I have been collecting any pumpkins that are unwanted. We have collected right around 150 so far! We have also rounded up a few mums, bales of hay and ears of dried corn.
I posted on Instagram this picture of pumpkin number 100!
Well a sweet soul informed me that I was holding a fantastic variety called Galeux D’Eysines.
This is a nice heirloom variety from France that has been grown there since the 1800’s. It wasn’t brought here until around 1996! Galeux is French for mangy or scabby, so not a delicious sounding name! 😆 But, it’s a delicious variety. So, I pulled this beauty out of the chicken food bin and roasted/puréed it!
Sometimes it’s hard to have too much to post on here in winter. Nothing is really growing, other than the indoor plants. Absolutely nothing is being harvested and some days it feels like winter will be lasting forever!
It looks like fog, but it’s snow!
I am hosting a little local seed swap and I love seeing the varieties that are coming in!
So many great varieties!
I turned the huge pumpkin compost last weekend, and that beast is becoming one hot compost! I’m weirdly proud that there weren’t any chunks of pumpkin in there anymore. And look at that temperature!
Hot composting! 130 degrees!
On the cold days, I have been spending some evenings working on quilt number 2. The second row is finished!
I love that square with lots of bees! 🐝
And, I’m still turning those Dickinson pumpkins that I grew into some pumpkin pie! They make the most beautiful colored purée that I’ve ever seen!
Pumpkin to purée to pie and extra to chickens!
It’s nice seeing the bees flying around on the pretty days.
And I’m not going to lie, I’m still enjoying relaxing with my Sherman dog.
He is seriously the most snuggly pup I have ever had. I hope that you are staying warm and attempting to enjoy this cold season!
It all started out with a pattern that I found on Pinterest! I made a test square using scrap fabric and I decided that in 2019 that I would make my first quilt! Here’s the pattern that I used to make a Chicken quilt square
I learned from a few mistakes and started whipping out the squares!
All together I made 40 chickens and I spent one afternoon placing the squares exactly where I wanted them to go! Once I had them perfectly placed, I cut and sewed the squares together.
And then I sewed on the edging.
The quilt sat around asking to be finished for way too long. Then, on New Year’s Eve, I decided to finally quilt it. Lucky for me, my mom has a long arm machine and didn’t mind spending an afternoon teaching me how to use!
Next up, I cut off all of the extra batting, trimmed the backing, and used it to be the edging!
The finished project!
I am loving the finished project and I’m already planning out what the next quilt will be! I am so glad to put a big ✔️ next to my last goal for the year!
Now that it’s 2020, what are your goals for this year?!
Where in the world have I been?! In the garden! I’m constantly harvesting, watering, pruning, weeding and mulching. But, I’m not complaining at all. I love this time of the year!
And now, the goal updates:
1. Sew my first quilt– The craft that I wanted to try was making my first quilt. Everything is sewn and I just need to quilt and bind it! ** When momma feels up for it, we will quilt it!**
2. Keep doing good for our community. The school garden is starting to produce little cherry tomatoes. And, the farmer’s market in town is doing amazing!
3. Can and save money on our groceries: We had a decent harvest of cucumbers, so those were turned into pickles. Plus the green beans are all being canned for winter too!
4. Use that camper some more!: We were able to have a nice day at a local lake. It was perfect!
**so here’s the change: I have lots of traveling with being the teacher of the year, so I don’t think that we will be doing much traveling this summer.
5. Compost!: We are still getting some food scraps dropped off, especially watermelon leftovers! The chickens love it! Plus, all of those composted pumpkins have regrown some volunteers for us!
6.Little free library/seed sharing-The Library is open and we have sooo many books! And check out that beautiful flag holder that the Mr. forged!
7. Grow some new plants: The ground cherries have really taken off! The bird egg gourds are going to look adorable in the spring, once they are dried out. And I’ve harvested a couple delicata squash!
Bird egg gourd
8. Yard to garden our bottom yard. We doubled the size of the garden last year and produced lots of extra food. That swing set was reassembled by a friend for her adorable twins. We are starting to harvest a good bit from this area!
9. Keep reducing our trashWe are now on bag 3. We are continuing to watch what we throw out, and I’m thinking bag 3 will be leaving the house in August.
10. Create a Monarch waystation and tagging supplies-Last year we made a wildlife habitat area and we will continue to add to it! That habitat is being loved and used by so many pollinators! The monarchs have been laying so many eggs. We have released almost 10!
11. Teach the teen life skills– the boy is growing up way too fast. He will be in high school next year. I want him to be ready to be an independent adult when he decides to leave the nest many years from now!
*he was washing and waxing cars a lot last month. The waxing was with our personal vehicles and the washing was for a fundraiser!
12. Keep track of $ from gardening– We decided to use the money made from the garden cart to go towards the teen going to Disney with band. We are slowly making a little bit at a time!
July was a great month for gardening! Mostly working in the garden and taking in the summer warmth!
Panorama of the garden
Beautiful zinnias, black eyed susans and milkweed
Hoping to do a walk through the garden Wednesday! Keep blooming friends!! 🌸💚
Hello May! April was a very green month both at home and school! The goals are being checked off!
