Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Showing off the Biz

My husband pointed out to me that I haven't featured out other dog as much on my blog as I have Lola. So let me introduce you to Showbiz.

My husband and I adopted Showbiz as our first pet together (I already had Pumpkin for about a year before we got together). Anyways, we went to Petco on some Saturday when the local humane society had their puppies on display for adoption and we fell in love with them. Matthew wanted a rolly polly black fuzzy pup out of the litter (they were half chow half sharpei) - I envisioned black dog hair everywhere and leaned towards an adorable attention loving smooth haired tan pup. She was such a show-off - hence her name. :)

For Showbiz too close is never close enough. For being a 40lb dog she is constantly trying to get on our lap, sneak between your legs, and be, in general, as close to your face as possible.

So trying to take her photo shoot tonight was difficult - this was the best shot. She would not sit far enough away from me to get anything better.

She is also our separation anxiety dog - having some amount of emotional baggage I assume from being a shelter dog. She is not as bad as some dogs I have heard about - but if left long enough she will tear open pillows in her crate and chew holes in her blanket.

Showbiz is the best dog hugger. You wouldn't think a dog could hug - but she does. She does this thing where if you are sitting at her level and you feel bummed and she knows it she will scoot herself right up beside or in front of you and wrap her neck around you and rest her head on your arm - a doggie hug - kinda hard to explain. :) Always makes me smile.

Fending Off The Frost

So this afternoon I found myself lugging out miscellaneous pots and things to try to cover my little garden seedlings and other delicate plants in hopes to protect them from the possible frost tonight. I must also point out that by the time I remembered that there was a frost warning tonight I had already donned on the fleece pajama pants and baggy pj sweater complete with pink fuzzy socks - so any neighbor who caught a glimpse of me from over the fence got an eye full. :)

(wow, my garden bed looks really dry - I thought it was supposed to rain yesterday)

Anyways, how do you decide which plants get covered and which ones don't? I mean - I can't possibly cover ALL my plants. So I chose to cover the little pea and cucumber seedlings that sprung up the last couple of days in my garden, one of the newer plants that popped up around the flower beds, one of my new rhubarb plants (the rest are pretty much already dead) and my lettuce in various containers (I brought in the ones I could and covered the rest with a towel).

But what does a seasoned gardener do to heed a frost warning? I am new to this so knowing my luck I am doing it all wrong!

Monday, April 28, 2008

Happiness is...

Happiness is a warm chihuahua to warm your lap on a chilly day in April.

She has been following me around the house and keeping me warm wherever I sit - whether on the couch wrapped in a comforter or at the computer with a sweater on my lap. She is there - my little live heating pad. :)


What the heck is a meme?

Well, according to Wikapedia a meme:

/miːm or mɛm/) consists of any unit of cultural information, such as a practice or idea, that gets transmitted verbally or by repeated action from one mind to another. Examples include thoughts, ideas, theories, practices, habits, songs, dances and moods and terms such as race, culture, and ethnicity. Memes propagate themselves and can move through a "culture" in a manner similar to the behavior of a virus. As a unit of cultural evolution, a meme in some ways resembles a gene. Richard Dawkins, in his book, The Selfish Gene,[1] recounts how and why he coined the term meme to describe how one might extend Darwinian principles to explain the spread of ideas and cultural phenomena. He gave as examples tunes, catch-phrases, beliefs, clothing-fashions, and the technology of building arches.

Here is a link to another great reference about memes especially in reference to blogs


I was tagged for this meme by Momma Val.

The Rules

1. Post the rules before you give your answers.

2. List one fact about yourself beginning with each letter of your middle name. If you don't have a middle name, use your maiden name or your mother's maiden name.

3. At the end of your blog post, tag one person (or blogger of another species) for each letter of your middle name. Be sure to leave them a comment telling them they've been tagged.

My middle name: Marie

M-Married. I have been married for going on four years to a wonderful man!

A-Animals. I love animals and have two dogs and two cats right now. (and hope to keep it that way for awhile - no more!)

R-Random. That is me to a T. I am gardening on minute, taking up knitting the next.

I-Internet. I really enjoy the internet - could say I am addicted to it but not so much that it is a problem - I don't think. :) I actually started dating my husband through the internet. We knew each other in high school but had kept each other's IM and started chatting two years later and decided to set up a date - have been together ever since. I also love how it can connect people - especially family who live far away or random bloggers who probably would have never met each other in person.

E-Ergo. I am a graphic designer/marketing manager and am in love with fonts. My recent passion is the font Ergo.

