Monday, April 27, 2009

The Hunt is On! Morel Season is Here!

Matt and I headed out on a little adventure this weekend and came home with lots of lovely finds! We found a grand total of 27 morels - but they are a hefty bunch! The biggest measured at 7 inches and the smallest was two! Lots of 3-5 inchers!

Here's our cat for size comparison. ;)

Now I have the thrill of the hunt streaming full in my veins - can't wait get another chance to head out and look for more!

Check out our full album of pictures here!

Read my husband's rendition of the trip on his blog!

Links about morels and morel hunting:
Preparing for the Hunt
Tricks and Secrets of the Trade
How to Find Morel Mushrooms - E-How

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Bloggers Make the Best of Friends

Oh, thank goodness for the sunshine! I thought I was going to have to spend the rest of spring in that dreary funk we had going on there for a while!

Managed to make it outdoors after work Thursday and get these puppies in the ground finally! My good blog pal, TMC from Return to Rural was kind enough to pass along these black-eyed susan transplants from her friend's garden to mine. She's marvelous I tell you - just marvelous!!

And here's a few more much-deserved blogger shout outs:
I love my blog pals! You are all so great! Thank you!!

Friday, April 24, 2009

Muddy Road

Our yoga instructor read us an old Buddhist parable that illustrates the challenge--and the value--of letting go of the past last night before we started our class last night. Was something I really needed to hear. Funny how you hear stories like this right when you need to.


Two monks were walking along a muddy road after a rainstorm when they came across a beautiful young woman. She was wearing an exquisite kimono and was looking very concerned at the prospect of crossing the muddy road. The older monk immediately whisked her up into his arms, carried her across the road, and set her on the dry bank opposite. The young woman smiled her gratitude, and the monks went on their way. After several miles of walking, the younger monk could restrain himself no longer.

“We monks have taken vows. We are not even supposed to touch women, especially not young and beautiful ones. Why did you pick up that woman back there?”

“Have you been carrying her all this time?” asked the older monk. “I put her down many miles ago.”

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Getting the Gardening Bug

Hoping for a few nice days here soon - I have a terrible gardening bug. I've got two more gardens to plant and all these bulbs to put in the ground....goodness!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Daffodil Love

Loving all my daffodils this year! They are really going crazy with blooms. I cut 9 flowers Easter weekend and bundled them in threes for my mother-in-law, great-grandma and mother. And I already have another good dozen blooming this weekend!

Though one set of daffys really stuck out - these two blooms have such short cups! And such an intense orange around the rims! A different variety of bulb must have snuck it's way into my bag.

Any of my garden-savvy readers have an idea of what kind of daffodils these are?

Monday, April 20, 2009

Rhubarb Flower Stalk Mystery

We had a rhubarb patch when I was little and have lots of great memories munching on tart stalks dipped in sugar and so we set out last year to recreate a little of my childhood yard and planted our own.

This is our rhubarb patch's second year and, my, has it grown! (it's kinda crowding out my daffodils - may have to relocate the daffys to a more roomy locale). Though one thing has surprised me - it is blooming! Huh, I don't remember rhubarb ever doing that. There's this giant stalk in the middle of the patch with large cauliflower-like buds. Showbiz, our pup dog, even thinks it's odd - :)! (I love it when our pups sneak in my pics!)

With a little research (gotta love the internets!) I've found that this stalk is bad. Well, at least it is if I want to harvest the other stalks because the flower stalk will take away nutrients from the rest of the plant. Gotta get my butt out there and cut that baby down to the crown!

More info:

Rhubarb Flowers Blooming or Bolting?

Sunday, April 19, 2009

What's On The Needles: April 2009

Had a pretty non-existent weekend. Worked a conference until 10:30 Friday night and Noon until 9:30 PM Saturday. Thankfully, I had Sunday off, but was so wiped that I've done next to nothing.

Did made it up bt 10:30 to get in a little gardening before tuckering out. Though I was only able to plant my dahlias and maywood lily tree. Still have a LOT more to go!

