Thursday, July 18, 2013

Things are growing.

I know I know. I'm sorry I never write. Big things have been happening and there isn't time. My days are spent at the So, There store and the time I'm not working I live life!

On that note, I've been meaning to share the results of our "garden". We really just planted stuff all over the yard to see what happened. It was tricky to keep the first sprouts from being eaten by slugs and bugs, but once they got started....

Here are a bunch of pictures of our plants at the beginning of June.

One of our three artichokes.

A couple of summer squash plants.

Broccoli finally looking like broccoli.


Potato flower.

Potato bags.

Snap peas!
But now it's July, and SPIDER SEASON!

The lettuce is still going strong!

The kale is DELICIOUS.

Delicious I say! (Patrick loves Kale, even more than I do. He brings it home.)

Lots of flowers one of our GIANT tomato plants. We've already had 2 early tomatoes off of this one- they're Sungold.

There are sprouts starting on our brussels.


Our new strawberry plants are going crazy, but something keeps eating the fruit before we can get to it. (It leaves teeth marks! This has been a problem in several areas of the garden.)

But not at the summer squash. Which are GIANT and delicious.

They have the prettiest blooms.

Lookit that squash! We've gotten probably 4 times that amount off the 2 plants already.

Then there are the true miracles- artichokes!

These two plants are supposed to be the same variety but they sure don't look alike.

There's our first harvested artichoke with some of the kale. I braised the kale tonight and we ate it with

Zucchini sandwiches!

Not shown : We harvested the first bag of potatoes. They were DELICIOUS. So perfect and amazing. The other bag has  purple potatoes, which we'll probably harvest this weekend.

The broccoli made food- but we didn't love the taste. We've definitely figured out what's worth the effort (which is minimal, really) and what isn't.

So we probably won't do Broccoli next year, but we will do:
Snap Peas - delicious and effortless.
Cherry Tomato
Squash (also effortless, after the bed was built.)
Potato (maybe)
Kale (in containers again)
Lettuce (")

Still don't know about:
The brussel sprouts

MINT (More of a weed. A nice tasting weed.)

We have a little bit of asparagus planted, it shot up one sprout-- who knows what will happen with it next year. It's all magic!

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

and some days you just have to stop and eat the flowers.

I've been running on full speed for a while now- but when I looked up and realized I was missing another beautiful day, I decided to go for a short walk and admire what we have planted.

Unfortunately, I didn't take my camera, so you'll have to use your imagination.

Went exploring under our Big Tree (because I was hoping to find morel mushrooms.... some people have all the luck) and found these pretty flowers, which I plucked from their homes so I could admire them while I work work work work... sorry. Got on a loop.

No luck identifying them with my nifty wildflower app.

Cooper offered to taste-test them.

This is why I can't have pretty things.

Monday, April 22, 2013

so get a log little doggies.

I'm not sure the images in this post are for the faint of heart.

Let's talk about Mushrooms. It was only a few years ago that mushrooms moved from the list of foods I would not touch with a ten-foot pole swiftly to the list of things I crave. CRAVE. 

Then one day I see something called a "Shitake Log" at the Capital Hill farmers' market and although I don't buy one, I obsessed about them until, nearly a year later, Patrick brought one home for Valentines Day. (This one from our local Feed Store, the Grange.)

This particular log,from Cascadia Mushrooms, looks less like a piece of wood and more like a loaf of bread someone made from the backend of a wood chipper. But that's not the point. The point is that you get it saturated with water, wait a couple of weeks, then you start to see little bumps pop out.

Then the little bumps become more pronounced, in kind of a creepy "HOW DID THAT GROW SO FAST" way.

Then even bigger, and lewder.


Bigger, and more populated...

Until all of a sudden you look at them and they are little mushrooms.  So that's where we stand today- adorable little mushrooms on a stump in the living room.

This is actually the third cycle on this log, so I know that soon the little mushroom group will look like this...

Then this...

And (this is where it gets gory) it will look like this...

Then this...


Saturday, April 13, 2013

that I heart stew.

