Wednesday, July 23, 2014

#HowDoesMyGardenGrow

So, how does my garden grow? Me of the seemingly eternal gardening killer thumb, that is.

Well, I think I may have finally made progress on the turning-said thumb-green front. Oh yeah. I'm feeling good about it :)

See for yourself:


Tomatoes!! My very first tomatoes!!! I'm so excited. Can you tell?

I have so many tomatoes, I don't know what to do with them all. I'm almost to the point of chasing random strangers down on the street and handing them a tomato.



More tomatoes.

And more.

I told you.

But I'm not complaining. Really, I'm not. I'm just super proud of being able to say that I'm finally a true Southern woman because the one thing that all Southern women are supposed to be able to do is grow tomatoes. And despite being born and raised here all my life, that's one thing that has eluded me. But I can now finally join the club :)

There's also Clemson Spineless okra that has just started producing.


And little baby okra. 


If you follow any of our farm/blog social media accounts then you know I'm very much looking forward to one dish in particular. . . scrambled okra. Literally the best stuff ever. If you're an okra lover, that is. If you're not, then the worst stuff ever. Good thing I happen to be of the loverly variety. Ooh, and if you're wondering what scrambled okra is (and there's a good chance you are because I've been asked more than once). . . it is basically just sliced okra sauteed in a little oil. Indescribably good.

And as soon as I have enough to make a dish of it, I'll be sure to share it with y'all.

Back to the garden.

There was also yellow squash planted in the garden. Emphasis on was. 

And they were huge with little baby squash just beginning to form - thanks to my secret weapon (more on that in a minute). Until the ducks developed a taste for squash. Oh well, at least I've learned a lesson for the future. . . . make sure the ducks can't get to them. 

My new feverfew that I was given in April by the Satsuma Lady (She grows, among many other things, satsumas. Of course.) has been blooming for several weeks.  


And we have pineapple sage. Which really is very pineappley. 


A little strawberry. 


Not surprisingly, no blueberries. But that will change.

I was told recently during a conversation, "If you want blueberries, get three or four bushes and in a couple of years, you'll be drowning in blueberries." Which lead me to say, "Three or four? But I have six planted." So, to all local readers and berry lovers, in a couple of years look for us (and a mountain of blueberries, of course) at the Enterprise farmer's market. 

And now on to my secret weapon that has really made a huge difference this year. 


That's right! The goats. I really should thank them for helping to make some extra effective compost for me. Thanks guys!!


Now, if I can just keep my two escapees (Clara and Rosalie) out of the garden. 

Thursday, July 17, 2014

MHF Summer Giveaway!!!

I'm thrilled to be hosting our next giveaway for reaching 500 likes on our Facebook page. 


This giveaway will have one winner. The winner will receive one (2 ounce) bottle of goat milk lotion (made with fresh milk from our herd that I personally milked out. . . thank you!) and a handmade eggshell necklace (made with eggshells from some of our hens).  



You can visit our Etsy shop here
For the whole month of July, use code BRYONY15 at checkout to receive 15% off your order. 

Now for the legal part: Open to entries from the US only. One lucky winner will be chosen at random when the contest ends on August 1, 2014 at 12:00 AM CST. The winner will be contacted by email to obtain their mailing address - if after 48 hours I haven't received a response, a new winner will be chosen. When you sign in to Rafflecopter make sure to include an email address so that I can contact you. Prizes will be mailed out as soon as possible. 

Thank you for participating and good luck!!!


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, July 14, 2014

Transformation.

If it's possible to be in love with a porch, then I'm in love with ours.

Or at least, I am now. Before a couple of weeks ago, I wasn't. But do you know what? A little paint can transform even the dingiest, most boring back porch into a masterpiece.

Well, certainly not a Picasso-Michelangelo-Titian type of masterpiece, but definitely a masterpiece of the I-usually-can't-paint-anything-and-have-it-look-even-halfway-decent variety.

I completely forgot to take a before picture (something I'm developing a habit of), so I did a little digging and found two pictures from a while back. With chickens, of course. This is me, after all :)


And now, for the transformation process. Sans chickens.



