January 31, 2013

The Never-ending Green Onion

I love the flavor of green onions. It's just perfectly subtle. Fabulous in just about every thing I make from Mexican to Italian to just good old scrambled eggs! BUT I always forget to buy them! So 3 weeks ago, our grocery store Kroger had organic green onion bunches 2/$1.00. A steal! So I went ahead and bought two. I brought them home and they just looked less than perky the next morning, so I got a small jar with some water and plopped both bunches in and put it in the back of my fridge.

The next morning, I discovered they were bright green and happy looking...and that's when it hit me!

{GREEN ONIONS on Pinterest! }

Yes, that flash bulb moment when you remember seeing a pin on Pinterest about something.

This one was talking about how you can grow green onions indefinitely in your house.

I was stoked about this idea and decided to test it out.
So I put fresh water in my pint mason jar, trimmed the dead-ish looking pieces from the green onion bunches and put it in the jar. Then I set the jar on my kitchen window sill. I love my kitchen windowsill. It gets the beautiful morning sunshine and lets me peak out at the pasture behind our house. And it's the perfect place for new plants. AND my window panes are such that they have lots of lines on them. Perfect for marking growth of my green onions.

Whoa Nelly!

In just ONE DAY--ONE! The green onions grew 1/2" (inch).
By the next day it was another 1/2". And new growth was showing up near the base of the onions!

After this, I didn't think about their growth very much (just enjoyed having them fresh for my food), but a week ago I noticed--you know, these things are REALLY growing! And they were. So I measured again. This time they grew 1" (inch) OVERNIGHT!!! No joke. I measured. I sent my mom this picture of my green onions on the 25th.
The morning of the previous day (the 24th) the tallest one was BELOW the line. Yeah. I know. Crazy!

Well here is a picture of them from the 29th. At the top edge of my window.

Is that enough to convince you that these things are awesome?!

Here are the pics side by side so you can really see:
My husband likes to cook breakfast for me on the weekend and he has been enjoying snipping fresh green onion for his country style fried potatoes and eggs.

Frankly, I just enjoy the beautiful greenness of the shoots during these cold winter months. Once it turns warmer, I will plant some of these out on in my porch containers and continue to just do the same...snip and let it grow. But I'm still going to keep some inside. I just like watching them grow!

It's got awesome roots too...all thin and hair like...
I totally recommend you try it out! Of course if you enjoy eating the BULB you clearly can't make it last forever! LOL!


January 29, 2013

Adventures in Gardening~ Planning

I decided that this year I would document my adventures in gardening! Last year was our first year of cultivating our own garden and I shared some pictures of the process...but not from start to finish. So this year, I thought it would be fun to start from the get-go noting what we do.
garden planning

As you would imagine, in January nothing is growing in my garden except weeds! But just because it's January doesn't mean you don't do ANYTHING...for it will be time to start seedlings indoors in just a few weeks! Especially for the early crops! So I've been chomping at the bit and pouring over my most favorite catalog marking and planning out what our garden will grow this year.

 Here is my BEAUTIFUL seed catalog! It's the Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds catalog---they only sell pure seeds. Nothing altered. Nothing GMO. Absolutely nothing touched by Monsanto. They travel around the world to find new heirloom seeds to share. We ordered from them last year and were more than satisfied with our produce so we went with them again. Even if you don't order anything, their catalog is a 211 pages of visual delight! Gorgeous color photos of all kinds of fruits, vegetables, herbs and flowers!
 As you can see, my list was rather long...in fact, I filled up half the other side too! LOL! I basically choose 1-4 varieties of each fruit/vegetable that my family likes. I love trying new varieties--like the "Sweet Chocolate Pepper" that you can see on my list above. I call this list my "Wish List"! From here I then go to all my left over seed packs from the previous year.
I had a lot of random things left over from last year--either I didn't get to plant them, or we had already planted some and saved the extra. Most of these seed packs are flowers and herbs. But I go through and cross of anything I have on my list so I don't buy more than I need.

Then I just go to the website and start filling up my shopping cart. This year we are spending much more than last year, but that is because we want to double the size of our garden, as well as replace more of the "store bought" plants from last year with good heirloom seeds this year. This fall, we are going to really try to do as much seed saving as possible, to start our OWN heirloom collection. I have all kinds of little baby food jars ready to go for that! I saved a few from last year (peas, watermelon, beans, lettuce) and I'm eager to see if they will come up this year.

I also placed an order through Mountain Rose Herbs for some organic herb seeds that I plan on harvesting and saving for medicinal use. That company specializes in carrying organic or wild harvested plants. They are a great source for supplies if you make your own soaps, lotions, etc. I went ahead and added a bunch of dried herbs/flowers to my order for some teas I've been wanting to make or at least have on hand. Especially the dried elderberries for my Cough Syrup recipe I found.

But back to the garden...so I went ahead and plugged in my finalized lists and sent them off into cyberspace! I can't wait to get my seed packages!! It helps the winter days go by faster as I get everything ready for the spring planting!

The next step is figuring out when to start each plant: whether to go with seedlings, or just in the ground---I will go into my process for that next time. 

Do you have any vegetables or fruits that are favorites in your family garden?? Anything new you want to try this year?


