Monday, April 30, 2012

We got our plants in this weekend

This weekend was spent getting our plants into the ground. Luckily, the weather cooperated. We are a little early but our next few weekends will be busy so we had to get them in as soon as we could.

We spent hours in the garden but it will be well worth it a few months from now when we have fresh vegetables. I would say that 85% of my plants are heirloom and/or organic. Like I said before, I am boycotting genetically modified seeds or plants. Most plants or seeds you buy are genetically modified and that's not cool.

I am on a push this summer to get away from as much processed and GM food as possible. It is tough since we eat out sometimes and I like convenience food but if we start doing a little at a time, I think we can do it.

The summer will be easier if our veggies come in because I will know my food is totally fresh and organic. We have also cut back our meat consumption.

They are baby steps but at least they are steps.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Cold, Car and Gardening, Oh My!

Last weekend, we got crazy and did a lot of gardening. On Sunday, I got sick. Blergh! Monday I woke up with a sore throat but I had to go into work because I had scheduled to have my car fixed. It had this weird vibration for months and I worried it was something serious.

Anyone who knows me, knows I LOVE my car. It's not that I am a car person. It's that my car is so darn cute and it's probably the best car I have ever had. I have a little Honda Del Sol. My nickname for it is: The Mini Car. I have had the Mini Car for about 8 or 9 years now and I LOVE IT.

The Honda Del Sol is a two seater car. Technically, it is not a sports car because it only has 4 cylinders. But it is sporty enough for me. It is also a "convertible" car. It has a top you can take off and store in the truck. I have never ever taken off the top because I am not into convertibles. I am not a wind in my hair while driving girl. Tom has been itching for years to take the top off but never has although I know he wants to.

In Florida, it was the perfect car because of the flat roads. It also handles well in the rain. When we moved to Santa Fe, it was the perfect car except in the winter. The first time it snowed and I went to work, I ended up sliding and in a ditch. Not a big ditch, mind you, but a ditch nonetheless.

Here in North Carolina, it is not the best car in the winter since most of my 45 minute drive to work takes place on windy mountain roads. My second winter here, I hit black ice and almost went into the river. The car is just too lightweight. But when the roads are dry, it is the perfect mountain driving car ever.

Well, a few months ago it started having this weird vibration. My first thought was the tire but then I thought maybe the shocks or struts were trashed. Or maybe it was the axle or ball bearings, right? I imagined the worst as usual. But since it was winter, I knew I could use Tom's car for a few months since his Honda is bigger and better than mine. We traded cars.

Monday, I finally sucked it up and decided to take the car in and get the bad news. That is why I couldn't stay home in the comfort of my own bed and nurse myself to health. Luckily, the news wasn't so bad. I just needed new tires. Now I could kick myself because if I had known that months ago, I would have done it before and saved myself from the $70-80 gas fill ups on Tom's giant car. My mini car, fills up on half of that and lasts a lot longer. Sigh. Oh well.

So I got all new tires and an oil change and my mechanic, who I think is fantastic, also fixed my passenger side door free of charge. Someone at the University where Tom works rammed it just enough to not allow the door to close. But my mechanic was able to pull out the ding and make the door open. You can't even tell someone hit it. I honestly would hate getting rid of my little car.

I love my little Honda. Sure, it's old - 11 years old. It has dings. No power locks. No cruise control and it is a little worn but it's my baby. I also resigned myself in the first few days of driving it on I-95 between Boynton Beach and West Palm Beach next to giant semi-trucks that if I ever got into an accident in the Mini Car, I would die immediately. Morbid? Sure. But it's the truth. I drive it fearlessly now and it also makes me a better driver because I always have to be on the lookout for bigger cars not seeing me.

Anyhow, I just rambled way too long about my car which is a little crazy but oh well. I do feel better today.  I am taking it easy today and doing inside the house and blog stuff because this weekend I have to do a lot of gardening. The plants I ordered came in and we have to get them in the ground or in containers before they die off. I am just hoping it is not too soon. But if it is, we can always buy more. Stay tuned for more garden pictures in the months to come.


Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Saturday in the Garden with Tom

Saturday was spent trying to get our garden in shape for the season to come. It was a mess. It was full of weeds and leaves. I think because we had a mild winter, a lot of the weeds and grass didn't die off.

I have to be honest. I love my garden but hate the act of gardening. I know some people who say that they love gardening because they get to commune with nature and be outside in the fresh air and sun. I say good for them.

Me? I love nature and respect nature but I am no fan of being out in nature. Me and nature don't mix. I hate the bugs and bees and wasps and snakes and dirt. I was also not meant for physical labor and gardening is physical labor.

Anyway, we got up early and then headed out to the garden. We had to rake and hoe parts of the garden. As I used the hoe, Tom would come behind me and till. Then I would come after him and rake. It took a few hours to complete but the garden is almost ready to go.

Today (Sunday) we have to put on some manure and then till it into the garden. I am actually going to start working on my container gardening. I am putting all my herbs into containers and set them on the porch because it makes it easier for me when I need them for cooking. I also have a few more seedlings I started yesterday.

This year, I decided to have little or no genetically modified plants in my garden. All the plants I ordered are organic and all the seeds except for a few herbs, given to me by a friend, are totally organic as well. We use no pesticides either. We just do it naturally.

Though I hate being outside, I have to say that there is nothing like harvesting your own food. It is amazing when you pick tomatoes and then use them that same day to make dinner. That simple act of being able to walk out to your yard and have food is one of the most joyful things. I know that sounds corny but it is true.

This is the perfect time for this post since today is also Earth Day and I feel like I am doing my part. By growing my own food and growing it responsibly, it makes up for years of using non-earth friendly crap. For my loyal readers, be prepared for my endless gardening posts coming up in the next few months!

Happy Earth Day!!

Friday, April 20, 2012

Garden is Already Yielding

The other day Tom was in the garden and brought these in. Some onions survived the winter and decided to come up and say hello. Then they got killed.

I cannot wait for my garden to be in and yielding this year!! WOO!

Monday, April 16, 2012

Carolyn's Deviled Eggs Recipe

Tom had a potluck at work so, of course, he volunteered to bring something. Of course, he never cooks it, I do.

He wanted some deviled eggs to take so I agreed to make them. I had no idea about deviled eggs growing up. Costa Ricans aren't big on deviled eggs so it was a food I was never given as a child.

I can't remember the first time I had deviled eggs but I am sure it wasn't until I was in college and ended up at a potluck somewhere. From the moment I had one, I was in love. The are these tiny bites of deliciousness. I could eat a dozen if given the opportunity.

If I ever go to a picnic or potluck, I know someone made deviled eggs and it is one of the first things I make a beeline for. I didn't make my first deviled eggs until I met Tom and for one reason or another, he needed a potluck meal. I actually think the first time I made them was when we lived in State College, PA. Don't hold me to that but that's my story and I am sticking with it.

It was easier than I thought. They are a little time consuming because you need to halve them and then stuff them with the mixture but oh so worth the trouble.

I first tried a recipe from the Betty Crocker cookbook but soon adapted my own willy-nilly version. I have to say I don't like them with relish or with celery. I like mine pure but with a little flavor.

Here is my version of Deviled Eggs. Boil the eggs. Once they are cooked and cooled, peel them. Halve the eggs and place yolks in a bowl. I also add at least one egg white sometimes two to bulk up the mixture. Then I add mayo, red wine vinegar, salt, pepper, ground mustard and paprika. Sometimes, I add other flavors but this is my favorite.

Of course, there are no measurements. I just start tossing in mayo until the mixture is creamy. I have tried them with sour cream but it is not the same as good old mayo. Then I add the spices and the vinegar. Then you just add until the mixture tastes yummy.

It is quite easy. Plus, they are perfect for any party, picnic or potluck. I even bought a handy dandy deviled egg carrier so it would be easier to transport them to wherever they needed to go.

I love deviled eggs! Yummy!

Buen Provecho.