A little Glidden Porch & Floor Slip Resistant Paint in battleship gray, some cheaper exterior porch & trim paint in white, and a whole lotta painter's tape:


So much better, am I right? 

And it only took me four days to do it. Truth be told, I think that's mainly because I'm still limping around a little bit. And to give you an update on my little mishap from several weeks ago. . . .  My ankle has healed fine and hardly ever even hurts a little, but the foot sprain is taking its sweet time to heal. At least, I no longer have to drag around the walking boot (and in this hot weather, you have no idea how glad I am of that) and have moved on to wearing a brace instead. All in all, I dread mornings and walking down any steps. Ouch. 

Back to the porch. Next up are the steps on the side of the house and the front porch. Considering how long the above project took to complete, I'm thinking the next two will take at least a week together. But they'll look so much better.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Grilled Bacon Wrapped Jalapenos.

I adore anything hot and spicy, especially if it has jalapenos in it. But it wasn't always that way.

The first time I ever ate a jalapeno pepper certainly made an impression. It was the early nineties and I was six years old. We had a huge garden that summer with corn, pattypan squash (yumm, one of my favorites), tomatoes, and. . . . you might've guessed, jalapenos. Enter one of my cousins, who with a twinkle in his eye (which should have been a clue) and hard-to-conceal grin, said, "Here, try this. You'll like it!"

An hour later, my mouth, hands, and eyes were still burning, and I vowed to never go near the evil things again. That was a vow that didn't last long, because I found out they're actually delicious.

Which brings us to these babies. Jalapenos, bacon (you can never go wrong with bacon, am I right?), cream cheese, AND feta cheese. Oh, I'm all about them.

Ingredients:
12 Jalapenos
1 (8 oz) package of cream cheese, softened
1 (6 oz) package of crumbled feta cheese
2 - 3 green onions, chopped
Salt, to taste
Pepper, to taste
Bacon, cut into three to four inch pieces
Toothpicks

Tip: It's best to wear disposable gloves while working with the jalapenos, but if you don't and your hands are burning afterwards try rubbing them with olive oil and then washing it off.


1) Start off with jalapenos. Cut each one in half. Remove the seeds and membranes by scooping them out with a small spoon. Now, set them aside.

2) Chop the green onions. Then, in a small bowl combine the softened cream cheese, feta, green onions, salt, and pepper.

3) Fill each jalapeno half with a spoonful of the cream cheese mixture. 


4) Wrap a bacon piece around each pepper and hold in place by sticking a toothpick through it. 


5) Cook on the grill until the bacon is browned. 


Tip: If the bacon on the bottom is browned before the top, simply remove the peppers and finish them off in an on broil until the bacon on top is browned. 

I made these on the 4th and completely forgot to take a nice, pretty picture of these guys until after I'd already fixed my plate and started eating. There were only a few left by then, so, until I make these again, this will have to do:


But I will be making them very soon. Definitely. 

PB Marshmallow Pops.

What is better than chocolate and peanut butter?

How about chocolate, peanut butter, and marshmallows!

If you read the Happy 4th! post from a few days ago, then you might have noticed these little gems of goodness:


These little treats need only a few ingredients, meaning they're extremely easy to make. In fact, the hardest part for me of the whole recipe was finding red, white, and blue sprinkles. For some reason, there was a complete dearth of patriotic baking stuff at the stores I went to this year, but I eventually found some :)

The best part of these are there's no cooking involved (other than a little microwave action), and let's face it, who wants to stand over a hot stove on a hot summer day. Not me, that's for sure.

Ingredients:
Lollipop sticks
Smooth Peanut Butter
Marshmallows (not the minis, but the larger sized ones)
Chocolate for dipping
White Chocolate for dipping
Sprinkles in your choice of colors.

1) Spread peanut butter around the sides of each marshmallow then place them on a wax paper lined cookie sheet.

2) Pop the peanut-buttery marshmallows in the freezer for about 20-30 minutes, so they'll be easier to dip.

