March 30, 2012


I ordered seeds from a catalog this year! It makes me feel like a serious gardener who knows what she's doing :) (Ha that's a joke.) But it was fun to look through the catalog and actually read about the different varieties of each veggie and take my time to decide rather than just staring blankly at seed packets in the store and playing eenie-meanie-miney-moe while Micah paces behind me. Plus planting heirloom, non-GMO seeds makes me feel good about what I'll be growing and subsequently eating. With prices comparable to the local farm supply store, and a super positive customer service  experience  I'm happy to recommend Comstock, Ferre & Co. to anyone.  (Some of my seeds were back-ordered and misplaced, but it only took one call to get it ironed out and I didn't peak to a single machine!)

Last Thursday, Micah and I planted all of our indoor starts. It felt good to put things into dirt. I was dying to plant since we had those few 80 degree days here but I restrained myself from putting anything but a little spinach in the ground. This weekend I'll plant the peas and onions right on schedule, like a good little gardener.

I openly admit that I ran down the next mornign to check if anythign had sprouted. Starting plants inside is like Christmas! Nothing had sprouted. but 2 days later, this marigold came up!! I actually harvested the marigold seeds from last year's plants. Look at me go. (I'm actually starting to be suspicious of it now though, like maybe it's a weed or volunteer tomato sprout. But I'm nurturing the heck out of it anyway!)
These tomatoes are also seeds from last year's tomato plants that took over the garden. This year, if they continue to grow, I will prune and trellis them. I am so unreasonably proud of them and me that they actually sprouted. If they bear tomatoes, I might dance.

Here is another gratuitous shot of our seedlings, Danish Ballhead cabbage and a Boston Pickling Cucumber peeking up behind them. This is another advantage of ordering seeds from a catalog. They all have fancy names...Straight 8, Early Snowball, Little Marvel, Delicious 51, California Wonder, Contender, Russian Mammoth. So cool. I am so easily amused.

Admit it, you are dying to know what Micah planted here :) 
(really unhelpful hint: Their given name is "Long Island improved 100 Days." No wonder we shortened it.)

March 29, 2012

I'm a reader

Another installment in my 2012 Non-resolutions series!

I'm a reader. I've always been this way. I can't help it. Cereal boxes, street signs, billboards, magazines, any book you put in front of me, I'll read it. At the end of last year, I was convicted to give up fiction. I was wasting too much time reading as a form of mindless entertainment escapism.

I was mindlessly consuming Christian romances that in spite of being "Christian" were building up unrealistic expectations about romance and I started to take it out on my husband when he didn't match up, mystery novels that were a bit racy, lawyer drama books with lots of language I didn't understand and plenty that I should not repeat, Chick Lit with no substance and even more things that didn't match up to Phillipppians 4:8 (whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things). I was not being edified - in fact the opposite. I was avoiding, I kept getting sucked in, staying up late to "just finish this chapter," losing myself in these books again and again instead of doing fun stuff from my "creative/crafty to do" list, taking care of my house or to be honest, doing anything remotely productive .

We did a series on the fiction of CS Lewis in our Sunday School class and we started with discussions about wether we should even read fiction and what the benefits of it are (I have a great sunday school class!) they were good discussions and I have no plans of permanently giving up fiction (taking Advent off though will probably be a yearly occurrence).

I took a month away from fiction so that I could resume reading fiction more intentionally; so that I would be able to enjoy it not end up feeling guilty or unsatisfied. I'm the last person who would say that fiction is a bad thing, and mindless escapism may even have a place but I want to be more intentional about what I'm reading.

So for 2012 I'll be listing the books I've read on this page. Some I may comment on some I may just list, but the purpose is record keeping and accountability. Please don't take their appearance on this page to be an unconditional endorsement.

March 28, 2012

Not New Year's Non-Resolutions

So WAAAY back in January, my sister posted a list not of resolutions but just things she'd like to do in 2012. She described it thusly:
these are not resolutions [...] rather, these are goals. things that i would like to accomplish [...]  some things involve major lifestyle changes and paradigm shifts. others are much simpler. there are things on the list that are one-shot kind of things, and once they are done that's all there is to it. but there are things in there that are longer-term kind of things, and they will hopefully stick around for a while. its not a comprehensive list, and it might grow as the year goes on. i might keep track of what i accomplish, or i might not. no biggie.

