Thursday, April 29, 2010

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Buds

Sweet Woodruff
Chives
Lilac - looks like this will be the inaugural year!

Monday, April 26, 2010

Weekend News

Let me just get something off my chest.  There are strangers on my roof, dropping shingles on my poor little plants, and I feel very uncomfortable.  I really don't mind the noise at all.  I mind the vulnerable feeling of paying a lot of money for something that may end up hurting more than what I had before.  Like confronting an annoying person in your life, or going to the dentist for a little pain and leaving with a big one.  But I'm trusting that it will all work out for the best, so let's talk about something pleasant and just pretend my house and yard look like this. 



The boys went to Nana and Grandpa's house for the weekend, so BFJ and I went out and did things we don't get to do often: going to the movies and changing our minds at the last minute about which one to see, and not calling anyone to tell them about the time change.  Going out to dinner somewhere we'd never been, and not caring whether there's a kids' menu.  And ordering stuff we've never eaten.  And walking in the rain.  Falling asleep on the couch (I love my couch) and not remembering to set an alarm.  And driving around town and just stopping somewhere because.  Because we've always wondered, what's over there?  And things like that.  This free and unplanned weekend was an early birthday gift to my husband.  I did state one rule for the weekend:  we could eat at home, or we could dine out, but if we went out for a meal it had to be somewhere we'd never been.  All fast food was out, including places like Applebee's and IHOP, as well as our local pizzeria. 

Friday night was rainy; we ended up driving through a spooky neighborhood, and saw lots of buildings we've never noticed before, then on to one of my favorite little neighborhoods in Denver.  We had dinner at The Hornet; I drive by it frequently and wonder how it is.  It was packed! but we didn't have to wait long for a table.  We ordered the Sweet Potato Fries, which were so awesome I would go back just for them.  The rest of the dinner was good but the fries were the highlight.  From there, we went next door to The Mayan where we were planning to watch The Runaways but instead got tickets for The Joneses.  I love going to a movie I know very little about - having no expectation, having no idea what's going to happen.  We both enjoyed The Joneses, especially David Duchovny, but there were definitely some scenes that were painful to watch. 

Saturday morning was drizzly; we started out aimlessly but then were driving through this cute little neighborhood we never have time to stop in.  This day, though, we had time to stop.  We parked on a side street and walked through the neighborhood admiring all the cute little houses.  (Sorry about the formatting, sometimes I don't know what I'm doing.) 




Chartruese; hmm.  Our favorite was the yellow and purple house at the top of this post.  It was freshly painted and the owners were obviously in the midst of some landscaping projects but it was so fresh and happy looking.  Here's a detail photo (click to see it closer): 


During our walk around this neighborhood, we visited a cheese shop where we purchased some sausage and baguette for an impromptu breakfast. 



I was on the prowl for some delicious chocolate so we stopped into a shop that said Desserts on the side.  Desserts were not yet prepared, but BFJ ordered a Vietnamese Coffee which he'd heard Anthony Bourdain talk about.  He said it really was the bomb but I wouldn't know; I am not a coffee drinker.  Eventually we arrived back at our car and headed to LoDo.  We did some window shopping and had lunch at a crepes place in Writers Square.  Last time we were downtown we tried to pursuade the boys to try crepes but they all declined; this time we didn't have to take a vote.  I can't remember exactly what mine was but it had chicken and mushrooms.  The pesto was fantastic.  Perhaps this summer I will try making some. 

Savory crepe: 



Sweet crepe:



BFJ bought me a cute little hat.  I am undecided about whether I like the picture I have of it so will have to post one later.  We went looking for some wicked boots; we did not find any but instead browsed through a vintage shop and a few other shops.  We parked near a church which he said was Scottish and I said was not so we explored it a bit on our way back to the car.  I liked this little patch of clover growing under the doorway. 


In the afternoon, we went back to The Mayan to see The Runaways.  It was a good movie as far as acting and directing, but I didn't enjoy it.  I'm married to a musician, if you didn't know, and have seen a little exploitation of talent, but this movie was difficult to watch.  It was especially hard, having seen Dakota Fanning in movies as a child, to watch her getting involved in drugs and more.  BFJ did enjoy it, and he was the one that wanted to see it, so that worked out alright. After the movie, we went to a new restaurant in our neck of the woods where we ordered more sweet potato fries.  They weren't quite as fantastic as the ones the night before, but my salad and pork chops were delicious. 

Yesterday, we met up with our boys and went immediately to a jungle-themed birthday party, and then a swimming birthday party!  They were out with the lights at bedtime. 

