Wednesday, March 31, 2010

What Do You Get When You Combine A Dozen Eggs, 2 Girls, 6 Coffee Cups full of Dye, Electrical Tape And Some Stickers?

A fun messy Spring afternoon.

Wardrobe (Malfunction) Wednesday

Today is the last day of my 30 day free trial of Adobe Lightroom and as you can imagine, I'm a little sad. Or maybe a lot sad, because after today, I will have to go back to editing my photos in Photoshop Elements RAW. Which as as far as complaining goes, I should just shut the hell up right now because Elements does plenty, but Lightroom is absolutely amazing. The presets, the vignettes, white balance, color sliders, I could go on all day... Reality check, Aliceson! As much as I would love to purchase Lightroom and know that I would use it all the time, with the Gardener not working and money being tighter than ever, I really can't justify spending money (even if I can get it for less than retail online) on a hobby when this month's mortgage payment is making me nervous. So for today, I'm trying to edit as many photos as I can before I get cut off. Including of course, a set for Wardrobe Wednesday!

Yesterday Binny hopped off the bus with a sad face and an open jacket. The zipper on her (hand-me-down from Mae) coat had completely disintegrated. A few weeks ago, the pull fell off so we clipped on a little green tag with a cow on it from the dairy lady (Wisconsin is the dairy state after all, back off California!) that came to visit her class. This time, the zipper had completely fallen apart but Binny insisted that Daddy could fix it. With a handful of broken parts and a needle nose pliers, the Gardener tried his best and managed to get it to work a little but without the help of a trained adult, there is no way Binny could take the coat off by herself. UP works great but down is another story. At home, that's fine but I can hear the phone call from the teacher now. "Hello, Binny's mom? Binny's coat seems to be stuck and she can't get it off. What am I supposed to do?"

Another piece of clothing on it's way out to the burn barrel.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Monday Garden Club

With the kids (finally!) back at school and the Gardener off doing odd projects for old ladies, I again have the house all to myself, with the exception of 2 snoring dogs. A perfect time to show off what's been going on in my basement!

The lights have been burning around the clock and it seems to be working! I had read that seedlings need 17 hours under the lights daily but that just didn't seem to be enough. The plants that were starting to become real leggy (from not enough light) have beefed up and are growing so much that we had to raise up the lights. Some of the plants had themselves tucked right up next to the bulbs! I'm not posting photos of our crude height control setup but trust me, it looks a little scary. My husband assured me that paints cans and the other miscellaneous found items (including paint stir sticks and a dustpan!) he used to stick under the table legs to achieve the correct spacing would be just fine. So far so good!

The 2 flats of seedlings (one flat of veggies and one flat of flowers) that I started last week have sprouted and are now enjoying some of the faux basement sunshine as well.
Now for all you gardeners out there who wish to participate, either leave a comment on what's growing in your basement yard, or post a Monday Garden Club update on your blog. Don't forget to drop your link in the comments and I'll add it to this post.

Participating Bloggers

Out In Them Sticks

Friday, March 26, 2010

I See London, I see France....

(A late Wardrobe Wednesday for sure but I have a good excuse! This is Spring Break week. The Gardener is still laid off and all up in my business and the kids are not in school, so I've been a little busy. [Except for Today because the girls had a sleep over at Grandma and Grandpa's house last night and won't be home til this afternoon and the Gardener is off raking someone's lawn. I'm home alone!] Once again my blog has taken a back seat to laundry and cooking and cleaning and entertaining the kids. After all it is Spring Break and I don't think it's too much to ask that my kids go outside and enjoy the nice Spring weather. But... the weather is still cold and windy. I can't with a good conscience bundle them up and send them outside to play in the grain bin playhouse so I can post a few photos to my blog without having to break up a fight or clean up a mess. Hopefully next week I can get back to actually writing something here instead of just posting a bunch of photos. Although some days I don't feel like writing and just like to look at some pictures...)

I swear this kid has been practically living in this dress for weeks now. The gold sash that she absolutely loves is all torn and frayed and barely hanging on. After close examination to the sash, it has been determined (by me) that it is well beyond the repair stage. I offered to remove (Cut it off) the sash all together and replace it with some other flashy fabric, but my suggestion was quickly shot down and Binny ran off yelling "WE'RE KEEPIN' IT!"

By the way THIS is how Binny watches TV:

I think the nickname Little Miss Wiggle Butt definitely applies here.

And THIS is how we do garbage, recycling and composting in our house. Watch carefully!

Hours of fun I tell you!

Monday, March 22, 2010

Monday Garden Club

I cannot even believe that Winter is finally (almost?) over! Of course I am thrilled that the days are getting longer and warmer. Who isn't excited to finally put away the snowboots (and snowpants and hats and mittens and gloves and heavy winter coats and extra blankets) and pull out the flip-flops and once again hang laundry out on the clothesline to dry? I hung out some towels today and almost got drunk on the fresh smell as I was folding and putting them away. Sooooo good! With that same of enthusiasm for all things Spring and Summer, I am so happy to start the 2010 gardening season!

Shall we?
I was lazy this morning and didn't feel like switching lenses on my camera so the garden is shown in 2 photos. Last year I could fit the whole thing in if I was standing on our front porch but now it's twice the size!
The Gardener spent all weekend acquiring and building a disc for the back of the tractor to use to smooth out the dirt in the garden.

While it's much too early to start actually planting anything outside, it's nice to get started on a few things, like maybe thinking about cleaning out my potting shed again.

The irises have popped out of the ground
and so have the tulips.

I have also started some veggie and flower seeds in the house.
Since this is my first year starting any seeds in the house, I had to buy some supplies.I bought these inserts, the bottom trays and clear plastic lids at a local garden center along with a few bags of starter mix potting soil, my seeds and a heat mat.

I also ordered one of these kits from Amazon (because I had a gift card) that included the whole tray system (72 cell) and heat mat.
The heat mat keeps the tray warm and with the cover on, that thing is just the perfect environment for starting seeds, especially since we keep our plants in the (somewhat cool) basement under the lights.
We had the light fixtures sitting in the barn, but I bought some grow lamps from the hardware store.

I started a flat of flowers (petunias, pansies, 4 o'clocks, zinnias, and lupines)

and a flat of vegetables (several varieties of tomatoes and peppers) 2 weeks ago
I also started another flat of veggies (broccoli, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, basil and 2 more types of tomatoes) and flowers over the weekend that will also go under the lights in a few days.

So exciting! Anyone else gardening yet? Thinking about gardening? How about sick and tired of the crappy selection of produce in the grocery store and want the Farmer's markets to start again soon???

Now for all you gardeners out there who wish to participate, either leave a comment on what's growing in your yard basement, or post a Monday Garden Club update on your blog. Don't forget to drop your link in the comments, I'll add you to this post.

Participating Bloggers:
Out In Them Sticks