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Showing posts from May, 2013

Mama Kat Thursday: Favorite Table

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  The Mama Kat Blog Prompt topic for today is: "Give us a tour of a room in your house you love."   For me, I love the furniture in my dining area more so then the actual room per se. So, I decided to show you a photo  of my dining table, which is a solid oak butcher-block table and my "corner cabinet" behind it. Each piece has it's own story and both were acquired our first year of marriage, when we were setting up our first apartment. We came upon the oak table and chair set on weekend when driving by an old restaurant that had been turned into a fly-by-night furniture outlet in Maryland and decided to stop in for a look. We needed a dining table and I hate glass tables, which are fragile and show every smear and finger print. I like real wood. It's warm and durable. So we decided on this rectangular butcher block table, since we wanted to have adequate seating space for dinner guests and purchased it and it's 4 chairs for a mere $400. Since

Garden Pic Wednesday: Vased Glads

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    I swam at Y again this morning, then did a little bit of trimming on my blackberries, which are starting to ripen. I decided to snip off any malformed berries, so the plant would put it's energy into ripening the good ones really fat and plump. I watered them with miracle-grow fertilizer yesterday as well.   I have 2 Garden Pics for you today: First is a mixed vase I put together featuring Gladiolus . They are an easy bulb flower to grow and make an excellent vase flower, though you do have to remove dead blooms and trim stems every couple of days, since they open from bottom to top. But they last as long as it takes to bloom to the top of the stem! Outside, their bloom heads tend to fall over, being top heavy, and must be either staked up or cut and brought inside. I prefer the latter. To make this arrangement: I cut some short stems of Hydrangea, climbing rose & Lily of the Nile (Agapanthus) and arranged these short stems in a circle around the top edge

Garden Pic Wednesday: Calendula!

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Today's photo topic is a herb called Calendula: Calendula It's common names include Pot Marigold, Butterwort, Cowbloom, Marsh Marigold, Mary Flower and Bull Flower, among others. The Calendula flower is both edible and a medicinal herb known for it's anti-inflammatory effects when it is used topically and it is also a potent antioxidant. It can be soothing for the gastrointestinal tract when ingested as tea. Because of its antiviral and antibacterial qualities, it is also useful in treating minor wounds and abrasions.    The petals of Calendula are often added to salads as well. Their bright orange color is an attractive contrast to salad green and their slightly bitter flavor compliments the other vegetables. When cooked, the flavor mellows. Calendula can be used much like saffron by adding it to rice and pasta dishes.    The photo above is actually last year's lone Calendula. I saved 2 heads of seed from it and this year have 10 plants coming i

Good Eating Monday: Sweet-Sour Slaw

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Welcome back to another gorgeous week of May! The cool weather is lasting a long time this year! And, here's a interior view of the new garage door! Treated wood forms the frame, which is bolted at top and bottom into the frame of the house. It's designed to withstand intense wind, but really, we just needed a door that would stay shut securely. The old one had a tendency to randomly pop open about 5 inches, so I was having to keep it tied with a rope to prevent that. That is a biggest reason for getting a new door! I liked the installers, too. Very proficient and very knowledge. He explained to me exactly how to care for both the hinges and outside appearance, which is a briefing we didn't get on the last one!   Anyway today's Good Eating recipe is for Sweet-Sour Slaw! This is a vinegar based slaw recipe given to me by a Jewish lady I met in swim aerobics at the Y, who enjoys sharing her family recipes. It's actually a terrific tasting slaw with extra

Mama Kat Thursday: The Family Talent

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         You might be wondering how the door install is going, since that was to happen today? Well, they're hard at it. There was a lot of hammering going on for awhile as they put up a new frame of treated wood around the door opening, but it's quieter now, so I imagine they're working on assembly.      The Mama Kat Prompt for today is:   "Describe a talent that seems to be in your genes." That's easy enough. There's an artistic-creative gene that travels through my family like the Force of Star Wars. Our Mother had a specific talent for drawing. I remember she used to hand-draw paper dolls and clothes for them to wear when I was little, but she was also very creative when it came to crafts and sewing. Our Dad's creative genes found expression in wood-working. So, my sisters and I inherited a culmination of artistic, crafty, resourceful, hands-on sort of creativity that expresses itself in a board range of ways. All 3 of us have certainly tak

Garden Pic Wednesday: Pink Petunias

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The garage door people called yesterday to schedule a time to install the new garage door---which caught me completely off-guard! I wasn't expecting to hear from them for a couple weeks and thought that because the guy who inspected the garage opening said it might be 4 to 6 weeks. The good news is, "Yay, we get the door tomorrow!" The bad news is, "Oh goodie, now I have to clean up the garage!"   So, that's how I spent the last 3 hours. I needed to clear the area near the door opening and under both slide rails, so the installers can get to everything. My cluttered metal shelf of garden tools and all my various bags of garden soil, lime and weed & feed were sitting right up front, right under a slide rail, so all that mess had to be moved! I don't know about you, but moving things around to give the garage floor a good sweeping just doesn't happen often and I figured if I'm doing a little, I might as well do it all. (Single car si

Mama Kat Thursday: First News Story I Cared About

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       The Mama Kat topic for today is:  " How old were you? Share one of the first news stories you remember caring about."   I was 7, almost 8 in November 1963 when the news broke that John F. Kennedy had been shot. I can't remember watching the news. I don't even precisely remember how I understood the President was dead. What I do remember is the palpable sense of sadness that seemed to roll over me like a wave, even as the whole of the US reeled in shock and mourning. Their new young hope was gone.  I was told in a college sociology class that every generation of kids is effected by some significant event. For me, it was the assassination of John F. Kennedy.    

Garden Pic Wedesday: Fireworks Grass

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Greetings! Today I was working on a set of wooden shelves that I had stained some years ago, but had never finished the project. So, I decided to finish them.They needed a second going over with walnut stain  and I sanded down their edges to give them a slightly worn look. Tomorrow I'll but the Tung Oil on to give them a nice polish. While I was out in the garage with door open working on that, the garage company guy showed up to look over our garage door opening, which is the first step to getting a new one. Our existing garage door is in desperately needs replacing! But things have changed a lot about installing garage doors since we replaced ours 12 years ago. Insurance requirements have changed considerably. Since I live in Florida, garage doors have to be wind resilient. The interior frame for mounting it will be re-done.  Every piece of hardware, including the spring coil has to be replaced. And the price includes a costly little permit that is now required. Things sure do