Monday, July 31, 2006

Catching up

Hard to believe tomorrow is the first day of August. Ughhhhh. I once heard a saying that went "after the fourth, watch for the fall" and it really is true. Autumn is approaching at alarming speed. Not sure what I doing for my local meal this week. I was thinking a Dutchie type meal, perhaps Chicken Corn Soup, which is a serious summer food where I live. And something with peaches and blackberries again cause that bush just keeps on producing berries. I'll let you know. And I'll be sure to include the before and after shots. Maybe I will incorporate unflattering lighting and cheap dinnerware in the before shots, y'know, just for effect.

I believe air conditioning is ruining our society. Okay, not really, but I think it has made profound changes that many people don't realize. I've said before that we don't have AC in our home, nor do I have it in my car. Am I sometimes hot? Hell yes. But not so hot that I can't function. Apparently I am now freakishly acclimated to heat and humidity, enabling me to continue living my life, where others I know are relegated to being shut-ins when the weather is above 75 degrees. Saturday, I went out to dinner with my husbands family to Ruby Tuesdays (blech) and it was so cold in that restaurant, I seriously wished that I had a sweater or something. It was ridiculously cold...I was literally shivering. But everyone else was fine. Then we went to a local fair and walked around where all the families (there weren't that many due to the heat) literally looked like they could die at any second. People appeared to be melting. It wasn't even that hot....and it was evening. Too bad I'm not having kids, because mine would have been evolutionarily pre-disposed to succeed during a period of global warming. And I don't understand all the deaths from heat. How does that happen? Unless you are so accustomed to living in your air conditioned home, driving in your air conditioned car to your air conditioned office space and shopping and eating in malls and restaurants you could store meat in that you can no longer tolerate heat and humidity. If you have access to water and an open widow with a fan, how do you die? Sometimes I wish that I could live in the days before air conditioning. The days of sleeping porches and wide front porches crowded with wicker furniture and huge ceiling fans, and just the slower pace that summer took because of the heat. That's all gone now. I've read a few times that many old-time southerners credit air conditioning with the demise of many southern traditions as well as the 'pace' of the south in the summertime. Gone are the days of the Seersucker suit and the chilly libation on the front porch. All year round you can live, shop, drive, and work at a comfy 72 degrees.

And speaking of the South, only a short while until I am there for a much deserved and much anticipated TWO WEEK vacation on Hatteras Island! woohoo. The countdown has begun. And I won't share the countdown on here, cause I'm not entirely sure who all reads this blog and I don't really want to advertise when it is exactly that I'll be away. But I am super excited. I am resisting my desire to start making lists, cause it is a little too early for that. The only bad thing about the house we stay in is the damn AIR CONDITIONING. I tried to turn it off when we stayed there last year. What good is having a waterfront house when you can't hear or smell the water. But the screens had been removed in most of the windows for repair, so that didn't happen. I did find out that my dogs LOVE air conditioning, because they refused to come outside most of the time, unless they knew they were going in the water. Sit outside and lie on the deck while I read? No thanks, they said, we'll watch from inside. Girly-dogs.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Oh, sweet summer

Local Meal 5

Whole wheat pasta (which I bought in bulk at Darrenkamps in Mount Joy, but its probably not local) tossed with my tomatoes and pesto made with my basil, my garlic, and parmesan cheese that I had (not local). Pine nuts also not from around here. Hmmmm. What could I substitute there?

Blackberry and Peach crisp, made from peaches from Masonic Home Orchards and Balckberries from my yard. Butter from Shady Acres in Elizabethtown, Daisy flour from the mill in Annville. Sugar not local, but hey.

This is Masonic Homes Farm Market. Cute. It is on the campus of a very expensive retirement community for Masons. They have all kinds of fruit and veggies that they grow on site and this fall they will be offering grass-fed beef for the first time. Yay! And it is only 5 minutes from my house.

I go there every Saturday now, because one of these Saturdays all those plants that are sitting out there will have a 'free' sign on them. Every year, I snag at least 10 large geraniums. And yes, it's almost August, but I can still enjoy them for at least another 2 and a half months.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

I'm not sure this is safe to do:

I don't think I'd advise anyone to roll over when Santorum is around.