I don't have people to tag starting with all the letters of my middle name so I will just tag a few of my blog friends:



What's Up With This Weather??!

Brr! I did not want to turn the heat back on but I am frozen. It got down to 63 in the house and the furnace must be on again. :( This weather isn't the best for making my bus efforts any easier. I am also worried about my tiny new pea and cucumber plants - should I cover them up?

The bus ride went pretty good today - was so full this morning that people were standing up - never saw it that full before - but I am new so what do I know? :)

The hubby is working late yet again tonight but he did check out some dvds from the library to keep me entertained.

A little bit of good old Rick Steves. I love watching his show on PBS on the weekends. (We don't have cable so we are pretty limited on what we can see)

Sunday, April 27, 2008

What's Growing In the Garden

Well, I can finally say that I have more than oats growing in my garden. Since I planted it all that has been sprouting up is oat seedlings from the aged horse manure we mixed into the soil...bummer.

BUT today I found little cucumber and pea seedlings coming out into the sunshine! Maybe I will have a garden after all!

Also planning out the second garden box - or maybe container garden - with these! Watermelon, carrots and radishes!

Saturday, April 26, 2008

How much does your commute cost?

So riding the bus to work has been an initiative for me since last year when I first attempted the idea. I had since stopped riding the bus due in part to the inclemate weather at the time and my friend was getting ready to have a baby - didn't want to be stuck on a bus if she called me needing a ride to the hospital.

Have recently started the idea again after gas prices have soared to $3.40 and the weather has gotten nice enough to walk or block or two to the bus stop.

I am slowly getting more and more used to the bus, its route, where the stops are, etc.

But yesterday, I experienced a first - I got left while standing at the bus stop. I was standing with three other people who were waiting for a different bus. I saw mine approach and as it pulled up I started unzipping my purse to get my money out - I managed to pull out a dollar and the bus zoomed away. It never did make a complete stop - didn't even give me time to make a step foward - just drove off leaving me standing in shocked silence in midstep to the street.

Not a happy camper I must say. Oh, I was crying and having an awful time - even hung up on my husband after I told him what happened. Thankfully, the bus runs every 15 minutes in the evening so I didn't have long to wait for another. Ended up making it home within a half an hour and with no other awful occurrences.

One thing I have noticed is how long people ride the bus - some shockingly get on - pay their $1.50 and get off 2 blocks later - that dumbfounds me. Maybe if it was extremely hot or cold out - but two blocks - come on you can walk that! But at least they are riding the bus and not driving their own car that distance I guess. It just surprises me. I ride the bus about 18 miles from the stop in Greenwood to Downtown - 35 miles total - there and back.

Riding the bus costs me $1.50 a ride or $3 a day to go to work and back. Not too shabby.

My commute when I drive costs me $18.22 a day according to the Central Indiana Commuter Services Commuter Cost Calculator. I know I fill up every 4 days or so and with a 10 gallon tank that cost me well in $30 a week. Yuck. Riding the bus is a great way to cut down on the stress I experience driving in rush hour traffic and also saves me money in gas and saves my car from wear and tear.

And so far, for the most part, the bus has been a pleasant experience. Nice people ride the bus, most drivers are nice (though the one who left me may not be) - the bus is clean - and the route goes ahead of schedule.

If anyone is thinking about trying the bus - one word of advice - be at the bus stop well ahead of time at least 10 minutes ahead - they pull away quickly and sometimes don't stop at all if you are not near the sign or quick on your toes apparently.

I keep waiting to hear about the ICE route that has been in the works for Greenwood - I hope we get it!

How does it cost you to commute? Click here to visit the CICS website to use the Commuter Cost Calculator.

Garden Update

Haven't had a post from the garden in the past few days - must apologize. We have been awfully busy and hadn't gotten out in the yard like we've wanted. Did managed to head outside today after getting my hair cut and taking a nap after garage saling with the hubby.

Check out my new garden gloves! Matthew surprised me with this little gift yesterday after I had a TERRIBLE time riding the bus. The bus left me as I was pulling the money out of my purse...yup. Thankfully another one came within 15 minutes - but I was livid -or more correctly - bawling my eyes out. These lovely gloves definitely brightened my day. Do you see have marvelously they match my blue knee pad!? Cute to boot! This is my first pair of garden gloves - I have been skating by trying to use my rubber dish gloves which leaves my hands sweaty and yuck when working in the yard...now I am one step closer to being and official gardener!

