Archive for June, 2009

Garden Update – June 27

Jun 27th, 2009 Posted in Yard Happenings | no comment »

I’m just giddy at how well my garden is doing!  It’s almost like cheating to have brand new raised beds and fresh blended topsoil.  So far we’re eating all of the lettuce varieties and I’m very impressed with the curly red-leaf variety from Al’s and, of course, the Romaine is always a favorite. Not sure about the Chinese cabbage though. It’s enormous and almost too much of a good thing. I’m thinking it’s too aggressive for a raised-bed space. Ben’s also chowing on his favorite Nasturtiums. He loves the spicy stuff.

We’ve also been taking advantage of the basil and cilantro.  You just cannot beat fresh pesto.  And, while I was shopping for some new cilantro plants for a little succession planting, I discovered a red leaf basil at Al’s. It smells absolutely wonderful and I can’t wait to make some purple pesto. Love it!

More garden news:

– Curly green lettuce (from seed) is ready for cutting

– I’ve got my first zucchini 🙂

– The ever-bearing strawberries have been a real treat (for me and the deer*)

– Lots of green tomatoes and peppers

– Sweet snap peas are climbing high on the “tomato” cages with peas almost ready for eating. My planting secret: Dig 1/2 inch deep, 1 ft diameter circle, throw in 10-12 pea seeds, cover with dirt and plop a tomato cage in the middle. It works fantastic. The deer* have found my peas as well this  year, but so far have only nibbled the tops off of one cage (I have 4).

– Bean plants and lemon cucumbers are looking good, but no fruit yet.

– Onions are tasty and growing great. I planted a lot so I could use some as babies and some as full-size later.

– Pumpkin plants are growing big, but no flowers

– Potatoes are proving hard to keep up with. I think I’m done mounding on the dirt for this year

*Deer: We do not have a deer fence this year, since we had to move the garden. It’s a risky game we’re playing, but so far the damage has been very minimal. I’ve received a lot of advice and here are my favorites: have the boys pee around the garden, hang nylon socks full of human hair around the garden and scatter dog poop around the garden.  I think I’ll try the hair since the other options will make me want to stay away too!

Summer Celebration: Black Butte 2009

Jun 19th, 2009 Posted in Fun Photos - General, Fun Things to Do | no comment »

Our second annual “let’s get summer started” trip to Black Butte was fun, fun, fun.  The 4 families got along great and the house we rent is just awesome. Next year I have to remember to take pictures of it.  Go check out the pics.

Sam Pitches His First Game

Jun 4th, 2009 Posted in Fun Photos - Sports, Sports | no comment »

Sam got his shot to be pitcher last night. Still can’t believe they are having 1st graders pitch! He did great. I posted a whole new crop of pictures on my photo website. You just gotta love the intense expressions on their faces while pitching.  Go take a look 🙂

Thai Noodle Salad

Jun 4th, 2009 Posted in Good Eats - Recipe, Yard Happenings | no comment »

Is your garden cilantro taking off like mine? Cilantro can bloom out quick, so start harvesting. I plan on purchasing another start this week so I’ll have some to add to my tomatoes, onions and peppers later this summer. Bring on the salsa! But, until then, Jennifer turned me on to a great recipe for your cilantro, Thai Noodle Salad.  

The salad is refreshing and has quickly become a favorite make-ahead meal for baseball nights. I was chowing down the other night and another spectator said, “Oh my. Look at her salad. It’s so pretty!” I couldn’t stop laughing. Maybe I’ll bring her a bowl to the next game!

You can use shrimp or chicken (rotisserie chicken works great as does baked and shredded chicken breast). It keeps well in the fridge for that night and the next. And, it’s pretty healthy. Yu-um. I’ve made it strict to the recipe and with some change ups as noted in (_). Both are fantastic.


12 oz to 1lb package angel hair (or thin spaghetti) pasta

3 cups shredded napa cabbage (or hearts of romaine)

4 large carrots, shredded (or broccoli slaw)

1 small green bell pepper, chopped (or just 3 reds)

1 small red bell pepper, chopped

1 small yellow bell pepper, chopped

1 bunch fresh cilantro, chopped

1 bunch fresh green onions, chopped

1/2 cup chopped peanuts

2 tablespoons toasted black sesame seeds (skipped these)

8 ounces frozen cooked shrimp, thawed and

drained (or shredded, cooked chicken)


1/4 cup peanut butter

2 tablespoons tahini

1/4 cup rice wine vinegar

1/4 cup sweet chili sauce

5 tablespoons soy sauce

1 teaspoon sesame oil

1 teaspoon brown sugar

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon ground black pepper




Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Break pasta into small pieces (thirds) and add to boiling water; cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until al dente; drain. In a large bowl, toss together the pasta, cabbage, carrots, green, red and yellow bell peppers, cilantro, onions, and shrimp.


In a small bowl, stir together the peanut butter, tahini, rice wine vinegar and sweet chile sauce. Season with soy sauce, sesame oil, brown sugar, garlic powder, salt and pepper. Ten minutes before serving, toss the sauce with the cabbage mixture until evenly coated. Garnish with black sesame seeds.

Outdoor School

Jun 2nd, 2009 Posted in Random Thoughts | no comment »

It is amazing to me that I have a kid old enough for Outdoor School. Ben took off this morning for his first overnight camp. He’s ready. That feels good. He’s almost a 7th grader. That’s just crazy talk 🙂  Can’t quite wrap my brain around it.  I’m sure every mother hits this wall of reality (probably many times).  My babies really are going to grow up and leave the nest.