I did use my time wisely on Saturday and knit this whole half a scarf in moss stitch while our attendees were in session. That's a lot of knitting - at least a good 3-4 hours worth!! Even found a few fellow knitters while I was at it. :)

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Indiana House Rabbit Society Easter Egg Hunt 2009!

Thought I would give you, my lovely readers, an update on how the Adult Easter Egg Hunt (& Fundraiser for the Indiana House Rabbit Society) went Easter weekend! We got lost on the way as always - that happens. And ended up there too early - which was fine because were able to run into a posse of good friends who showed up - woohoo!! :)

(Registration - they had upwards of 70 people come out this year!)

(Our little posse - counted our eggs after the hunt!)

This year there were 2,500 eggs hidden a wooded area of West Clay Park - last year only 500 were hidden - so yay! Out of our group of 6 people we found between 40-60 eggs a piece - my husband however - found a grand total of 5. LOL

(Matt and his five eggs. :))

Anywho - everyone had a blast and Jessie even found a ticket in one of her eggs! Yay, for prizes!!

Click here to see our full album of fun pics from the egg hunt.

And if you want to come out and participate next year - make sure you join the Indiana House Rabbit Society on Facebook and check out their website to stay up-to-date!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Mid-April Garden Update

Gotta keep my thoughts on the warmer weather ahead despite all this chilly rain!

Check out my radish seedlings!! My peas are also up as well - though no sign of carrots or lettuce. Hmmm?

Hopefully some decent weather gets here soon I have lots of gardening work to do!
  • Plant one more 4x4 garden box
  • Plant a 4x2 garden box
  • Dahlias planted
  • Bleeding Hearts planted
  • Day Lily Tree bulb planted
  • Gladiolas planted
  • Other bulbs I picked up and need planted in April/May
Seems daunting huh??

Monday, April 13, 2009

A Very Special Icing Recipe

Called my Great Grandma Peggy on the way home from yoga one day a few weeks ago and asked about her icing she always put on the Angel Food cakes she would make (my all-time favorite cake). She told me the recipe and so I set out to make it - took me a time or two to get it right, but it turned out delicious! Though it wasn't not quite the same as hers - she has that grandma touch that makes everything 50-times better!

(Sorry to the taste-testers on the first batch, though I had heard good things, I knew it wasn't right...I had used a different kind of margarine and I could taste the difference even if no one else could.)

Great Grandma Peggy's White Icing

5 tablespoons flour
1 cup milk
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup oleo (she uses Imperial - the stick kind of margarine)
1/2 cup Crisco (white, not butter flavored)
1 teaspoon vanilla

Heat flour and milk in a saucepan on the stove until mixture thickens.
Cool in the refrigerator for one hour.
Add sugar and vanilla to mixture.
Combine oleo and Crisco and add to mixture.
Beat together until smooth.

I haven't had the icing on anything other than Angel Food Cake (which is what is pictured above - just in cupcake form - directions for the cupcake version should be on the side of the cake mix box) - on which it is DIVINE, but experiment as you chose! :)

Also, if anyone knows where to find the "Hospitality" brand of Angel Food Cake mix - please let me know. That is what my Grandma always used until the Kroger in our hometown stopped carrying it. I couldn't find it at the Kroger on my side of town - but keep your eyes open if you're in the Indiana/Indianapolis/Franklin/Lafayette area and let me know if you see it - if I find it I am supposed to pick her up a few boxes and I would love to be able to find it for her!

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Rain Barrel 101

So, I made myself a rain barrel at Invoke Yoga Studio's Go Green Rain Barrel Workshop! :) I even drilled (most) of the holes myself...I was a little wary of drilling the hole for the 3/4 inch spout because it had to be just right or the spout wouldn't fit in right. Was actually pretty easy to make and I can't wait to go out and buy myself a 7/8 drill bit, water sealant caulking, a female connector - which you cannot see in this picture as it is inside the barrel connected to the other end of the spout, screen and a few more food-grade barrels (which is the hard part to find, I guess). So, if anyone knows where I can get my hands on a few (3-4 more) let me know!

