Sunday, July 18, 2010

For the Birds

While driving back from visiting my sister in New Hampshire, my mom and I decided to go a new and scenic route.  We saw this stretch of birdhouses along the side of the probably went for at least 1/4 of a mile!  We also found this birdhouse shop and stopped.  Mom bought one of the church birdhouses for her sister.  I love these cute roadside sites!

This Year's Garden

These are pictures of our garden about two weeks ago.  Since then it has exploded with ripe vegetables and herbs!  It is a mix of raised beds and ground plantings.  This garden is 21ft by 46ft and is one of our two gardens.  We have a second one that is our pumpkin patch with another patch of corn as well.  This is the largest, most varied garden we've attempted in the 10 years we have lived here. We have plans for expansion next year. Eddie is also going to build me a green house right next to the garden area and we are moving our compost area closer as well. The greenhouse will use many of the windows we have been collecting in our barn. We are really under-utilizing our 9 acres, but we are slowly making it work for us.  This year I have planted dill, basil, garlic, onions, carrots, green peppers, cantelope, cabbage, broccoli, zucchini, yellow squash, radishes, spinach, romaine lettuce, iceberg lettuce, roma tomatoes, early girl tomatoes, peas, corn, butternut squash and pumpkins.  We have a large upright freezer which I am sure will be full by the end of the summer. I have 35 tomato plants and some of them are now over 4 feet tall and full of green tomatoes.  I need to start now looking for good recipes for those!  My parents and one of my aunts have chipped in on seeds and supplies, so I give them as many veggies as they can handle.  We really love that we are supplying our own vegetables!

Black Raspberry Bush

This year Eddie went down near our pond and noticed this huge Black Raspberry Bush.  We went down every two days for a couple of weeks and picked them.  We got about four gallons total! I made a batch of regular jam, a batch of low sugar jam and froze the rest to use throughout the year.  That was an unexpected crop this year!

Raised Strawberry Bed

Eddie made me a great raised strawbery bed this year.  We had a great crop our first year.  I was too impatient to do as recommended and pinch off the berry bunches the first year so the roots could get well established..but the strawberries were good! We had to put a fence around it and netting over the top to keep our chickens and other birds and critters out.  It worked great!

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Summer Sunset Storm

Eddie and I went outside to have a little campfire for a while.  Skies were blue and there was no wind.  We looked a bit to the northwest and there was one big storm cloud slowly moving over the top of us.  It was very interesting how the sky became black over us but under the storm were bue skies and a pretty sunset.  I loved the contrast.  We stayed out until we saw lightning.  We got a few sprinkles from it, but that's it.