Thank a liberal

I think I've posted or linked to this before, but I like it, so here it is again:

A day in the life of Joe Republican

Joe gets up at 6 a.m. and fills his coffeepot with water to prepare his morning coffee. The water is clean and good because some tree-hugging liberal fought for minimum water-quality standards.
With his first swallow of water, he takes his daily medication. His medications are safe to take because some stupid commie liberal fought to insure their safety and that they work as advertised.
All but $10 of his medications are paid for by his employer's medical plan because some liberal union workers fought their employers for paid medical insurance - now Joe gets it too.
He prepares his morning breakfast, bacon and eggs. Joe's bacon is safe to eat because some girly-man liberal fought for laws to regulate the meat packing industry.In the morning shower, Joe reaches for his shampoo. His bottle is properly labeled with each ingredient and its amount in the total contents because some crybaby liberal fought for his right to know what he was putting on his body and how much it contained.
Joe dresses, walks outside and takes a deep breath. The air he breathes is clean because some environmentalist wacko liberal fought for laws to stop industries from polluting our air.
He walks to the subway station for his government-subsidized ride to work. It saves him considerable money in parking and transportation fees because some fancy-pants liberal fought for affordable public transportation, which gives everyone the opportunity to be a contributor.
Joe begins his workday. He has a good job with excellent pay, medical benefits, retirement, paid holidays and vacation because some lazy liberal union members fought and died for these working standards.
Joe's employer pays these standards because Joe's employer doesn't want his employees to call the union. If Joe is hurt on the job or becomes unemployed, he'll get a worker compensation or unemployment check because some stupid liberal didn't think he should lose his home because of his temporary misfortune.
It's noontime and Joe needs to make a bank deposit so he can pay some bills. Joe's deposit is federally insured by the FSLIC because some godless liberal wanted to protect Joe's money from unscrupulous bankers who ruined the banking system before the Great Depression.
Joe has to pay his Fannie Mae-underwritten mortgage and his below-market federal student loan because some elitist liberal decided that Joe and the government would be better off if he was educated and earned more money over his lifetime.
Joe is home from work. He plans to visit his father this evening at his farm home in the country. He gets in his car for the drive. His car is among the safest in the world because some America-hating liberal fought for car safety standards.
He arrives at his boyhood home. His was the third generation to live in the house financed by Farmers' Home Administration because bankers didn't want to make rural loans. The house didn't have electricity until some big-government liberal stuck his nose where it didn't belong and demanded rural electrification.
He is happy to see his father, who is now retired. His father lives on Social Security and a union pension because some wine-drinking, cheese-eating liberal made sure he could take care of himself so Joe wouldn't have to.
Joe gets back in his car for the ride home, and turns on a radio talk show. The radio host keeps saying that liberals are bad and conservatives are good. He doesn't mention that the beloved Republicans have fought against every protection and benefit Joe enjoys throughout his day. Joe agrees: "We don't need those big-government liberals ruining our lives! After all, I'm a self-made man who believes everyone should take care of themselves, just like I have."


Special thanks to whoopsy daisy for pointing me to this hilarious video. I want to marry this guy. Oh....wait....yeah, can't do that. But when he stops singing and starts buttering a roll and stuffs it in his mouth, it just totally melts my heart. Glad to know that I'm not the only one utterly humiliated by the actions of Bush.

Monday, July 24, 2006

Buddleia patrons

Butterfly sex apparently.

Not sure what this is. They're face to face.

Big fat bee.

Hummingbird moth. There must have been 50 of these on that bush on Sunday.

Okay, not butterflies, but very happy chickens. Out all day. Chickens have the cutest butts. The Buff on the left looks like she has little feathery pantaloons on. So cute. And man do they love tomatoes. Flash the yellow plastic collander (used to collect tomatoes) and those chickens would follow you to the ends of the earth.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

We'll be welcomed as liberators

I want to grab this guy by the balls and tug his ass all the way to an Army recruiting station, sign him up, and send him over and let him see first hand how much the people of IRAN will welcome us as Liberators. I cannot even believe Bill Kristol is so delusional to make a statement like this. Unbelieveable. The day will come, and I believe it isn't that far away, where every single dollar you and I pay in taxes will go to the military-industrial complex because at that point we will be occupying the entire Middle East.

