Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Garden Girl

Greetings!!  Summer has arrived here in Southern California!  It has been hot, hot, hot!   My garden has begun to really produce some nice veggies!  I am cooking with them daily.
I have already harvested all of the cooler planted veg, like broccoli, and spinach, cilantro, potatoes.
Here we see the back garden, where a good deal of it has been harvested.  I have planted some new seeds, but they are not yet poking through.

There are 5 raised beds here, and several other pots and containers, holding veggies.  The corn got a late start, as all of the first seeds, did not come through.  I have had a problem with Toe Hee's taking my seeds this year, and wound up with many a bare spot in my garden.  The cabbage patch, although much smaller than I had wanted, is putting out some decent heads of cabbage.

 I have a Japanese eggplant in the above box, as well as lettuce varieties, and a yellow squash and arugula.
 I love Arugula, and use it on so many things.  My favorite is perhaps to heap it on a hot pizza, drizzle it with olive oil, toss some sea salt and fresh grated parmesan on top.  Oh la la!!  I also make pesto with arugula, and I love it as much as with basil!
The beets are just now coming in, and I have been roasting them, and enjoying them in salads, and on sandwiches.  They are divine!  The leafy beat tops are a favorite for the chickens!
The back garden is entirely fenced, due to the free ranging chickens.  They would mow that garden down in nothing flat!  We have repurposed  our pool fencing, but will be putting something much prettier up next year, as I am planning to be on the garden tour for The Women's Assistance League next Spring.

In the pots sitting just outside the garden are Lavender, Thai basil, and Stevia.
The area just opposite the fence, which is actually to the front of the house, and directly across from our garage, I took over as more gardening space a couple of years ago, and it has given me double the space to play in the dirt with.  We have a large property here, but it is heavily treed, and therefore shaded, so the only desirable area for veg gardening, is in this space.  I wish it were in a more private area of the yard, but it is okay.   And the soil has been beautifully amended now to yield me some great crops.
 In above photo, you can see how I have rigged the hose.  I built a tripod with bamboo stakes, and have them on either end of this patch.  I can rest the nozzle of the hose into the top, and direct the water where I want it to go, leaving me hands free to do some weeding, and harvesting, while at the same time watering the patch.
 My tomatoes are abundantly growing.  I have 6 varieties planted.  They are all loaded, but not ripening yet.  Below, you see the sugar snap peas, and cucumbers.  I am getting some nice cukes, and I eat the peas while I am out there working.  Yum!

I have some tidy rows of carrots,and more cabbages coming up in the center where the birds have raped my garden, time and time again!
 This rusted out bed spring is one that I dumpster dove for a few weeks ago.  I thought it would make an excellent support, trellis, and backdrop for some flowers in my garden.  I have  planted a variety of flowers in front of it.  I think it is going to be really pretty when it blooms!
I have more lettuce planted here, and a cantaloupe, a watermelon, Swiss chard, Kale, some onions, and a lovely butternut squash, which is loaded with little gems!

This front garden is coming along beautifully now too.  It was planted some 4 weeks after the back garden.
I have just recently put in my pumpkins. I have planted 3 varieties.  Two of which, are Big Jacks.  I am hoping for a good crop.
I have two huge clay pots that my brother gave me from a gas station tear down that his business did.  He had to deliver them with a forklift, so I can't move them from this spot.  They have been integrated into my garden as well.  This is where I planted my potatoes earlier in the Spring.  And now I have strawberries in one, and radishes, dill, jalapenos, and bell peppers in another.

The bale of straw is an experiment.  I am hoping that the tendrils and shoots from the strawberry plants will attach to the bale and continue to set off more plants and berries.  I have seen it done, but have not yet tried it.
That final hour of daylight is my favorite time in the garden.  The hens come a waddling over for some fresh greens to peck at.  The sun streaks through the orange grove in the most spectacular way.
As the sun slips over the horizon, the girls make their way back to the safety of their coop for the night.
 This Silver Laced Wyandote is now broody!  I need to get some fertile eggs this week for her to sit on.
 This pretty little lady has just come off her broody spell.  She was broody for about a month!
 One by one, they make their way back to the coop.  Greg has installed an automatic door to the back of the coop, so that now when we are away, they can be let out to the safety of their fenced run at sun up, and be closed back in at sundown.
The backyard is coming alive with blooms too.  These nasturtiums are in their prime.  I do shade them with garden umbrellas in extreme heat, as they tend to wither away and die if I don't.

