Wednesday, August 31


Whoa. I'm trying my best to get used to the new Blogger interface sooner rather than later and I have to say that getting used to the stark glaringly white simplicity is kind of rough. I love color and I hope that I add some up in here soon.

Again, I've been delaying the inevitable blogging because I'm determined to catch up completely with rewriting my gardening page. Such a friggin' journey, this task has been. I'm in the home stretch though! At least, I like to think of it as such. Updating about current going-ons makes the process seem twice as long. :P

Oh, junk. It's been a week since my last post. What have I been up to? I cannot believe that tomorrow is September. Where on Earth has this year gone?! Time really does seem to speed up as you grow older. This past week has been a fairly productive one for the household in terms of projects. We've replaced two bulbs in the kitchen, one lamp that was knocked over by a moth-chasing cat right after we finished replacing the kitchen bulbs >_<, the bulb in the garage, and a bulb by the front door. Ridiculousness. We're apparently not allowed to see at night around this house, so says the universe. As we replaced the kitchen sink faucet, the main bathroom sink started leaking so we're working on that too. That was in the span of about two days. Such ridiculousness. House maintenance is a never-ending cycle like laundry and dishes. It's eye-twitch inducing.

My order of Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends: Season 1 and  Samurai Jack: Season 1 have arrived and I'm so excited to watch them when I get the chance. I loved those Cartoon Network shows! I've had Season 2 of the latter for a few years and recently gave up trying to find the first one in stores. I also found a spare Nintendo DS charger so I'm back to dabbling in Pokemon: Black again. I'm all about reliving my childhood-teen years right now, lol.

I also put in my birthday order through SU and I cannot wait for it to arrive so I can start trying out a new type of product to show you! I even planned out my supplies, address list, and design of our Christmas cards this year. The only difference is that I'm not finishing the bulk of my cards in two days of August. :D I'm learning, lol.

I thought there was going to be more to share picture-wise, but I guess not. Here's what I got to show for the past few days. Oh wait, I lied. I just looked and realized I've been saving plant pics. Whoops!
What did I do last night?
Oh, you know, maul dinner for the household.
You can't quite tell with the sauce, but the outside of those meatballs are flash-fried burnt.

But surprisingly, it was edible! And we're still alive the following day! One of these days, I'll learn how to fry things. Bless, the SO and FMIL's hearts, they actually ate my burnt meal. Usually, I don't let anyone else eat it if I've messed up that badly. Although I was trying to use it, this meal definitely does not count towards my quota of trying recipes from my giant cookbook. Not in that sad state.

I've been toiling away in the backyard for the past week and a half. The tomatoes looked like they could use more direct sunlight but I was determined not to take up any more room on the patio, so I decided to take over an area in front of one of the walls facing east that had died during the freeze earlier this year. Well, not completely, there's a bush there that half of the household is allergic to that I started tearing out on Mother's Day. I couldn't get the trunk stump out on my own and the friggin' thing started growing back! Here's the process and aftermath of my dumb butt working during +105 degrees days.
 Moving a large rock uncovered the wall of an underground ant hill. They were not pleased.
Most of what I tore up and out.
 The now cleared view of the left side.
The now cleared view of the right side.
The new big plant set up! 
I hauled rocks (with the occasional help from the SO) from all over that area and the rest of the yard to create a separate area. Those suckers were heavy!
 The Thai Hot Chilli Peppers!
Two days ago, I added tomato plant food again. Whole stakes this time.
Gryffindor is now a whopping 44 inches tall.
Slytherin  is now 40 inches tall. 
Maybe I should start measuring how wide instead, :P.
 Ravenclaw is 32 inches and focusing on new leaf growth.
 Hufflepuff has made it to 32 inches in height.
 The Bougainvillea that's only been watered a handful of times in its lifetime sitting in between.
Starting to bloom after dying back this past winter. So pretty!
The hybrid cherry tomatoes were fed too!
Tomato #1 is nearly 18 inches.
 Tomato #2 is 17 inches tall.
Tomato #3 is about 16 inches tall.
Started our third batch of cereal pet grass. Day 0 is the 29th.
All about experimentation this time with a taller container with plenty of seeds, one smaller one with less seeds, and that clear one in the middle for fun.
By the end of Day 2, this was a peek at what has been going on down below while the grass broke ground.

The very end of Day 3!