I want to set up a system of barrels on the west side of the house, inside the fence - under our downspout. That side is always mucky when it rains and we never use that I think a few rain barrels would be perfect! We can connect the rain barrels through the over flow hole I made at the top of the barrel - you can see it in the picture above - using a connector and some hosing. The thing I need to remember is to stagger the height of the barrels using a foundation of bricks or concrete blocks and stagger the over flow holes in each additional barrel so it is lower than the first connecting barrel..and, of course, to insert a spout on each additional barrel.

(Here's a visual of how barrels can be connected - see how they are at different heights? Image from

(Here's a picture that illustrates how my rain barrel will work - see how the down spout is raised so it just pours in? And how the rain barrel itself is raised on a layer of brick to increase water pressure through gravity. Image from :

Not so excited about the color - but we were told that we could use clear plastic primer to coat the barrels and then paint them whatever color we choose, though I have a vision of creating some sort of lattice screen with some sort of climbing flower or plant.

To get the water out, you can attach any sort of hose, soaker or otherwise, or simple fill a watering can. As long as the barrel is raised on top of a layer or two of concrete blocks or bricks you will have enough water pressure to reach the end of your hose - though of course it won't be anything crazy - but we were told it does reach the end of a soaker hose.

Another thing to note is what to do with the barrels in the winter season. You will definitely want to empty the barrel of any water as the barrel will expand and probably sustain damage if the water freezes inside.

Woohoo! We have our first rain barrel!! I love going green! First recycling, then our compost bin and now our rain barrels! Love it!!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Full Calendar = Happy Me

If you've read my blog for any amount of time I am sure you have come to the conclusion that I like to do things. Picnics in the park, wine tasting, classes at the library, yoga, sewing, gardening, etc.

Well, I am happy to announce my calendar is filling up once again with all sorts of fun and exciting things that are going on in and around Indianapolis!

This month I've got:

The Go Green Challenge at Invoke Yoga Studio
I'm jumping into this workshop series a little late - I've already missed their first session, Gardening & Composting 101, but I pretty much have those things under my belt already anyways so no grief was shed.

But I am excited to say that I am headed to the free For the Love of Water & Rain Barrel making 101 Workshop this Friday! (space is limited - click the link above for registration information.)

Tyler & Laura Henderson will demonstrate how to make a rain barrel from a 55 gallon plastic drum. Watch and learn, or make one to take home.** Tips and suggestions for conserving water use will also be discussed.

I get to take home my very own rain barrel! ($50)!
Eeek!! :)

2nd Annual Adult Easter Egg Hunt
I loved searching for eggs when I was a kid, so why not relive the feeling with the 2nd Annual Indiana House Rabbit Society Adult Easter Egg Hunt?! I'll be hunting for hidden eggs and hopefully winning some great prizes!

Saturday, April 11th at 2:00 PM
West Park in Carmel
$5 fee to participate
100% of the registration fees will be used for food, supplies and veterinary care for rabbits in foster care.

Participants must be over 18 years old and bring a container to carry collected eggs. Registration will be from 2 to 3 PM. Egg collecting will begin promptly at 3 PM and end at 3:30 PM. Eggs will contain candy, gifts and prize tickets. Prizes will be distributed beginning at 3:30 PM. All eggs must be returned at the end of the event.

Herbs For Your Garden at the Greenwood Public Library

Saturday, April 18 (10:00 a.m. - 11: 00 a.m.)
I get to learn a little about the most popular varieties of herbs, tips and tricks on successfully growing them and some recipes and ideas on how to use them in my kitchen.


So there's a lot going on for me in April! Not to mention the spattering of birthdays, social events, business workshops, and the yardwork to do (two more gardens to plant!). Love it!!

A Little Lola In My Life

This little chihuahua is the best pup ever!

Monday, April 6, 2009

Spring, where art thou?

It's feeling pretty chilly here in the Hoosier state...just when I thought spring was on it's way. Brr!! Here's some pretties from my garden to cheer you up though! They are calling for 60's later this week! Thank goodness! I don't know how much more of these 30 and 20 degree weather crud I can handle. Brr!