Wednesday, April 28, 2010
Mini gardens and gum
Years ago we were blessed with the opportunity to share a very large garden plot with another family for a few years. After growing many culinary herbs in small pots on my windowsill, I jumped into the opportunity with great zeal ! I planted tomatoes, peppers, zucchini, cucumbers, Swiss chard, eggplant, lettuce, spinach, beets , Brussels sprouts and more. I learned how to can, bought a pressure canner and preserved the harvest. I also mastered the art of making jellies and jams at that time. I loved it, and there was something deeply satisfying about getting my hands in the dirt, watching the weekly progress and trying to make use of all of the bounty before the next truck load ripened. Some things we went a bit overboard with planting, and there is no dilemma quite like trying to find homes and uses for a station wagon full of fresh tomatoes because your freezer is filled, you have no space for a single canning jar more, you cannot eat that many and at the time the food banks would not accept fresh produce grown at home.Ah, memories ! One year the garden ended, and I have not been able to have access to another, so I have to content my desires with growing herbs in indoor post , which is sort of like listening to a symphony with one ear bud. Two years ago I successfully grew salad greens in a dishpan by a sunny window. This year, in an attempt to keep from going bankrupt, we are attempting cherry tomatoes. I say we because I am including Nick is this project, and he will have to play the role of bee in a few weeks. Tomato plants will grow indoors and flower, but in order to produce tomatoes they need pollination. This can be accomplished with a paint brush and a gentle hand- labs do this all the time when creating hybrids.
So with a pack of seeds, potting soil and some used containers, well washed, let the garden begin ! I also planted some containers of basil, chives and parsley and plan to pick up some cilantro , dill and sage within the next week or so. Think of me as Rebbecca of Sunny-brook Windowsill !
Nothing extraordinary happened yesterday- school, exercise, study and the usual round of house stuff. All fueled by the following, who's recipes have been already posted
Breakfast- Polenta with cranberries, pineapple and melon and pumpkin seeds
Lunch - Turkey burger on an Earth Grains flat, broccoli slaw and raw veggies . Our store had these baby cucumbers this week and they are like crunchy kosher dills without the vinegar or seasonings.
Dinner- grilled chicken breast with Garlic pasta and kale with cherry tomatoes added and baby spinach topped with coconut salad.
New challenge. Nick is suddenly obsessed with chewing gum. By obsessed , I mean eating two packs of it a day ( and swallowing it). While chewing sugar free gum can help cut down cravings and be an aid in weight loss ( hey...should I get to do a product placement here like The Biggest Loser ???), two packs a day is NOT acceptable. Nor is swallowing the gum. I talked to him about it , but he is totally shut down about it( as was in the beginning of this journey with all food), impound the gum and ration out portions till he gains control. I hate doing this because it means that not only will I be bombarded with endless requests for gum and have to spend a lot of energy reminding him why he cannot have a pack every time he wants gum and that gum is not food, but also will require that I find better and new hiding places. It also means that he has NOT learned the fundamental changes that he must in order to make this a lifelong commitment. I can understand needing to be "the policeman" for a time until he learns a new behavior, but he has to claim the skill and the process for his own.That is a really hard thing to mentor !