They are outside for now as they finish sprouting like crazy because Mr. Fuzzbutt has taken an early shine to them. Despite the intense morning sun, the peppers have been able to recover more and more each day. The cherry tomatoes are loving the light. Not much else to report with the rest of the greenery.

Need to grab dinner, I'll see you soon! <3

Tuesday, August 23

In The Details

Gonna make this "quick" (for me) because I want to try to get some extra sleep before going into school tomorrow. :D

I know I just wrote about my gardening and I feel bad gushing about them constantly, but I really wanted to share something I found while I was checking in on the chili pepper plants today! They're getting BUDS! For flowering. I hope.

 Look at Gryffindor go!

 Slytherin will not be out done!

 Ravenclaw is starting up as well.

 And even Hufflepuff is joining in on the action!

I am beyond excited to potentially see some flowers in the next couple of days or weeks. Be prepared for pictures of that sight! :P

It was a pretty warm one here today. I believe we tied our record of 106 or 107 or something. Yummy. In other natural news, there was an earthquake on the east coast of the country and in Colorado. I had friends in Georgia through New York feel it. As far as I know right now, no one I know was personally affected but I'm working on getting in touch. Most of the people I know, including my family, are in Florida and they are much more concerned about the whereabouts of Hurricane Irene. I was there for the ones of 1999 and 2005. They made everything pretty darn soggy, to say the least. I'm keeping a wary eye on this year's storm. 

I prepared my package for my bestie today and this is a doodle I drew inspired by the quail I saw scurrying by in the back yard while I was writing a letter to her. It's on the stationary she just sent me. :D

Last but not least, my Cricut cartridge case. It has garnered interest at school, so I'm bringing it in tomorrow to show. I like how it inadvertently matches the Cricut Expression the household got for me last Christmas. Yes, I know I'm a very lucky gal! Blotted out my name in this pic but you get the idea. I went a little crazy with the vinyl but I never get to use that stuff (that I accidentally purchased anyways). The inner contents are flopping around a little inside because a hefty chunk of the filling is missing that I was using. Laying it back down and scooting things upwards takes just half a second though. I'm still pretty pleased with the results!
Well, there we go! Just wanted to share those things. I'll see you soon! <3

Monday, August 22

The Waiting Game

Good things come to those that wait, right?

It seems to be a bit of a double edged sword but that just might be my crankiness showing at the moment.

Whoa. I was just distracted from contemplating the order of this post by finding a little tarantula on the porch out back! 

 Whoa! Why, Hello there!
 Just a little guy!
 We let him loose in the front yard, away from pestering family dog.

Well, that's one way to reset my mind frame. Mmk, where was I going to start? Yesterday, there were two trips made to the two big craft stores. We went on a mission to take advantage of a buy a pack of card stock and get a second one for a cent more for the class room. There were a few other side missions that were also accomplished too. I felt so proud and productive in a craft fashion.

We were able to grab the paper, I found mini 4x6 photo albums that fit 60 pictures each to save for later when I start making brag books for my garden. :D Most of the albums I've been seeing around only hold 12 and sometimes 36 pictures, but with how many photos I've taken, I knew I could only crop it down so far. They will be digitally scrapped too, so it won't just be plain snapshots shoved into the sleeves. I'm too enthusiastic about them to just leave it at that. :P

One big project that I worked on and finished last night (it was a long, drawn out, and frustrating night) was a portable way to store my Cricut cartridges. I have been keeping them in a gallon-sized zip baggie and I'm pretty sure if I got one more, it would burst. I like to have the cartridges, handbooks, and keyboard overlays together. One good idea I've read about was taking out all of the pages that I don't need. Namely, all of the ones with instructions in languages that I can only sort of read and understand. I felt a little guilty doing so, as if I was committing some narrow-minded crime, but I got over it because it allowed me to store two more booklets per stack. Here are the results:

Okay, I don't have as many as are shown in the first picture. I promise. I borrowed FMIL's to fill in the space to see how well it worked. This idea combines the idea that has been floating around the forums for a few years that use plastic ribbon bins that stack and snap together plus a 12x12 scrapbooking carrier (which I have now) that has come out with a plastic tray insert designed to hold 18 booklets and cartridges with a few tools. I used plastic canvas and planned out a few layouts but found that this worked the best. I made sure to get a bin with a handle. It also snaps shut. 

