kareid: (Default)
2010-08-03 03:49 pm

Jam

I made blueberry jam last night.  First time I've made blueberry, and it came out sweeter than I'd hoped, but the honey flavor came through stronger than on other flavors, which was interesting.  I also was able to make it myself, on a weeknight, in an hour or two.  I like knowing enough about doing this to be able to do it as an evening project.

Unrelatedly, there is a watermelon in my yard.  It is the tiniest watermelon I have ever seen, smaller than a grape.  I want to see if it will turn into a big one!
kareid: (Default)
2010-07-09 06:25 pm

Fried Pickles from Clover

The Clover truck was making fried pickles this week (after 4pm only, next week it will be fried plantains.)  As I have a minor obsession with fried pickles, I had to try them.  I was not as impressed with their fried pickles as I am with much of their food.  The batter stuck well to the pickles, but wasn't very interestingly flavored.  The pickles themselves were spears, and with the thick layer of lumpy batter extremely large.  On one of mine the batter wasn't cooked all the way through.  They did have a very tasty mustard sauce with them which made them much more interesting.  All in all, only middle of the road for fried pickles.  I had hoped for better from Clover.
kareid: (Default)
2010-07-07 04:04 pm

Backpacks

I went looking at backpacks monday, to replace one that I love but has zippers that are dying.  I found two that I am not sure of.  This one which is an update of my current pack. The front pocket now opens sideways instead of from the top which seems random and less useful.  And this one, which was wonderfully lightweight and easy to carry things in, but had fewer pockets and seemed like it may be smaller in general.  The metal frame also made me worry I wouldn't be able to wash it, but the mesh back would make it much nicer in hot weather like we're having now. 
kareid: (Default)
2010-06-18 03:51 pm

(no subject)


I'm planning on going to see a performance at the roving shakespeare truck monday night, tuesday if it looks rainy monday. The schedule is here, along with a link to the WBUR article, if anyone else is interested.
kareid: (Default)
2010-05-28 02:12 pm
Entry tags:

(no subject)

Today NSTAR came to check our meter and pipes and told us we had two gas leaks. Small ones, no need for panic. Still, not something I expected. They put wax over them and will schedule an appointment later to replace the pipes and part of line to the street, which is also not up to spec.

Afterwards, I got to sit outside and eat the first ripe strawberries while smelling the peonies. Much more fun.
kareid: (Default)
2010-05-23 10:49 am
Entry tags:

Herbs and veggies

Does anyone have any interest in any garlic scapes or fresh garlic? I dug up a whole pile yesterday afternoon because it was in the way, and it's far more than we can use anytime soon and I don't have anywhere to put it. I have no idea how the bulbs taste when harvested this time of year. Along those lines, if anyone wants oregano plants, they're coming up all over my yard. I'd be happy to pot some up for you, and I think I'm going to have an extra tomato plant or three too.
kareid: (Default)
2010-05-08 12:17 pm
Entry tags:

New Lilac

I went out to a garden store today with one of J's aunts to look for a plant in the rain (slightly long story) and got a dwarf lilac for the stepped raised bed in the back of the yard. I'm not quite crazy enough to plant it in the middle of thunderstorms. Hopefully I can do that tomorrow.
kareid: (Default)
2010-04-18 04:26 pm
Entry tags:

(no subject)

I've spent far too much time spent thinking about dishwashers lately.  Ugh. )  At least the yard is pretty and everything is starting to turn green.  I'd rather be working in the yard though.  Maybe it will stop raining tomorrow and I can take advantage of my holiday.
kareid: (Default)
2010-03-05 05:51 pm
Entry tags:

(no subject)

Spring is suddenly here.  There are crocuses and snowdrops up in my yard, with buds.  The daffodils are just starting to break the surface.  I started my first seedlings last weekend (foxgloves and leeks), with more planned to start in another two weeks.  It might be time to start fixing some of the winter storm damage soon.
kareid: (Default)
2010-02-09 10:31 am

(no subject)

Is anyone else interested in seeds from Seed Savers Exchange?  I'm going to put in an order real soon.
kareid: (Default)
2009-12-26 10:08 am
Entry tags:

Remodeling

[livejournal.com profile] frolain and I are trying to remodel the downstairs bathroom and replace the floor in the downstairs kitchen.  If any of you remember it, the downstairs bathroom is the one with the square pink standing shower stall that doesn't fit the space, so that water hits the floor when it's running without a carefully rigged shower curtain, the rough 2x4s that were used as a frame for the door, the stained floor, and other general not-right.  The downstairs kitchen floor is pink and "white" linoleum from a decade I'm not sure of.  We thought it was black and white when we first bought the house until two moppings with bleach water revealed it was pink and white (matching the then-pink walls.)

We've had a contractor in to give us a quote on labor for replacing the kitchen floor with tile and doing the bathroom work, and have another one scheduled.  We also went to start looking at tile.  This is where the real problem comes in.  The tile places we've seen so far seem to want to exclusively sell natural-ish colors, things I sort of think of as mediterranean tones, in large, 12" tiles for floor tile.  They'll branch out a bit into 12" marble for baths.  Or into tiny hexagonal tile if you're going for the antique style (we're not.)  12" marble would look ridiculous in this closet-sized bathroom.  We'll probably manage to find something reasonable in this color palate for the kitchen, but I think we're going to have to compromise a lot more than I'd hoped for the bathroom.  This is really frustrating me, as I feel like we can't be the only people who don't want to do our bathroom in marble or antique tile.

