Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Just Call Me Polly Pioneer

   I have been called Suzy Homemaker and Betty Crocker in the past. I have decided lately it should be Polly Pioneer. Gardening, preserving one way or another, sewing, crocheting, spinning, weaving know how, cooking, yogurt making. I think I have too much time on my hands. No real marketable skills.
   Yesterday, I had a thought. Why it didn't come to me earlier, I'll never know. Some people are just slow, I guess. I bake our bread, and when the loaf is stale, I was feeding it to the ungrateful birds, who won't eat it. My thought was, why not make my own stuffing mix, like StoveTop, so that's what I did. I already make the usual bread crumbs with it, and I intend to make croutons, but haven't yet. Anyway, I made 2 quart canning jars of stuffing mix. I will make more of it in my stocking up efforts since I will have more stale bread. I guess we could eat it faster. With just the 2 of us, my loaves are getting smaller, but homemade bread gets stale to fast. If I make larger loaves, I cut them in half and put half in the freezer.
  My stuffing recipe is one I made up as I went. I cut the bread into bite size pieces, but you can tear it. I sprinkled ALOT of poultry seasoning, some dehydrated parsley, and some garlic powder,( because I didn't have any dehydrated garlic), on the bread and spread it out on a cookie sheet and baked it on about 300 degrees until the bread was dryed out. After it had cooled I filled a quart jar up to the bottom of the neck and added some previously dehydrated celery and onions to it and put about a tsp. of chicken bouillon granules on top, and used my foodsaver to suck the air out after I had put the lids on, of course. To make the stuffing, I will use about a cup of boiling water, more or less, and 1 tbsp. butter or margarine. I will use chicken broth instead of water, if I have any around, and mix like you do with the Stove Top. I will tweek the recipe of the fixings as I go, until I figure out the perfect amount of everything.
   Yesterday, I harvested our first spinach crop and made apple pear crisp. I was jokingly ask about spinach in the apple pear crisp and said it was on old family recipe, but the hardest part was turning the spinach into apples and pears.
    I cut the leaves off, and I hope, more will grow. I washed the leaves well and cut off the stems and then  I blanched it for 3 minutes and put it in ice water for 3 minutes and then spun out excess water with my salad spinner. I blotted a little more water off with paper towels and put it in a gallon ziplock bag, go as much air out as I could, and put it in the freezer. I need to bet more foodsaver bags, along with canning jars, of different sizes.
   The apple pear crisp was made the usual way. I had 2 large apples of some variety and 2 pears, Bartletts, I think. Anyway, It was good.
   Our garden is growing really well this year. The new crop of potatoes I planted are growing. We are going to have corn coming out our ears (harhar). Birds are eating the flowers off of the tomatoes when they are staring to turn into tomatoes.
   The deer luckily haven't eaten any of the berries, but they have walked through the garden along Rufus, the one of the many dogs that live behind us. Wht is it, that the majority of people who live out in the country feel it's alright to let their dogs roam loose?

Just a picture of moss on a tree

Saturday, June 26, 2010

We Planted More Deer Food Today

   Tim and I, (mostly Tim) planted more deer food today. We planted 2 more blueberry plants, 2 blackberry plants, 1 raspberry plant and 3 rhubarb plants. When I was planting the rhubarb, the pot that held what looked like a double sprout was really 2 plants, so we got 3 for the price of 2.
   Tim and I have never had rhubarb, but hey, why not? If we don't like it, we'll harvest and give it to someone who does.
   We've decided we need 2 more blueberry plants, so we can feed the deer and birds really well when the berries are ripe and ready to pick.
   I have more beans and peas to plant. Chip and Jake, really like green beans. I'll share, they can have mine. I was staggering them so hopefully they wouldn't all be ready at the same time. If all we've planted does well, I am going to be so busy. Tim says our garden is 60'x50' and it will be bigger next year.
   I read in a pest control book that deer don't like rosemary. Maybe we should plant a hedge of rosemary all around the garden. Deer also don't like anything smelly. Well, neither do I. I've heard bars of soap work to repel deer, but only if you've used it and then it's mostly the human scent that repels them. If we dig a moat and fill it with water, it too, is suppose to keep the deer out.  That one sounds like a wee bit much work.
   I took Chip out and tied his leash to a tree branch, since he tends to not come back. That was a mistake. I foolishly thought since the weeds had been mowed down, they wouldn't get in his curls so much. Nope. Just smaller pieces to pick out. You'd think I would have learned by now that poodles and the great outdoors don't mix. He's also not a hot weather dog, even though his coat is about an inch long now, and it was only in the upper to lower 80's today, and he was in the shade. A very nice breeze went with the temperature today.
   I get out of some garden work tomorrow because I have to make cookies and bread. I have clothes to sew and crocheting to do also, even though I hear my spinning wheels calling me.  We're getting very pioneerish here.
   A big part of me thinks we should have started this before we were in our 50's. Maybe it's our midlife crisis? Sky rocketing food prices? All the junk that is in food from the grocery store? Stupidity? Who knows? I'm still sure this getting healthy bit is going to kills us.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

