Friday, August 20, 2010

Natural Home Magazine.

If you haven't checked out my guest blogs on Natural Home Magazine's website, please do. It's a great magazine with great ideas for the all natural person inside you. Love this magazine. (Thanks to Anne who loaned me my first copy!) Just click on the link below and you can scroll through the blogs or search Green City Garden Girl on their website. Enjoy!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

"Blondie" Part II

Ok, so last night "Blondie" walked right up the stairs to our kitchen to see what we were doing. We took this opportunity to photograph the event. Yes, we are becoming a bizarre little family but what can you do when you have a bizarre little chick. Check it out:

Elias enjoying the growing bird.
Family self-portrait, if only Elias and Duke were in the photo!
A different point of view from the back of the couch.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

A Strange Bird.

Blondie as a baby staring at the camera.
I've got to admit, I was kinda annoyed with my new chicks when I first started raising them back in March. As I mentioned before, it was only a week or so before my adult hens were killed by a dog when I brought them home and it was hard accepting them. They were a different breed, seemed sketchier and, I admit, uglier than my previous birds. Well, things progress as they should and we introduced two more chicks a month later. We added them to the coop and they all got to know each other without too much fighting when determining the pecking order.

Blondie (on left) kickin' it with her sister.
Well, lately, one of the chicks has developed quite the personality and is strangely docile and obedient. "Blondie" as we call her is becoming quite the cool chick. I think I love her. When I go out to the yard to get all four back in the pen and the other three scatter wildly, she sits and waits for me to get her to scoop her up. She loves sitting in my arms to look at me. I think she might love me, too. She is mellower than the others and will walk right up to Elias and Duke without a care in the world. She started laying early, too, even though they were miniature eggs. I'm surprised by the bird's behavior and pleasantly happy to see it emerge. Something about her is just different and I like what I see.

Just last night she walked from the backyard, up the stairs straight into the kitchen to see what we all were doing. We picked her up and she happily sat and watched. My son wanted to show her his bedroom, so that we did. He, also, thinks she has gum on her head because the 'cockscomb' or 'comb' isn't quite developed yet and really does resemble chewed, red gum. Maybe we should change her name to "Big Red" - if only she was a Rhode Island Red breed.

So, she's different all right. I've never met a bird quite like her. I'm not sure how the other three will turn out, but at least I have one I can count on, for now.

Growing up.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Recycled Yard Art.

I try not to buy anything brand new. There are times when I just can't help myself, but for the most part, I keep things very limited on the new-tip. I think it stems from my childhood when we lived on an island in Alaska and, literally, lived like Little House on the Prairie. I kid you not, we had no hot water, slept on cots, peed in a dual outhouse and had a large ladder to climb to the second floor. When we needed to bathe, my folks would heat up water and poor into a clean garbage can. It was perfect for my young size because I fit neatly in the can and the water went up to my neck. It probably wasn't as much fun for my folks, but they never let on. My folks recycled before their time and were not wasteful people by any means. They still aren't - although they are able to splurge a little more now - which is always nice to see.

When I had my son, I filled his room with all second-hand gear; all hand-me-downs from my brother, sister  and friends who got started on the kid scene a lot sooner than I did. I found an old dresser in the basement of a new house we bought, was given a changing table by some friends who had outgrown it and even now use the bunk bed set my Dad and his brothers used when he was a kid. It's amazing what you can do with a gallon of black paint! I'm not a hoarder by any sense of the word, but I like to reuse useful things.

So, when it was time to add a little 'flava' to the yard, the only thing I could come up with was put as much stuff on the fence as I could find; old mirrors, frames, window panes and even copies of oil paintings. My favorite includes an 1800's lady hiking up her dress while sitting on the toilet. Her behind shows and everything. The cool thing is, I didn't buy any of this stuff; I found it. This isn't a new idea and a lot of people are a lot better at this than I am, but I really get a sense of satisfaction with creating a new place for old things. I'll scour an old garage and find a little spark under some cobwebs. For some reason, I'm always drawn to old chairs, lamps and baskets. These items always fit nicely into the landscape of a yard and makes it easy to decorate with a little twist that is the polar opposite of Pottery Barn, Crate and Barrel,  and, well, you get the picture.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Back By Popular Demand...CORN UPDATE.

So, here we are deep into our summer months and I'm happy to report our corn is thriving despite enduring the crappy start to the Seattle weather. Jason's "knee-high by the 4th of July" motto actually hit its mark and we now have something close to corn blossoms on our stocks. Hooray! Our maze isn't ready for fall tours - yet, but perhaps we'll have a Harvest party celebrating the upcoming solstice.

We recently added compost around the base of the stocks to fully enhance the growth (sounds so technical...) Although a recent trip to Lake Chelan proved our corn wasn't as impressive as our 'east of the mountain' counterparts - we really aren't doing too bad. Hey, what can we expect from our weather? We are doing the best we can this year. If we are able to eat a few ears of corn by next month, our work here is done.

Stay tuned for more Corn Updates!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Cookie, I mean Kitchen Monster.

My 2 1/2 year old loves to be in the kitchen. He loves to stir things, blend things, crack eggs and, yes, use knives. It's a dirty job but, I figure, somebody has to do it. He demands (can you believe it!) sitting up on the counter or standing on his stool anytime I am in the kitchen. We just finished baking cookies and he's currently in the bathtub scrubbing the chocolate off his little body. He likes to get naked at some point in the day so there was chocolate, well, EVERYWHERE. You might think twice before eating our fresh-baked goods when you come for a visit, but I like to see his style at work and he's becoming quite the little helper - albeit bossy - when we cook in our kitchen.

He was so excited today because he got to "make cookies all by himself." Yes, he even used the blender without my help. If he noticed my hands coming near it he said he had it. He actually did a really good job until he went to lick the batter, then things got a bit messy. He cracked the eggs into the sugar mix - unfortunately they were miniature eggs because our latest chickens haven't quite developed the powerhouses. So, we used four little eggs, instead of two, and it seemed to do the trick.

He was getting pretty good at plopping the dough on the cookie sheets; they weren't in a line or all the same size, but they were HIS cookies and he was very pleased with himself. As was I.