3) In a microwave safe container, heat the chocolate in the microwave for about a minute, stir, then microwave in 30 seconds intervals, stirring after each until the chocolate is completely melted and smooth.

Tip: You can thin the chocolate to make it a little easier for dipping by stirring in 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil once it's melted. 

4) Take out the marshmallows from the freezer and place a lollipop stick into the bottom of each one. Then, dip each marshmallow in the melted chocolate til its covered, shaking off the excess. Decorate with sprinkles and place on a wax paper lined cookie sheet until the chocolate hardens.

Tip: If the marshmallows and peanut butter begin to get too soft while you're dipping them, place them back into the freezer for a few minutes.  


Friday, July 4, 2014

Happy 4th!

I hope everyone has had a spectacular Fourth of July full of good food and good times! We sure have and it was so nice getting to visit with family. A few pictures from our day:


And Bryony's Fourth of July outfit (complete with the dress she wore to the Patriotic Puppy Parade at the Fabulous Fourth Friday in Enterprise last week): 


Lookin' cool, Bry!
And at the end of the day, time to curl up for a nap, of course. Something we're both very good at.


Happy Fourth y'all!!!

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

6 Great Light Fixtures You Can Buy Today

Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post that I was compensated for, but the following opinions about two certain decades and its aesthetics are entirely my own.

As a child of the 80s and 90s, there are many things that I love about both decades:

1) The Golden Girls (Obviously.)
2) Cabbage Patch Kids.
3) The Jerry Springer Show.
4) Dolly Parton movies.
5) Ronald Reagan.
6) Calculator watches.
7) Lifetime movies.
8) Nintendo.


But let's face it, neither decade is known for being full of fabulous design elements. Fabulous at the time, sure, but now? No. Definitely not all that and a bag of chips. Case in point, this chandelier that my mother bought (and I helped pick out) a few years ago.


While this one was bought in the mid 2000s, it definitely has the whole 80s - 90s brassy, over the top look going on. So much so, that I'm convinced it had been sitting on the store's shelves ever since then just waiting for some temporarily insane person (cause seriously, I had to be to pick it out. . .  and my mother, too, to go along with it) to come along and exclaim, "Why, it's perfect!"

But I've woken up. Seen the light and all that. And as soon as I find the perfect replacement that we both agree on (and no brass!), it's out of here. Gone like Donkey Kong. No more, no more, no more, no more.

In the meantime, check out these great ideas and inspiration from Crescent Harbor Modern:

6 Great Light Fixtures You Can Buy Today

Have your overhead lights been in place since the '70s? It's high time you replaced your old, boring fixtures with something more contemporary and stylish. The good news is that there are a number of amazing lighting options you can order online and have installed within the week. Here are just six ideas if you're looking for better, brighter and more beautiful light.


1: 126C12 Soho by Varaluz Twelve Light Chandelier

With handmade piastra glass falling in a cascade around a dozen bulbs, this chandelier is sure to become a talking point among your guests.


2: D1428 Penbrook Floor Lamp by Haute Couture

Pixar, is that you? Accentuate any living room or den with the iconic curvature of this famous floor lamp.


3: 3174 Dichroix 4 Light Bar Pendant by Sonneman Lighting

Add a little flair to your kitchen with these multicolored bar lights that will look great over an island or set into the wall.


4: 113-42 Interior Two Light Pendant By Corbett Lighting

Bronze and iron swirl together to create this geometrically magnificent pendant light by the artists of Corbett Lighting.


5: Crystorama Lighting 1064 Traditional Crystal 4 Light Mini Chandelier

Perfect for smaller homes, this mini-chandelier offers all the brightness of its bigger cousins but for a fraction of the cost.


6: BW6023 Celestial 3 Light Wall Lamp by Trend Lighting

Shaped with wire and silver nickel, these power puffs live up to their celestial name by being both cute and otherworldly. They'll look amazing in a child's playroom!


If you're looking for a new way to jazz up your interior design, these are just six lights for the job. Visit retailers like Crescent Harbor Modern to find even more.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

First of the Year.