It included things like  "be a good a 5K...put new music on my to a book by Jane Austin Austen...paint something little...carve a jack-o-lantern....have fun"

I was inspired. So I sat down and wrote my own list. then  I color coded it. and sorted it onto another page of little lists. I am compulsive like that.  I think it may be hereditary, like the clutter, and the procrastination....

Anyway here's my list. Some of these are projects that I can do once and be done, others are ongoing projects that will take longer than one sitting but have a specific point were they are done, some are things I want to do regularly through the year with the hopes that they become part of me

  • Undecorate
  • Masks
  • Nick & Kaitlyn's capes
  • Angel
  • Hat
  • Plan flower beds & Maintain
  • Keep up house
  • De Clutter
  • BBE MkII
  • Read Bible - roundtable
  • Track Books Read
  • Blog 
  • PPT @ Grace Church
  • Cook from Scratch
  • Snowflakes
  • Pin Yellow Chair covers
  • Degrease Micah's White shirt
  • Project with Autumn et al
  • Play Piano
  • Clean Office - PAPERS!
  • Recipes Sort & track
  • Bulb in LR light
  • Mend that big stack
  • Get sewing machine fixed
  • Pamper
  • Budget
  • Garden plan Plant Keepup
  • Throw away less food
  • Be active
  • Put together Christmas book
  • Less time online
  • Pray
  • 2011 Photobook
  • Photograph life
  • Use video feature on  camera
  • Memorize scripture
  • Bake regularly.

Just puttin' it out there so I can at least have that much done for my quarterly review in 2 days :)

I gave my list it's own page so you can track my progress if you are so inclined. Don't feel like you have to, but it gives me the impression of accountability :)

2011 Yearbook

Another "non-resolution" checked off the list (you know, the one I have every intention of blogging one of these days) All the list said was "2011 Photobook" but what I intended was "put together book on shutterfly in a timely fashion and wait for the eventual free book offer. so you don't have to stay up to midnight franticly fighting the internet". Which is exactly what happened Monday night (thankfully the code still worked at 12:03).

But the book is done. I got the letter of the thing if not the intended spirit.TA DAAA!

I also feel compelled to note that I really like the changes they have made to the book making process. I enjoyed having all the control over placement and details. 

Keep your eyes peeled for pictures of the plants that sprouted. Have a good day

March 15, 2012

Picaken Adventures

The internet has amazing powers.
Somehow, last Monday, Pinterest made it seem like a good idea to use the last of my frozen raspberries from last summer to make a pie. This was certainly out of character but not necessarily a bad idea. But the internet was not content with a simple out of character pie. Oh no, it wanted me to bake that beautiful delicious pie into a cake.

It is called a picaken (pie-KAY-ken). According to Jamie The Very Worst Missionary (whose blog I highly recommend)
"A Picaken is more than food... it's an adventure."

And So I took the most beautiful pie I have ever made and flipped it upside down into 1/4 inch of batter in my biggest cake pan and then I poured in the rest of the batter.

Baked it (over. Apparently I need a bigger pan for my next picaken adventure)
And did not let it cool enough before icing it. I was out of time. A pie made out of frozen berries takes a loong time to bake. Also for the record one should not try and cool their cake on top of the stove.
No one at our homegroup minded how the cake looked. It was novel, bizzare, and most importantly DELICIOUS! Everyone wanted an encore.
Here is a the link to the post that started it all (for me) in case you feel adventurous! Her Picaken is WAY prettier than mine. I'm OK with that.

March 12, 2012

How does my garden grow...

Eventually I'm going to write a post about my long list of 2012 plans (Yes, I am aware it is almost halfway through MARCH, but how did that happen!?) Maybe this will be the week.

In the meantime one item on my long (and color-coded because I had brand new crayons)"not really resolutions" list is: Garden. Plan Plant Keep up.

I'm getting there.

I got the planning part done (and my seeds ordered!) and my plans are posted over at You should go over and check it out and let me know what you think....

This is the only picture I have of last years garden attempt. By the end of the season, it was an overgrown mess with a shoddy looking fence that only succeeded in keeping the groundhogs IN.

I can now cross one part of one thing off of my list. Progress being made.

I'll go ahead and point out again that ironically Blog is also on the list....14 items above "garden".

March 1, 2012

Today is March

March is Spring. Even if it does not look like it.
But, can Someone tell me what Happened to February?