 This pot of zinnias is about to explode in color!  I can't wait to see them bloom.  It is one of my favorite cutting flowers!  I have several pots of them planted around the pool and yard.
 This little guy was having a sunbath in the last of the days sun.
I hope you enjoyed seeing a bit of what is growing in my garden.  It is indeed, a passion of mine.
Happy growing!!!
XO  Kris

Friday, June 8, 2018

Thrifting & Nana's Hutch

Hello out there!  I am trying to stay on track with some regular blog posting.  I did have a thrifting blog post for yesterday, but the day got away from me.  So here is my Thursday Thrift & Shout. 
I have been looking for a small, comfy chair for my little Knitting Nook.  I wanted it to be small.  It had to rock, and swivel.  And it HAD to be very comfortable!  I also wanted it to be pretty.  So this one ticked almost all of the boxes.  I wish this was a floral print, but maybe I can recover it in a pretty feminine floral.  It is a green/gray.  I don't love the color, but I don't hate it.  It was 169.00 at the thrift store.  I offered 50.00 and they said yes.  So I brought it home.
 I love the tufted back of the chair.  And it had been freshly cleaned
It fits perfectly in my little Knitting Nook, and I know I will be spending a lot of time in there.
Next up, another Longaberger basket.  It sits inside a metal holder.  I am not sure how I will use this one.  Possibly as a planter.

Two Fall dish mats, for laying dishes to dry on.
Two glass watering globes.
A heavy duty beach umbrella. I put it up to provide some shade for the nasurtiums.  They fry up in our hot summers!
A Patriotic utensil holder and ice bucket.
I also popped into Big Lots to see if  I could find some new cushions for my patio chairs. I didn't want to spend a fortune.  Cushions are crazy expensive!  I had remade the cushions on the patio wicker set last summer, and did them in a sort of patriotic colors. Navy blues and a red, white and blue print.  So the cushions I bought match those perfectly.
The table is a thrifted, wrought iron, glass top table I bought last summer.  I love it, but have not repainted it yet. 

Our back patio is west facing, and can be very hot in our summers.  We installed misters a few summers ago, and boy do those make it nice!!! 
Lastly, I have dressed "Nana's Hutch" for the summer and Fourth of July season. 
 I still need to find my red silk geraniums to put into the turquoise vase on top of hutch. The bunting, and firecracker stick and pom pom stick were all found at Big Lots.  They had a great selection of holiday decor for summer.
 My new thrifted Willieraye figurine from last week, looks  perfect on the hutch. 
I also found a cute burlap bunting that I hung on the fireplace.  The quilted scrap flag pillow I made a few years ago.
I put the runner I made last year at retreat, out on my counter.
The little tray you see in above photo, with the red scale I found last week.
That's it from me.  Hope all of you are enjoying the beginning of summer.  We have a lot planned here, and I will be posting along the way.  Next time, a garden update. 
XO Kris

Thursday, May 31, 2018

Thursday Thrift & Shout

Yesterday I popped into one of my favorite haunts for thrifted and vintage finds.  This particular place has a great little outdoor room, filled with rusted old tools, buckets, and yard goodies.  I happened upon my best find of the day here.  Two thick foam pool rafts.  These are the extra wide ones, and they also have a drink holder (the star cutout).  I have had two of these mats, and I love them.  But mine were not the extra wide kind.  This was a good find, as these rafts are well over 100 dollars each.  I paid 5.00 each.  I also liked the floral design at the end of these.  Even though I cannot sunbathe, these will get a lot of use in our pool!
 Another thing I have been looking for is a red scale.  What did my eyes spy, across the dark outdoor room of rusted out treasures?
I love the scale, and I also love the apple green writing and markings on the scale face.
I also got the set of buffalo check napkins that are seen to the left of the scale in the above photo.
I spotted this beat up box, high on a shelf.  It was a limited edition Williraye set, hand signed by Williraye.  It was 10.00

Two little chicken plates, with a red and white crosshatch design on edge.
A two page sheet of heavy magnets in a Laundry theme.  These are thick and sturdy, and had not yet been unfastened from the magnetic sheets they came on.
A small cross stitch pattern of a blue bird.
And a cute rusted out trailer, that I put succulents in. The trailer was 1.00.
I just wish the truck was there too!!!
Yep, it was a good trip to the thrift this week.  My favorite finds were the rafts. What are yours?
XO Kris