Thursday, September 27, 2012

KT and the Pool Table

We got to keep KT last Saturday night - what a great time we had!  She played and played and played outside on the pavilion, and has found out that her Grumpy will just about do anything she asks him to do! She's learning -- smart little girl!

She fixated on the pool table this time - he unwrapped it and she spent quite a bit of time up on the table, learning to roll the balls into the pockets, she used a rag and washed the pool balls, and she tried to learn the different numbers on them, and told us the color of each of them.  We counted them, we put them in number order, we lined them up by color and then we lined them up in the triangle.
Smart girl!

Cooking with the Michili Chinese Cabbage

I'm going to have to find something to do with this cabbage, it's growing so fast! I'm cutting off the outer leaves and using them, and some of them are huge.  Here's my first foray into using it, a simple stir fry.
First I washed the leaves off and then submerged them in salt water for about 5 minutes to get rid of any bugs that might have been hiding.  Thankfully, not too many!
Chopped up a medium onion, stir fry in olive oil, then chopped up about 6 leaves of the cabbage and added it to the pan. I turned down the heat, put the top on and really just sweated it for a while, then added some roasted garlic bulbs, a little salt/pepper and some chopped pre-cooked bacon.  I think you could add anything else you might think of, I was thinking dried cranberries might be good in here too.  Too bad I didn't have any.

Mom on September 26th, 2012

She was having a really super day.  Very sweet, quiet and smiling, she looked so pretty.  Sleeping when I left.  I left with a happy heart!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

And for the truly lazy....

We have pre-peeled and wrapped bananas.  OMG.  Yes, I'd call this a sign of the coming apocalypse.  The wrapping provided by God wasn't good enough?  Sheesh!!!

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Movie Review --- Resident Evil Retribution

Nuh Sorry, I really wanted to love it, but ... just no.

Maybe its a lot like the video game, which I have never played, but I've always enjoyed the movies before.  This one just seemed so choppy and more like a game, really.  Not much new, and the bad guy from the last movie that Alice killed, shows up as the "good" guy in this one...what?!!

What happened to Claire, K-mart, and Claire's brother?

Not recommended, unless you're just an action junkie.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Mom on Wednesday, September 19th

Another kind of frowny day, but she was sleepy and slept through my entire visit.

She had her hair up in a cute little top-knot!

Fall Garden Update

Purple cauliflower plant
I'm impressed with how well the fall garden is going - I really think it's been easier then the spring garden (possibly because we didn't have to build all those raised beds this time!)  Here's a few photos of how it's looking!
Michili cabbage.  I've already been using these, cutting off the outer leaves as we need them. Tonight I'm making stuffed cabbage with these beautiful big leaves!
Swiss chard
Russian Kale
One of the beets - I think this is the Detroit Red
Another beet - Bull's Blood
Some of the many winter squash
Today I planted the first of the garlics (one full bed will be devoted to garlic this winter)
This is the Mexican garlic I got at Costco!
 I've read so many conflicting advice columns on how to plant garlic.  Some say don't bury the top, some say bury them 6" deep! Some say cover with one or two inches and mulch heavy.  I really don't know what to do, so I just did what seemed right.  I buried them about 1/2 inch, then topped them with compost (my compost is turning out to be gorgeous!) about another 1", then I'll top that with hay once the entire bed is planted.  These will stay in the ground until early summer next year if I have any success.

 I planted a small bed of giant Elephant garlic (that I just picked up in the grocery store!)  We have some other varieties ordered but they won't be here here for about two weeks, so they will go in later.  I also put in some shallots that I started from seed, we'll see how that goes.
This mushroom is sprouting along the side of some of the raised beds.  Anyone know what they are?

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Found a nice couple in Las Vegas....

Ran into this nice couple here in Las Vegas...they were fun to hang out with!  Tonight we're going to see "the world's greatest impressionist" (I'll let you know tomorrow how true that is) and having a late steak dinner with them.  Back home tomorrow!

Watching the light show on Fremont Street

Friday, September 14, 2012

Bright Lights, Big City!

