Thursday, May 30, 2013

This Week in My Garden: May 30






Taking my cue from Amanda with her "This Week in My Garden" series.






 My first year to get enough to make a whole plateful!





I consider eggs to be bounty from my garden, in a way.

Purchased tomato.  (I thought about lying.)

Pesto straight outta' the freezer from last year!

Mayonnaise straight outta' Compton.

(Heeeeeee.)






My hillbilly rain harvesting.

Oh, to have my dream water system in.  Oh.






These guys continue to not do well despite fixing the drainage issue.

And so it goes.






Satsumas still growing.






As usual (always) I never label my plants.

These are going well, whatever they are.








More of those same lovelies.

Honestly, I need to do more labeling.

It's a bit embarrassing.








One poor decimated herb bed.

Chikkins got in.

Havoc ensued.

(Apparently, chikkins do not eat sage.)

It's on my list for the weekend.






I just ripped out the last of the sugar snaps.

Basil goes in today.

Mmmmm, basil.






More basil.

Evil Ivy.  (Great name for a band.)






Beets!

Need to seed more beets, pronto!






Fig happiness is everywhere.






The peppers have been loving the cloudy days and rain.

I need to move them, but they are in plastic tree pots and they weigh around 45 tons so ...






Hi.

I'm a happy squash.





Hi.

I'm a cantaloupe bloom.






Hi.

I'm a watermelon bloom.






The $*%&#(#&* birds ate my blueberries.

Sob.

I had a bunch.

More are coming in though.

Huzzah!






More mystery tomatoes doing well.




And there you have it.

The straggly spring/summer garden here at The Wabi-Sabi House.

My shady yard combined with my lazy gardening in the spring/summer months makes for a so-so garden.

La, la, la.  

My garden matches me!  Shady and straggly.

Heeeeeee.


Wednesday, May 29, 2013

The Most Beautiful Thing

I stumbled upon the most beautiful thing.

Am I the last to know about this?

How did I not know?

I kept seeing reference to it here and there.

In my mind it was an old book.

A classic.  

Something that had been around forever.

I'm not sure why I thought that.

Perhaps the title?

An Everlasting Meal:  Cooking with Economy and Grace

Sounds old-fashioned, doesn't it?

Then I saw it in Appendix II of Michael Pollen's new book, Cooked, and I thought, hmmmm.

What's all the fuss about?



Oh, the fuss is sooooo right.

The fuss is not nearly enough.

I cannot even describe the loveliness of this book.

It's a cookbook.  Kind of.

It's a story book.  Sorta.

It's a novel and it's non-fiction.

It is, to me, like homesickness.

That's the only way I can find to describe what it feels like to me.

I know that sounds so strange, but it's true.

Listen to this from page 1.  (Yes, just the first page.)




"Cooking is both simpler and more necessary than we imagine.  It has in recent years come to seem a complication to juggle against other complications, instead of what it can be - a clear path through them."


Or this (she is often so funny in a quiet, unassuming way):



"A ... cooking magazine I picked up recently seemed contrived to scare its readers off.  The magazine advertised recipes for ""boil-and-toss pastas"" and "" last-minute omelets"" amid other tips for getting meals to the table quickly.  It pretended to make cooking easier, but complicated it instead.

All pasta is "'boil and toss.""  A lot of perfectly wonderful meals are ""boil"" alone.  You don't need a shortcut for either, but to reserve the three dollars you might have spent on the magazine and use it for buying salt and decent olive oil."



Or this:




"This book ... doesn't contain ""perfect"" or ""professional"" ways to do anything, because we don't need to be professionals to cook well, any more than we need to be doctors to treat bruises and scrapes:  we don't need to shop like chefs or cook like chefs;  we need to shop and cook like people learning to cook, like what we are - people who are hungry."



Listen to some chapter titles:

How to Drink to Saints  (On hosting.)
How to Weather a Storm  (How to cook when there is nothing to cook.)
How to be Tender  (Slow cooking.)


And go ahead.  Read the last page.

It will make you hungry and a bit weepy for the time that that happened to you.

And it has happened to each of us, hasn't it?  That time when the food was so perfect and the moment was so perfect that you remember it still.



I bought the paperback, but I plan to give that away and buy the hard copy today.

It's that kind of book.

A book to have forever.

I've been taking it with me from room to room in case I get a spare second.

I really have.



Every morning with tea.








Cheating while we play Mad Libs.
(Cheating by reading my book while playing, not cheating at Mad Libs, silly goose.)






Instead of folding laundry.
(Course, I'd read an automobile manual to ward off laundry.)






Brushing teeth.
(Such a chore, that teeth brushing.)





 
My favorite time.








 
Oh, just look at this from the chapter, How to Build a Ship, whereby she talks about food passages in books!!   This one from The Wind in the Willows.

Oh, how I love to read about food in books!

Don't you?

One of my favorite food descriptions in books is simple peasant fare.  Always eaten during a long journey, usually on horseback.  Must consist of dried meat, hardened bread, some apples and wine.  I have no idea why that appeals to me so, but it does, so much.

Or how about in the Harry Potter books?!!    Oh my lord!  Those feasts at Hogwart's are enough to make me swoon with hunger.

I digress.




She talks about capers!

My god, who ever talks about capers anymore?

I love capers soooo much.

Capers in butter, no less.

Anchovies!

She talks about anchovies packed in salt!


It's a treasure, I tell you.

Even if you have never read a cookbook in your life, you must.

It's not even a cookbook really, but, of course it is.





There's a wonderful interview with her HERE at Pantry Confidential.

What an adorable thing she is.

She makes me want to be smarter.

To cook more.

Often and always with love and care.


I know I am absolutely gushing, but I just can't help it.