Where exactly does he expect to get the military people to invade Iran? My husband served in the Army during the first Gulf War. Thankfully he did not sign up for the Reserves after he was finished with active duty. But still, when this stuff starts looking like it's gonna happen, I get nervous every time I open the mailbox because you just never know.

Local Meal 4

Local Meal 4


eggs from Shady Acres (Elizabethtown, PA, 5 miles)

Local Cheddar Cheese from S. Clyde Weaver (Central Market, Lancaster, PA, 20 miles)

Tomatoes, Scallions, Basil, Mucho Nacho Peppers, and Heirloom Stuffing Peppers (me)

Blackberries (me, although they are not very sweet)

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Like a Pixie Stick for Dogs

So I put the dogs out on Monday evening when I got home from work. They were hot so I sprayed them down with the hose and let them run around for a while. Then I got the mail and perused the paper, drank a beer, checked on my garlic, and pulled a few weeds at the front of the house. I then heard a weird noise coming from the back yard. A kind of thrashing and banging and mad panting with a sort of growl The brown dog was furiously playing with this corrugated pipe:

See how the end is all crimped up? He had been playing with it (and chewing on it) for some time apparently. It was about 5 feet long and maybe 6-8 inches in diameter. I watched him for awhile as he flung it around, wrestled it, ran it around in circles. I felt bad. I am a bad pet owner. My dog is so bored as to be reduced to playing with a junk piece of pipe. So I took it away from him. He was really annoyed. I was suprised at how annoyed he was. It was just a pipe. And as the brown dog strained on his leash to get the pipe back, the pipe squealed really loudly and scared me, causing me to drop it, causing the brown dog to wildly jump up and down cause the pipe was just out of his reach. Then I saw this:

There was something brown and furry in this pipe. Something that had just had a really bad day, possibly the worst day of it's life. Something that was probably reeling with dizziness and about to puke from being flung around the yard for the last 20 minutes or so by my dog. The brown furry thing squealed again. Hey I know that squeal. That's a whistle pig! And sure enough, looking into the end of the pipe that wasn't crimped, there was the bottom of a baby whistle pig. He was wedged in there pretty good. I turned the pipe to try and shake him out near his home burrow, but he wasn't coming out backwards. So I had to get some shears and cut the end off the front of the pipe where it had been all chewed. Finally, after much cajoling and then resorting to nudging him out with a long stick, he emerged and staggered toward the burrow like a drunken sailor. I could have just left him alone, but it was about 95 degrees and the pipe was black and I was afraid if I didn't get him out of there, he'd die of heat stroke.

I don't know how many babies there are. This is the first time I've seen one. So their home is less than ten feet away from my enormous FENCELESS garden and there is an entire whistle pig family living under my shed and yet nothing in the garden has been touched. What gives? Who knew that ground hogs could be considerate. But that could be over and done with now. Brown dog crossed the line and messed with one of the kids. My garden will probably be a sea of green stubs when I get home today.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Garlic Harvest

I harvested my garlic on Saturday. I have a lot of garlic! I planted 2 bulbs of hardneck and 2 bulbs of softneck. It seems like I harvested a lot more than I planted....I mean each clove produces one head, but it seems like I have more heads that I planted cloves. Weird. Most of it turned out a normal size. Some of it was kind of puny. And others are absolutely enormous, like it takes up my entire hand!

Things I learned:
Garlic likes mulch.
Garlic does not like to be crowded. The largest heads were the ones that had the most space and were not crowded by the neighboring Swiss Chard.
Garlic likes water.
Cutting off the scapes really does result in a larger head on the hardneck varieties. I left one scape on to experiment with planting the resulting bulbils. That head was much smaller than the ones from which I had cut the scapes earlier.

I bundled them bunches and they are currently hanging in the garage attic to cure. They make the entire garage smell like garlic. It is supposed to be 98 degrees today. I hope I am not slowly cooking them. Garlic was very easy to grow and I will plant much more in the fall.