My shapes cartridges are on the top row with room for 18 total. The next row has my seasonal, lite, and character cartridges and can fit 8 total. The last row also holds 8 and currently has my font cartridges. That means I have individual slots for 34 cartridges and about 40 handbooks. Lol. If I ever reach that amount, I could always throw some carts in the booklet or tools section. :P I'm pretty friggin' proud of myself! It took so much longer to figure out and make than it should have because I was so tired but wanted to finish before going to bed. Stupid stubborn streak. 

Oh! I also got a crochet book that I was eyeballing a few months ago but decided against it at the time because we were already grabbing so many yarn goodies. Well, after some discussion with friends and much contemplation, I hunted for this book, could not find it anywhere, and then snagged the last copy at the store yesterday. It's Twinkie Chan's Crochet Goodies for Fashion Foodies! It's so hilarious and amazing. I cannot wait to try a pattern out.

While on my mini missions in the store, I stumbled upon a few little treasures! There is a line of terrariums that are guaranteed to grow of all sorts of off the wall plants to get kids interested in grow gardens. With alien and fairy themes, I was so excited too! :P They have individual eggs, small trays, and bigger trays with up to twenty plants (5-6 different species). FMIL wanted to test out one to see if they would be good in the classroom and got an fairy-themed egg that will grow these purple flowers that will be attractive to butterflies and hummingbirds. I got two eggs to try out and... one's a fly trap and the other is a pitcher plant. And they will possibly sprout by the end of this year. Oh yes. Patience is some sort of virtue that will be tested with these guys!
The fly trap will sprout sometime between late September and late November. Roar!
I have to refrigerate the pitcher plant for 6 weeks and then it will sprout sometime between early November and early January. I can't wait! This is going to be so weird!

Today wasn't nearly as fun or intriguing. Except for one part that I'll get to that later. :D It was full of chores and errands. We decided to tackle the less than user friendly kitchen sink faucet today and I took it on the task of clearing out the space underneath so the SO could crawl underneath and around to change out some of the connecting tubing too. It... took quite a bit of time for me to get through everything. Thankfully, it's all done now and working like a charm. I even helped with the caulking. Yay for growing up doing weird jobs on household projects. It does mean that I'm peeling dried tacky stuff off my fingers for the remainder of the night. Sigh. :P

That rain that I showed you last time? It's resulting in things like this:
 The Barrel Cacti are flowering and/or fruiting (again).
 There are different variations that are so pretty.
Almost in full bloom!
Another vivid and pretty sunset.

I also decided to pot the spider plant chunk that FMIL gave to me to try to grow for our kitty. He loves eating the plantlettes off. Silly veggie lover.
 Soaked it in some water for a few days and it developed its own roots.
 That's some pretty serious effort going on there.
All ready to go nuts and become a little bush.

I also realized that I haven't measured the tomato plants in a little while to see how much they've grown since moving outside. So I did so while I was out checking in on everyone.
 Tomato #1 is about 12.5 inches tall.

Tomato #2 is about 12 inches tall.

 Tomato #3 is also about 12 inches tall.

All of their stalks have become more reddish-brown and they have endured a few very windy nights surprisingly well.

Fast forward to this afternoon, I got a wonderful semi-surprise in the mail. I had forgotten to remember that I had a package on the way from my best friend-former roommate. She recently moved half a country closer to me and sent me presents she had purchased back when she spent time in Japan for school as a birthday gift. I love it all! It was the highlight of my day. 

This is my stash after ripping them out of their packaging. There's a stationary set with paper, stickers, an envelopes; a multi-color pen (everyone knows that I love those); a cute pair of chopsticks with elephants and their own special case; a striped mini pencil case; a mechanical pencil with a retractable eraser; and four oh-so-cute eraser critters (a bunny, hamster, puppy, and bear - I believe). It's all so cute, from Japan, and from my bestie! I think the very best part was the postcard she sent with it. :D It was so cool to hear from her in that medium. I definitely have some stuff to send back to her. Hooray mail! I cannot wait to use it!

I guess the past two days have been more productive and random than I thought. I guess how tired I've gotten by the end of the day zombifies my brain into dulling all of the excitement while my body recovers. Oh, the joys of blogging to remember and share.

I need to go tidy up a little bit before I start gnawing on my arm. :P See you soon! <3
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