The amount of neon in Las Vegas is just amazing!
Our Hotel
Walking the Fremont Experience 
Sadly, losing.....
Love the glass lighting throughout this hotel...
Across the street
For our KT bug!  It's pink!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Welcome fall!

It's been in the 50s for the past two mornings!  

A sure sign of fall...

I've been seeing these Spikes on Hwy 46 on the way to Boerne lately.  I'm not sure that they are really called Spikes, but that's what my mother always called them.  A sure fire sign that fall is here!

Carlie is having surgery today

Poor Carlie has some cysts that are being removed today. She probably won't even notice.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Look at my foot!

To live is the rarest thing in the world.
Most people exist, that is all.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Vahalik Family Reunion, September 9, 2012

We attended the Vahalik Family Reunion today, along with the Jeff, Colleen and KT, and Mike & Kathy.  This is the branch of the family tree that included my mother and her family.

For a change, it was held in a restaurant instead of a hall, which I really liked.  We didn't have to bring in a lot of covered dishes and this place had us in a secluded room at the end of the building, which gave us plenty of privacy.

Much thanks to my cousin, Margaret, who hosted the whole thing and did all of the work to put this  together. The turn out was okay, but we missed seeing a lot of my cousins who didn't come.  Hopefully more will be able to attend the next one in two years.
If you want to see any of these photos in larger form.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Movie Review --- 2016: Obama's America

I just had to see what all the fuss was about...I'm not normally the audience for any documentary, and especially any politically charged documentary, but I've read so much about people's reactions to this one, we just had to go see.
First, I was expecting a real hatchet job.  But it wasn't that.  In fact, if anything, the author is sympathetic to young Obama's wildly erratic childhood, thanks to a childlike mother who seemed to be searching for her own fulfillment despite the emotional damage it was doing to her children.  She married Obama's father who hid the fact that he was already married in Africa.  Then divorced him and married another man from Indonesia - leaving and divorcing him when he was moving toward embracing (gasp!) capitalism.  She was raised as a socialist and raised her children that way.  Her parents made sure that young Obama was mentored by another socialist when she dumped him back on her parents to raise.
My take-away from this movie:

  1. Obama is a socialist, if not a communist.
  2. He wants America to suffer for the sin of colonization ("taking" Hawaii as a state, oil from the middle east, goods from across the world.)
  3. He hates England for the same reason.
  4. His sympathies lay with Muslims.
  5. Obama is emotionally damaged.
  6. He wants to use what he feels were the ill-gotten riches of the US to enrich the 3rd world countries of the globe, and as an intended consequence, he wants the US to suffer.
  7. Our universities, especially the bigs such as Harvard, are a festering hotbed of socialists, communists, and America haters.
  8. .....and the biggest lesson of this movie is that our media cannot be trusted to tell us the truth.  They are so partisan that they will intentionally not do the job that they are entrusted with - they did not do the hard work of vetting Obama.  He even handed them the research material in his book, "Dreams of my Father" and they ignored it. They have been derelict in their duty.
The movie is fairly short, about 1-1/2 hours.  I recommend it to anyone who would like to know a bit more about their president before the next election.  Don't be afraid of it, its not a waste of your time, I assure you.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

KT is a photographer!

Saturday morning I loaned KT my little Canon digital camera so she could take some pictures of her own.  She's done that a few times during the summer and she really loves to take pictures.  Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't, but she seems to be getting better about centering her subject and actually taking a few great shots!  Did I mention that she's only two?!! My goodness!

Her mom was working on a quilt on the floor, and the red thing is her pillow pet (it's a ladybug), just in case you were wondering.  She captured some weird lighting from the window there, too.
A photographer is born!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Happy 85th Birthday to Mom!

My mom turned 85 years old today!  She was having a pretty good day, sleepy and sleeping most of the time, but was able to wake long enough to see who was visiting with her.  When she was awake, she was listening to the Turner Classic Movie that was on the television, and occasionally giggled a little.  I'm so blessed to still have my mother with us this long.  Happy Birthday, Mom!

U Never Know What U'll Find on The Pitty Pat Pages!