More of Amy and Daniel's Visit

   I finally downloaded the pictures I took when Amy and Daniel were here. One of the places we took the to was Farragut State Park in Athol, ID. Tim and I stayed at the park for a month or longer when we first came up here. You usually can't stay longer than 2 weeks at a time, but it was the off season and no one was there, and since we paid our fees, I don't really think they cared.
   Farragut State Park was a navel training station in WW II. Some of the buildings still stand, but the forest has reclaimed most of them. We visited the Brig which has been turned into a museum. Pretty interesting.     
   Farragut is along the shores of Lake Pend Oreille. Lake Pend Oreille is 65 miles long and 1150 feet in some areas and has a surface of 148 square miles. A very beautiful place, indeed. Farragut has the usual wildlife that is up here and there are also some interesting Columbia Ground Squirrels. Way too many of them. They talk back to you and are a lot of fun to watch.

   We also stopped at a place called Wolf People in Cocolalla, ID. Every time Tim and I would drive past there, we thought of Amy since she really likes all things wolves.
   There were 2  timber wolves there that day. We were told about their bigger wolf education ranch where we could have petted captive bred wolves and pups, but we were a broke bunch and didn't want to pay the $8.00 a person to get in. One day, we will probably do that.

   There is so much to see and do up here, it was hard deciding where to take Amy and Daniel. I don't think we will ever see and do everything up here.
   My parents are coming up her in July. I wonder where we will take them. Also, a niece is coming up here to see if she wants to live up here, so we'll have to take her to see the sites. The possibilities are endless. I guess everyone will just have to move up here.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Amy and Daniel's Visit

   Amy and Daniel came up here last week, and of course, it rained most of the time. Being from So. Cali. they don't see much of that. At least it didn't pour all the time.
   We drove them all over the place showing them the green sights. Another thing they don't have down there. Amy has been here before, but this was Daniel's first visit. He liked it up here.
   Saturday was a nice day, and Tim and Daniel got to go fishing. Tim caught an ugly fish called a sucker fish and Daniel caught 2 trout. I hear it was only because Tim had let Daniel use his lucky fishing pole. While the fisherman were off fishing, Amy and I watched The Proposal and I finished sewing 2 pairs of pants and fixed the purse I made for her. We had pizza instead of fish. There weren't enough to go around.
   Chip had to bark all the time. He didn't like people over. At least he wasn't trying to attack anyone. Amy discovered on Saturday that she could get Chip to like her if her shoes were off. The goofy poodle has a foot fetish. Bare feet are good, but feet in socks are the best. They don't even have to be smelly socks.  Now, we know the secret of how to get Chip to accept people. When ever we have anyone come over and we want Chip to like them, we'll just have them take their shoes off.