Local Meal 3

Hmmmm......I really intend to make these really great meals using as many local ingredients as possible. But the past few days it has been really, really hot and humid and remember we don't have air conditioning. I usually work outside until dark, because there just doesn't seem to be time to do it all. So this was the meal on Saturday night. It was 9:00, I was hot and sweaty and totally not feeling like cooking. I threw the beets in the oven earlier, so they were cooled and all I had to do was slice things.

Fruit Salad: Bluberries, peaches, and yellow plums purchased and grown at Masonic Homes Orchards (4.5 miles). Melon was purchased there also, but was labeled as hailing from the Eastern Shore. If they mean southern Delware, I'm good. Eastern Shore of Maryland....not so much, probably more than a hundred miles. Virginia, totally too far, more like 240 miles

Warm Beet Salad: Beets (mine) tossed in olive oil and balsamic and roasted, then mixed with dill (mine), salt and pepper, and crumbled bleu cheese (not local).

Friday, July 14, 2006

My lawn is better than your lawn

amy stewart has a great link to a story about the Foti Family. They are featured in this NYT article on the Edible Estates project, which involves turning their lawn into a garden, something not taken lightly in suburbistan. I am not a fan of lawn. My husband likes it, but is not a fanatic. The last few years I have been chipping away at the edges, planting rough hedges of American Cranberry, Red stemmed Dogwood, and this spring Serviceberry. I'd like a lot less lawn. I'm always trying to gently dissuade mowing. In the dead of summer, it really doesn't need to be moved every week. I don't mind shaggy, but husband does. It must be a man thing. Thankfully, he does not fertilize or spray herbicides or anything like that. Actually, our lawn is probably closer in approximation to a closely cropped field of violets, ground ivy, clover, hawkweed, and dandelion.

But we have this neighbor. Oh the stories I could tell about this neighbor.

When we first moved to our home, almost 4 years ago. We had no adjacent properties with homes on them. There was one neighbor about a quarter mile down the road, and a cluster of three 1950's ranch homes at the crossroads about 1,000 feet away. The rest was farmland. Then in December I noticed neon paint in the street, pointing toward the direction of the property directly between us and the ranch homes. The paint spelled out "driveway". Oh no. So this builder comes and builds this taupe, cookie cutter McMansion on eight tenths of an acre. And then these two idiots move in. We did not get along from the start and do not to this day. There is a simmering hostility there, basically because they are the most inconsiderate people I have ever met in my entire life (another post for another day). Anyway, here they build this suburban tract house out among farm fields. You'd think that after paying an arm and a leg for this lot with farmland views, they would be a certain kind of people. You'd be wrong. In addition to having a spotlight on every single tree and shrub in his yard, this guy is obsessed with his lawn. There are no weeds. And he mows at least three times a week. If he mows one day and my husband mows the next (because he has an odd schedule and mows when he can) this guy will mow that day too. He simply cannot have any property near him with shorter grass. If one of the other neighbors mows, he mows again. We have talked about setting up a schedule, so somebody mows every other day, thereby forcing him to mow, slowly driving him crazy. He even mows the strip of land across the street from his house, separating the farmers field from the road. Dude! That's not your yard! He mows in the winter. I swear to God. He mowed FOUR FREAKIN times in January alone. Any idea what it's like to be standing outside in a parka, letting the dog pee, feeling the crunchy earth under your feet, AND HEAR A MOWER? I think he didn't have the blades lowered. I think he was just reapplying the pattern to the frozen grass. See, he is also obsessed with patterns. Some days it is a diagonal, some days a sort of plaid, somedays straight across, some days stripes. It is so ridiculous. So we have this suburban wannbe, desperately competing against no one for 'best lawn'. You'd think with the price of gas what it is, he'd cut back a little this year. Again, you'd be wrong. What a guy. It would be funny, except that I know there are huge subdivisions across this great country full of morons like him. Poisoning the groundwater and surface waters with their Chemlawn and TruGreen, filling the air with their noxious emmissions as they mow and weedwhack, and blow, and trim to compete with one another. I just don't get it.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Roo's new friends

Well, Roo seems happy at his new place. I felt a million times better when I saw where he would be living. The farmer wasn't home but instructed me that he would leave a cage out for him with shade and water and feed. As soon as we pulled up we were assailed by various kinds of poultry. Turkeys and many kinds of chickens all came clucking around. Roo was still alittle scared, but leaned in to sniff things out.

