Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Pallet Pinspirations--Choose a project

So the hubbs has been bringing home pallets with the intention of burning them in the fire pit. HOLD UP! Burn these?  Yeah, so. not. happening.


So many projects come to mind, yet where to begin? With Pinterest, of course.

Here are some of the projects I have in mind..


Idea #1 Pallet bar--perfect for the pool area
http://www.1001pallets.com/2014/05/easy-diy-project-pallet-outdoor-bar/
Idea #2 Pallet headboard
http://www.taushpointo.com/2014/12/pallet-headboard-a-basic-tutorial-of-mostly-pictures.html
Idea #3--Pallet plant stand
http://palletfurniturediy.com/pallet-table/diy-pallet-potting-and-entry-way-table/
Idea #4 Pallet art
Idea #5 Pallet fence
http://theownerbuildernetwork.co/recycled-and-repurposed/pallet-fence/
Idea #6 Pallet Firewood Shed
http://www.nextdoorwoodstore.org.uk/reseiclo.html
Ermehgawd--I am gonna need more pallets!







Sunday, May 24, 2015

Garden Gone Wild!

I am trying to reign the gardens in after a year of neglect. Yes--a year. What happened? I am still trying to answer that question for myself. 2014 was big year for me in terms of completing school, graduating, getting a job and taking my certification exam. All which happened  during the growing season. I think I was too overwhelmed to care. Except now I do care!

And let me tell you...or rather show you... because they are a mess!

These are 2 of the 3 blackberries. Kind of difficult to see amongst all the weed and the other I forgot to remove the cage, now I have to cut it off.



Here are the blackberries after 6 weeks. I have been working on the gardens in small increments after work and on weekends--weather permitting.  These  finally look healthy. I cleaned up the beds and pruned back the dead growth. I need to cut the cage off the middle plant, add some compost and straw mulch these beds.

Rhubarb before and after 4 weeks. After clearing the bed of weeds, they were cut down to 2 inches above the soil and have bounced back beautifully.

 Strawberries...one of these it not like the others! They are loaded with berries. Time to get the netting out if I have any hope of harvesting before the wildlife strips the plants bare.


This had the added bonus of an ant nest...good times... I haven't quite made up my mind what I am going to plant in this bed.



2 of my 3 peach trees died. It took me calling 5 different Lowes, but I managed to track down 2 peach trees. The bummer? If I had pulled the trees before April 24, my 1 year warranty would have been in effect and I could have had the replaced for free.  DOH! We picked the trees up yesterday, gave them a nice long drink and they are going in the ground tonight. I am also wrapping the trunks and going to put perimeter cages around the trees to protect them from wildlife and the hubb's weedwhacker!


Oh the flower beds...so very very ugly!!  Here is an example of 1 bed, but they are all  in the same condition. Before--filled with poison ivy, buckeye, poke plant, oxalis, and who know what else.


In progress. It is gonna take while to clear the weeds and I need to move the hostas, day lilies, irises and sedum. And chop down that damn honeysuckle bush! Siiiggghhh... 


We are scaling the garden down this year, for a few of reasons.
1. The large garden plot needs to have the organic content built back up
2. I have other projects on which I need to focus
3. I need to slow down a bit and manage my work life balance.

Ummm, hello project...

So I gotta ask...Have your gardens gone wild? 



Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Revved Up Ravioli

When given the opportunity, I like to cook fresh, but sometimes the demands of life doesn't allow me this opportunity. What is a woman on a time crunch to do? Instead of drive thru, reach for some prepackaged items in the freezer and pantry.

Just because foods are prepackaged, doesn't mean you can't have creative and flavorful dishes. I wanted some cheesy, saucy pasta and Cinco De Mayo food stuffs have been rampant today. pasta...tacos...pacos? OMG--is there such a thing??!! 

20 minutes later as I googled Pasta Tacos, Taco pasta and Paco's ...Huh...there are recipes for pasta taco casserole, taco stuffed pasta, and a Mexican restaurant called Paco's Taco's...but I digress.

So here I am-- hungry and looking for inspiration. Out came a package of frozen cheese ravioli's, frozen grilling vegetable mix (Zucchini, yellow squash, peppers and onions), a jar of sauce and a can of chipotle diced tomatoes. And the chipotle diced tomatoes was total happenstance (double bonus points for use of that word!) because I didn't have enough sauce. 




I sprayed the pan with a little cooking spray, added a little sauce to cover the bottom, poured in the ravioli, the vegetables, sauce and tomatoes. I didn't even stir because I am a rebel like that. Cover with foil, bake at 400°F for 40 minutes. 

A quick stir and it is ready to serve--with cheesy garlic toast of course!


How I wish you could be here-- the aroma is divine! Oh and the taste!  The sweet tomatoes, chunky vegetables, with the heat of chili's, the bite of cumin and it all melds perfectly with the cheese pasta. The only additional seasoning I added was one quick grind of my pink himalayan salt.


Nutritious and delicious! Whatcha' think?
Update 5/6/15. Y'all this was  a 9x13 pan. The hubbs at 3/4 of this by himself between dinner and lunch today. I think it gets classified as a win!