I love it.

I love her.

I want to have her over and absorb her.


And now I am off to make a breakfast of Banana Cockaigne from The Joy of Cooking because I have been inspired.











Monday, May 27, 2013

And the winner is ...

Lucky comment #16 

Suuuuuuusan!

 Come on down!

"Rad tray!  And The Price is Right is still fun...my kiddos love it!"


Susan,  please send me an email with your mailing address.  
(You can find my real email address over in the right hand column where it says, aptly, Write Me.)

So, that was fun, right?

I got a little pile of goodies together so we're gonna have some more giveaway parties, OK?

There is more orange to be had, promise.



OK, can I just say that this was the best weekend ever because ...

It RAINED all weekend.

I mean it monsooned!  Poured! Cats and dogs!  Buckets!

You have no idea how rare that is here.

I just can't tell you how delicious rain is to me.  

I love the rain almost more than anything.

FinnigantheCurious and I spent all day Saturday staring out the windows, sitting on the porch, darting in and out, napping, drinking tea, etc..

Heaven.

Now it is over and I am sad, but grateful.

I need to live somewhere with frequent rain.

My Irish genes are drying up here in Texas.

Maybe my mama will move with me to Ireland or Scotland or Portland or somewhere.


I was mesmerized by the intensity of the rain.

Been a looong time since we've had rain like this.

I have about 237 more pictures just like these.


Oh, Oh, Oh, speaking of pictures, there's this new feature in Picasa (that's the program I used to add my photos to the computer) called "Creative Kit" and in it there's a tool on it that lets you add a TAN.  

I am not sh***ing you!

You can add a TAN to the people in the photograph.

Is that the craziest thing ever or whut?

You have been warned.

I am so going to Add-a-Tan to everyone and everything, especially me.

Hhahahahaha.  This is so hilariously EPIC.

Oh, AND?  I can airbrush myself as well.

This is very, very convenient because I am going out on the lake today to celebrate a birthday with some old friends.  

(Note the word old.  I have known them since Kindergarten ((for real)) and we are all 50 now.)

Yea, a boat.  On the lake.  On Memorial Day. With bathing suits. Gulp.

I am so adding a tan to my pasty white skin and airbrushing my ass.



Party On, Wayne!


Friday, May 24, 2013

Friday Giveaway!

I've never done a giveaway!

Had a few getaways, but that's another story.  Yuk. Yuk.

Part of my anti-blah program is purging.

Purge, Purge, Purge that's my Dirge, Dirge, Dirge.

(Over the edge, clearly.)

So, here ya go!  The first official Wabi-Sabi House Giveaway.

For your viewing pleasure ....







An orange tray of love and sunshine.


Remote and toe not included.


Lemon possibly included.


How fun is that, y'all!?!?!

Much better than some crappy old recipe that you're not gonna make anyway, right?

Heeeeeeee.

So, there ya go.

Leave a comment and I will do that random generator thingee to choose a winner.

Comments will close on, hell, I dunno, Sunday night?

Winner announced on Monday?

Sound OK?

OK!

May lady luck be with you!

(Comments are now closed for this giveaway)

PS Remind me to tell you about the time I was on The Price is Right. 

I am not joking.

Maybe I'll find a way to get the video on to YouTube so you can see it.

You. will. sh*t.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Blah Ramblings

I have the blahs.

Blah, blah, blah.

My house is soooooo dirty and messy.

Exercise has been nonexistent.

Single parenting for almost 2 weeks.

Blah, blah, blah, BLAH.

However!  I do have a big stack of new library books.

And a big stack of new owned books (thanks to Grandmary)!

And I do have that new not-a-Miele vacuum that is longing to help me!

And my garden is bursting at the seams!

And the pools are open!

And it's my blog so I can use however many exclamation points I want!

I hear an upset Blue Jay in the back yard, must be that the cats are on the prowl.

My boy is still sleeping so I have some quiet(ish) time to myself right now.

I was able to meditate for 15!!! minutes this morning.  (Oh, how I struggle with the meditation.)

I finally got all the fixins' for homemade granola which I have been meaning to make for about 10 years.

I went to a class last night that I have been wanting to find for a few years.   (It's a new agey, self-help class so I don't really wanna say what it is, but I feel such forward movement in my life this morning because I went to it!!!)

I went from Mommie Dearest to Best Mommy in the World on Monday night and was able to have a really, really, really deep and important talk with my son.  Amazed at that whole thing.

So, you know, life.

Lovely, messy, beautiful, sad, glorious, happy, joyful life!

Hopefully I'll be back to Chatty Cathy Homemaker tomorrow.

I might just have 4,000 pictures of me cleaning my house, but, who knows, that might be fun.

(I think it would be more fun if I had 4,000 pictures of someone else cleaning my house for me, but that's not happening.)










Wednesday, May 15, 2013

HOME.








 
Oh, it's so good to be home.

Going away was beyond marvelous and coming home was too.

Isn't it funny how being away makes all the tiny bits of home feel so special somehow?

All the nooks and crannies that seem so regular day after day, but so precious when you've been away from them.

Hugs are a little tighter and smiles a little wider.  

Things are easier ... less heavy.

Deep.




And on that note, I am off again today to Grandmary's!

FinnigantheCurious and I are going for a belated Mother's Day trip.

There will be some posting from the road, but nothing fancy, I fear.

We got rain last night!  Everything freshly washed and cleaned (including the clothes I left hanging on the line.  oops!) and sated.

I sold eggs for the first time yesterday!  Very exciting for us.

I told the boys that after we pay for feed we can keep the rest for fun.

Sweet Finn said that we should give it to the homeless as we have enough.  Sniff.

And so we will.

That is one child who really appreciates home, just like his mama.