Wednesday, April 24, 2013

My Latest "Cockamamie Scheme/Idea"...

So...I know I want to grow "stuff" again this Summer.  I also know I won't have as much time to devote to my plants this year (baby and all, you know).  But, I got to wandering around on Instructables...because I wanted to see if I could easily set up a growing situation in my garage to use year-round.  I'd really love it if I could grow tomatoes, Sweet potatoes, peppers, strawberries, etc... all the time, especially with starting up Gabriel on "real" food (we're doing baby-led weaning).

A Ginger Plant growing.  Not mine...found here.
The first thing I found that I want to try (well the first thing I think I can actually pull off without spending an arm and a leg) is growing my own Ginger!  We use this a ton during the Summer mostly!  We love it on Barbequed Shrimp! The instructions were based off someone else reading this post and doing it himself (or herself).  I need to clean a little space off of my Kitchen windowsill before I can start this one though...right now I have a Celery stalk that is "re-growing", 3 bunches of Green Onion (also re-growing), and 5 Avocado Seeds trying to sprout (the sixth one died).  Also, I have my Stevia plant (a Sugar Bush) happily growing away up there, that means I have no "windowsill real estate" right now!

Something like this...maybe.
Some things I need to look into before even truly considering growing in the garage though...cost of grow lights (these can be very expensive) and fish (or other nutrient source).  I could use trout, but then I'd need a huge set up and I'd have to learn to catch/kill/eat them too because otherwise they'd just get ginormous (I guess I could give away or sell them as they got too big too).  I don't like trout, so that's going to take some thinking...also, where does one purchase live trout from?  If I find a "homemade" setup I like and think I can do relatively easily (I did see someone growing lettuce above a Beta Fish tank (they didn't have to eat the Beta)...I could do that, fairly cheaply too), I may  give this a small-scale go before going to the full-scale "farm in the garage" approach.  Also, I'm horrible at growing anything from seed, so I'll need to look for plant starts I can get locally (love the herbs/veggies/fruits at Fred Meyer in the Spring....huge variety)!

Things I need to look at...
  • fish (yes/no? Type (goldfish, Beta, Trout...)?)
  • getting air in there (pumps, bubblers, etc...)
  • light source (grow lights or only use during the spring/summer outside)
  • nutrient source (either for the fish or for the plants directly)
For now, it's just a thought...we aren't passed the overnight freezes just yet, so I still have time before I really want to get anything going...and growing in the garage would probably be something to start now, but not get anything planted in until next Spring anyway (giving me time to gather all materials, run a small-scale "test", and do further research...and listen to Garrick complain about "yet another thing that he doesn't give a flying flip about").

I'm off to add Ginger Root to next weekend's shopping list!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Helping Where I Can...

I feel like these days, I post nothing but baby updates and product reviews...which is about all I have time for, but I feel like a total slacker!  You guys want recipes, chicken & garden updates, and craft ideas...right?

Well, those are all going to have to wait a little bit.  (You thought I was gonna be productive here, huh?)  Today I want to talk about another Mommy in my Facebook Mommy group(s) [We splintered into three or four groups a few months ago.]  Yesterday, her family was devastated by a fire that engulfed their home, she, her husband, their little girl, and the family dogs are unharmed (physically), but they lost everything else in the fire.  I'm doing what I can by sending off the size 2 diapers that our son has outgrown (her baby is on the smaller side), but that's only about half a package, along with a box of Rice Cereal, a package of wipes (that I swiped from Gabriel's stash), and then I plan to add a bag of dog treats and maybe a few small toys to the box to help fill in the space left.

She uses Gerber brand formula, so I'm looking for coupons for that (it's the one formula I do not have sample cans of, of course, or I'd send those too) and anything else I can help provide her family.  Luckily, we have an awesome group of women and many others are also sending items to her family (clothes, essentials like shampoo, and housewares), I just wish I could do more!  Heck, if I was closer, I'd make a road trip and take some clothes to them too (but, Pennsylvania is a bit of a drive from Washington)!

If you or anyone you know gets Gerber coupons, but doesn't use them, please consider passing them on to a Momma in need!  I do this with all my "baby coupons", I signed up for all of them while pregnant, but since Gabriel is a breastfed baby, we don't use them at all (and we're also doing "Baby Led Weaning", so we don't use baby food either).  I pass them along to those that do use them as they come in the mail to me (just sent a package of coupons out to a Mom using Similac and have an Enfamil coupon sitting next to me waiting to go out today/tomorrow to another Mom.

Triple Fun Exersaucer!
In other news...we got Gabriel a "new to us" Exersaucer at Sweet Repeat over the weekend and he loves it!  I picked it up for $36 after using my 20% off card I had been saving!
Baby enforced weaning!  He wanted to try my Apple slice!

Our freezer(s)!  The bigger one is new because we filled the small one up!
New freezer packed so we can defrost little one! 16 soda boxes all filled with boob juice in there!

Crocheted "dynamite" in progress! Just needs stuffed and finished off!

Baby shades!

Easter!  He was unsure about all the "stuff" (Cadbury's were for Dad...).