Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Two Weeks and All is Well!

strawberry lemonade!
It has been 14 entire days since I've written last, due to throwing myself into work and having very little time to do much of anything besides make sure the kids are clean and fed.  We had a couple of nice days--and by nice, I mean over 50 degrees!  I managed to get soil into the raised beds and get some seeds planted outside.

The peas are in the hoop bed, red and golden beets are in another bed, an entire bed of red onion sets have been planted, and a couple of different kinds of kale have just sprouted.  By the time our last frost date rolls around, the peas, kale, and beets should be ready to harvest, and the beds will be home to peppers, tomatoes, tomatillos, and carrots.  Amazingly, our Red Russian kale from last year started taking off the moment the snow melted.  I picked off the browned outside leaves and it is starting to grow new ones!  The garlic I planted last fall has kicked into gear as well, and I'm starting to feel the excitement of impending summer.  I have a schedule of when to plant each set of seeds, based on the number of days it takes them to mature.  Right now, in the house, I have celery and shallots started, but nothing else will go in until this weekend.

seed starts
This past weekend was Evie's birthday, which also coincided with the opening of Pennsylvania's fishing season, so we went fishing for her birthday!  We've been having a ton of rain, though, so the creek was muddy, fast, and the water level was really high.  Everyone was having a rough time getting the trout to bite.  One gentleman overheard that it was Evie's birthday and gave her his only catch of the day, which was super sweet of him to do.

The birthday girl and her birthday trout
On the homemade front, I've been baking apple turnovers with some of the apple pie filling that I froze last fall.  Tonight I baked some bread, and for the past few weeks have been making a huge batch of steel-cut oats in the slow cooker.  This week, I've been working on going "shopping" in my chest freezer so that we can use up the things that we froze from last year in order to make room for this year's harvest.

I managed to burn my hand last week by hitting the exposed top of my hand against one of the hot oven racks.  I put the last of my homemade "owie salve" on it, so ended up making another batch.  It is easy to make and really works well on minor cuts, scrapes, scratches, and burns.  It also smells really good!  I base my recipe on Mrs. Happy Homemaker's Homemade Natural Neosporin as well as on ingredients that my ex-husband's late grandmother used in her "Horton's" salve.

Herbs infuse the oils making it a dark green
I've been up with a sick kidlet for the past few days, but it looks like the tide has turned and she's on the mend, finally.  I'm going to head to bed early (for me) and hope tomorrow brings us a healthy sort of day.  Friday, I'm headed to the creek to hopefully catch some trout, and Saturday, the girls and I are meeting up with my friend Cynthia to go foraging for leeks and morels.  Of course, I'll take the camera this time.

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