I think the highlight of the weekend for me was walking around the neighborhood with the cute houses.  It might sound like the weekend was all about me, but it was really all about us.  BFJ and I met in LoDo (we worked together) and it was nice revisiting that carefree time in our lives.  And you know what, I did not knit a stitch the whole time the kids were gone!  I enjoyed the weekend so much I practically forgot all about crafting.  Can you believe that?  I asked Zoom later what the best thing about the weekend was, and he told me he had read two chapters of his book.  Hurray for books.  Thanks, Mom and Dad, for taking the boys. 

I hope you all had a wonderful weeked, too! 

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Eleven Days Later

I'm working on tons of knitting but none I can show, and tons of photography, but also, none I can show. I hope you don't mind more gardening news, that's all I've got at the moment!





L to R, two columns each: 
butternut squash, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, marigolds, peppers, and at the end we have four watermelon and four each of two kinds of pumpkin - none orange! 

I think this Burpee seed starting tray worked pretty well in the sense that it is self watering, and the plastic greenhouse type cover kept everything warm and moist - the first few days.  The seeds germinated (is that the correct term?) almost immediately.  On the negative side, I thought this system would somehow eliminate damping off, but it hasn't.  Also, I can no longer put the lid on because as you see, the plants are too tall!  The peppers are barely out of the dirt and I'm sure they would benefit from the lid.  I have thought about taking all the curcubits out and repotting them or planting them earlier than the peppers and tomatoes.  I'm looking forward to transplanting everything.  I mentioned earlier that you can't plant before Mother's Day here but I'm hoping that we can get the new garden plotted out a week or two before that.  We've had some nice rain the last twenty four hours.  That helps with the reseeding grass project!

We are working on getting our food from local areas.  I have stopped buying avocados, although I love guacomole; they're all shipped in from another country and we are trying to reduce our carbon footprint.  I sure hope we get some California avocados this summer.  And we are using our vote at the check-out lane.  Why?  We watched Food, Inc. and keep seeing things like this article on Larissa's blog.  Just trying to do our part for the world and our kids.  So what's more local than the back yard?!  I'm looking forward to the food this summer!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

On Chives

I recently discovered some dead chive blossoms that I plucked from the stems last year, and left in my shed over the winter.  They are dry now and the black little seeds shake out easily.  I think I might sprinkle them around my lilac where I transplanted my chive plants last fall.  My lilac always seems to have chewed up leaves, and I'm hoping that the pungent chives will keep away some bugs.  Plus, I think all the purple blossoms will look nice together.  I started out with some chives as part of my beginning gardening, thinking I'd use it on tex-mex dishes, baked potatoes, etc.  We really don't eat nearly as much as we grow, actually, but I enjoy them for many other reasons.  They are one of the first things to show life in the spring, I like the purple blossoms, and the bees love them.  They are also rather carefree, as garden plants go.  So there you have it, four reasons I grow chives. 

One thing I do use them for every year is lime chive butter.  Mmmmm!

Lime Chive Butter

Ingredients:
1 stick butter

1 lime
Handful of chives
Other herbs (thyme, sage, etc.) optional
Salt, to taste

Directions:
Let butter soften to room temperature; this can take an hour or two, depending on the weather!  Wash and chiffonade chives and other herbs.  Cut lime in half and juice.  Combine butter, lime juice and herbs in a bowl; season with salt if you'd like.  Stir well, chill.  
It's fantastic on corn on the cob!

Sorry, no picture.  It never lasts long enough to get the camera out.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Sunday, April 11, 2010

At Our House

This week: 
my lilac is budding, and I'm hoping this is the year we see flowers on it.

turkey vultures are circling and my husband could not be more thrilled. 

cats are sleeping on unmade beds.

I've finished my first Christmas gift of the year.  At least, I think it's a Christmas gift, but I'm not totally sure. 
We planted a bunch of seedlings yesterday and are planning our garden. 
I cleaned up my laundry room and you can walk all the way from one side to the other without stepping on any clothes!  Now there is lots of room for me to see all my unfinished projects.
I got to my local yarn shop twice this week, once for a baby shower and once for a book club meeting.  Everyone enjoyed Possession. 
I'm working on two different commissioned knitting pieces. 
I'm mulling over which sewing project I should finish up. 
I have caught some snippets of Rockies games. 

We had a fun day yesterday; one of those plan-as-you-go days that we used to have every weekend when there were two of us.  With a yard, three pets and three little boys, those days are few and far between now.  I think my own personal highlight was wandering in the used bookstore.  I'm thrilled that my boys are enjoying reading.   

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Go Rockies!!!

So far, the Rockies have not lost a game!! 


If you need some baseball knitting to keep you company while you watch a game, I finished my pattern and put it up for sale on Ravelry a couple of days ago!