Thursday, June 8, 2017

Learning to grow microgreens



A microgreen is a green that is between a sprout and a full grown green or plant.  The tiny stalks are tender and full of nutrients.  Some say between 5 and 40 % more nutrients than a full grown plant or salad green.  With a sprout you eat the seed pod and the sprout.  With a microgreen you eat the stem and leaves.


I decided I wanted to learn to grow microgreens because where I live the season for growing greens is very short or they must be grown in the winter.  I like salads more in the summer than winter so I needed a way to get them without buying salad greens all summer.  I get plenty of tomatoes and cucumbers and so on but I needed a way to grow the greens.  I watched several you tube videos and read about growing microgreens online.  I decided the best approach was to start small, so I bought a few of these clear containers that go under potted plants at the Dollar Tree @ 4/$1.00.  I poked holes in the bottom and filled with organic potting soil.  I then  spread alfalfa seeds thickly over the soil and wet it down real good.  I then covered it with a damp cloth and kept it damp by misting it twice a day.  On day two when it looked like most of the seeds had sprouted I removed the cover which by this time I had been using a plate.  I put the greens in the window sill so they could get their chlorophyll or what ever it is called. 

This is day four.  I have a feeling that the alfalfa greens are going to be a smaller green.  They have the cotyledon leaves right now.  As soon as they get the first set of true leaves it will be ready to harvest.  I have ordered more seeds to try this with.  I have beet, pea dun, sunflower and kale seeds coming.  I will eventually try to have a variety of microgreens growing to make a more colorful salad. 


Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Tasty squash dish

Yesterday I made a really good squash dish.  I used zucchini and yellow squash and tomatoes.  I sliced the squash and quartered the tomatoes and spread them on a parchment paper lined pan.  I sprinkled minced garlic over and sprinkled seasoned salt and Italian seasoning over them.  I then squirted olive oil around on them.  I baked these at 350 for 15 minutes.  Then I sprinkled parmesan cheese over top and baked for another 15 minutes.  It sure was good.  

Monday, May 15, 2017

Hope you had a happy Mothers Day

My mothers day was very nice.  I heard from all five of my daughters and I called my mother and mother in law.  My husband even called my mother.  Then my niece and her husband called.  It was a very nice day.

Hannah was home and brought a friend along and they cooked stir fry, Mexican rice, guacamole, Pico sauce, and lemonade.  It was so very good. 

Hannah had started they day by weed eating the entire yard.  I had mowed yesterday so now the yard looks very nice.  After she did they I started the water on the lawn.  We usually get a fair amount of rain and seldom have to water but occasionally we do and this is one of those times.

I continue to read via skype with Sammy and J'tihya Monday through Thursday.  First they read their assigned story to me and then sometimes I ask them about the story and then I read a chapter to them.  With Sammy I am reading Hank the cow dog and with J'tihya we just finished The Secret Garden and will start Little Women this week.  I already have bought the Little house on the prairie set so that will be up next.  I really enjoy reading with these kids.  It helps them in their reading and keeps me connected to them.

Well its Sammy's day to read so I will close this for now.  May everyone who reads this have a blessed day, filled with health and happiness.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

The garden looks good so far

So far, my garden looks good.  We've gotten a few cherry tomatoes to eat, a couple of green peppers, a few jalapenos, some cilantro, onion tops and basil.  I'm really hoping for a good tomato year because I have NO home canned tomatoes left.  I need to restock.

Its my first time growing herbs so its a learning experience.  The basil is beautiful.  I have been drying it but a friend said I should freeze it instead so the next batch I pick I will freeze and see which way I like it best.

I have been trying to spend a little time in the garden each morning before it gets too hot.  That is hard to do because it gets hot pretty early here.  Its 8:30 am right now and its already 77 degrees out.

I have been trying to eat healthier so this week I made zucchini spaghetti.  It was really good.  I think I like it better than spaghetti pasta because it has a good flavor and doesn't sit heavy in my stomach.
I used nutritional yeast and shredded cheese on top along with a few sprigs of basil from my garden.

I also bought a spaghetti squash which I will cook this weekend and eat with the meat sauce.


Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Sprucing up the kitchen with the pioneer woman

I just love the pioneer woman's stuff.  The other day I was in Walmart and noticed her table cloths.  I decided to buy one for each table and an extra one to make curtains out of.  I also bought a 4 pack of her kitchen towels.  Here is the result.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

My lemonade wasnt so sweet.