Monday, June 7, 2010

I Finished A Baby Afghan, But My List Of Things To Make Is Still Long

   I finished this baby afghan for Amy's baby that is due in Dec. It's left over yarn I had from grandson Alix's baby afghan and a shawl I made for me. I like the color red. It's called Autumn Red  and it's Simply Soft by Caron.
   At one time, I had made 20 white squares and edged them with the red. I slipped stitched them together so the squares are puffy. It wasn't big enough for a baby afghan, so I went around the whole thing a few rounds and the added some to the ends and sides. Now, it's 38"x27".  It turned better than I thought it would. I put a scalloped edging around it and even managed to get scallops on the corners.
   I should have been finishing up cleaning the house, but Tim brought the latest illness from work, and he stayed home sick, and I think I am getting it.  You know, the little scratchy throat and the ears feel kind of funny. I don't want it any worse than it is now. Amy and Daniel are coming Wed. and I know they don't want it, especially Amy, who is pregnant. I'm pretty sure Daniel doesn't want it, either.
   There is a woman who works with Tim and she never stays home when she's sick, so she shares all her germs. So nice of her.
   The weather turned out to be half way decent today. Just a few sprinkles and some good thunder. Scared the dogs.
   The carrots and corn and peas are coming up in the garden. We had a coyote wander through it last night. Coyotes are a terrible problem out here. They are very well fed, too, with all the deer and other animals around here.
   On the news this weekend, there was a story about a cougar in Deer Park, WA, that was caught after it had killed a woman's goats and another woman's llamas and goats. It was euthanized because it had a taste for farm animals and it wasn't afraid of humans. Cougars are also a problem out here. It was probably 30 minutes from here.
   The people that have lived out in this area don't really think too much about things like that happening. It's just one of those things you have to put up with, like tornadoes in other parts of the country. I know I would rather not have to put up with tornadoes.
   Tomorrow for fun, I am giving Chip a bath so he's nice and clean for company. Ah, he just needs a bath anyway. When I'm done, I'll be cleaning a water splattered bathroom.
   I just need to keep telling myself, I don't get sick, it's bad for my health.


Friday, June 4, 2010

Life In A Snow Globe is now Living In A Snow Globe

   I think I might have confused some people when I changed my blog name from Life In A Snow Globe to Living In A Snow Globe. I changed the name because the latter is closer to the address which is It's the same thrilling blog.
   We are having a temporary break in the rain right at the moment. I'm sure it won't last. The birds are enjoying the break. They are trying to get the food out of the abandoned squirrel feeder. I guess it will have to modified into a bird feeder.
   Yesterday morning when I went to get a closer look at the garden, the sunflower seeds were doing nothing. Later in the afternoon. 6 had popped up. The carrots still aren't doing anything. Maybe they are bad seeds. With all the rain, they might come up all over the garden.
   I'm sure I planted too much spinach to be ready at one time, but I planned on freezing it. Last year, the spinach went to seed before it even got leaves. Strange.
   The potatoes haven't come up yet, but they took a while last year. We still need to get more to plant.
   Most of the 300 onions are coming up. I keep thinking I should get more to plant. We go through a lot of onions, and I plan on dehydrating and freezing a good portion of them.
   The tomatoes are doing pretty well in the walls of water. They are almost up to the tops of them now. We heard on a news program the other day, that the proper way to plant the plants is to strip off most of the leaves and plant then sideways. This way they are suppose to get more roots and have a stronger base. Maybe if we get more tomatoes, we will try this. We did plant some seeds also, last week, but, as of today, they haven't come up.
   I haven't started my sewing projects yet, but I did come up with more of them. I have one baby afghan almost finished, so I guess that's progress.  We seem to be having a grandchild baby boom around here, so baby afghans are what I have been working on lately.
   I have managed to get most of the spring cleaning done, thanks to all this rain. Once I'm done, does this mean I can ignore the house and do what I want to do? It sounds like a plan to me. Of course, all this rain is also making the weeds grow like crazy, so the garden will need weeded. Then there is the flower bed I haven't planted yet. It might be getting too late for that, even though it's only early June.
   I was talking to our son, Daniel, the other day, and telling him I have to star stocking up for winter soon. He thought that was really funny, since it was still May then. I told him life is different up here, and we have to think of these things long before the snow comes, and I hear it's suppose to be another record snow year. We did switch the living room and den around, so I'll have different windows to stare out.
   For now, we just watch the birds and the weeds grow.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Never Ending Rain, But The Garden Is Growing

   Our garden is growing in our never ending rain. I can see green from the window, and since it's coming up in rows, I figure it's veggies. The deer haven't even tromped thru it yet. Maybe they don't like all this rain. I figure since I'm stuck in the house, I might as well clean it. I haven't started sewing yet, but I did fold those towels, so I guess I'm making some progress.
   All this rain is making everything so very green. Very pretty shades of green.
   Puddles of water with rings of yellow pine pollen around them. I never knew pines had so much pollen until we moved up here. Could it be, because there aren't that many pines in the desert?