It's that time of year again. Peafowl egg time!!!


The darker egg, that is. The other one belongs to one of the Royal Palm girls.

Yeah, they're a little late starting from what's normal, but I checked, and the girls are actually a whole three days early than last year's first egg.

Ossiris the peacock and Indra, one of the peahens.

And since I now have a peafowl egg, stay tuned for an egg lineup. Ah, one of my favorite parts of breeding season. Well, after the ultra cute chicks, of course ;)


Wednesday, June 11, 2014

More on Ugh.

It's sprained. At least, I think so.

Honestly, in the past week, each doctor that has looked at my x-rays has had a different answer. First, they didn't know, then it was just badly sprained in one spot, then it was broken in two places, then they weren't sure again, and now it's severely sprained in two places (ankle and foot - Who would've thought you could sprain your foot? But leave it to me.) with the ligaments completely torn loose. If you can't tell by reading all that, I'm a little unimpressed.

Anyways, now I have a lovely new accessory to wear.

But I have learned a few things in the past several days, and of course, being a blogger that automatically means I have to share them with you all. Of course. Here we go:

1) Crutches make for a really good workout. Seriously, it's been years since I've used any, and I forgot how many other muscles you use with them.

2) Strangers are surprisingly talkative to people on crutches. I've had some very interesting conversations the last few days. Not as surprising, they're also very helpful. Thank you Strangers for giving me a helping hand!!!

3) Walking boots make the perfect addition to any outfit. . . . Not.


4) They're also surprisingly HOT! Especially if you're stuck wearing one during an Alabama summer. I know, I know, it's still spring technically, but let's face it, it sure doesn't feel like it here.

5) Sit in a packed to the brim waiting room for 3 hours waiting for an exam, and guess what? There's a good chance you're going to come down with whatever bug is going around at the time.

6) Being sick and injured is not pleasant, and between that and the pain pills, I've practically slept away the last couple of days, and am starting to feel a little like Sleeping Beauty.

7) It's possible to sleep 20 out of 24 hours in a day and still feel sleepy.

8) Weimaraners and injured body parts do not belong in the same room together. Especially at night. When you're trying to sleep. After the fourth time that Remy decided to plop down on my foot for a snooze, the weims moved to my mother's room to sleep with her.


9) Black, blue, purple, green, red, and yellow all meshed together does not do anything for me. Below was taken two days ago after some of the bruising had faded (Look away now if you're squeamish). Thankfully, I'm not quite so colorful now.



10) I have a vendetta against my right foot. Seriously. In the distant past, I've sprained it three times, broken it once, and broken a toe on that same foot. I'm a klutz, I get it. Which brings me to the next thing on my list.

11) According to the orthopedist I saw, I have severe degenerative arthritis in my right foot for a person my age. Yeah, I had kind of figured that out.

12) I've never loved modern technology and my DVR more.

13) It takes me twice as long to pack and ship a soap order. It really does. So, be forewarned, if you order soap from me any time in the very near future, it probably won't ship out as quickly as it usually does. Sorry about that :(

14) I have an fantastic mother who has not only let Remy and Hunter sleep with her, but who has taken over all of my farm chores for the time being. Thank you Mom!!!

15) And last but not least. .  . I also have some fantastic readers! Thank you so much for your well wishes!!!

Monday, June 2, 2014

Ugh. . . Just Ugh.

I have landed myself in a mess. Literally.


I wish I could tell you that the above was the result of climbing a mountain or falling off a horse or anything more adventurous than what really happened.

Four little porch steps and this happens. You read that right. I tripped down the steps, completely missed the last two, felt my ankle almost fold in two, flew through the air, and landed face first in the dirt. I'm just as graceful as a ballerina, right?

Look away now if you're at all squeamish.
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Yeah, not a pretty sight. Not too pleasant feeling, either. They're not sure if it's broken or really badly sprained. Based on past experience with sprains and the fact that I can't put any weight on it at all without screaming like a banshee, I'm voting for broken. I don't do anything by halves. Not at all. When I injure myself, I really get the job done, am I right or am I right? Ugh.