Veggies and Vegging

9 May Week One

Inspired by our friends Don and Cindy, we recently signed up with a Community Supported Agriculture service called Terra Organics. Every two weeks, they’ll deliver a box full of locally-grown, organic fruits and vegetables to our front door. Whatever’s in season, that’s what we’ll be getting, so it’s forcing us to expand our culinary horizons. One week it could be mustard greens and bok choy, the next it’s celery and whatever the heck sunchoke is.

Week One

Week One


Easter Egg Radish

Brought to you by PAAS

Just in the first week’s delivery, we got some apples, a bag of mixed greens, asparagus, rhubarb, mushrooms, beets, and a bunch of aptly named “Easter Egg radishes”. There were also supposed to be some pears, but they disappeared somewhere between the farm and our porch, so we’ll be getting something extra in our next shipment to make up for it.
Rhubarb = Awesome

Rhubarb = Awesome

So far it’s been really interesting. Not everything’s been a success (Guess what? Beets are gross!) but we’ve been pleasantly surprised too. Neither Kat nor I had ever had strawberry rhubarb pie before, but WOW! I know, “Wow, who’d have guessed Jimmy liked pie?”, but the rhubarb adds an awesome tang to the sweetness of the strawberries. More rhubarb’s coming next week too, so we’ll be trying something else with it.

Crappy Old TV

Before...

This house has a lot of things going for it, but the layout of the living room isn’t one of them. It’s a pretty awkward shape. When we moved in last summer, we found out that the giant TV I’d inherited from Jason wasn’t going to fit in the room. So we’ve been making do with the old 27″ mono set I used to have in the den at the old house. Okay, *I’ve* been making do — Kat couldn’t care less (I’m not sure her eyes are actually capable of seeing HD). I was just going to have to suffer through it til I could afford a better TV.
Beautiful New TV!

After!


I can afford a better TV! 37 inches of HD awesomeness. I’ve got big plans for this guy too. I’m in the middle of ripping all of our DVDs (165 movies, 100+ TV shows) to my hard drive. By next month I should be finished setting up a Media Center PC in our living room. We’ll be able to watch anything we own without leaving the couch, all courtesy of a computer that uses less power than a light bulb. More to come on that front! 🙂

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Spring has Sprung

14 Apr

Surprise Flowers

We didn't even know these were flowering plants

So I know I promised another entry and some more pictures last week, but since I had food poisoning one night and was rear-ended two days later, last week was pretty much a wash.

I was able to get back out in the yard again today which was so nice! I worked on getting the side flowerbed into shape. Now that the lilies are starting to get bigger I wanted to get all the crab grass cleared out of that bed. The small bed on the side of the garage is in full bloom – who knew that those plants were gonna be so beautiful in the spring? Maybe I’ll just plant a bunch more of those this year 🙂

Front Flowerbed

Temporarily Weed-Free

Here is a picture of the beautiful blooming front bed. The tulips and daffodils are in full bloom and the Japanese maple is bright red again. I had thought that I had planted 2 kinds of tulips, but until this week I wasn’t sure. Now there are two kinds of daffodils and two kinds of tulips 🙂

I have been doing some reading about vegetable gardening as my little sprouts aren’t so little any more. I look forward to getting everything planted out in the planters on the deck, but I don’t want to lose any plants to frost so I think I’m gonna give it another few weeks. In the mean-time Jimmy and I have transplanted them into bigger peat pots and I have started to thin the plants back (as I planted at least 3 seeds per peat disk). I can almost taste the tomatoes and squash already 🙂

A new post, wherein seeds are sown

31 Mar

So spring might be here, but with the weather of the last few days, who really knows… We’ve had hail, thunder, lightning and of course, rain. My daffodils started making their appearance about a week ago just after I finished weeding the front flower bed (I think they were embarrased to bloom in such a mess…). Jimmy and I added some more creeping plants to the front bed last weekend (pictures to come).

Coming Soon...Vegetables!

Coming Soon...Vegetables!

My energy as of late has been sprouting my own seeds for our vegetable garden! I feel like such a little kid, just fascinated by watching them emerge from the earth and get a little taller every day (they are only about a week and a half old and some are already over 2 inches tall!). I’ve planted two kinds of peppers and two kinds of tomatoes, 2 kinds of summer squash, 2 kinds of winter squash, cucumbers and basil. I’ve been doing some reading and research and have already purchased the planters that they will be put in once they are big enough to be transplanted outside.

Sprouts a-sproutin'

Sprouts a-sproutin'

Anyhow, I’m working graveyard shifts this week, so I’m tired and starting to feel like I’m coming down with a cold (probably due to the lack of decent sleep I’ve had in the past 3 nights…) I promise more pictures next week when I am coherent during daylight hours.

Catching Up

3 Feb

So I know it is far past due since we posted on the blog, so here goes…

Christmas Tree

I never thought it was such a bad little tree. Maybe it just needs a little love.

Christmas happened, but you wouldn’t know it from looking at our pictures. My parents and sister came up for Christmas at our place this year, but somehow we managed to forget to take a single photo! The only proof of the holiday season is this lone picture of our Christmas tree on the day we were throwing it out. The whole holiday was sort of a blur anyway because…

I was hired a month ago at St. Joseph Medical Center here in Tacoma! And even-though I’m only a per-diem employee (which means I just fill in for others and don’t have any set hours) I am so excited to be working again. I have been happy to take hours from anyone who will give them to me, which sometimes means I have crazy weeks where I work various shifts and my body has a hard time keeping up with what time it is…

New Scrubs!

