Earlier this spring I was digging my pots out of the garage where they have lived since the move, preparing my soil and picking out my seeds. Unbeknowst to me, some pumpkin seeds had gotten into 2 of my pots and all the watering, chruning and general gardening had put them into the perfect position that must have been lacking previously. They shot up like kudzu and took off. 2 days ago, I finally got around to digging them up and putting them into the garden to give them a real chance. To the pumkpins, this was like a cotillion and the next morning I was great with several beautiful blooms. They only lasted a day but they were breath-taking.
I started and completed my Emmeline apron this past weekend and it was a labor of love (any apron that requires you to topstitch all the way around has to be). It is gorgeous and is almost too pretty to wear while cooking. Luckily I am not a messy cook. I feel like I should be exercising in heels, greet my husband at the door with a martini and slippers. It also makes me feel a little bit bosomy (of which I need no help and would prefer to feel the opposite though the mirror tells me it is all in my mind). I love that it has a great deal of coverage so if I am messy I don't wear it after dinner. I also love cotton and it drapes like a dream.
Don't you love getting the Osmonds stuck in your head!! Actually, I should be writing in the second person instead of first because I am referring to my nephew. He is a little bit Jewish (well half, but fully converted now) and a little hip-hop. I feel that I must digress more. Julian's dad loves listening to Dr. Dre and they often all listen to him in the car together. Apparently little Julian loves Dre as much as his dad, Ezra. Being the good aunt that I strive to be, I endeavored to commemorate father and son's shared love of the rhyming mogul on a onesie...Oh how I am sure Dre would love that. But, announcing to the world one's love of rap-supreme is not enough for one born of the Brangelina/Bennifer age. I felt compelled to somehow combine Julian's musically preferences with his religion. BEHOLD: Now that is one stylish kid! Stay tuned for a free download of this embroidery pattern and various sized onsies for sale!
I love it! Love it, in fact Betty has already earned some acclaim. I took her to Trader Joe's and because I had my own bag, I was entered in a contest. No word on whether or not I have won. Amy Butler's Betty Shopper (size small) is perfect for stops at the store, knitting groups, diaper bag and general hauling. Betty was super easy to make, not much cutting and I love the handles. I added a little touch of embroidery, I love the tree pattern that came with my Brother machine. I used Katie Jump Rope on the exterior and Belle for the lining. I have gotten many compliments, even from men on this funky bag. I think I will make some matching reusable grocery bags for bigger trips to the store. Plus Betty is already ear marked for flea markets and garage sales. I can't wait to actually go to one.
Gruene (Green) Series Vol 1- Composting Composting is one of the easiest and best processes you can do for your home, garden and environment. Not only are you contributing less to land fills, but you are creating a valuable resource for you plants and eventually your family. This is especially true for a vegetable garden. Any vegetable garden is a source of bountiful and tasty harvest and there is not better way to ensure your plants are receiving organic material than to make it yourself. Composting is easy: I purchased my compost container from Walmart for ~$40. It is not the prettiest thing in my garden but considering its neighbors (Air conditioner 1 & 2) it is in good company. Eventually all three will be fenced in with American Dream white Picket and a lattice top but until then it is not too discouraging. Set up was a snap (both literal and figuratively). The next step is slightly tricky but not once you know. Composting is not just kitchen scraps, in fact, if that is all you use you will have a den of flies of all kinds in NO TIME FLAT. I must repeat this and make it its own paragraph- Composting is not only kitchen scraps. Now back to the easy part- composting is made up of 2 layers:
Green Layer: Kitchen scraps (no meat), you can use anything. I put my eggs shells (calcium), coffee grounds, vegetables & bread
Brown Layer: Newspaper, cardboard, paper (I add my junk mail too since it is not always safe in the recycling bin)
Make sure to add your green and brown in layers as much as possible to speed composting, keep away flies and to ensure a healthy balance to your finished product. Just set out a bin for your brown layer by the trash can and keep a largish sealed jar under the sink for your green layer (I use one from Ikea). Once one is full dump it in your composter. Make sure to rip up the newspaper so it is not a whole page. Once a week water your heap so it is like a wet sponge, this keeps up the decomposition and the heat. Also stir your heap once a week to help with balance and make the process faster. I keep a shovel out by my bin but a pitch fork is great too. If you follow all the steps you should have a healthy pile of compost in about 6 mo, fly free and not smelly (that is why you don't use meat, also it is not good for plants). Your blooms and veggies will thank you for it.
I live in a pretty strict neighborhood, as far as architecture and historical aesthetics go. That means no parking huge RVs in front of your house, Leaving your car on cinder blocks and any other, general, sometimes small infractions. In my case, an unpainted pine shelving unit holding empty pots and garden equipment destined for greatness. Well, I received my letter from the HOA suggesting that I put my shelves and ugly equipment where the sun don't shine, my garage. "Ha", said I shaking my fist, "No one tells me what I can't keep on my front porch, I will show them!" I ran to my local superstore and picked up 2 cans of pale yellow spray paint. In this case, I believe the color name was Stick-it to the Man Yellow and started looking for some outdoor fabric. Apparently, outdoor fabric in any bright happy, fun time, garden colors is not very common, so I grabbed a vinyl table cloth (go for the oblong- more fabric) and set to work. I painted the unit, that took about 2 hours with drying time- no problem. Then I sewed up my table cloth with a center box pleat and side seams. If you are careful where you make your cut on the tablecloth you don't have to double turn the top. I added my sew-on/adhesive Velcro and Voila- A festive garden hutch- in the exact same place on my front porch with all the same stuff, minus the empty- now filled pots and I have successfully bite my thumb at the HOA. Ahh the simple things!