Also found a few newcomers popping up around the yard. This is my balloon flower from last year. Wasn't sure if she was going to come back but here she is!

Also my Lily of the Valley is deciding to come back as well! I am so happy because I love Lily of the Valley and it looked so sad all last year so I wasn't sure if it was going to make it.

Not really a garden item but it is in our backyard - my husband's new grill he finally got put together and that we have already tested out for a dinner of hotdogs last night. Very nice!

And finally my potted herb garden I finally planted today. Hopefully the seeds come up - when I tried sowing them indoors earlier many did not come up so I am worried.

Garage Sale Finds 4/26/08

This weekend was a good weekend in the garage saling department for us! We actually managed to find some and found ones that had decent items. Too bad I spent my bus money cash on my finds. :(

Here is a close up of my little $1 deal - isn't it marvelous?

Me happy with my find!

Another nifty deal of the day. $4 for this trellis - will be put to use for my peas to grow up in my garden (as you can see from the pic)

We also found a great level for $6 and an edger for $2. Woohoo!

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Margarita On a Stick

Oh, I am going to have to try making these for one of our summer get-togethers this year. Haven't had a good get together since February and it was blustery and cold then - but we all had plenty of wine to keep us warm.

But margaritas are marvelous - and in popsicle form - perfect! My mouth is watering now.

Thanks to Hostess With the Mostess to the heads up about this great idea!

Visit her post for the recipe and more info!

[top image courtesy of Bon Appétite via Epicurious.com]

You know what also sounds kinda good? Maybe...will have to experiment - but Lemon Shandy on a stick...frozen...hmm maybe. Frozen Lemonade flavored beer...dunno. I will keep you all updated though. :)

La Trattoria Fire

This is so sad to hear, one of our favorite restaurants in Greenwood had a fire! La Trattoria had the best Italian food and the best ambiance - candles on each table, red checker clothes or red tables clothes, outdoor seating, and they were always full of people dining so you have the quiet chatter of people around you. Very romantic.

The story from the Indianapolis Star said that,

"fire investigators Tuesday focused on a cooler and freezer storage area in a back room of the La Trattoria restaurant as the origin of the early Sunday morning fire. Bill and Jane Zimmer, who own the house that is home to the restaurant, visited with the Trotters in a parking lot alongside the house at 201 N. Madison Ave., where the Trotters opened La Trattoria on April 18, 2000.

Neither of the two Greenwood couples was certain Tuesday if the quaint house built in the early 20th century would be rebuilt, or torn down and a new building for the restaurant constructed.

"We don't know what's going to happen," said Rene Trotter, but she and her husband insist they want to reopen their restaurant at the same site.

"It's a shame," Tom Trotter said of the damage. "It was a neat little place. It will be again."

He said he's just not certain when.

The Trotters lament the difficulty of recapturing the restaurant's charms, which included the house's original hardwood floors.

The ambiance, authentic Italian cuisine and fine-dining quality steaks attracted couples and groups from a wide area of Central Indiana.

The restaurant will be closed for the foreseeable future."

[Photo from the Indianapolis Star]

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

I Miss My Matthew

(Image from the amazing artwork of Lawerence Yang - check him out)

Sometimes, when one person is missing, the whole world seems depopulated. ~Lamartine

Arg! I hate it when Matt has to work so much - I feel like I never see him - maybe I will go eat at his restaurant tonight. The midshift sucks, him working nights suck, him never getting weekends suck. Blah! Sigh. Of course he has tomorrow and Friday off - I have to work all day - why wouldn't he have those days off - it is a cruel world. At least he is finally doing something he enjoys. Gotta keep trying to look at the bright side.

I feel a craft project coming on!!

(image from hoop.de.doo)

Oh, oh, oh - I want to make some of these!! I have been looking for artwork or something to compliment the new, but tiny, bulletin board I bought for my office and I think these would be perfect!!

Thanks to decor8 for sharing!

Click here to visit instructions on how to make your own via sweetjessie.

Lemon Shandy

So I finally found a beer concoction I will actually drink - a Lemon Shandy. Tried one at Claddagh and was quite impressed! Beer flavored with lemonade - whodathunk that would taste so good! Wohoo - now I can add that to the RazzWheat that I can also bring myself to drink - my husband should be so proud. :)

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

It's Official - I am addicted to StatCounter

Forget getting addicted to email or reading the tons of posts in my Google Reader - NOW I am finding myself addicted to checking my statcounter. Especially now that more and more wonderful people are visiting my blog! Woohoo!