I need a farm. I need a barn. I totally need more animals. My husband knew that this would set my mind thinking about what I want to get next. The turkeys were friendly and I loved the goats. I could do without geese. They had babies and would have killed I believe, were they not fenced. Hopefully Roo never tangles with them.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

My favorite weed

Yes, I have a favorite weed. It gets a bad rap. It is Chicory (Cichorium intybus), a member of the Composite Family. Right now, in Lancaster County, it is blooming all along our country roadsides and rough spots, forming impromptu vignettes with left behind day-lillies and Queen Ann's Lace. Chicory blooms from June until early October. Other names for this plant include wild succory, Belgian Endive, cornflower, coffee weed, witloof, or blue or ragged sailors. In Germany, it is known as Wegwart or Road Plant for it's affinity for growing along roadways.

It grows madly in my garden and I let it alone for the most part, back where the fruit bushes grow. The flowers bloom in the morning and their heads follow the sun (a phenomenon known as heliotropism), folding up by noon on a sunny day.

According to The Secrets of Wildflowers (Sanders), Linneaus used chicory as one of several flowers in a 'floral clock'. He determined that the flowers opened regularly at 5 a.m. and closed at 10a.m. In England and the U.S. the period is more like 6:30 to noon.

The legend of chicory says that the plant was once a fair maiden who refused the advances of the sun. In true male chauvinist fashion, the sun turned her into a flower, forcing her to stare at him each day and making her fade before his might.

Chicory favors poor soils and develops a long tap root, enabling it to live in environments unfavorable to most plants. In European countries, the roots are dug and forced in dark cellars in the winter. The resulting white shoots are eaten in salads. It has been used to make a coffee substitute, particularly in the south. It is used as a root vegetable, as a dye plant, and even as a hay crop. Thomas Jefferson grew it at Monticello.

Oh, not in Ladies Gardens,
My peasant posy!
Smile thy dear blue eyes,
Nor only - near to the skies-
In upland pastures dim and sweet-
But by the dusty road
Where tired feet
Toil to and fro,
Where flaunting Sin
May see thy heavenly hue
Or weary Sorrow look from thee
Toward a more tender hue.

- Margaret Deland (1857-1945)

Dear Rooster,

I'm sorry it has come to this. I tried. I really did. You are such a handsome rooster and I so wanted to keep you. But the crowing....oh, the crowing. I just can't handle it.

It's not you, it's me. A few times, at 6 am was okay. But for half an hour straight? It's too much. And the bigger you get, the louder you get. The dogs don't appreciate it, I don't appreciate it, and husband really, really doesn't appreciate it. And on overcast days, when you crow whenever you feel like it, all day long? I know you can't change. You have to go. So this evening you will be driven to Meadowview Apiary in Manheim. In addition to honey, they raise chickens for eggs. I hear that there are over 100 free range hens there with currently no Rooster. They also breed chickens and that's what you'll be for. You can run free all day instead of only on weekends and when I get home from work. And the man even asked if you crowed and was pleased when I said that indeed you did. He likes roosters that crow a lot. So I think you will be happy.

I'm sorry things turned out this way, Roo. Really I am. But I think it's for the best. The man said I could come visit anytime I wanted, and I will come and see you. We can still be friends. Hopefully you will always let me hold you like a football and pet your shiny feathers. And if the farmer isn't looking, I may even sing to you just like old times, cause even though you are a big boy now, I know you still like it. Take care, buddy.

Monday, July 10, 2006

Personal Hell

My personal hell, stolen from badger.