New Scrubs!

Judy has been sweet enough to send me some new scrubs to wear to work, which is so nice as they can be expensive. So far I have refused to buy any new scrubs, especially when I find some pretty cute stuff at Goodwill. Once I’m getting more consistent hours I’ll probably splurge a little, but until then I have accumulated quite a bit, so I’m happy.

So apparently the bulbs I planted think that it’s spring, which seems kind of early to me. My mom said that it might be normal for our region. We had a pretty mild winter so perhaps spring is just coming a little early.

Still couponing like a crazy person – it’s nice to have a hobby that I like and that saves us money 🙂 I have also discovered Futoshiki which is similar to Sudoku which is a logic puzzle, but uses symbols and math. Anyone who has done Sudoku and likes it should try this new puzzle.

Bad Day on the High Seas

Bad Day on the High Seas

We have a new center piece for the livingroom too! Jimmy bought me a print of Brandon Bird’s “Bad Day on the High Seas” which is a painting of a whale, a giant squid, and a T-Rex all fighting each other (yes, Jimmy and I have strange ideas of what constitutes “art”). Anyhow, I had a great coupon for Jo-Anne’s fabric for framing so I got it framed for pretty cheap. For Christmas my parents got us a set of wooden carved whales (an adult and two babies). So those have been placed on the mantle to join the painting. Now Jimmy and I have started to look for wooden carved pieces of a T-Rex and a squid to someday join the whales 🙂
Bad Day on the High Seas

I think it really classes up the joint

Gobble Gobble Gobble

4 Dec

Sweet Potato Pumpkin Casserole

My new favorite - Sweet Potato Pumpkin Casserole

It is our first Thanksgiving in our new house, and we went all out! As anyone who knows me well knows, I LOVE Thanksgiving – it’s my favorite! I’m also very particular about the food that is at Turkey day – there are certain food that I MUST have there. I have to have sweet potatoes and I usually just have the canned kind with marshmallows, but I found a recipe for sweet potato pumpkin casserole – it was wonderful (I now have a new Thanksgiving favorite).

Gobble Gobble

Gobble Gobble


We decided to try doing a brine with the turkey this year – a salt water and herb soak for 8 hours before roasting. It made the turkey SO moist! And because we got an 11 pound turkey we had plenty of leftovers (yay for turkey soup and turkey sandwiches, and of course Christmas turkey enchiladas).

And as much as I love Thanksgiving, we can’t forget how much Jimmy pretty much hates it. So of course all the amazing food we made was almost all for me (which has meant a TON of leftovers…). Oh yeah, and Tesla had his first turkey feast, of course.

The full spread

The full spread

Why, yes, I will have S’more

30 Nov

Something you should know about Kat: the girl LOVES S’mores! It’s a good thing we don’t go camping very often, ’cause she’d probably weigh 300 pounds. So when I found this recipe back in August, I knew I had to make it her birthday cake. Ladies and Gentlemen, the S’mores Cake:

You're lucky to even get this picture!

You're lucky to even get this picture!


Of course I forgot to take a picture before we ate it. Trust me, it was gorgeous! The cake itself uses graham cracker crumbs instead of flour, there’s a layer of marshmallow fluff between the layers, and the whole thing is covered in a milk chocolate glaze. Yeah, it’s pretty much exactly as delicious as it sounds.
Happy 30th Kat!

Happy 30th Kat!


And speaking of Kat’s birthday, that’s a picture of 30 birthday cards, all sent by Kat’s sister Audrey. They’ve been trickling in for the last month. Aud, you’re awesome! 🙂

Pumpkin, how I love thee…

16 Nov

So one of my favorite parts of the Fall season is that everything pumpkin (cakes, cookies, lattes, etc.) comes back for another year. I LOVE pumpkin.

pumpkins

So many beautiful pumpkins

Us at Maris Farms

Us at Maris Farms

Corn Maze

Muddy, but fun, Corn Maze

To get our pumpkin for carving this year we went with our friends Em and Michael to Maris Farms in Puyallup, WA where we wandered around, watched pig races, ate way to much kettlecorn and got kinda lost in a corn maze. It was a pretty nice afternoon and we had a lot of fun choosing our pumpkins. Jimmy and I didn’t spend too much time picking one – I’m not that picky and I guess Jimmy isn’t either.

Michael and a pumpkin pal

Michael and a pumpkin pal

Michael and Em, on the other hand were very thorough, carrying large pumpkins from place to place as they changed their minds.

Skeleton pumpkin

Skeleton pumpkin

We didn’t get a chance to carve the pumpkin until Halloween evening just before Em, Michael and Hannah arrived to watch Mystery Science Theater 3000 with us. Jimmy went with a kinda skeleton look as I was busy trying to make cupcakes look like bats and spiders (only the later really worked). We were amazed at the amount of kids we had come trick-or-treating as we only had a handful over the past couple years living in the duplex.

Spiders and Bats

Spiders, Bats and Pumpkin cookies

I gave the jack-o-lantern two days before I sliced him up and threw him in the crockpot – I decided to give making my own pumpkin puree a try this year. Luckily Em and Michael have a Cuisinart food processor, so it wasn’t too hard. Our pumpkin made 15 cups of pumpkin puree! Now I just have to decide what to make with it all – the possibilities are endless 🙂 So far I have just stirred it into vanilla yogurt (which is quite tasty with a little cinnamon and sugar – could use some nuts though) – but I hope to try my hand at making a pumpkin pie from scratch with it, though the consistency is a bit runnier, so I’ll have to figure out what to do about that…