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May 23rd, 2016

The window screens on this house are all fairly old and many of them have had a rough life. There is paint on them, their original paint has worn off, overall they’re looking pretty rough. This means that they inhibit the view to the garden, which is not OK!
painted window screens 1
Enter matte charcoal gray spray paint. I few quick sprays and voila, the screens are once again dark and seeing outside is once again an option (and a pleasure).
painted window screens 2
It’s amazing how something that seems so insignificant can make such a big impact. I’m in the process of painting most of the screens in the house and I’m really looking forward to the new and improved view to the garden outside! Quick DIY projects are the best, especially those that help me see my hard work in the garden in a better light.

Did you do any DIY projects around the house or garden this week?

Ear Protection

May 20th, 2016

I’m serious about ear protection and I have very sensitive hearing. I’ve never listening to loud music and never liked loud noises of any kind, especially a lawn mower. I used to have a pair of custom fit musicians ear plugs that I wore at wedding receptions and when I used power tools and loud machinery. They finally wore out and I decided to buy a box of these foamy soft 3M ones. I use them a few times before tossing them and grabbing a new pair. While I love the previous custom earplugs I had, I didn’t want to spend the money for a new pair, I find these are super comfortable and I can wear them all day. I’m not usually one to use disposable products, but I do love these babies!!!
I highly recommend using ear plugs if you are using a mower or other loud equipment. If you don’t like things in your ears and haven’t liked other earplugs I think you’ll like these. I’m so glad a friend gave me a pair last year because I was able to see how comfortable they were compared to other brands. Now, I carry a pack of them in my purse and in the glove box of each car. I’ll never be caught in a loud situation without earplugs again!

Do you wear hearing protection?

Uncommon Cut Flowers

May 19th, 2016

Yesterday evening I planted my cutting garden, well most of it. I still have a few things to seed. It’s filled with the usual suspects, you’ll be seeing them throughout the summer as they bloom. Meanwhile, I’m always on the lookout for uncommon cut flowers and other plants that I can use during the weeks with no blooms. This week I have lovely rhubarb flower bud stalks gracing my table.
rhubarb flower buds in a vase 1
rhubarb flower buds in a vase 2
They’re rather graphic, very large, very bold, and quite interesting. I absolutely love how they look and enjoy their beauty during this season. Since they need cut from the plant anyways, I may as well enjoy them on the table for a few weeks during this time when there’s not much else blooming outside.

Do you have any recommendations for uncommon flowers or foliage for the table?

First Rhubarb of the Season

May 16th, 2016

Yesterday, I harvest the first rhubarb of the season. I have some frozen strawberries from last year’s harvest that I have saved for this day. A delicious strawberry rhubarb sauce was made, which will be stirred into semifreddo to make a strawberry rhubarb ice cream.
rhubarb (1)
It’s such a wonderful flavor combination, no wonder it’s so popular. Of course I made more than I needed for ice cream, so I’ll have it to stir into yogurt as well. I’m happy as can be that the harvest season has arrived, it’s such a wonderful feeling to be eating seasonal fruits and vegetables once again, especially those harvested from my garden!

What are you harvesting from your garden?

Friday Favorite: Seeding Vegetables

May 13th, 2016

It’s quite an amazing thing to sprinkle seeds on the soil, cover them up, water, and watch then sprout and grow into edible things. I seeded radishes last week that are already up. It’s the season for direct seeding all sorts of things: peas, beets, onions, lettuce, endive, etc.
seeding 1
I haven’t plants my main crop peas yet, but ‘Golden Sweet’ which are a sugar snap variety have been seeded. These are one of my favorite types of edible pod peas.
seeding 2
Beets are another one of my favorite vegetables. I love them boiled, steamed, pickled, roasted, fried, pretty much any way you can cook them. They will be seeded a couple more times throughout the summer so I have an endless supply for the table.

What are you seeding in your edible garden this weekend?

Seeds and Sundries
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Berkey Water Filter

This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.