Finally got the snowflake buckets off the sign and new decorations up! Thanks Dollar Tree!
Are these not the largest squash leaves EVER?
Matt, Zach, Kendall and I spent most of the day outside planting the garden. This year we hope to harvest a ton more food than in the past. I have replaced all the horrible soil. I also purchased two vertical planters. My intention was to devote one to strawberries. However, I was unable to fine any strawberry plants last night. So I think we will try to plant some different items and then know next year, it will be devoted to strawberries with probably 3 years until it is full of strawberries and producing like I anticipate.
This year, I decided to try and save money by starting everything from seeds. I am going to have a master list below. I have decided to try a variety of items in the vertical planter just to use up some seeds. This will allow me to decide what is a good plant to grow and really since we have the seeds not a waste if it does not work out! We started tomatoes and green peppers inside the first of March. We did lose about 1/4 of out plants while we were at Disney due to a watering problem but we still have more than plenty to enjoy. After planting all that I wanted and planted to plant in the raised beds I have 2 empty squares. So I may open the Zucchini seeds I have just to plant more. Depending on how many of the pepper plants live, I may be adding Zucchini and squash seeds as the weeks go on. I would also like to grow some pumpkins this year but not sure about where. I do know to start around July 1st. IF the radish and/or carrot produce well then I will like plant a second time at the end of August as well. I did purchase several flowers from Lowes but will not purchase any more seeds or plants for vegetables until next year. I need to get these seeds used up and be diligent about what we are spending!
Now in the effort to be transparent as possible. I ended up paying the kids $20 to work outside the whole time with us so $40 and I ordered pizza for dinner $30. We decided to use paper plates but these are from our camper stash. We had frozen items for lunch. I don’t regret or feel bad about any of these as I am sore and tired. So there is no way that I could get this much done in a day without all the help that was given!
1. 35 pepper plants including the one in the tomato bed.
2. 27 tomato plants (I purchased 2 cheery tomato plants because we like to snack on these)
3. 110 bush green bean seeds
4. 5 Zucchini seeds
5. 6 yellow squash seeds
6. 20 cucumber seeds in the raised beds. I am going to try at 12 more seeds in the vertical planter to see what happens.
7. 5 watermelon seeds
8. 3 cantaloupe seeds
9. 30 sugar snap peas 25 seeds and 5 plants ( I had already planted on packet with only 5 plants growing)
10. 24 radishes
11. 50 carrots
12. Basil- packet
13. Dill- pack
14. Paisley- pack
15. Chives- Pack
Now to watch it all grow!
I am sure this is only the first set of pictures that I will be sharing!
Beside saving on gas by not going anywhere the other focus of saving lately has been with gardening. I am continuing to focus on using items in my freezer and pantry to help control my grocery bill but I also plan to do a lot of restocking this summer. One of the things that I am hearing on repeat from the channels I watch on you tube as well as with most of the blogs that I follow is that we need to grow as much of our own food as possible.
Last year was a complete bust on growing food thanks to the awful soil that I ended up purchasing. This year we have started with better soil so hopefully that is a better result. My initial plan was to purchase most of the plants to start with as I think this is easier and have had better luck in the past. But as I started looking at my current selection of seeds I realized that I had lots of seed just sitting her. I also have containers and extra soil on hand. To start plants from seed would save lots of money especially since the out of pocket cost was nothing. I decided to go ahead and try and if I failed then I just wasted my time and effort. We started the seeds inside the house so that the temperature would be more consistent. The plan is to move these to the greenhouse next weekend. Currently we have 27 pepper plants and 46 tomato plants!
In the red cups, I am trying to start our sweet potatoes! I am very hopefully that after we return from Disney we will be able to move both the green pepper and the tomato plants out of the green house and into the beds. I have WAY more tomatoes than I have need for or have dedicated room for but will just plant what we have and use every spare pot and spot I can find in the mean time.
We have ended up with just a little bit of harvest from the greenhouse with some lettuce and spinach. I am not sure it will be worth using year round but it was a fun experiment. We also continue to have kale.
1 Timeline- I started with a slight cough on Saturday night while attending LIly’s performance in Sound of Music. Worked on Monday but did end a session 10 minutes early. Came home and went to bed. Tuesday- woke up and took a COVID test- it was positive, Doctor’s appointment on Tuesday. Wednesday was Awful. Thursday some improvement but went medicine free and started IVermectrin. Friday- functioning human being but still no where near normal.
2. I have learned that sometimes no medicine is the best. I had a horrible time both Monday and Wednesday night when taking Nyquil. Thursday night-just honey and 100% improvement. I also have tried the nasal decongest given by my doctor and it makes me soooo sleepy. Guess I will try again at night. Uggghhhh
3. I am planning to be out of work until at least Wednesday. I will be out of quarantine then as well. This is the longest I have ever missed work.
4. Symptoms- include NO fever, loss of part of my taste and smell, congestion, coughing, sore throat and ears, coughing and wheezing, chills, nausea and vomitting.
5. Zach had the stomach bug just prior to the last time we had COVID in November 2020. This time as well!
We have several “food accomplishments” to celebrate this week. First we are at 50% in the chest freezer. I am beginning to look at how we want to organize this for the future. I also have some tiny spaces in the freezers in the house. The next goal is to move all the connivence foods into the house where they can be convenient! Next we have not eaten out this week, we will have guest this weekend for Lily’s play and I am going to assume that means we will be eating out several times. Third, total grocery spending for the month is $20. Thanks to a trip to Costco using our credit card rewards! Dinners are a little bit less work intense as we move into the busy season,.
Breakfast– Saturday- Homemade Bagels with bacon, pimento cheese or tomatoes. Sunday-Muffins from Costco Tuesday- muffins from Costo, Monday-, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday -choice of breakfast muffins, eggs, sausage, oatmeal, cereal, pancakes, French toast or grits or breakfast burritos. We do have some left-over baked oatmeal from last week and with the muffins no need to make anything extra this week.
Lunch- – Saturday-Turkey Dorito Casserole Sunday – Sausage potato soup Monday- Thursday I have 2 salads and one day of chicken salad and one left-over day.
Dinner- – Saturday- Turkey, stuffing, air fried corn and zucchini. Sunday- left-overs and we finished up the soup! Monday- Shrimp Alfredo Tuesday-Taco Soup Wednesday- Turkey noodle casserole Thursday- Beef and Broccoli Friday-Lasagna and Garlic bread.