On a different note, I called my dad last night, to find that he and my sister were feeding a baby goat in the house.  They'd brought it in because they were worried about it making it through its first few days in the cold.  Apparently one of the goats had triplets but lost them due to the cold in the barn.  My sister describes baby goats as being a lot like puppies.
kareid: (Default)
2009-12-03 01:51 pm
Entry tags:

Kitchen and bathroom work

SJ helped me rip out the extra cabinet in the downstairs kitchen last week, where we found this delightful green linoleum tile on the wall. We also discovered the kitchen was wallpapered under the pink paint. Who knew?

I've scheduled one contractor to come over and talk to us about the work on the kitchen and bath next week. We want to have the kitchen floor redone (finally, getting rid of the white and pink linoleum) and something close but not quite a complete remodel of the bath. I don't think the downstairs bath will ever be great because there just isn't enough space, but we can do better than the current shower and sink. There's going to be a lot of running around looking at tiles, sinks and such in our future though.
kareid: (Default)
2009-11-28 06:18 pm

(no subject)

It is a very strange fall. On wed, I had raspberries straight from the bush. They were good too. The blue bearded iris is trying to bloom again. SJ and I cut all the other irises back for iris borer control, but let this one keep its leaves so that it doesn't use all its energy on the flower. I felt strange cutting so many strong leaves but, it's Thanksgiving, and we've already had at least one hard frost.

Today, the wind actually ripped my butterfly bush out of the ground. It's lying in the driveway. This is a 7-8 ft tall bush which has been in that spot a few years. If the wind is down tomorrow, I'll try to put it back in the ground, stake it down, and cut it back a lot. I didn't want to try today, as it seemed the wind would just tear it out again. No idea if it will handle this okay, or if it's pretty much dead now. Luckily, these bushes grow fast and are easy to find, so it's not a huge loss if it doesn't make it.
kareid: (Default)
2009-10-17 07:23 pm

(no subject)

Off to Maine to be not-in-Boston for a few days.  Hopefully this will be nice.
kareid: (Default)
2009-08-16 02:44 pm

(no subject)

Things I did not want, but got anyway (a partial list): Iris borers.  I feel like the yard is a losing battle this week, with the squirrels (I don't know what it is, but I'm blaming squirrels) digging up both established plants and vegetable seedlings, the return of fungus infections, everything stressed from the heat and dry, and now nasty insects.  And I get to deal with it all in hot, sweaty weather with plenty of mosquitoes.
kareid: (Default)
2009-08-08 02:42 pm

(no subject)

Zoe caught a bird yesterday.  I was working on the big veggie bed (which is sadly pathetic this year, the last of the zucchinis just died, and I'm trying to figure out what to plant in its large, empty place) when I heard her walk by behind me, peeping.  I thought that was a rather odd sound for her to make, and looked over to see that she had a large, reddish bird in her mouth.  Looked pretty satisfied too, and had no intention of giving it to me.  She took it over to the pear tree, and set it down, at which point I picked her up, and dumped her in the house.  She was pretty annoyed and spent the next while staring at me through the door, meowing constantly.  The bird was gone by the time I got back a few minutes later.  While I didn't get a great look at it, since it was upside down and in Zoe's mouth most of the time, I think it was the female from the local cardinal pair, so I'm not particularly pleased that Zoe beat it up.  Why couldn't she beat up a pigeon or a starling or something else nasty?  I am curious to see if this was one-time luck, or if she's learned a new trick and there will be more birds.

Ivy followed this up with a good impression of freaking out at seeing my shovel lying on the lawn, which I later figured out was freaking out at seeing the skunk hiding under the hosta.  For once, freaking out over something reasonable.
kareid: (Default)
2009-07-25 08:53 am

(no subject)

I found something in my yard that seems to like the current weather: the bamboo.  It's finally hit its growth stage.  (It does all its growth for the year as one spurt over a few days.)  The new canes are at least a foot taller than the old ones on most of the plants.   Yay for it finally settling in, I'd been worried that it wasn't doing well, and this is better.  It makes sense that it would like this weather too, as it's supposed to like a lot of watering.
kareid: (Default)
2009-07-22 09:32 am

(no subject)

Yesterday was the deadline to nominate gardens for the 2010 Somerville Garden Club garden tour.  I went on the 2008 tour, and had been interested in being part of a future tour, but was being somewhat angsty about it, and only found out about the 2010 tour yesterday.  Yes, on the due date.  I was convinced to sent in a nomination last night anyway (you can nominate yourself) despite feeling kind of weird about the self-promotion, and kind of weird that they will definitely get it after the deadline.  I don't know how strict they're likely to be about the due date, and it'll only be a day or so late.  The worst that can happen is they'll ignore it, right? Which is no worse than not having sent one in. 
kareid: (Default)
2009-07-10 09:59 am

(no subject)

Zoe-cat is doing better, yay. She's been eating food for almost a week now, and we've been letting her outside again. She lost about a pound, which, when you're a 9lb cat, is quite a bit. I don't know if/when she'll get the weight back. She looks kind of sadly skinny right before her back legs now. We don't really know what was wrong, some people have been guessing food poisoning from something she ate outside.