Statcounter is a free service that you can imbed code into your blog or website to count your websites, analyze your keyword searches, and see where people are visiting from and who are regular visitors, what browsers they use, etc.

Now don't get all worried that I can actually "see" who you are - I can't. But I can get a general idea - for example, I have a visitor who has become a regular who gets to my blog from Facebook - and their IP address lists them as being from Winter Park, Florida...hmmm? Let my sleuth mind work for a second... if they are from Facebook that means I know them and have listed them as a friend...so who can it be? Either my Aunt Erika who lives in Florida or my husband's old frat brother who lives there and just joined Facebook. See what I mean? You can start to figure it out...but really who are you from Winter Park, Florida?

Who are all you marvelous people who visit my blog? Some of you I know, like Tina from In The Garden blog has an IP from Tennessee and Carol from May Dreams - anyone who comments regularly. And the one person I have who visited me from Brazil and who got to my blog via Facebook must be my classmate from IUPUI who is now located in Brazil - hello, Ana if you are reading this! :)

I am not trying to be nosy - I am just interested in who reads my blog and flattered that you chose to visit! So speak up, leave a comment, I would love to know who all reads and what posts interests you, etc.

I have really found that what is so gratifying about writing a blog is not just the actual act of writing and coming up with posts, but the interaction between your readers and between fellow bloggers. So tell me who you are already! :) (but really if you want to remain hush hush and incognito that is fine with me too - I am just happy you visit my blog) :)!

1 Year House-iversary!

(This picture was taken around when we closed on the house....no shrubs in front yet, no fence - there is even the lockbox still on the door.)

Today is our one year anniversary of buying our first home! Today was the day we closed on the house - we may not have officially moved until a few days later - but this day is very momentous in my husband and I's history. Our first house - I can remember the mounds of paperwork we had to sign and how scary it was. And our first HOA fine after living there for a week - was later revoked - but still. And planting our first shrubs...Sigh.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

A Weekend In Review

Matt and I found a few little garden decor items to grace our garden this weekend. They were all under $5 a piece at Flower Factory - love that place! I really wanted the look-alike Smith Hawken ducks but they were a little pricier so I will wait. In the mean time I can feast my eyes on these adorable little oddities strung throughout my flower beds. Matt and I aren't huge fans of gnomes but thought we should at least have one in our yard. (I am also trying to find the perfect little "fairy house" to tuck around our hostas)

Matt built me this lovely raised garden bed for our very first vegetable garden this year! He also hauled in aged horse manure from a lady on the northside to nourish the soil for my garden. He must love me a lot to do so much huh? :) Today I managed to fill the bed with soil left over from when we had our fence put in (about 4 wheelbarrows full [or as full as I could get it and still move the heavy thing]), two wheelbarrows of compost manure, and two wheelbarrows of topsoil we bought from McCarty Mulch - phew - my lower back is now a tad sore. But I am excited to have it all ready to plant. Didn't quite get that far today - but at least the hard work is done.

I want to have Matt add a ledge all the way around the bed...that would be the finishing touch - besides being full of healthy veggie plants!

Another thing we did today was go garage saling - had an awful time doing so. Couldn't find half the sales, got lost, and when we did find a sale there would be nothing there for us. No garden knicknacks, no tools, no pitchfork, bookshelves or dressors...just kids clothes and old shoes. :(

But, on the way home I spied THIS on the curb! Someone was throwing this handsome shabby chic chair out because it missing a 2 inch nub on one of the legs...it still sits sturdy and looks good! So I made Matt circle around twice and nab it. He really does love me I think! :)

Also managed to plant my rhubarb, strawberry plants, yukka and stonecrop splitlings from my mother-in-law Sue, made no-bake cookies, did two loads of laundry, picked up the house, did a load of dishes, and walked the dogs - quite a way to end the weekend!

Saturday, April 19, 2008

IMA Perennial Premiere

Perennial Premiere, IMA's popular spring Greenhouse event, took place Friday, April 18 (Members' Day), through Sunday, April 20. Members will receive a 20 percent discount on all purchases during the event - non-members could receive a 15% discount. The Greenhouse offers hundreds of perennials and annuals, including a wide variety of hostas, native wildflowers, showy shrubs and unusual alpines. Guided garden tours will be offered throughout the weekend, and IMA horticulturists will be on hand to answer your gardening questions.

I had the pleasure of attending this event at the IMA since I was downtown anyways - enjoyed a pleasant walk among the gardens and enjoyed plenty of spring blooms! Didn't buy anything but got plenty of ideas (as if I needed more)!

