Monday, November 30, 2009

Monday Harvests 11/30/09

It seems quite amazing that I can still run out to the garden on this last day of November when I need a little bit of green for a meal. You can see what other gardeners are still harvesting at Daphne's Dandelions.
This week I ran out for some arugula and mizuna to add to a breakfast of huevos ranchros on Saturday morning.
Here is the breakfast they contributed to.
Tonight I ran out in the dark for some greens for out tacos. I ended up with a few leaves of swiss chard which we chopped to use as one of our toppings.

Neither harvest amounts to much by weight but psychologically it is nice to know that I don't have to buy store-bought lettuce and I can provide the bits of green we need. I do wish that I had seeded some lettuce back at the end of August because we only have arugula and some regular lettuce would be nice. However, the Swiss Chard does alright as a stand in.

We still have some carrots and kohlrabi in the cold frame that I need to pick and the kale is plugging along quite well. Maybe we will get to the carrots this week.

P.S. Here's a funny photo of the squirrel that was licking the mat on my parents' porch in Maryland last week. Not sure what yummy substance he found on the mat there.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Wedding Quilt #2

As I mentioned last month, I started two quilts in August for weddings this fall. I finished the second one last weekend and today we're headed to that wedding so I can show off the finished product.
This pattern is called Facets, and it is a random combination of squares made of two colored triangles. I used three green and three blue fabrics, with a light, medium, and dark of each color family. It was easy to piece the squares by sewing the two triangles together. The hard part was laying out the squares so that it looks random enough and that you don't get two triangles of the same color right next to each other. It is the kind of design that when your eye looks at it, you try to make out what the pattern is, but can't quite get it to work. There is lots of interest and movement in it. After the sharp geometric design top, I went with a more fluid paisley fabric that ties the colors together for the border and binding and backing.
I quilted lines along the inside of each square made of four triangles.
The finished quilt measures 63" by 52".

Monday, November 23, 2009

Monday Harvests 11/23/09

A few warm days this week with temps in the 50s allowed me to prop the cold frame open to let out some of the moisture. This week I harvested winterbor kale from the cold frame. I tried to choose the leaves that were most getting in the way of the windows closing snug. This was picked at night and went into a yummy Barley-Tomato-Kale Soup from the Moosewood soups cookbook.
We also picked some tatsoi on Saturday to throw into a quick asian noodle soup. I love how it has formed beautiful rose shapes with the leaves. It is definitely doing better now than in the summer heat. I planted tatsoi in succession throughout the whole season, but the mid summer planting bolted very quickly. This last planting was horribly attacked by something eating its leaves in August, but has recovered nicely and is actually outside the cold frame. I have another harvest yet of it. I also have some seedlings of it in the cold frame so we'll see how it does at the temperature drops.
You can see what other gardeners are still harvesting at Daphne's Dandelions.

Monday, November 16, 2009

A Month of Harvests

I've been behind on posting my harvest photos for almost the past month. We've had about one harvest a week from the garden. Here they are, better late than never. You can see other gardener's harvests at Daphne's Dandelions.

10/22 Lacinato Kale and 1 carrot. I was curious how the carrots were developing so I pulled one of the larger ones. It seems like they could be harvested any time now.
10/31 Arugula and Mizuna for a salad with pears and goat cheese. Yum!
11/4 This was my first harvest in the dark after the time change. The sun sets around 4:30 now so if I want to harvest for dinner I have to don the headlamp and head out into the darkness. I picked all the Broccoli Rabe. It seems like it needed more sun. There wasn't much to each plant. It did better in the spring. I also picked some of the Italian Dandelion Chicory to round out the Broccoli Rabe pasta dish I was making.
11/11 Another night time harvest: Lacinato Kale. We roasted this in the oven and it was very good.

We still have winterbor kale, carrots, arugula, kolhrabi, swiss chard, mizuna ,sorrel, claytonia, & mache in the cold frame along with a few stray beets. The biggest problem right now is the slugs which are feasting on the kohlrabi. It seems that I'm picking off slugs every time I go out. Hopefully we'll be able to continue to harvest well into December and see how things survive once the snow falls. Here's a photo of the mache which is supposed to be the hardiest of all.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Mini Sweater Ornament Pattern

After making mini mitten ornaments to go with our gifts to family last year, I decided I wanted to make something else this year. So I designed my own pattern for mini sweater ornaments with cables and two color designs. So far I've made 6 of them and I'm aiming to make more. In the mean time I decided to write up the pattern and publish it.

** Edit: I've moved my blog to my own host. Click here to find this post with the pattern link on my new site

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Still Here

Just a note to say I'm still alive and around. I've been extra busy with teaching, travel, visiting friends, and trying to finish some sewing projects. The garden is still going, with harvests about once a week. I'm sure I'll update more once the dust settles, whenever that may be. In the mean time, here's a shot from early last month.