Saturday, March 22, 2008

Charming....

The Victor Street Farmhouse is not exactly palatial. No, really. It's sort of more what you'd call cozy. Or in an advertisement, quaint.

You can click on a picture to make the image bigger. Unfortunately, you cannot do that with the house.

Here it is from the front before our newly designed beds:


Tyree spent another Saturday afternoon shoveling sod. I love this guy. Meanwhile, I went out to Carly's and gathered as many down tree branches as I could fit on the roof of the Toyota to make teepees for climbers. I think the whole front looks a lot less bland. It will look even more so after I plant the cottage garden I have planned.



It's almost a shame that asbestos siding holds up as well as it does.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Blueberry Sunday....

Sorry if you live in Thailand, or anywhere else with a slow connection, but there are a lot of images today. Sadly, none are of the kids (Sorry Grandmas!) unless you count the granddog. Tyree and I spent the better part of this rainy weekend adding another three garden beds here at the old Victor Street farm.



I didn't even count this in the three new ones, he just doubled the size of this older one. This bed gets full sun all day, so it's tomatoes, peppers, etc......




This little one next to the other contains 2 giant mature blueberries that we bought from some guy off Craigslist who was moving them for a farmer. It might not be evident in the photo, but they're about 6 feet tall and 4 feet across and loaded with buds. They hadn't been pruned in many years, so we had to remove some of the dead wood.





After being neglected among acres and acres of blueberries, I think they'll thrive spoiled in our back yard with compost. We planted strawberries below them in the bed.





Debbie.





Well, it's not like I'm jealous. I knew she was going to do it. This stinking dog is now more or less in love with Tyree. She follows him around like....well, like a puppy. She's still MY dog when she's injured or hungry or has to go potty......fickle animal.





The wheelbarrow a.k.a. the firepit. We inherited it from Jill and Ted and it kept us warm while we were outside all day today. We burned yard debris and we used it to sterilize various weeds before we threw their charred remains into the compost bin. It's waiting for you, Jill and Ted, on the 25th.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

YWCA City Farm....



In my ongoing effort to eek vegetables out of any patch of unused soil, we rototilled our city garden at the YWCA in front of the parking lot. Turns out our computer tech volunteer is also very handy with the garden implements.

We have ambitious plans for this little swath of land. Since many of the residents that want to participate in the garden are elderly and not particularly ambulatory, I've got community service people doing a lot of the harder work. The Garden itself is actually about 50 yards long and gets deeper at the far end. I estimate we raised over 600 pounds of veggies last year and we only half-heartedly used about 1/3 of that space.





What started out as my teaching a knitting night at the YW turned into my learning how to crochet from the residents. I designed and crocheted this little Tam for Isabella as my first project. I'm making one for myself now. Bella came with her mom (in the top photo) to visit on Friday and I gave it to her.

Quick Soda instructions

There was some interest in how to make homemade soda. Here are my condensed instructions. It's easier than beer.

You need: A stockpot big enough for your quantity (ours holds 4 gallons), sanitized spoon or stirrer, sanitized siphon tube for bottling, sanitized bottles, a bottle capper and caps. And Ingredients!

You just make the syrup base and then cool it off to 100 degrees and pitch in an activated wine or champagne yeast. And bottle it. Be sure that you keep it in a warm enough place for the yeast to stay active for about 4 days, and then you can move it to a basement or garage.

Here's the deal: The yeast creates the carbonation and once the pressure reaches a certain point it kills the yeast cells. My point? Yes, there is a minute amount of alcohol in that soda but my understanding is that it's less than naturally occurs in Orange Juice. Just call it mother's little helper. I keed, I keed.