The adventures of being me. 
As many of you know I gave myself a challenge of getting rid of 40 bags of stuff in 40 days.  I didnt last the whole 40 days but I got rid of way more than 40 bags.
While I was cleaning my pantry I came across a 2 quart jar of (sugar)  I tasted it and everything, I thought.  So trying to consolidate things I poured the (sugar) into my sugar canister that holds 10 pounds of sugar.
A few days later I made up some sugar water for the hummingbirds but they never came to drink.
Hummm
Today I made a gallon of pink lemonade to take to club.  I proudly served my pink lemonade to my friends.  One friend took a sip and said wow, thats tart.  I thought, thats strange, I put a little more than 2 cups of sugar in that.  It should be sweet enough.  Another friend asked if it was real sugar and I said of course.  I dont use that fake stuff.  Well once everyone was served I sat down and grabbed my glass and took a big swig.  Blech.  It was salty.  How could that be?  So everyone else tried theirs and they all said yuck, ick.  blah blah blah.  One friend said are you sure you didnt put salt in instead of sugar?  I said of course not, I got it out of my sugar container.  Then it hit me.  I had poured in two quarts of salt into my sugar container. 
No wonder the hummingbirds didnt come.  LOL
Then we had role call and we were suppose to answer with our worst cookig mistake.  We sure got a good laugh out of that one.  
Oh my

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Fancy baby afghans

I am working on the third fancy baby afghan in the same pattern.  Its the hardest pattern I've ever made.  It's quite pretty but sure is complicated.  Of course by the third one I'm getting the hang of it.  I will tell you that when I finish the last blue one I will put away my crochet hooks for a while.  I have concentrated on these afghans because I am on a time frame.  But I am longing to get back to the sewing machine.
Here is the first afghan I made with this pattern.


I think its just as pretty on the reverse side as it is the front.  It is suppose to have a ribbon threaded through the pink part just inside of the ruffle, but I am going to let the customer pick out her own ribbon and place it there.
Here is the first blue afghan completed.  Again the customer will add her own ribbon.

This is what the main body of the afghan looks like, here I am nearly done with that part.
I am almost done with the second blue afghan.  I started the gray last night so just a few more evenings and it will be done. 

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Productive Saturday

This has been a busy and productive Saturday at our house.

First Jeff and I finished the drip irrigation system in the garden.


Then, Jeff and I worked on attaching the lattice that we had just had tacked to the deck in a permanent manner.  Its not done but we got a good start on it.


Meanwhile, Hannah was busy building a new step platform to replace the little steps coming out of the deck on one side.  They were too small and hard to navigate.  She did a real good job.





Sandy was so proud of Hannah, she just had to give her a kiss.  Another job well done.







Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Non GMO, organic, heritage seeds and plants.

Seedsnow.com
They are having a sale right now 20% off.  Free shipping on orders over $30.00 and only $3.95 on orders less than $30.00

I placed an order today.  I have been hunting non GMO. organic, heritage/heirloom seeds and I believe I have found a source.  If they grow in my area I will be one happy girl.


Monday, March 20, 2017

Missionary update

Bush Beat BlogF


FROM "BUSH BUNNY BRENDA"
DATE: MARCH 18, 2017






GOVERNMENT VISITORS THRILLED WITH OUR PROGRAM

On Tuesday, 5 officials representing the Departments of Health, Social Services, Administration, Justice, and Public Works (building inspectors) walked from house to house, visiting our families and seeing first-hand what our program is all about.  They were very happy to know that our children are be given a good education complete with proper school books that your Love Gifts provided, as well as having top notch care by our foster mothers. 

Our 4 babies impressed them all with their recovery from a malnourished state.  We were blessed by their visit, as it was great to get to know these people, and show them all we do to help the orphans and abandoned children of Balama.

SURPRISE!  GOVERNMENT SCHOLARSHIPS ONE OF OUR ORPHANS TO PROFESSIONAL TRAINING SCHOOL


Fatima Jorge, 15, in the 8th grade, received a full scholarship to one of the finest professional training schools in Chimoio, Mozambique. 

