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Archive for May, 2011

I’m back after almost 6 months off! I have a really good excuse, though.

This is Baby at 12 weeks along. S/He is now 27 weeks along and weighs about 2 lbs.

That’s right, we’re expecting our first baby and I’m already 6 months along: due September 1st. Plus this was the rainiest spring in my memory. The local crop reports had only 2% of the local corn crop in by the usual planting time. Plus all the soil around here is clay and it takes days for it to dry out after a rain and we just kept getting pounded day after day with 1 inches or more at a time. Brutal time for our farmers.

I was also (and continue to be) extremely busy. I was barely able to keep my poor seedlings alive, what with our unheated garage and very cold early spring. I was also dealing with morning sickness, getting a garage sale together (major work!), and cleaning out our future nursery. Plus joining an expectant mothers online forum (due date club), becoming a weekly online chat co-host, and not wanting to cook anything (food aversions) made me disinclined to continue my blog for the time being.

But now I’m back! And today was planting day! I finally finished tilling out my garden plots (yes, I admit: I worked my soil when it was wet. Ha, ha. Hardly had a choice, you know?) I was 2 weeks “late” but my neglected seedlings needed the extra time. Plus I kinda forgot about the hardening off process. I usually baby my plants over a 2 week period, but this time I pushed them into hardening off in just 8 days. They seem to be adapting good, though. Please see my Seed List for a complete list of what I’m growing this year.

I’m going to finish up planting my peppers and squash tomorrow and then I’ll be done except for staking, daily watering (unless it rains—ha!), and occasional weeding. Oh, and mowing the yard of course. That’s right, I’m 6 months pregnant and I’m still doing all my usual outdoor chores. But my midwife encourages cardiovascular exercise.

Also big news: we got our tree order!! Two years in the making, and we finally just up and ordered the 10 trees and 4 bushes that I wanted. Now I have to try and keep them alive too, and I still have to cut their tags off and mulch. They are so tiny! To think, in 3 years or so we might be getting fruit! Here’s what we ordered:

  • Hall’s Hardy Almond
  • Russian Mulberry
  • 5-in-1 Dwarf Apple
  • 5-in-1 Dwarf Pear
  • 5-in-1 Dwarf Stone Fruit (a.k.a. Fruit Cocktail Tree)
  • Dwarf Sweet Cherry
  • Dwarf North Star Cherry (Sour)
  • Paw Paw (3 quantity)
  • Tophat Blueberry (2 quantity—in pots)
  • Honeyberry (2 quantity)
Here I am inspecting the shipment:

I'm inspecting our tree shipment looking for dead or diseased plants, broken branches, etc.

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This is my go-to recipe for making Apple Crisp in the fall as well, just substitute 5-8 apples for the fruit. It is so amazing warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Drool!

Ingredients:
1 lb strawberries (can be fresh or frozen)
1 lb rhubarb (can be fresh or frozen)
¾ cup flour [healthiest substitution: ¼ cup whole wheat flour, ¼ cup white flour, ¼ cup ground flax seeds]
½ cup whole oats or plain oatmeal
½ cup brown sugar
¼ cup canola oil
½ tsp cinnamon

Directions:
Wash and hull the strawberries, then cut in half. Place in a bowl and set aside. Wash and de-string rhubarb (if necessary) and chop into ½ inch segments. Add to bowl with strawberries. Add ¼ cup of the brown sugar and toss.

Grease a 7 x 11 biscuit pan and pour the fruit mixture into the bottom of the pan. Preheat the oven to 375 F.

In a small mixing bowl, combine the flour, ¼ cup brown sugar, and other dry ingredients. Cut in the oil with a fork, much like cutting in butter for biscuits. Mixture should be coarse and crumbly. Spread the topping on the fruit and bake in oven for 30-40 minutes.

Serves 6

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