1. I want/need/must have a magnolia tree!
2. I want/need/must have bleeding heart flowers!

Book Review: The Red Heart

Another one of my passions besides graphic design, gardening, and other things is reading! I always had my nose in a book growing up and nothing is different now besides my lack of time to read. But with my husband working all sorts of funky hours at his new job I have found ample time catch up.

I chose to read the Red Heart based on Carol from May Dream's Garden blog suggestion. I had posted about the assortment of arrowheads I have collect over the years and how it is so intriguing to think back about those times and the people who used the tools I had found and she mentioned the book I might enjoy in her comment - and it was great! Thank you, Carol!

I didn't quite know what to expect from the book at first, but let me tell you, I was captivated. It has been a long time since a book has kept me up past midnight or traveled with me to work to read during my lunch hour. I couldn't keep myself from diving into the next page. Such an enthralling tale based upon the true story of Frances Slocum, a pioneer girl who was abducted from her Quaker family at the age of 5 and grew up with the Miami and Lenape Indians. The book has particular interest because a portion of it takes place in Indiana (not very far from where I found all those arrowheads). Her family kept trying to find her over the years but she always disappeared with the displaced tribes. She did end up connecting with her Quaker birth family just before she died 59 years after she was first taken - but she never went back - she choose to live out her remaining years with her Indian family. Very amazing story. A must read!

The story inspired me to learn more, of course:


Frances Slocum Ancestry Website

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Grounds For Your Garden

As I am always interested in cheap, or in this case, free ways to spruce up the yard and my flower beds - I was excited to read about Starbucks "Grounds For Your Garden" program. I knew you could add coffee grounds to your acidic loving flowers but we don't drink enough coffee here to really add much of anything.Then Tina at "In The Garden" put a very helpful tip on her blog - Starbucks gives away its spent coffee grounds! Woohoo!

Now I visit the Starbucks on my way home and take their coffee grounds and most stores I have talked to and visited have been more than happy to hand the stuff over. One out of the three I have visited so far has been rather rude to me - when I asked about their Grounds For Your Garden program they disdainfully waved me over to a bucket near the front of the store - when I made it to the bucket there was nothing in there and instead of returning to inform the woman that there was nothing in the bucket I just walked out. The store wasn't busy by any means -no one was in line at all and two customers were just leaving - she just wasn't willing to work with me (for those on the Southside of Indy this store would be located by the Panera off of Fry Rd.) - but all the others were friendly and helpful.

Here is Starbucks' spiel about the program from their website:

"Let Starbucks help your garden grow Coffee grounds can provide a valuable source of nutrition for your garden if used properly. The proper amount to be used depends on the condition of the soil and, more specifically, what you are growing in your garden. Check with your local gardening expert to see what is best for your situation. Here are a few general tips.

Applying coffee grounds directly in the garden

Coffee grounds can be applied along with other materials as a side dressing for vegetables, roses, and other plants. Coffee grounds are high in nitrogen, but are also acidic. Adding brown material such as leaves and dried grass to the mulch will help keep a balanced soil pH.

Mixing coffee grounds in your compost

Coffee grounds act as a green material with a carbon-nitrogen (C-N) ratio of 20-1. They make an excellent addition to your compost. Combined with browns such as leaves and straw, coffee grounds generate heat and will speed up the composting process.

Using coffee grounds in a worm bin

Worms fed with coffee grounds combined with other materials will flourish.

For more information about composting, here are a few helpful Web sites:

compostingcouncil.org (US Composting Council)
compost.org (Composting Council of Canada)

Call your local Starbucks for more information!"

More uses for your grounds!
I was a little worried about applying grounds to other plants in my yard without composting it first, but found great articles to ease my mind and that got me even more excited about my new found resource!

Are Coffee Grounds Good For Your Lawn
- Professor's House

Why a Master Gardener Program?

I must admit that I have never heard of the Johnson County Extension Office - or maybe I have but never really understood who they were and what they did and quite frankly I am still confused.

But, tina at In the Garden, mentioned that I should look into it - and so the internet search began. Which, I must say, the Master Gardener Program and the local extension offices really lack a presence on the web. It took me a good while to find them and what I did find wasn't too entirely helpful. Maybe I am just a techie who relies way too much on the internet for all my information, but honestly if I can't Google it than I generally have no idea about it.

And this Master Gardener Program - what is it and why would someone want to be a Master Gardener? Is it for personal use or more for people who own greenhouses and nurseries where they sell plants to the public? Why would I want to pay $100 and go through all the fuss to become a Master Gardener?

