Thursday, April 30, 2009

Garden shots

Ok, I know it's still raining but I couldn't resist taking a few pictures. Everything just looks so green and alive after a spring rain!

My Hydrangea paniculata 'Limelight', soon it will be overtaking that ginormous allium.

A little blurry, but you get the idea of why I love this cushion spurge.

I can't wait to figure out which hosta I dug up from the folks.

My little friend from the North, it's just barely peaking up... soon enough this Tiger Lily will be towering over the hostas. Pin It Now!

Garden update

Holy smokes am I beat! This past weekend, I dug out a bunch of hostas from my father-in-law's place (thank you!) and potted them up. Yesterday, I planted some tiger lillies on the side of my garage (thank you Auntie!) and will soon plant the hostas with them once I know what kinds they are. Finally, today I went to Horrocks Farm Market and picked up a ton of perennials for my little garden. Once I got home it started raining cats and dogs but I was able to plant everything in the lulls of the rain. All in all, it was a very productive afternoon!

Check out my Globemaster Allium. I saw some very pitiful looking alliums at Horrocks; their leave were half the size and had very small stalks with almost-about-to-open buds. I feel so proud of my monstrousities! In the bottom right you can see my new 'Bonfire' Cushion Spurge and my very leafy Limelight Hydrangea in the bottom left.

Here's my list of perrenials, pictures will come soon when the weather is nicer.
  • 3 Cushion spurge (1 of them 'Bonfire')
  • 2 Delphinium 'Magic Fountains, Cherry Blossom'
  • 1 Delphinium 'Magic Fountains, Dark Blue'
  • 1 Delphinium 'Magic Fountains, White/Dark Bee'
  • 2 Carpathian Harebell 'White Clips'
  • 2 Gargan Bellflower 'Dickson's Gold'
  • 3 Thrift 'Alba'
  • 2 Mallow
  • 1 Foxglove 'Camelot Rose'
  • 1 Foxglove 'Excelsior Hybrid'
  • Bunch of Creeping Flox 'Candy Stripe'
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Tuesday, April 28, 2009


Way too cute to not share... Pin It Now!

Pasta Salad

To me, warm weather means it's time for pasta salad! This is a staple recipe in my home during the summer months and these last few days of high temps had me craving it.

Pasta Salad

1 box rotini pasta
3 stalks broccoli
1 red onion
1 small jar marinated artichoke hearts, use liquid too
1-2 containers feta cheese, I like tomato-basil flavor
1-2 containers Newman's Own Family Recipe Italian dressing

Boil rotini. Chop raw broccoli into bite sized pieces, place in large bowl. Finely chop 1/4 of the red onion, I like to only coursely chop the remainder and add to salad for extra flavor as it marinates. Finely chop the artichoke hearts and add to salad, be sure to add the liquid to the salad mix too. Add in the feta, I like feta a lot so I use 2 containers. Mix in pasta and add dressing as desired. The salad will tend to dry out as it marinates, add additional dressing as desired but not necessarily all of the second bottle.

You could enhance this recipe by adding black olives, baby corn, etc...
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Saturday, April 25, 2009

Succulent designs

There's nothing easier than growing succulents, and now the designs seem endless for incorporating them in with nearly anything.

Flora Grubb's succulent garden designs are extremely unique, found via Katie Elliot. I love the idea of making a wreath made from succulents, very summery and would make a beautiful centerpiece for outdoor entertaining.

Directions for making wreath similar to Flora's design from
Martha's website.

Tools and Materials
Succulents (Martha used Aeonium, Crassula, Echeveria, Gasteria, Haworthia, Kalanchoe, Sedum, and Sempervivum)
12-inch wire wreath frame
Sphagnum moss
Moistened soil
Copper wire
Pencil (or screwdriver)

Succulent Cuttings How-To
1. Cut off piece of succulent 2 to 3 inches long.

2. Leave cuttings out for a few days in order for them to dry and create calluses on the bottoms. New roots will grow from the stem.

Sphagnum Wreath How-To
1. Place a 12-inch wire wreath frame on sphagnum moss.

2. Pack moistened soil into frame.

3. Wrap moss around frame and soil.

4. Secure to frame with copper wire and wrap tightly.

5. Plant succulents into wreath. Use a pencil (or screwdriver) to help make holes.

6. Place succulent roots into holes. Press moss around roots and secure with floral pins, if necessary. Don't bunch them too tightly as they need room to grow. The succulents will take approximately 6 months to fully grow, depending on their environment. Don't hang upright until roots have fully grown.

7. To water, submerge in water for 10 minutes. Allow to dry completely between watering. Fertilize about once every 6 weeks.

How cute are these?! Rhonda Patton Designs

I am falling in love with succulents as wall art...this interesting wall art is from Big Red Sun via Fresh Dirt. Pin It Now!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009


Tulip! How I've missed you... you look a little different, though.

Apparently, my obsessive gardening last year has had an impact on the pH level of my little garden because I swear these tulips were vibrant red last spring. I do kinda like the peachy color better... it's very girly.

