Green is Good

“Green is the prime color of the world, 
and that from which all loveliness arises.”
– Pedro Calderon de la Barca
 Tulips in downtown dog-town,

Sliding down the green hills,
 A king on his patch of green,
 A friend searching for greens in the backyard,
*Sweet baby dove

Just some green love that made my week sweet. 
Nurture Photography Challenge - Spring 2013 Edition

*I know, she’s not so green…
My boys found this sweet baby dove and we thought she was a goner.  The second day we put her outside to get some sun and her mama and papa came down to greet her!  So sweet.  We put her in a bush and they’ve been taking care of her. 

With Ten Minutes and $1

What can you do with a ten minutes and about $1 (or so?) 
Make 12 quarts of laundry detergent
1 quart of *tub scrub
*Today I deviated from my “Rub a Dub 3 Men in the Tub Scrub” recipe and added Citric Acid instead of True Lemon (because that’s what I had) and added Bergamot essential oil drops (about 4) to make a nice citrusy smell.  Smells lovely! 
So easy I didn’t even have to get out of my PJ’s!

Green Tomato Goodness

In November, before the first frost hit us, 
Mom decided we should pick all the peppers and tomatoes we could from her beautiful garden. 
She has a beautiful garden, and I didn’t realize how many she was talking about until I went to help her pick!
One of many trays…

There must have been four large baskets of tomatoes and probably two full trays like this.  As for peppers we couldn’t even pick them all- habaneros, hot Chinese, jalapenos, and more.
We scoured the internet for recipes for green tomatoes and peppers, and ended up mostly just winging it anyway…

Pickled (Dill) Green Tomatoes!

For the pickles we just followed a basic pickle formula (with regular vinegar, not cider) and then added fresh dill, some hot peppers, garlic, peppercorns and sliced green tomatoes then processed them.

Upside Down Pepperoncini!

 She had enough banana peppers to make about five or six jars of pepperoncini (our fave.)  We just pickled these too (with no dill.)

Green Tomato Salsa!

We had so many tomatoes left over and wanted to make a salsa of some kind.  Our favorite salsa is Herdez Tomatillo/Green salsa and we thought, “Why not make a green tomato salsa?”  We only made about three jars of this and it came out so yummy!  Basically it was chopped green tomatoes, jalapenos, chopped onion and garlic, cilantro, a bit of cumin and salt, some lime juice and touch of vinegar and then we cooked it.  I should have written the recipe down!

Our Green Bounty

Our next day we made THE HOTTEST pepper jelly from basically all habanero (aji chombo) peppers and a few jalapenos and Cayenne peppers.  We had to cook it outside on the grill because it was so hot, then processed it inside.  It came out a beautiful golden color with red and green flecks. I just used the pepper jelly recipe on the pectin package.  I swear it’s the hottest goodness you have ever tasted. 

 Mom still had a ton of peppers at her house so she made aji chombo sauce (Panamanian hot sauce) basically just aji chombo (habanero) peppers chopped up, vinegar, mustard, chopped garlic, chopped onion, and salt and pepper put into a bottle to sit in the fridge.  Very, very, hot so be wary.

On Not Buying It…

I really want my family to take the “Not Buying It” challenge for at least half of 2011,but haven’t worked out our specifics yet.  Thinking we’ll do an exception for shoes (I’m sorry, used shoes are not my thing, especially for kids) and we’ll see what else.  Might have to do exceptions for some home things as we’re still working on the rent house and who knows if I can find what I need at Habitat for Humanity Restore or Freecycle.   I’ll keep you posted after our meeting.
*On another note, does anyone have any idea why my right sidebar won’t show up?  I have done all I want to and nothing.  I think I’m going to wait and just redo it all when I do my revamp sometime soon.  


On Houses for Chicks

For Christmas my chickens got a new house!  
Cole and his pets

This was a long time coming.  We had hired a man to come build a coop from plans… he said it would be done by Thanksgiving.  (Two weeks after Thanksgiving he showed up and built the frame, roof, and brought the rest of the materials then never came back.)  Scott finished it in about two hours.  We still have to stain it and fix the roof (the man put the tin roof on going the wrong direction!)

Sorry for the bad pics but this shows the walkway to house

Side view so you can see the nesting box (opens to collect eggs)

Easter in November?

The start of the hunt (slightly muddy eggs)

We just had an amazing egg hunt!  (Yes, I know it’s November, let me explain…)
Our chickens have been acting strangely. 
We couldn’t find the girls last night and searched the yard (and neighborhood) high and low.
No sign.  I thought they were in a pot or cat’s belly somewhere.
This morning they all wandered out around 10 AM.  They had been hiding under the deck!  (We have a HUGE deck.)
Dinner, the sweetest chicken, was not coming out but for a minute or two to eat and I thought maybe she’d been injured by a cat or some other creature…


When we went hunting for her tonight (to put her up in the coop) I found her in the smallest part of the deck (about 6 inches from the ground.)  She was sitting on a “nest” of eggs and she pecked at me when I went to chase her off.
Uh oh- a broody girl!

When I managed to chase her off Scott went to reach for the egg she had been sitting on.
Hubby: “Um, babe?”
Me:  “Yeah?”
Hubby:   “She doesn’t just have one egg…”
Me:  “Oh?  How many?”
Hubby (laughing):  “Get me a BIG basket.”

Before washing and testing

The Grand Total?
81 EGGS!
After washing them assembly-line style twice, and testing them 2-3 times by independent judges (me and the kids) we ended up with 44 GOOD ones!  Oh me.

After, only part of the find

And I accused the chickens of being lazy.