Someone do fill me in on what I am missing here.

4th Annual Garden Celebration - May 3, 2008 - Franklin, IN

Sponsored by the Johnson County Garden Club and the Purdue Master Gardener Program of Johnson County

Johnson County Fairgrounds, Scott Hall
100 Fairgrounds Street, Franklin, IN 46131 - View Map

May 3, 2008 from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm

Admission: Donation of a non-perishable food or toiletry item for the Inter-Church Food Pantry or $2.00 per person

Join us in Johnson County for a full day of gardening seminars, vendors, food, and just plain fun!

Free seminars all day long-- topics include:

9:30 Jo Ellen Meyers-Sharp of Living Green Indiana Magazine, speaking on using Drought Resistant Plants

10:30 Anne Young, Advanced Master Gardener, on The Wiggly World of Vermiculture

11:30 Bill Noble, Indy Water Garden Society, on Beginner Backyard Ponds and Water Gardens

1:00 John Hawkins, Certified Arborist, Q & A session, An Hour with An Arborist

2:30 Carolyn Clark Kurek, American Institute of Floral Designers, with a demonstration entitled Artful Arrangements from Your Own Garden

For more information contact Deb Baker, Purdue Extension Service/Johnson County, at 317-736-3724 or bakerds@purdue.edu

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Happy April Garden Blogger's Bloom Day!

I almost forgot about the day after I got home from work - then woohoo it hit me! I need to post my blooms! And I finally have some!

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Blasted Backyard

Our backyard is muddy. We are going to work on getting it to grow grass soon - but it is so muddy at the moment. Here is a pic...

(See my sticks by the fence outlining where I want my garden to be?)

We have been in contact with different landscaping professionals about putting in a patio of pavers, but have yet to find a price we like - still waiting on one guy to get back with us. He came out for measurements last week and we haven't heard from him since. Hmm?

One guy I had scheduled to come out for a free estimate never showed up and when I called him he never called back.

Are most landscapers fairly flaky like this? Not returning calls, not showing up for appointments, and taking over a week to get back with you on a quote? Arg!

Here are the kind of pavers I would love to have for our patio...

Today is icky and cold so I can't work much outside and the husband is working all today, the Pampered Chef Party I had to go to was yesterday so today there is nada - so forgive the multiple posts.

Check Out My New Compost Bin!

I am very excited to be the proud owner of a real compost bin!

Matt and I had concocted up our own version of a compost bin by using a trash bin and drilling holes into the sides. I must say that it has worked fairly well. But we really can't get into the bin very well to mix it up - there is the turn-the-bin-on-the-side-and-shake-it method - and then there is the stick-the-stick-down-in-the-bin-and-try-to-stir method - neither worked amazingly well.

What I think we need is a pitch-fork which I hope will be our next buy - but I found a great deal on Craigslist for a brand new still in the box stackable compost bin! Very exciting!

Today I picked it up and put it together. It is a lot bigger than I originally thought it was going to be based on the size of the box - comes up almost as tall as my waist but is is perfect! And since it is stackable - it is easy to stir up. The instructions say to take the lid off and fork out some of the compost onto the ground next to the bin - then take off the top layer of the box and put it around the compost and basically rebuild the bin on top of the new stop - layering and mixing the compost as you move it into the new location. Nifty idea! Hopefully it will speed along our composting.

Here is our old bin...

We Crave Exotic Escapes - Our Pineapple Decor

One of the things that my husband and I have really gotten into for our new home has been pineapples. We both love the tropics - the warm sun, palm trees, beaches, the ocean, snorkeling, etc etc - too bad we are stuck here in Indiana. To help alleviate our landlocked woes - we collect pineapple themed items to decorate our home. The pineapple is also symbol of hospitality so it works out that we have fallen in love with it.

So far we have a pineapple doorbell.

Pineapple-esqe lamps in our living room (found 'em on sale at Lowes last year!)

A pineapple plant that we planted from an actual fruit we bought at the grocery store. We could have our very own pineapple fruit in 3 years from this little plant - but we will see.

Here are instructions on how to plant your own pineapple plant from the fruit you can buy at the grocery store - if anyone is interested.

A pineapple fountain - we do keep it outside, but we had it set up inside the night we bought it because I was too excited to wait till the next day to see it in action.

What has caught my eye lately is the Pineapple Orchid Fragrance at Bath and Body Works, they have a candle in pineapple shaped jars!