I love this meme. I spend a lot of time thinking about personalized hells. Not so much for myself, but rather for other people. Like when I see a sprawling suburban development, I wish that the developer's personal hell is spending eternity driving endlessly around a ginormous subdivision in which all the homes look exactly alike and it is just one cul-de-sac after another with remarkably similar names and he cannot find his own home, ever. Or for the assholes that cannot keep their car to 45 mph or under on my windy country road so I fear for my life every time I pull from my driveway....well for them, I hope they spend eternity as a turtle, endlessly trying to cross a two-lane country road and never being able to do it because people are just drinving way too fast. As soon as he thinks he has a chance, zip...a car comes out of nowhere. Anyway.....

Things in my hell:

Drinks in my hell:

Any hard liquor except Tequila
Diet Pepsi

Food in my hell:

Marshmallow Peeps

Occupations in my hell:

Walmart Greeter
White House Press Secretary for Republican President (they must feel so dirty each and every day)
Corporate Seminar Giver (those people that come and try to get everybody in the team spirit, I don't even know the name for the job, but I always think what a total fucking waste of time).

Music mix in my hell:

The musical stylings of:
Jimmy Buffet (I hate that music more than anything)
Contemporary Christian Music
Anything by these American Idol idiots

President in my hell: I quote Badger -- "um ... crap".

Authors in my hell:

John Updike (I've read almost everything and am convinced he hates women)
That Left Behind retard....Tim something
Alice Hoffman (I want the time back I wasted reading Here on Earth)

Husbands in my hell:

Owen Wilson
Tom Delay
this guy (ewwwww, so weird)
Bill Frist (he doesn't look like he's actually alive)

Only activities allowed in my hell:
cleaning the cat box
cooking crap for my husband cause that's all he eats (refused to eat Local Meal 1 or 2)
watching movies that he brings home from the movie store (Joe Dirt again? C'mon)
Stripping Wallpaper from old plaster walls

Oh and I end with a funny anecdote. I'm driving today and I flipped past a Christian station (we have a lot of them) and this pastor is pleading for people to send in money because the air conditioning at their studio broke, which, in the heat and humidity is devastating to their broadcast equipment and their tape library. And he actually blamed it on the Devil. The Devil broke the air conditioning, because he doesn't want those tapes to survive to teach future generations. Haha. Ohhhhh, powerful Devil. Can't destroy the tapes directly, can only endanger them by killing the air conditioning. Please send money!

Local Meal 2

Local Meal 2

Chicken (Bell and Evans, Lancaster County, PA)

Gazebo Room Dressing as marinade (Mechanicsburg, PA

Tomatoes (Washington Boro, PA)

Mozzarella, fresh local (Central Market, Lancaster)

Spring onions and basil (me)

Kalamata Olives (not local)

Sweet Corn (farmer up the road)

Bacon (not organic or free range, but from Lancaster County, PA)

The skillet corn was by no means healthy. Corn pan fried in bacon grease generally isn't. But it was reaaalllllyyyy good. I totally could have just eaten that.

Friday, July 07, 2006

odds and ends

I got my hair cut last night. I love having my hair cut. I probably only do it about twice or three times a year. I have a pretty simple cut and I wear my hair shoulder length or longer, so it looks okay for awhile. Sometimes I cut it myself. Usually I bring in a picture of what I want my hair to look like. Last time I brought in a picture of Martha Stewart getting on the plane as she got out of prison. Before that I brought in a very small picture cut out of my husbands Playboy (I know, ewwww, but the articles ARE really good)...I believe it was a College Coeds edition. This girl had super cute hair. I had to tell the stylist not to turn it over, because there were b-r-e-a-s-t-s on the back of it. Last night I asked for something that I could blow out if I wanted, but would also look good allowed to air dry, while I am speeding to work with the windows down, that I kind of can pull back if I'm working outside and will look good in curls. I have naturally curly hair, well wavy hair that gets insanely curly in the humidity. If I go to bed with a wet head on a humid night (remember, no AC), I wake up as Shirley Temple.

Anyway, my stylist knows that I am a sucker for things that smell good. If she uses it and it smells good, I will buy it. Last night she used this Smoothing Lusterizer and oh my God it smelled so good. It actually got me out of bed earlier this morning because I couldn't wait to use it. It smells like the red popsicles, the twinpops? Or cherry Kool-Aid. I love it. It was expensive but it was worth it.

