Have You Seen Green

All the rain lately means the yard is a riot of green.

What’s growing out there? Sugar snap peas, garlic, cilantro, onions, arugula, three kinds of lettuce, broccoli, strawberries, runner beans (that last one is planted but not sprouted). The lilacs are in bloom (seems early to me?). New mum leaves are showing up.

Inside, the tomatoes, peppers and basil continue to grow and I have potted on some of the tomatoes. I also have some more onions going.

There are a ton of flowers on the strawberry plants and I have protected them with hardware cloth cages so maybe I’ll get to eat some strawberries!

In the back garden, in the arugula and lettuce rows, I have two “volunteer” plants — maybe pumpkin? Probably should pull them out but kind of want to see what happens with them.

These pictures are old and I broke the lens on my phone 😦

In the front garden, the hydrangea plant appears to be sending up new plants. I looked it up and this is indeed how they work (with a rhizome underground). That’s exciting, but the main plant is still so small. There’s also something else sprouting that seems like a good plant, perhaps something from last year, but I’m not sure what it is.

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New hydrangea plants

Much more yet to do. I need to plant carrots and to continue potting on peppers and tomatoes. I need to start more basil and onions. I need to do a lot more purchasing and movement of dirt. The pea plants will need some kind of trellis soon. The compost has been a weird consistency so I probably need to pay more attention to that.

This week, I attempted to make vodka sauce using the last of the tomatoes and basil from the freezer. I spent Tuesday afternoon making the base of the sauce, following a Giada deLaurentiis recipe.  It smelled great and I was excited about it. Thursday night, I finished it off with the vodka, heavy cream and Parmesan cheese, but unfortunately, no amount of cooking seemed to burn the vodka off completely and I found it inedible. (Yet my husband and Sebastian ate it, go figure.) Well I guess that’s not the first time I’ve been betrayed by too much vodka. Next time I’ll just skip it. I happened to read yesterday in a magazine that this is not even an authentic Italian dish, so phooey on it.

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Other cooking highlights from the past two weeks included homemade taco seasoning for taco night:

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plus cilantro from the garden, in my tacos anyway. Honestly, with spring break happening this past week, there’s been a lot of eating out, and I don’t even remember what went on the week prior to break.

I’m so excited for the farmers’ markets to start up again.

We’ve had a pretty relaxing spring break. Kicked it off with a nice Easter at my sister-in-law’s house. Everyone had appropriate clothing and shoes to wear so I didn’t need to buy anything. Lots of time at the park and playground, friends coming round to play. Tuesday, I hung two loads of laundry on the line, the first of the season. But Aidan was sick/injured for three days, so the only adventure we had was a trip to the aquarium. We took the RiverLine as an added bonus, since we are train geeks. That was a fun day (if expensive!).

One night we had a fire and roasted marshmallows. Hubs said that the firepit was rusting through and that he should probably buy a new one. “You can’t fix it?” I asked. A half hour later, he had sprayed it with special paint and we were good to go.

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I did buy something new this week: a litter box with a an enclosure and swinging door on top. Why, oh why, did I not buy this years ago? Best invention ever.

Today is Saturday, and it’s raining. The boys and my husband went to a Philadelphia Union soccer game; Gemma just wrapped up a playdate. I ran errands this morning and now will clean up the kitchen. Dinner: arugula thinnings from the garden plus store-bought romaine, carrots etc, plus sauteed chicken. Tomorrow we have a family function, but hopefully I can do some garden work in the morning. Then it’s back to school on Monday and it’s just going to be one long blitz of sports and PTA until June 16. I wish I had gotten more done over this break! I wanted to clean the whole house, but only did a few rooms.

Not to mention everyone needs to go to the dentist, I need to go to the eye doctor and get a haircut; Aidan and Gemma need spring/summer clothes. Everyone is going to need water shoes, bathing suits, etc. Aidan wants to do the STEAM camp at the middle school after school is over. Swimming lessons? Vacation?

Edie Brickell, “Green”

 

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