And now, the goal updates:
1. Sew my first quilt– The craft that I wanted to try was making my first quilt. Everything is sewn and I just need to quilt and bind it! ** I still need to quilt this thing!**
2. Keep doing good for our community. The town Earth Day clean up was amazing! We had close to 40 volunteers and look at all of trash we kept out of streams and the environment!
We also had a very green week at school and had a school wide composting day. We also planted our school raised bed garden! I’m hoping that the kids get to eat those radishes and some lettuce by the end of the year!
3. Can and save money on our groceries. I am hoping to make a lot of jam and jelly this year! Somehow I didn’t make any last year and the store bought stuff just isn’t the same! We are working on growing lots this year! * here are some strawberry blooms! I’m hoping to make lots of strawberry jam this year!*
4. Use that camper some more! Last year we remodeled and fixed up the camper and traveled to Yellowstone and back. It was a great trip and we have another family camping trip to plan in 2019! This is the major change.
**so here’s the change: I have lots of traveling with being the teacher of the year, so I don’t think that we will be doing much traveling this summer. Unfortunately.
5. Compost!! Composting at school is still going well and we have diverted around 150 pounds of food waste! We are still getting some compostables and I love the yard waste that’s becoming a nice mulch in my garden!
Cut grass makes great mulch!
Older food is loved by the chickens!
6.Little free library/seed sharing- The Library is so close to opening! The library placard is on the way and the ribbon cutting will be happening this month! It’s getting exciting!
7. Grow some new plants: This year we are hoping to grow ground cherries better. Plus, grow blue pumpkins, corn and more gourds! I picked up a lot of great plants at the master gardener plant sale (prickly pear cactus was my favorite find!) and I have a lot of the cooler weather crops in the ground already!
8. Yard to garden our bottom yard. We doubled the size of the garden last year and produced lots of extra food. This year, we want to take out our huge swing set that hasn’t been used in such a long time and start getting rid of grass. I’m hoping to turn this area into more food production with trees, bushes and understory plants.
**We are making progress! The swing set is gone, the little greenhouse was moved over and this month we will be getting rid of all of that grass!
9. Keep reducing our trash We are now on bag 2. We are continuing to watch what we throw out!
**we are still on bag 2!!**
10. Create a Monarch waystation and tagging supplies-Last year we made a wildlife habitat area and we will continue to add to it! We have lots of new plants and even more coming back from last year!
We have 9 butterfly weed plants that came back!
11. Teach the teen life skills– the boy is growing up way too fast. He will be in high school next year. I want him to be ready to be an independent adult when he decides to leave the nest many years from now! He learned how important that it is to help out the community and cleaned up so much for our cleanup day!
12. Keep track of $ from gardening– I’d love to eventually break even on all of our gardening! So this year we will see if we earn more than we spend on all of our efforts! Maybe?!
Our chickens are putting out lots of eggs and we did sell some at the craft show last month!
May is the big month for this region when it comes to gardening! So much will be planted this month and I can’t wait to start showing the walk through the gardens! What are you planting?!
Remember how I said that I was hoping to be teacher of the year for the whole county? Well, I won!!!
I was so surprised!
It was the best feeling in the world! And I can’t wait to spread my love for teaching little humans how to take care of our Earth! (Maybe I can get more adults on board with changing their wasteful ways!)
And back to the prepping of the garden: lots of plants are growing under the grow lights!
Today was a big recycling day at school! We collected around another 20 pounds of plastic film. And, I dropped off the plastic bottles, magazines and newspaper to the proper bins after school.
Plastic bottles and apples for the chickens
Magazines and newspapers
Chickens enjoying the leftover apples!
We completed a lab that involved taste testing apples after we learned about the process of selection! My students are never surprised with me saying “put the leftovers in the bag because the chickens will love them! And they did!
The new board that I chalked, since spring is supposed to be here! After a week like this one, I definitely feel like I am blooming where I am planted!
Have a great weekend, and you guessed it, keep blooming friends!
This week was a cold icy week and we didn’t have much school. So, that means that the teen was eating everything that was in our house! I eventually had to make extra yummy food! We had homemade fajitas (so easy to make! Flour, water, salt and shortening)
We also decided that we needed something yummy, so I thawed out some frozen zucchini and used the eggs that were frozen from the polar vortex to make some zucchini cake:
The Mr. has been busy in the shop working on a big project for the house! (Which I cant wait to share when it is finished!) But, he was also able to whip up a few hooks for someone else’s project!
At school, I managed to snatch up all of the plastic bottles from the faculty lounge to recycle for them. And, I happened to snag up some rolls for the chickens that were being thrown out!
And a sweet neighbor, who was part of our summer composting program, dropped off more treats for the chickens!
Maybe it’s the days getting a little longer, or all of the treats, but I’m just glad to see my hens finally laying some eggs!
For the rest of the weekend, I plan on working on my teacher of the year paperwork, sewing on my chicken quilt, starting my plans for the garden and spending time with my family.
🌱keep blooming friends! (Spring is right around the corner!) 🌸