicums that I've been trying to be patient enough to let turn red in situ - so I feel a caponata coming on ...
Have a great week everyone!
Greenie x

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Weekend Heaven!

Ah! The bliss of sitting on the deck eating home grown tomato & basil on home-baked toast after having planted carrots & leeks. Another loaf in the oven ... Heaven!

What are you doing this weekend?

Monday, February 6, 2012

February update

Hi everyone, I made a few goals and shared them with you at the beginning of the year. So I thought it would be good to share where I’m up to at the end of the first month:
  • Loads of quality time with the family
    • Good progress. Finally sorted little Charlie’s swimming lessons out so they are at a time that suits her (early morning rather than late morning when she’s tired and grumpy). Looking forward to spending some more time with DD when she goes on mat leave for baby II in April.
    •  Love spending my days with DH, but he’s going away again in a couple of days. 
    • And today is my darling boy’s 39th birthday. I miss him terribly but am trying to think happy thoughts and conjure up happy memories – he had the best, most infectious laugh ever! Nearly 3 years since we lost him, and I still think of him every day. 
  • Establish front garden
    • The wonderful Sustainable Gardener comes back on Wednesday for the first time this year, and I think he’ll probably finish the infrastructure this week – ie finish gravelling the paths, and mulching the beds. Then its off to the creek for some tadpoles and the garden centres for some plants.
    • This is a whole of year goal …
  • Find a moveable chook house that works for me and the chooks and is secure enough to keep next door’s cat out!
    • Well, I’m kinda pleased with this one! It’s a bought hoop-house greenhouse, courtesy of Ebay and manufactured in China. It’s dead cheap, super easy to erect, and light as a feather. Obviously, not particularly sturdy, and I nearly had a disaster before it was even in place. I fell into it while trying to fling the tarp over the top, and bent a couple of the struts, and broke a couple of the connectors. But 20mm pvc pipe fits over the connectors perfectly and keeps it all together. The girls (did I tell you I have 6 now?) like it because they are protected from the pesky cat next door. The three new girls are in the first photo below. Wellesummer/New Hampshire crosses apparently. They're very sweet but very shy.

  • Make more staples from scratch – bread, biscuits, pasta, preserves, yoghurt etc 
    • I finally mastered the art of the choc chip cookie – DH’s staple for morning tea!
    • I went to a wonderful bread-making workshop hosted by one of the Canberra Urban Homestead Clubbers, and made some truly wonderful focaccia. Also received a wonderful everyday bread recipe which I will try out. Am on the look-out for plain rice crackers/rusks for littlies. And am about to try a couple of cheese savoury biscuits.
    • Haven’t made pasta or yoghurt yet.
    • We do make most of our meals from scratch, which is why it wasn’t listed as a goal.
  • Get rid of the weed trees 
    • This is a job for autumn or winter
  • Maintain and improve the back garden’s food forest production 
    • I was interested to read Gavin’s post about not having a great year because he’d forgotten to mulch way back before Christmas. I have had a very mixed Spring/Summer with bugs galore eating most of the seedlings; some nasty getting to the tomatoes, and the nectarines rotting on the tree thanks to the leaf curl infestation in early spring.
    • However, on the up-side – I have made fabulous compost! So, I’ve mulched a bed whose soil was in a terrible state and mulched heavily and planted broccoli, Brussels sprouts, bush beans, cucumbers, lettuce, and sunflowers just this last weekend. Here’s hoping!
  • Exercise, get fit, and lose weight – ie improve and maintain my health 
    • Definitely could do better on this one. February must be the month I start walking and cycling again.
  • Continue to Learn, Grow, Share and Enjoy!
    • I love this aim, cos it can be applied in so many ways! I believe I am learning and growing as a gardener, and as a cook, as a professional in my job and as a family member – especially learning to be a Granny! I’m sharing my produce and my expertise wherever I can, and for the most part, enjoying life!
Enjoy your February everyone!
Hopefully I’ll post a bit more regularly again now …
Greenie x