January 28, 2013

Homeschool Mother's Journal~ Jan 28th

  • In my life this week…I am thankful for the warmer weather we are having right now! We've had two weeks of 20 degrees or less---and now it's already 60 degrees! My boys have cabin fever and I will be so happy to send them OUTSIDE for recess today!

  • In our homeschool this week…we are just continuing our My Father's World curriculum. We are on Day 91-95 and learning more about the Israelites as they wandered in the wilderness, geometry, and reading of course. Also moving ahead in our Geography and Story of the World.

  • Places we’re going and people we’re seeing…well, it's not happening this week, but we did get lined up for a field trip in Cincinnati with other homeschool families to visit the Planetarium. And we are working on a trip down to South Carolina in April to visit my aunt and her family!

  • Things I’m working on…include continuing my Bible Study on Collossians, daily prayers for patience, and trying to get to bed at a better time each night. I have the tendency to stay up too late--especially on the nights my husband works away from home.

  • I’m cooking…hmmm...I am thinking about making some mexican rice to go with our leftover fajita chicken. I want to try the Pinterest recipe for Breakfast Muffins as well as test out the homemade Cheese-It recipe I have.

  • I’m grateful for…good health and the love and prayers of friends.

  • I’m praying for…my sweetheart. He threw his back out yesterday--very badly actually--and though he says he feels better, I don't trust him to take it easy at work this week. So I'm praying that he will be smart and not do too much.

  • A photo, video, link, or quote to share (silly, serious or both!)…

January 20, 2013

Homeschooling Mother's Journal~ Jan 20th

In my life this week…I have many things to do--plan out the music for the groups I'm working with for the Spring Holy Days, make up my annual Spring Holy Days greeting cards to give and to sell, make a host of cards (or find some I've already made) to send out to some shut-ins, and then the normal everyday SAHM stuff.

In our homeschool this week…I see us hopefully staying on schedule all week. We have readings about Moses all week and the 10 plagues. We also have our Continent work to finish and the next chapter of Story of the World.

My favorite thing this week was…hearing Little Britches just picking up things like ads to read...or reading signs or brand names. What a nice feeling that is to see your child R-E-A-D!

Things I’m working on…patience and diligence. These two traits are what I need to work on above all the rest right now. Patience for people and things. And diligence to follow thru on my plans and commitments.

I’m cooking…I have a new made from scratch Cheeze-It recipe I snagged off of Pinterest that I'm dying to try and I want to make a banana breakfast muffin recipe I saw there too. You can find both of these recipes on my Good Eats Pinterest Board.

I’m grateful for…continued good health! We had a short virus hit Little Britches last week and gave him nearly every symptom possible from fever to rash to vomiting...but it was relatively mild and gone in 4 days. And I'm soooo grateful it wasn't worse and that no one else came down with it!

I’m praying for…emotional strength! I have been helping many friends bear burdens right now and there are days when my "shoulders" start getting really really heavy. So then I remember to take it to God and the Father grants me the strength I need to stand up tall and keep encouraging them to walk on!

Something I am ogling or have my eye on…oh I'm seriously checking out two things. #1 is a juicer for our family. My boys love smoothies and drinks and I have Baby Britches who is super picky but loves drinking things. I think with a juicer I could get him the vegetables he needs in a form he will enjoy! Not to mention we are planning a huge vegetable garden for this year and it will be a nice asset! So we are shopping around trying to find a great one for a not-too-expensive price. The other item I'm eyeing is an enameled cast iron dutch oven...this one is my personal choice:
Oh I just love the bright Caribbean Blue color--though a Red one would make me happy too. But I've gotten so many recipes that require this item and I just can't make them right now! I'm seriously hoping to convince my hubby that I *need* it to ensure continued nutritious meals--especially on Friday night! Because I could just fill full of all sorts of good stuff and let it cook until Sabbath dinner!

A photo, video, link, or quote to share (silly, serious or both!)…

This song has touched my heart since the first time I heard that last two lines...I could have written it myself and I hope you enjoy it.


January 1, 2013

Exploring a World of Color: The Best Unit from 2012

Last year we were mostly focused on finishing our My Father's World Kindergarten curriculum. I thought it would be fun to share photos from our most favorite units. Out of the 26 units we completed, I think we both enjoyed Yy Yellow Paint the most because we explored the world of color.

Here are some photos from that unit...

Learning about the different levels of color and finally getting to use this great poster that came with a book we've had for a long time! We love the birds on this poster!

Making our own paint palette color wheel...
So we can paint of course!
A beautiful rainbow and an example of using warm colors and cool colors.
We continued working with the color wheel---
Always enjoy adding in colorful candies!

We even went to an advanced color wheel with the primary, secondary and tertiary colors!
And we discovered we had crayons for every petal on the color wheel flower!
Speaking of crayons...we decided it was time to make some new ones!
We put them in miniature muffin tin cups so they would be easier for little fingers to handle...
And we love coloring with them! Baby Britches uses them the most though.

Our final project was making a color ribbon mobile---thank you Pinterest!

Little Britches decided it was a rainbow jellyfish...it adds a lot of color to our classroom!
Baby Britches loves it too--he likes running his fingers through the ribbon best.

The main book we read--with it having both English and Spanish, we practiced the color words in both languages. It is a very beautiful book!
As you can see, we had a colorful time learning about colors--and with all these activities, it's easy to see why it was our favorite!