  Equal to a student going to a Jr. College while still in high school.
We were all taken by surprise at noon today when we got the call.  It means a whirlwind of activity for Capena and I as he must organize many documents this week so Fatima is eligible to leave by next weekend.
Fatima gets to choose her study courses, so we will have to “fill you in” once she arrives and gets settled in.
This is a truly wonderful opportunity for this VERY INTELLIGENT young lady.  It is a 2 or 3 year school depending on what major she chooses.
God is moving! Fatima will be missed, but we plan to organize her a cell phone so she can call home.  Since she will know NO ONE at the school, we want her to be able to call us when she needs to hear a familiar voice.
The only cost is her transport, and we plan for Pastor Fred to escort her by bus on this 2 day journey to the school.
Balama is her home, and we expect to have her return to us during the major holidays.


HOUSE CONSTRUCTION MOVING ALONG WELL


THE BRICK WALLS ARE UP AND THE OUTSIDE CEMENT FINISH IS BEING APPLIED THIS WEEK.

  The roof extension will be added next week, as we took this opportunity to expand this house by adding a 4 meter (12 foot) wide bedroom. 
Still have to mount the doors and windows, as well as build a kitchen and new “outhouse” (longdrop) and bathing area, but know we hope to have it all finished well before the end of April.  This house will serve each of our families as a “temporary” residences while we renovate each home that needs a MAKE OVER.

ALL 5 HOUSES WE PLAN TO BUILD THIS YEAR HAVE BEEN SPONSORED, AND FOR THAT WE ARE TRULY GRATEFUL!

Blessings,
Bush Bunny Brenda Lange
And the Balama Staff








Sunday, March 19, 2017

Drip irrigation system for the raised bed and molasses tubs

For the last few years we have steadily added on to our raised bed gardens.  Some buckets, some molasses tubs and some cinder block raised beds.  Here in south Texas the gardens have to be watered daily.  We had been using soaker hoses on timers but it just wasn't working well.  The hoses further down the line didn't get enough water and the plants suffered.  This year we decided to install pvc pipe drip systems on timers. 

This is the front area.  Its very simple, with pretty much just straight runs.  We started with this to get the hang of it.  It was so simple to put together we went ahead and started on the back garden.  We had originally thought to use hose from spigot to the garden but I thought it would be better if we went pvc all the way.  No kinks.

When we got the front done, Sandy inspected it and said good job.
This is a shot of the back garden before we installed the drip system.

This is what it looks like at the spigot.  A few turns to get it going the right direction.
Another before shot.
The system is about 80% complete.  Since we didn't use hose for the beginning we ran out of PVC pipe.  I figure 3 or 4 more pipes and I can complete the system.

Each set of beds has a shut off valve.  I can adjust the flow of water here as well as at the spigot or turn a bed completely off.  I still have both raised beds to plant as well as 4 of the tubs so it worked out great for now.  I will get the system completed in the next few days and get the rest of the garden planted as well.  I plan to plant lots of tomatoes in the hopes of a good year and that I will have plenty to can.  I have had to buy store bought canned tomatoes. 


Beach Reach News story

This was from a couple of years ago but Hannah said its pretty much how it was.  Anything you can imagine was happening.

The beach reachers were always in teams of at least two and if they went out anywhere they had to have a guy with them.  It seemed sexist at first but was soon apparent that having a guy with them was a very good idea. 



Saturday, March 18, 2017

Working on the garden

We got the fence put back up around the raised bed garden and got it about 1/3 of the way planted.

I am going to plant extra tomatoes this year and pray I will get enough to can.  I am out of home canned tomatoes and there is just nothing like home canned tomatoes.




Beach Reach for Hannah

Hannah went to beach reach this year with the Baptist Student Ministries.   She had great stories to tell and stepped out of her comfort zone a few times as well.  It wasn't all work and no play they did have a couple of hours one day that they got to spend at the beach. 
I'm really proud of Hannah and her heart for the lord.
I had originally written that Hannah went to beach reach for the second year but I was wrong.  She did go to Port Isabel last fall but it was for a community outreach project.  OOPS


This is the group that came from Kingsville College.  Texas A &M


Sunday, March 12, 2017

Do you blog?

     I am interested in reading others blogs and I was wondering if any of my readers have a blog.  If so I would love to read it.  I know a couple of you have blogs but leave a comment anyway and I will do a post with your blogs listed.
     It will help us get to know each other better.

     Also, is there anything you want to know?  Anything you want me to blog about?  Let me know and I will see what I can do.

Have a great week.