happy valentines day! from kassi for mom & dad love kassi i love you georgi !                         

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February 14, 2014 · 10:37 am

New Loyalty

I have completely jumped the WordPress ship and am exclusively writing at Blogspot. I was reluctant to admit this, but it is obviously true. I managed to export this entire blog and it is ready to publish over there, which was nice. Anyway, thank you for understanding that I like all the shiny over at Blogger, and now that I have my own dedicated browser (Chrome. shiny.) Karl and I no longer have log in conflicts with Blogger.

Starting from Seeds

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New Friends

We went to the local WAPF chapter today. It was so fun! I am exhausted from being ‘on’ the whole time, because we were talking about our garden and things, but I really liked everyone and even the kids did well. Kassi met a little girl and has done nothing but knit and make her gifts since we got home. I am so glad we went and I hope to go regularly.

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Seed Starting

We are getting closer each day to starting our garden seeds. As I sit here a giant winter storm is headed our way, so naturally I am dwelling on the seeds and spring.

Each year our seed starting ritual changes. Our first year we used a mix of wild soil and compost in those natural wood pulp pots. It was what we had, so we went with it. It worked very well, but we did not have trays to move the plants with, so I was constantly handling each pot. We had at least 200 of them! We also had to do it in the kitchen, with two curious children looking on. But somehow we survived and they all made it to planting time.

The next year, we also used the kitchen, but we added shelves to a window seat area which made keeping the plants safe easier. We changed mediums to those all-in-one trays you can buy, gradually repotting the baby seedlings into larger pots. This was also a fiasco, but we made it to harvest and that is what mattered.

In 2008, we added lights to our indoor situation. We also annexed the top of our large deep-freeze. We were starting more plants than we had room or light for, but they were thriving. They were robust when planting day came, in part because we were using liquid kelp to nourish them.

I was expecting a baby that year (aww, Rome! We love you!) and he was born at the end of July, which I think we can all agree does not bode well for tomatoes.

The our whole world changed (and not just because of Rome.) Karl built a little greenhouse. It changed everything. Now, we didn’t have to worry about the safety of the plants. We didn’t have to add light to their shelves. We didn’t have to only plant what we had room for, either! Last year was our best year because of it, and I hope this year will also shine. We will have some change though. 2009’s greenhouse doubled as a chick brooder, and 2010’s will not. We have plenty of room down in our chicken coop for the brooders. It was sort of pleasant to have the excess heat of the brooder filling the greenhouse, but we paid for it in lack of space.

I know a lot of gardeners who like the soil block makers they sell through many supply catalogs. Looking at Johnny’s makes me want to given them a try, but then I wonder how we will sell plants that have no pot. At least the smaller block makers would work until transplant. If, that is, they work, which I think it something I have to see to know. It is not that I doubt my friends, I just need to try it.

We have a very large supply of plastic, greenhouse quality pots from a friend who got them at an auction. Our transplant needs to work with them. We can use Jiffy pellets until transplant, buy seed starting soil ready-made for our trays, or buy the mini block maker, the ingredients for the mix, and do it that way. Whatever we choose, the transplant soil will be our own very finished compost. Also, we had better decide quickly!

I am dreaming of heat, and growth…


Filed under garden, how we do stuff

It’s True

I have been blogging over at blogspot. Karl outed me over on his blog.

Here is what occurred:

1) I started using Chrome.

2) I suddenly could use my own google account without logging karl off, something he dislikes. Though we used both Safari and Firefox there were still log in issues.

3) I went to my old blogspot blog and fell back in love with how it will let you post anything you want, not just text and pictures.

4) So I am not saying anything permanent, but just linking you to it in case you have not seen it.


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Tristan Update

I have been reluctant to post this until we were sure. Today is the day of Tristan’s pre-admin appointment for his biopsy, and we are at home. He is better!

I know that time alone may be what healed him. The doctors and I had discussed this possibility when we made the appointment. But I want to give credit to our neighbor who gave us and herbal support formula for Tristan and also to our friend Kristine, who sent us a care package of herbs as well. These past weeks Tristan has been a very good sport! He was taking Echinacea, Elderberry, the Herbal Release formula, Spilanthes and Poke. I also had him taking extra C.  The lymph swelling is completely absent. We are so happy!


Filed under illness, Tristan

Another Good Weekend

As Karl mentioned on his blog, we fixed up our black raspberries yesterday. It was good hard fun and even the kids helped. Yesterday was a perfect day for it. We planted these berries not last spring but the one before, and last year they were heavy with fruit. Because we had not done the right thing with the trelissing they were hard to pick and we often sent the kids in for the middle berries. This year should be much better!

Last Year’s overgrown berries in bloom.

Nearby and our next endeavor are the strawberry patches. We should have gotten to the work they need in fall, but better late than never.

Every day marches us closer to the precipice, Karl’s last day at work is February  1st. Elements are very exciting- mixed with all those elements which are very scary. To be sure, I would rather my husband be home all day. I rarely to never feel the need for time away from him. We love to work together here at home, to run errands together, eat together. The kids will love it too. Making the car payments and paying basic utilities is all I worry about. We are rich with food, and a roof over our heads, and all the entertainment here we could hope for.

I daydream of making a little sewing business up, not so much for true profit as cost offset for our own needs.

This week I need to can chickpeas. I have about 25 pounds of them. Chickpeas for hummus and chili and soup! Chickpeas for the whole summer so meals are easy when I am doing nothing but canning. I am knitting a hat for Karl and have a little sewing I would do If I could find my sewing scissors. We are back into a homeschooling routine so there is that each day, somehow the days get away from us.


Filed under garden