Tonight will be my local meal 2. Pictures forthcoming. Local chicken, marinated in Gazebo Room Dressing, a tomato salad featuring my homegrown Basil, tomatoes from Washington Boro, PA, not-so-fresh mozarella left over from the farmers market this weekend, and sliced kalamata olives (Liz said they are a condiment), and skillet corn cooked in local bacon fat and sprinkled with bacon. Yum. If there are any black raspberries left, that will be desert. I do have green beans left from the other night. I roasted them. Pretty good. Tossed them with olive oil and balsamic, roasted at 400 degrees for about 12 minutes. I'm running out of things to do with green beans. Maybe I will make dilly beans over the weekend. I believe every single dill seed I planted came up and it is time to harvest the garlic.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

In case you missed it

Waht's that Sinclair Lewis quote again? Oh yeah....'When fascism comes to America, it will be draped in the flag and carrying the cross'......Apparently, fundies are taking that literally.


This makes my skin crawl. This is wrong to so many degrees I don't even know where to start. And who are the morons that are clustered at the base thinking it's a good idea? Founding fathers are spinning at the speed of sound at this point.

Here is a link to the article. What the hell is wrong with people?

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Rudbeckia with a mind of it's own

This perennial bed is currently on fire with an unknown Rudbeckia. I bought it the first year we lived here. It was of questionable hardiness as it died back and never reappeared in the spot that I planted it in. It is a rather tall flower and I had it towards the center of the bed. Apparently, it is a little claustrophobic as it has rampantly reseeded itself all along the edges. It is pretty so I leave it alone.

This clump is currently growing up between the bricks in a walkway. And I'm sure it will eventually walk into the narrow little planting area in front of it.

This year we've achieved some kind of genetic variation and ended up with a clump with whitish centers. I can't decide whether I like them or not. They look strange to me.

In other news, my compost is apparently not that hot. Or tomato seeds are super tough. In every pot that I planted using compost, I now have a tomato. These pots of stock (now over, they don't like heat) are hosting two fairly large tomato seedlings. We'll see what develops. I, for one, am a fan of mystery tomatoes. Once, I got a cherry tomato that was so tiny but so sweet, I ate them like candy in the garden. And I take a lukewarm approach to tomatoes. Not their biggest fan. But I'm getting better. Since I scorched most of my tomato seedlings that I started from seed, I'm really hoping that this turns out to be a Constoluto Genovese or a Brandywine, since I only have one of each of those. We'll see. I suppose I pull out those stock to give my suprise tomatoes more room.

Monday, July 03, 2006

chubby baby

So darn cute. My head gets all fuzzy when shes around. The girls had a great time over the weekend, but when mom and dad came to pick them up Sunday afternoon and brought baby sister, you could tell that the girls really missed her. They just held her and kissed her and smelled her sweet little head. I had baby fever for a few hours after they left.

One local summer - meal 1

So I'm participating in One Local Summer (sponsored by Pocket Farm), in which one meal a week has to be entirely composed of local ingredients. I had a busy week and an even busier weekend, so this was the best I could do.

This was Saturday lunch. We had grand plans for Friday dinner, but it got late, the grill didn't want to start, and so in a fit of desperation, I cooked macaroni and cheese from a box to supplement local chicken, asparagus, and fingerling potatoes , thereby ruining my local meal.
So we made salads and a black raspberry pie the next day for lunch.

Chicken, cold - organic, free range from Shady Acres Farm in Elizabethtown.

All vegetables in the salads (lettuce, spring onions, carrots, beet greens, cherry tomatoes) were homegrown. Nasturtium petals, homegrown. Fresh mozarella we purchased on Friday at Central Market. Gazebo Room dressing, made in Mechanicsburg. I didn't grow the tomatoes on the table, we purchased them at Central Market. The croutons were stale bread we turned into croutons. The bread was store-bought that I had, but made from a local company. I think I did throw a handful of Spanish olives on the salad, which are most definitely not local. Does this disqualify me?

Black Raspberries are homegrown. The crust includes the organic flour purchased on Friday, butter from Shady Acres. Sugar was not local. The remainder of the stuff for the crust was stuff I already had (not local).