Friday, April 27, 2012

I Have Found a Goldmine!!!!!!!!!!

Last Sunday I planted 12 tomato plants, 8 bell pepper plants, 4 jalepeno pepper plants, and 8 more broccoli plants.

I did a light weeding [dandelions are NOT stymied by the heavy mulch]. Most things are doing well except my carrots which were covered by mulch by my garden "helper".

I still have to transplant the wild stawberries into their permanent spot in the garden, but I want to wait until they are a little bigger and stronger.

I spoke to my wonderful friend Adrian today. He is the friend who helped me choose my beautiful black Arabian mare Lady Ashen a few years ago!

Well, Adrian is a farmer who lives nearby and he has a few large round bales of partially decomposed hay that he will GIVE me!

I am doing a happy dance of joy! Soon, I will have enough spoiled hay to mulch all of my young orchard, my roses, my herb bed, my grapevines, a new vegetable bed for squashes, cucumbers, and pumpkins, my garden paths, build a compost heap, and still have hay left over!  I get chills all over just thinking about the rich soil I can build with this motherlode of spoiled hay!

I feel like I really have found gold! Black gold that is.........

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

My First Taste of Home Grown Asparagus!

In the last few weeks, I planted a pear tree, a crabapple tree, two plum trees, potatoes, and half of the huge amount of onions sets I bought.

I also temporarily planted the wild strawberry plants I bought until I get the permanent beds ready.

Last week, I worked like a dog all day, but I got a lot of stuff planted: Four grapevines, the rest of the sweet onions, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, kale, beets, turnips, two types of pole beans [Kentucky Wonder and Blue Lake], and peas.

This week the beets, turnips, and kale we planted last week are up. Some of the sweet onions are up also. My perennial onion bed and my cultivated wild garlic are doing wonderfully. The grape vines we planted a couple of weeks ago are doing good also.

The tiny crabapple and pear trees we planted a couple of weeks ago are doing fine, but the plum trees look dead.  I will give a call to the nursery and ask them to replace them.

I noticed asparagus is rearing it's lovely head, and I ate a spear right out of the garden.......delicious!  I tossed composted manure around the bed.

We will be starting to transplant irises to make way for the cucumber, yellow squash, and zucchini bed next week.  Then we will mulch the area thickly with leaves and hay.

Bugs are nibbling on my cabbage plants so I had to hit them with a little Sevin dust.  I hate using chemicals but it was necessary.

Moles are not yet in my raised beds, but they are wreaking havoc in my lawn!  Today, I had my lawn mowed for the first time this year.  It looks great.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Niecy's Flaming Living Room

""What is old, is new again." Nowhere is this more evident than in the world of fashion and textile design. Vera Neumann, better known simply by her first name and distinctive signature, created clothing and textiles that are as fashionable today as they were in the 1960s and '70s when the artist was at the height of her career. Designing for the "average woman," Vera was known for her bold geometric designs and bright, splashy florals." Vera's vibrant scarves, blouses, dresses, sleepwear, kitchen textiles, bed linens, and dishes were widely marketed and sold.  Vera's designs are the focus of Niecy's apartment.

The kitchen project was/is a big hit with my niece and my sister.  So much so, that they want me to work on the living room!  The apartment is a standard issue white walls, no painting allowed beige brown carpet model.  Since we can't paint the walls, color has to come via the furnishings.  And the apartment is so small that most colorful accessories must be working accessories.  We have no room for accessories that do not pull their weight.

On I found a nice little orange front door mat.
My last thrift shop junket resulted in me finding four brand new, still in the package Home Goods orange cotton curtain panels for $8 a panel!  I snatched them up!

I have purchased 8 Vera butterfly design napkins that I sewed into 4 pillows.   

I will use the four Vera napkins I got on Ebay to stretch on a set of 4 wood frames -- instant art!

I found this lamp at an auction and paid $1!  The shade was an extra one I had.  I bought a can of mellow yellow spray paint, and the transformation was fantastic.  Less than 3 days later, my cousin gave us a matching lamp!  We went ahead and painted it yellow also!

I think that my niece's hand me down sofa and armchair were revitalized when she got soft cotton duck slipcovers from Ebay.  The black color will hide dirt [my niece is not the greatest housekeeper].  The vibrant sofa pillows will really pop against the black!

An old rectangular dining table placed against the wall makes a spacious study area for the two college students who are sharing this apartment. 

I talked my sister into splurging on the chairs for this "desk".  We spent a only $130 on this orange leather pair of parsons chairs on Ebay.  They generally run between $200 and $300 per pair.  They are both elegant and comfortable for hours of study and really make a positive impact in the space. 

An inexpensive framed orange and yellow flower poster pops this wall, along with two small orange lamps which illuminate the study area.  A black shelving unit next to the desk holds school and reference books.

My sister and I found a couple of end tables, and a old solid oak 6 drawer dresser at an auction for only $4 total.  A careful sanding and a few coats of black glossy paint turned these decorating orphans into star players.  The dresser is now an elegant entertainment center [minus two of its top drawers], and the old cabinet end tables now proudly hold the yellow lamps.  Extra orange and yellow butterfly placemats protect the table tops.

Another ugly duckling cabinet end table painted black substitutes for a coffee table.

Over the sofa we hung 3 mounted color block cotton panels in pink, yellow, and orange.