Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Business Busy-ness

I know I've neglected this blog, but for the past month I've been creating a new business with a friend who's also a floral designer. We worked together and when our employer closed their storefront we decided we loved what we were doing so much we didn't want to stop. So the flowers live on through DellaBlooms and Gifts. Here's the link to the business blog There are photos of samples of our work. If you live in the Maryland, Virginia or DC area we can help you with your event, large or small. Call us for a free consultation.

I have a huge garden update with pictures coming soon. Stay posted you faithful few readers, and comment to let me know you're out there. Several friends say they follow my blog but never make a peep. I love comments and want to hear from you! I'm off to a wedding consultation.

Phillipians 4:4-7 Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand. do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Spontaneous Date

See Thomas Jefferson inside looking out over the tourists?
The low hanging branches arching out over the water look like sticks with pink glittery jewels.
Over the years of visiting this sight it's common to see a Japanese bride and groom having wedding photos taken with these gorgeous blossoms paling to the gorgeous couple.

The tulip library is much more stunning than this picture allows. Over one hundred varieties are displayed here in a very small space.

There are so many photo ops with the branches framing the Washington Monument which stands as a sentinel over our nation's capitol.

We live near Washington, D.C. and have incredible opportunities of sight-seeing. But our normal routine marches on and we don't always take time to make the trek to the city. Clever husband said recently he'd never gone down to the the Tidal Basin to see the cherry blossoms and he'd like to do so this year. We've had some typical strange spring weather here which ranges from sunny and warm to brisk and flurries within 24 hours. Planning to go before the winds blew the blossoms off, yet avoiding the parade of tourists was like walking a tight-rope. Clever husband called yesterday and asked me to be ready in an hour; we were going to the Tidal Basin.
Parking was a breeze, and the walk around the basin was magnificent. Thanks CH for a wonderful spontaneous date. And thank you Japan for your gift of these beautiful trees to our country.
What would you see if you were a spontaneous tourist in your area? Where would you like to go on a spontaneous date with your mate? Hmmm..... I'm thinking of making a list to keep on hand for those times when we've got time to go. Afterall, this is an advantage of having an Open Nest in this season of life.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Garden questions and catch of the day

I''ve had several friends and family members ask questions regarding my garden, so I'll attempt to answer them here for all to benefit. First of all, check out the beds once they've been grided with twine. Cool, huh? In the second edition of Square Foot Gardening they suggest using lath, but to grid the beds and it is very white and pretty, but also pricey, so we found twine works just as well.

This second pic. shows a close up so you can see the holes and seedlings. It's amazing how many plants you can put in these beds. So far we've planted sweet, yellow, and red onions, radishes, peas, several lettuce varieties, swiss chard, beets, broccoli, cauliflower, and corn. A friend asked for the dirt recipe. Ha! I've had lots of recipe requests over the years, but I think this is my first one for "dirt." Here it is:

1 part compost

1 part peat moss

1 part vermiculite

Mix all together and fill beds. Our layers are: Newspapers, shredded leaves, and then the special dirt.

Someone else asked why this method might be better than container gardening. It's a huge space saver, and like I said above you can plant so much more in these 4x4 or 8x4 beds. Square Foot Gardening suggest you feed the plants some kind of fertilizer as the soil will become depleted eventually. This is why container medium should be replaced each year. There's nothing left to give to the plants.

These next photos are not gardening related, but I guess they would fall into the category of clever self-sufficiency. Kudos to my sons Carter and Blake who caught these trout on opening day in the Patapsco River.
The before and after shots of the trout. See that beautiful golden crust with all the flecks of orange zest and cilantro? Mmmmmmmm...... my mouth is watering just looking at it and remembering how good it was.

Carter's girlfriend, April found a tasty recipe for Salt-Crusted Trout and they treated us to a lovely dinner. The salt mixture included cilantro, orange zest, pepper, lemon juice, and basil. When it was baked the crust was cracked and each fish brushed off. It was incredibly moist and yummilicious. I know that's not a word, but it was the perfect word to describe the trout. They served it with rice, and this wonderful Thai cucumber salad.

You don't know how much it thrills me that my kids are clever enough to fish and are also creative in the kitchen with the catch of the day.
I'm leaving you with a gorgeous Maryland spring sunset. Enjoy your weekend with those you love. If you can't be with them, commit to praying for them.

Neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the Love of God that is in Jesus Christ our Lord. Romans 8:39

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