How to separate an egg -- I found this on one of my homesteading blogs today and I just had to share this with you.  What an amazing idea, and I have to try it soon -- next time I have to separate an egg, anyway.  Okay, so this is in Chinese....just turn off the sound, you don't need it (unless you actually understand Chinese, that it!)  Very cool idea.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Movie Review --- Battleship

Had to wait for this one to show up on DVD so I could finally see it.  It was really entertaining...and they actually brought in the old 'board game' aspect by tracking the aliens on a grid like we used to do on the board game!
It's full on cgi and special effects for most of the movie, so if that's not your thing, you really won't like  it.  There is a story, but the main parts of this movie are the battle between a navy destroyer and the aliens.  Funny that the crew of scientists who started this thing all take off for the hills and don't take any responsibility for what they have brought down on earth, but just leave it to the military to take care of. Hmmm....
They used a real double-amputee war hero,  real life Iraq veteran Grogory D Gadson, in this movie as a patient of the main actress (who is a physical therapist in the movie).  He did a good job, and I hand it to the movie honcho's for using a real person.
Definitely suspend your belief system for this one and just go into it for the fun of it!  No great acting, including Liam Neeson (who only shows up in the beginning and at the end) but the aliens were kind of interesting -- more human-like then I'm used to seeing in my sci-fi movies.
3 Stars!

How does the garden grow?

One reason that I've been a blogging slacker is that I've been focusing on getting this fall garden in so that we have a chance of getting some results before the heavy frosts. [Oohhh....doesn't the thought of heavy frosts just sound so great right now?  I can't wait for fall!!!]  

I do have a plan in case of early frost...since we're using raised beds for most of it, I can put up some covers if necessary.  Most of what I'm planting is supposed to be fairly cold hardy, though.  So we'll see how it goes.

I only have one bed left to go -- and it's going to be all garlic and onions.  It gets done this week (I hope.)

Today John helped me get the pumpkin/watermelon patch replanted with winter squashes.  It features:

  1. Seminole Pumpkin Squash  The wild squash of the everglades...just had to try it.
  2. Thelma Sanders Sweet Potato Squash
  3. Iran Squash  This one is recommended for ornamental purposes, I read that its not particularly tasty, but a beautiful pumpkin like squash.
  4. Long Island Cheese Squash  Doesn't that name just grab you?! ha!

I picked these all up at the Baker Creek store that we visited with JR and Ashley when we were in California. Don't they all sound yummy?!

I also have finished bed#3 and bed#4 in the regular garden this week.
Bed 3 has the existing peppers in it that I cut way back (about 1/3 of the plant left).  They are looking good after a bit of a shock, so I think they'll continue to do well until frost.  The rest of that bed has:

  1. Honeyboat Delicata Squash
  2. Jumbo Pink Banana Squash  This variety is over 200 years old...amazing!
  3. White Carrots
  4. Chinese Heirloom Cabbage

Bed 4 has:

  1. Orange Cushaw Squash
  2. North Faulkland Island Squash
  3. Yugoslavian Finger Fruit Squash  This one is a summer squash, but I didn't have room in the spring garden.  I'm just going to give it a try and see what it looks like.  I have lots of seeds left to try again next spring if need be.
  4. Galeux Heirloom Squash  Warty looking!

It may appear that I've over squashed, but I truly only planted about 4 of each of those I have lots of seeds left over from every one of these packets should any of you out there like to have a few.  Now, on to the garlic!

The Michili Cabbage is looking really good after transplant.
5Color Swiss Chard also looks like it's doing great! John just watered it, so it's kind of "leaning..." 
Kind of excited about the purple cauliflower....all from seed! 

KT at the library

KT is amazing with these puzzles....

KT and her momma came out on Saturday to visit.

We went to the Lakehills Library, where I had been taking KT every Thursday all summer during Mimi's Summer Day Camp.  KT loves the library...she plays with puzzles, she takes out the floor cushions and plays with them, she visits with Clifford the Big  Red Dog and the black stuffed pony and she looks at books.  She got to show her mom where everything was, even Mimi's rocking chair!

It was also their First Saturday Book Sale day, so we browsed through their books for sale and bought several children's books and a few Nora Roberts paperbacks for me.  Then we went out to lunch at the local Mexican food place.
What a great way to spend a Saturday morning!