Friday, October 30, 2015

Songs of the Bat

Simon got quite excited when I played the sound clips from this article on singing bats. Singing Mammals are rare. They tell us it's humans, whales, dolphins, and bats. Did you know bats were on that list?

Tuesday, October 27, 2015


The fall carrot crop is doing well. 
I tend to grow short chunky carrot varieties as I've gardened in clay soils most of my life and just don't trust myself to double dig well enough to warrant planting long tapers of carrot. Especially not when I've finally figured out which varieties will give me some lovely tasting chubby little ones.
Simon will eat carrots too -- especially if they are fried with chicken or sauteed in butter.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

I'm A Citizens for Boysenberry Jam Fan

"Punky's Dilemma" by Simon and Garfunkel is currently available free on Amazon Prime.

Can I just tell you the inordinate number of times the lines "saying hello to a passing raisin, casually gazing at his toupee" have actually gone through my mind over the years? It's shocking how often. 

Stray music from my childhood regularly erupts into my life from time to time with a randomness any ipod would envy. The recurrence of this particular song is due to the number of times we listened to it over and over again. The great appeal that any song beginning with "I wish I was a Kellogg's cornflake" has for anyone under the age of twelve should not be underestimated. I blame my father... although, I don't think we were actually supposed to be playing his vinyl record collection, so never mind then.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Stuffing Squash

Patty Pan Summer Squash
In my head, squash is any kind of squash. Other than a division between Summer (stuffing or dicing) types and Winter (roasting or pie-making) types of squash, they're interchangeable. I happened to have White Patty Pans, so white patty pan squash are what I stuffed. This is less of a recipe and more of a philosophy... and a way to use up whatever happens to be in the fridge and/or garden.

Remove stem, dice out center leaving a thick shell,
salt the cleaned out squash "shell"

The salt will draw out some moisture,
allow the squash to rest upside-down while you prepare the stuffing.

I hadn't though very much about what to use for stuffing or filling.  But that day I had lots of basil pesto, some leftover grated sheep cheeses, green peas, and a take-away box worth of cooked white rice. That should work.

Already cooked white rice will go quite mushy if you add a little water (and butter) and re-cook it. When it got soft I added several dollops of pesto, the cheese, it was not quite a half cup, and the frozen peas.

Pack it in to the squash shells, and put in a baking pan
with a little water at the bottom of the pan to bake.

Out of the oven
allow to cool a little before garnishing with basil so the basil doesn't wilt.

Easy, Yummy, Stuffed Squash

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Hello Again Iris

"Yellow" Iris, in the rain, with the new stones
installed for my stepping stone garden path.
This is the re-blooming yellow iris I ordered, sight unseen, from a clearance sale. The buds were a decidedly worrisome shade of blah, but the open flower is quite pretty after all. I was under the impression that it was "Hello Again" and that Hello Again was a more buttery pastel yellow all one colour -- not white with beigey yellow falls -- but then half the fun of clearance plants is the random inaccuracy of the labeling.

Friday, October 9, 2015

Something With Pictures

After several posts of mostly words, how about a post of mostly photos? Sound good? I finally got around to downloading the photos from my camera. Ergo, in no particular order, here's my photographed look at this past month or so.

Calendula (Pot Marigold) Seedhead

Soup From Only My Own Homegrown Vegetables
solar yellow carrots, parisian carrots, german butterball potatoes, ronde de nice,
yellow chambray green beans (and chicken stock, which I admit did not grow in my garden)

A Brown Moth

A Yellow/White Moth

Using Clothespins To Train Limbs
in my new seckle pear tree

Russian Banana Fingerling Potatoes
not a good return on the planting, and all so tiny, very disappointing
Yukon Gem Potato
now that's a potato we need to grow that variety again next year

Spice Bush Berries

Goldenrod Wreath (On Honeysuckle)
my goldenrod jelly did not get its picture taken, but turned out quite well anyway

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Simon Says: Varpapuu

It's not put together yet, Simon says, and you don't have all the pieces.

But it's a loom, I say. I have always wanted a loom. Perhaps I would not have chosen a Varpapuu Finlandia 4-shaft countermarche loom with missing bits and rusted reeds needing to be restored... But it was free.

Simon agrees. A free loom does make a good argument in favor of learning (re-learning) how to weave. The plan is we will get it put together and then I will warp and he will woof. 

Update: We cleaned and refinished the loom, and then gave it back to the lady who had given it to us. Turns out she really did want to learn to weave, but was just daunted by the work involved in getting the loom into shape. She would have let us keep it, but that didn't feel right. I can honestly say that, while I would still love to have my own loom, I felt so very happy when we took it back to her that I am not even tempted to second guess that decision. 

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Five Acres and A Dream Giveaway

Head on over to Five Acres and A Dream Blog to enter to win a copy of Leigh's book. I only found her blog this year but I have to say I've really enjoyed reading about the homesteading projects there. I'm sure her book would be a great read.