Maybe the pH change will affect my little Limelight hydrangea as well. I read somewhere that a more acidic soil will make the blooms even brighter green. I'm excited! Pin It Now!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Lawn and garden work

Whew, have we ever been busy this weekend! After a few days of sunshine and warm temps we decided to do some much needed lawn and garden work. Saturday started out with raking all the old, dying grass and leftover leaves.

Next we decided to roll the lawn... it didn't do exactly what we had thought it would. Our lumpy lawn is just slightly less
lumpy now.

Java continued his rabbit hunt.

Then, on Sunday, we decided to go all out and bought 10 Emerald Beauty Arborvitaes. After searching all over for a good deal we found these for about $15 a piece from Home Depot. They are nice and small which made them considerably cheaper than any others we've been looking at.

These little guys are so cute and they work great for distracting your attention from our neighbor's yard which shows bountiful evidence of three large dogs, ewwwwww.

We were even able to fill in some of the bare spots around our growing tree roots with the grass displaced by the arborvitae. Very Dick and Jane... haha
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Friday, April 17, 2009

Eco-friendly Crafts

Happy Friday! I was looking through my long-ignored inbox this morning and came across these eco-friendly craft ideas from Martha. Easy crafts are the best, their even better when they cost next to nothing! You can find full instructions here.

Mismatched teacups look so cute when filled with scented wax from old candles. Could be a neat gift idea for showers or Mother's Day.

Cerial boxes of all sizes can be put to new uses as organizers for office supplies and books.

By simply pouring glass enamel into clear glass jars you can make beautiful milk-glass-looking vases for those spring blooms. Pin It Now!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Hunting wabbits

This picture makes me want to cry!You think you know the neighborhood... no malicious squirrels, not too many cats, no digging dogs... and then this happens. Who would have a thought a little rabbit no bigger than my fist could have inflicted this much damage on my crocuses?! I may sound sick and cold-hearted, but I almost want to let my dog into this corner bed just so that this won't continue to happen all year long. I swear, if I so much as see one bud missing from my prized little hydrangea I will let the dog loose. Pin It Now!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Dog park

We finally did it, we took this smiling nut to the dog park and... drum roll please... we took him off his leash! I was having an extended anxiety attack nearly the whole time but it was all in all a success. Java stayed near us and was always on the look out for where we were, makes us feel loved. The time in the park was all going great until the very end when this rabbit-like whippet came onto the scene. Imagine this: eight dogs running at full speed after a small little gray blur scared out of it's mind. It was mob mentality and then of course our too-smart-for-its-own-good dog had to think ahead and trip the poor little dog. Everyone got out unscathed but that was the end of Java's unleashed stint. I'm hoping that he will get more obedient after a few more months of regular visits to the dog park... treats in hand, of course. Pin It Now!

Candy Sushi... who woulda' thought

Way too cute for their own good! These little candy sushi rolls are seriously my favorite thing ever, thank you Sage Mommy for finding this idea.

This clever idea came from
Mommy Knows. The rolls are made from Rice Krispie treats, filled with gummy candy, and wrapped in Fruit Roll-Ups.

Check out the Swedish Fish! Pin It Now!


Easter celebration is over and cleaned up! Whew, now I can finally get back to my life. This was my first attempt at a full-on holiday celebration and it went exceedingly well if I do say so myself. I set up the tables in our bright basement in a sort of shabby chic/eclectic style with colors of blue, green, and yellow.

The centerpieces were homemade votives made from many glass jars (collected over the past couple of months) and coordinating tissue paper, I love cheap and re-purposed ideas!

Sangria Punch

1 can frozen concentrate raspberry lemonade

4 cups cold cranberry juice

1 cup cold orange juice

1 tablespoon lime juice

3 cups club soda

orange and lime slices for garnish

Pecan Crusted Sweet Potatoes


3 cups fresh (cooked) sweet potatoes
1/3 cup butter
2 eggs
1 cup granulated sugar

½ teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour


1/3 cup all-purpose flour

1 cup brown sugar

1/3 cup melted butter

1 cup finely chopped pecans

Mix all ingredients for filling together until smooth, will be only slightly lumpy. Pour into lightly greased casserole dish. Mix together ingredients for topping with fork and sprinkle over mix; it will melt evenly to cover filling. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

*Tip: boil sweet potatoes with cinnamon stick or a sprinkle of cinnamon for extra flavor.

Deviled Eggs
This recipe was really a taste and add sort of recipe. The main components added to the hard cooked egg yolks were mayo, salt and pepper, dill relish juice, and a little spoon full of relish. So creamy and delicious!

Good company...

Lela is always so lovely.

The girls...
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Saturday, April 4, 2009

GO GREEN! Pin It Now!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Reusable sandwich wraps

Wow, has it ever been a long time! I hadn't realized that I've been away from my blog for a week now, how the time flies with a good book.

I was searching around today for some neat re-usable item crafts and found this one on Betz White's blog. Such a good idea for kids or for your own budget friendly lunches these days!

The following snippet is taken directly from
Crafty By Nature and you can find the complete directions there as well.

Make lunch, not trash! These fun, functional sandwich wraps give you a reusable alternative to plastic baggies, plus they are a snap to make. After each use, they can be wiped clean with a damp cloth or tossed in with the rest of the laundry.

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