We've had another couple of craft days, since I spoke of them last. There is no photographic evidence, which I think is proof of how much fun we had.

I WILL speak for everyone!

I decided to make a version of my favorite vegetable stew for the pre-valentines event, and used a little inspiration from Tara to sweeten the pot. (ALL PUNS INTENDED.)

I don't have the original links, but if you decide you're whimsical enough to make hearts from carrots to spice up your stew, I'm pretty sure you're handy enough to find a how-to. All I did was carve a divet along the length of a carrot, sharpen the other side, then cut of slices. (Think- extruding a heart on one of those Playdoh Fun Factories

The best part- I froze two batches of stew for later consumption- and I by the time we got around to eating them, I was surprised by the sweet little hearts.

I think I "Awwwwww"ed.

Monday, April 8, 2013

I went batty.

I'm not someone who usually decorates my home for holidays. I should be that person. I WANT to be that person, but I'm just not.

However, this last Halloween I went batty (pun intended) and cut creepy-crawlies-and-flyies from scrap cardstock and hung them around the room with thread and tape. (My favourite trick is to tape them on the inside of a lampshade so they surprise you when you turn on the light. GAH! SPIDER. Oh right, I did that.)

Oh course, the cats removed them, one-by-one, so all I had to do after Halloween was pick them off the floor and put them in the trash.

Are you a crafty decorator?

Monday, April 1, 2013

you aren't getting an Elevated Envelope.

This Elevated Envelope is brought to you by willful misunderstanding. That is to say, Tara gave us 9 different theme options (Black and White, Nature Attacks, Softly, Lucky 2013, Phoenix Rising, It's a Zoo in Here, Cats of the Internet, and I Want a Bunny) and told us to "Choose [our] Own Adventure" by picking one theme to represent.

So I made a "Choose Your Own Adventure" envelope, cause I like bending the rules (sometimes.)

Everyone got a double sided envelope, and were told to open one side or the other for an adventure.


I made and illustrated (adventure) card for each of the 9 themes, and included 1 in each envelope.

Then I doubled up the envelopes, so that the recipient could open one at a time. (Kinda like an envelope version of a scratch-off.)

Click on the next image to see the whole collection of "adventures" in all their colored pencil glory.

Like what you see? Well, you should see the other envelopes that are going around right now. AAAAAANNNNNDDD sign up for the next Elevated Envelope to get in on the action.

This is my first second third fourth envelope go-round. It's fun!

Monday, March 25, 2013

and a groggy moggy

Patrick's been doing some of his own crafting- and he started out by making a variety of apple beverages. (I can't drink beer.) He's got a knack for it- and I decided to brand it with one of our own groggy moggies, Jovi.

We've just finished labeling the first batch of beer, but the bottles shown here were from our Molasses and Apple Juice Experiment. (I should note- it really will kick your molasses.)

We're being thrifty, so I designed the wrap to cover as much bottle as possible (to cover the label of the beer it used to be, if we can't get that label off.) I've been printing each run on extra sheets of text-stock I have lying around from my paper mania days. The design, which includes brewing notes, is taped all kattywompus with black artist tape.

Here's a shot I took of an early bottle with my phone. The elusive Apfelwein. Now endangered.

Monday, March 18, 2013

so get thee to the Glass

Here's a little more catchup. Kat's friend came to visit in January, and we all went to visit the Chihuly Garden and Glass exhibition in the Seattle Center.

It was a wonderful thing to do on a rainy day, and I recommend it to anyone. Honestly, most of it was so beautiful I stared instead of photographing.

One place that's actually prettier in the drizzle. Most of the exhibits are indoors, and lit dramatically, so you just go around trying not to trip over anyone in your daze.

Summary: It's pretty, check it out. If you can't get to town, just spend some time in the website. You'll be glad.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

and where did I go?

I have been doing a lot. I've even been photographing it to share. There was just some sort of wall between the doing and the chronicling. I'm working on my schedule, and the things I want to share.... so I hope to have more up soon. IT'S BEEN TOO LONG, but (That's a scan of my Valentines Card to P in progress.)