Friday, May 7, 2010

A January Conversation With Mr. Chickadee (subtitled: Why I Have A Successful Marriage)

Mr. Chickadee: How big is the garden going to be this year?

Me: (blankly) What garden?

Mr. Chickadee: The garden that I know you are going to insist on planting.

Me: I don't know what you are talking about.

Mr. Chickadee: (Sighs.)

(A pregnant pause fills the air for several moments, then:)

Me: Well, how big do you think it should be?

MC: Well last year you said you were never going to garden again. You always overdo it and then you swear you will never ever do it again.

Me: (incredulously) I do?

Mr. Chickadee: NUMEROUS TIMES.

Me: Oh. Well, I suffered from temporary insanity. The glut of tomatoes and cucumbers overwhelmed me and I couldn't take it anymore. I was having nightmares that they had overtaken the house while we were sleeping. But I have since reconsidered my position.

Mr. Chickadee: So you ARE going to garden again.

Me: Well, probably just a tiny little one.

Mr. Chickadee: (snort) Uh huh.

Me: I am serious.

Mr. Chickadee: (feigns sudden and irreversible deafness)

Me: You never believe me.

Mr. Chickadee: (still feigning deafness)

Me: Never mind. You'll see.

Mr. Chickadee: (wisely remains quiet and buries his head in his newspaper)


Conversation is over, until we fast forward to March:


Me: So when are we going to rent the tractor?

Mr. Chickadee: What tractor?

Me: (Impatiently) You know, the tractor that we till the field with.

Mr. Chickadee: I thought you weren't going to have a big garden again.

Me: What are you talking about! Of course I am going to have a big garden! I have one every year! I couldn't imagine life without one!

Mr. Chickadee: (thoughtfully and quietly gives me a long, searching look)

Me: (smile winsomely and innocently at Mr. Chickadee)

Mr. Chickadee: (wisely turns and without comment goes to call the rental place to reserve the tractor)


And this, dear friends, is why I have a successful marriage. :)




These Shoes Were Made For...


(So where the heck is all this darn snow coming from?!)


Monday, May 3, 2010

Makes My Heart Happy...

Three gorgeous, yummy jars of....
Rhubarb Sauce!


(Let the canning season begin! Ready? Set? GROW!!)



Saturday, May 1, 2010

One of One Hundred-Eleven


No, I didn't plan it this way, but somehow I wound up with 111 broccoli plants that germinated and survived my somewhat haphazard basement seed-starting system (as in if you are a plant in this house, you may get watered and you may not, depending on how busy my day is...good news is I take better care of my kids).

These plants are pretty happy little campers with this wonderful weather we have been having.

And yes, they are all spoken for! (To be eaten fresh (raw), lightly steamed (with cheese sauce, yum! or in stir fry or even just as is), and lastly blanched and frozen to enjoy all next winter sauteed or in Broccoli Cheese Soup when the snow is swirling and bitter winds are whipping).


Costs to date:

Seeds: started 114 plants cost of approximately $2 (had on hand) 3 did not germinate
Seed Starting Trays: 5.95 + 3.30 = 9.25 (bases/lids get reused but will count full cost)
Dixie Cups for transplanting up: (.03 each) 69 x .03 = 2.07 (will be reused but I will count it as an up front cost for the broccoli)
Soil for cups: ~$2
Electricity: unknown but not more than a few dollars at the most
Shop Lights: (already owned)
Approximately $17.32, plus some of my time (less than two hours total)

Plant purchase equivalent: $66.60 (.60 per plant, going rate locally)

Approximate Savings: $49

Hourly Wage that I "earned" by growing the plants myself: $25 an hour

Now to see what kind of harvest we wind up with!

(straight from the Lodge where admittedly the seed starting gets a little out of hand each year but makes for some awesome end-of-winter therapy and happy gardening dreams!)