Monday, July 18, 2016

Welcome to the Surface of the Sun...

Happy Monday! I don't much care for Mondays, but that doesn't stop them from coming. It's been a pretty typical one, with me making lists, goals, and plans - then getting to round-about-3pm and realizing there 'aint no way I'm getting this all done. Lol. Like I said, typical.

Hope ya'll are staying cool. We've been running the AC like crazy. I don't even want to think about the bill. Our area has had way too many triple digit days and there's no end in sight. Haven't even had a good monsoon yet. People like to say, "oh, but it's a dry heat, right?". Sure. Sure it is. Dry heat like opening the oven door when it's set on broil - you know, singe your eyebrows and nose hair kinda heat. But yeah, it's dry. Lol.

Recipes around here lately have been pretty simple - light & fresh meals that can be put together in a snap. It's too darn hot for anything else. Mostly salad based dinners... topped with rotisserie chicken and chopped veggies, or taco meat and black beans... that kind of thing. Tonight's dinner is a twist on the recipe I shared last week - Summer Steak Tart. I'm swapping out the steak for rotisserie chicken, exchanging the feta for manchego and pecorino cheeses. I'll share the results tonight.

One thing I've had a serious hankering for lately is spaghetti squash. Haven't seen any in my local stores. And the ones I planted have stubbornly refused to bear fruit. Buggers. Speaking of my garden...

It's summer. And it's hot. Ugh. Next summer I'm planning to utilize some garden shading - not sure yet what exactly that will entail, but losing crops makes me mad. I never did get fruit out of my Armenian cucumbers - the vines are still growing, but I think they're about done. I got quite a bit out of my regular cucumbers, and my tomatoes were an absolute triumph - still are, in fact. I'm harvesting cherry tomatoes every day. The cabbage and cauliflower went to seed while we were in England, but I left them in the garden because they were pretty, lol.

Now I've got pumpkins, cantaloupe, and watermelon all struggling to produce in two of the beds. A third has my second batch of corn that hasn't made it to maturity (seriously irritating). I've cleaned out and amended another bed and replanted using the three-sisters method (corn, green beans, and squash all together).  Haven't had a lot of luck with any of those crops, so maybe lumping them together is the trick.

I've also seeded a few empty sections with more fun stuff... broccoli, cilantro, dill, more peanuts, more peppers. I'm sunflower crazy, so I've also sowed a bunch more of those, including in the front yard around the big Fir tree. I had tried to do this several weeks ago... dug a little trough all around the tree, laid in fresh soil, put in my seeds. And the all came up! I was so excited and couldn't wait for them to grow and bloom. Then the guy who mows our lawn came. Yep. He ran them all over. I may have shed a few tears. So... I went out and got some little fencing and did it all again. Lol. You can see they're popping up. Woohoo! My pumpkins and watermelon seedlings in the front yard are also doing great. Maybe I'll get something out of those since the ones in the backyard are giving me fits.
 

My herbs are going crazy! I've got lemon basil, sweet basil and thai basil that have all thrived beyond my expectations. It's awesome!! My oregano was doing really good until this week, drat. I've got nice strong tarragon, savory, and parsley, though I'm hoping to get more of the first two. Seeds are in, so we'll see. My carrots are poking their shoulders up, and my peppers are all doing well. My favorite part of the day is picking a pepper for my breakfast omelet :-) I've got several different varieties, so it's fun to play with them all. I have discovered I prefer red jalapeno's over green ones. Lol. They're hotter.

The pups are doing great. I've been working with Loki in the pool - he loves to be held while in the water, and he loves to swim, but he still won't get in on his own. Weirdo. Hunter on the other hand...

Lol!! He adores that thing! And so far, hasn't been able to bite through it! Yay! Once Loki decides to venture in on his own, I'll get another floaty for him. This is the one I bought from amazon and it's really great.

Life has been as crazy as usual for our family. We've got a lot of things going on. Some days I manage to keep all the balls I'm juggling in the air. Some days not so much, lol. But hopefully this week brings us good news on a couple different fronts. Cross your fingers for us ;-)

Signing off - me and the guy "helping" me write this post. Lol.
Yes... he's laying on the keyboard. What a goober.