Saturday, April 25, 2015

Seed starting

We're fortunate in where we live. Winters are generally mild, spring comes earlier than many other parts, and the sun isn't quite as low as in the northeast.

There's nothing especially magical or secret about starting plants from seeds, generally speaking. Some seeds benefit from, but do not require, some extra steps like soaking. But, you pretty much just plant seeds in an appropriate medium, keep the medium moist, and keep it well lit.

Admittedly, there exist formulas and rules. Like, plant the seed at a depth 1-2 times it's height or whatever. Something like that. The example rule isn't one that can really be ignored, because if the seed is too deep it will likely rot before reaching the surface, and too shallow a depth will result in spindly plants at best.

Now, keep in mind I'm no expert. This is all based on what I've learned from doing over the years. But, it's not a super complicated process to start seeds. It really isn't. And you can keep quality seeds for at least a few years and still have them sprout. All the basil I planted did sprout, and it was probably 3 year old seed.

Related: I finally got the seedlings planted into pots. They got thoroughly rained on this morning and will get some wind later this evening. I may have over planted a couple of the pots, but I'm not horribly worried. We'll see how things go.

Saturday, April 18, 2015


OK. Things have not been going as planned. There are no beds because I never got the pine straw. I decided, since the neighbor offered to give them away, to use pots and 5 gallon buckets instead. Now I just need to get more potting soil. Soon. The basil seedlings are getting cramped.

Friday, April 10, 2015

Not dead

Not dead.

Also, spawn's cabbage just keeps getting bigger. It's finally starting to form the head I think.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

String of storms

We're currently receiving small hail that I hope stays small and sparse. The storm is part of a string of storms coming from the west. Unpredictable and wild, they are scattered widely and filled with lightning.

The worst that may happen is that the boy's cabbage may come through the night with a few holes in the leaves.

It is a good test for the roof and gutters, though.

Friday, March 27, 2015

Meal planning

I've decided that we'll give yet another attempt at meal planning. This only makes the third or fourth time we've tried this.

What's a little different this time is that I'm beginning by making a kitchen inventory. It doesn't seem like such a daunting task until you get to the dry goods. Because, in the fridge and freezer categories, you can kind of fudge things by just using generalized descriptions. But, for dry goods you kind of have to be more specific.

It's annoying.

However, if I want to meal plan effectively, it's something I have to do.

But, I really don't want to. There's dry goods all over the kitchen, hidden behind this or that. I want to pull my hair a little.

Anyway, I made a super simple kitchen inventory sheet using a spreadsheet program. If you want cute or fancy, there's tons of printables on pinterest. Mine is very utilitarian. As far as planning out the meals, I have a usable planner with large blocks for each day. I don't feel the need for a separate meal printable.

This should make it easier to save some money on groceries. It should also help us figure out what recipes and foods we use repeatedly. Helpful when trying to build up a rotating food store.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015


Here's spawn's cabbage so far. It's looking much better than when he'd brought it home.

Friday, March 20, 2015

more homeschool pondering

So I'm still working on building our own curriculum for 4th grade homeschool. I picked up a discounted sectarian math program, plan on doing diy history/language arts combo, and use a secular science program from Pandia Press. I'm not too worried about the religious bits in the math program because they seem to be very much wedged into the few lessons in which they appear, which leads me to believe we can skip them if necessary. It's possible we could use them as jumping off points for cultural studies. This sounds like a really relaxed first year that will still satisfy the results-oriented spouse.