Thursday, November 24, 2016

Happy Thanksgiving!

from Turk and Gray! They weren't a feature of today's meal, and remain our very happy pets! Hope everyone had a fantastic and satisfying holiday -- it's nap time!

Saturday, November 12, 2016

A few projects in the kitchen...

I've spent some time working on a few little projects in the kitchen lately.  First I made another batch of cheese, and this one turned out so much better!
 JR got me a gallon of milk with a lot of cream in it for me to work with.
 After letting it sit and firm up, I processed it with some sugar, cranberries and nuts. Delicious! 
Much like cream cheese, but not as smooth. We're using it on bagels anyway, and it's great.

I've been trying to keep up with the peppers from the garden until we get the first freeze. They're still going strong, so I'm chopping and freezing when I get a batch together.
 And last, I've been wanting to try making cranberry wine, but I had to wait until cranberries showed up in the stores. I had some "holiday" wine the last two Christmas seasons that is made by Fat Ass Winery (they are in Fredericksburg, TX.) It is just delicious, so I've been wanting to try myself.  Sadly, this won't be ready to drink until Christmas, 2017, but you have to start somewhere, right?! ha! 
This will sit in the bucket for 5 days (stirring daily) and then strain and move to the carboy. It won't even be bottled for about 4 months, so it's a long term project. Should be just about a gallon.

A very nice birthday!

Even if I did turn 66 years old! And I can't believe I have a 40 year old son. Goodness, that sounds old.
We all got together for a dinner together to celebrate mine and JR's birthday (we're only 4 days apart) at a restaurant -- we had a great time! Then we went back to Colleen and Jeff's house to have some delicious cupcakes that she had ordered for us. 
A fun time was had by all!
 My lovely family! 
 Joss just loves to hug on Max!
John got me some beautiful yellow roses (the same flower I used in our wedding!) A tradition now.

Monday, November 7, 2016

Hold on....

Driving through our little community other day and this was on the local day care center sign.  It was just what I needed at the time. I know lots of us are very anxious over this election and the general state of our country right now. I needed to see this at just that time.  Hope it helps someone else out there tonight and tomorrow.  
Remember, just breath.

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Halloween 2016

We got to spend Halloween evening with the whole family!! Colleen and Jeff invited us all over to have dinner and then enjoy watching the kids dress up and trick-or-treat.  Our niece Adrienne and her husband, Marcos, even joined us!
 Joss wanted to put on her own makeup! She was Minnie Mouse!
 KT is "Mal" from the Disney show Descendants. Mal is Malificent's daughter. If you don't know who Malificent is, I can't help you. ha ha! I can hardly keep up with the Disney shows anymore.
 JR and Ashley were space, and Max is an astronaut! So cute!!!
 The Koenig's!
 These three....I'm so lucky!
 Adrienne finally got to meet Max! Adrienne and Marcos have had almost NO time off while SeaWorld has been having their Halloween season.
 Max caught sight of his mama. He just loves her!
 Colleen had some pretty cookies made - almost too pretty to eat!
Joss wanted to take a selfie with me - she's a camera hog!

Barn Raising!

Well, not really another barn - a carport!  John has been planning to put up a carport for years -- and the time was finally right.  He did a lot of the work himself, but asked JR and Jeff to come help out on Sunday to finish up the roof.  Managing the tin and climbing ladders by himself is just getting to be too hard, so I'm glad he's finally asking for help when he needs it.  Colleen came and worked out there with them too! The four of them worked out there most of the day, but got it all done! Now John is planning what he wants to do on the ground under the cars - maybe gravel, cement, asphalt???  And he's going to install some lights.

Ashley has been sick, so she stayed home, but I got to keep Max most of the day, and the two girls ran around all day, too.  I was in Mimi heaven!

Here's a few pics of the day.  The photo of the carport was taken by Colleen.
The carport while they were all on ladders....
 Max's many moods...
Joss wanted to help feed Max, she would put the bottle in, but then lay it down on top of him. Ha! 
She wasn't willing to stand there and hold it for him.
 The girls got their Halloween baskets -- that kept them busy for most of the day!

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Fall Garden Update - November 1, 2016

It's been a while since I've updated the garden notes....I'm finally feeling well after the pneumonia, so I'm getting these weeds under control (well...I never get them totally in control, but as much as possible.) These are the Gonzales cabbages - it was hard to find them in all those weeds! I'll be putting a hay mulch down around these after I fertilize them in the next day or two.
 I got the weeds around the carrot patch, and next up is the collards.
 My summer tomatoes have come back and we have quite a few big tomatoes on these plants.  The plants aren't looking pretty, but they are still producing.
 I got the kale plants all weeded and mulched. I'm pretty sure these will withstand the cold and last all winter.  We'll see how cold it gets -- which so far is NOT VERY COLD! ha! We're actually still getting summer temps -- I'd actually like a little cooler weather.
 This is the Lacinato Kale (dinosaur kale) plant - pretty!
  The lettuce is just about totally weeded - need to mulch it yet.

 I started on the choy plants and decided to go ahead and pick all of the Extra Dwarf Pak Choy since they were starting to flower already.  We had some of this in salad and will use the rest in a stir fry.  I'll be putting out new seeds this week for the next batch.  I still need to weed the green choy and the Bak Choy plants and then will mulch those.
The Little Marvel peas are starting to show up now -- these are about 1-1/2 foot tall plants, bigger then the Strike peas, and much bigger pods.  
I started some pots of greens for the greenhouse thinking that it would be getting colder soon, but I can't put them in the greenhouse yet -- we're still too hot. They are growing well out in the yard in front of the greenhouse, though. 

Little kales

We're still bringing in these lovely Gypsy peppers -- I have a new favorite pepper.  Sweet, small and prolific. 
So, all in all, the fall garden is going strong. More work to do to catch up, but I'm having fun!