All in a Day’s Harvest

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We have been overwhelmed by the produce of our garden so far this summer. Not that we’ve gotten more than we can eat–yet; But in God’s ability to give life to something in such a tremendous and awesome way.  We DID sweat, and work, and get sore, and dig, and shovel, and rake, and plant, and water, and get eaten by mosquitoes… but honestly, I put some seeds in the ground and then stood back and watched God do the rest.  Let me tell you, He has done some amazing things.  I have plenty of pictures in this blurb, but I haven’t gotten any of the actual garden since it started producing… my bad.  But let me tell you all about it!

Little Boy SOO excited for life.

Little Boy SOO excited for life.

Starting back in April we prepped the ground, Back to Eden style: No tilling, layers of newspaper to kill the grass, a layer of dirt, and a layer of mulch to keep the ground from drying out.

Little Boy was ecstatic to be able to help our friend Lance load the mulch into the back of the truck.

Tractor

I won’t go into much detail with the prep, let’s just say that it was work–but not un-enjoyable. Ben and I are a great team… and Jayden-bug, he does his best to get in the way. The weather was nice; we were able to get free newspaper, dirt, and mulch! I was in the early weeks of my first trimester with this baby, so I was taking it easy–because I was starving! And had to keep taking snack breaks! And then I was SICK and had to take I-Think-I’m-Going-To-Throw-Up breaks.  😉  Ben did his fair share of the work.

The Garden Plot   Water break

We planted snap peas, carrots, red bell peppers, cherry tomatoes, roman tomatoes, marigolds around my tomatoes (I heard that was supposed to be good for some kind of pest…), lots of onions, some garlic, beans, corn, cucumbers, zucchini, Thai hot peppers, jalapeño peppers, basil, cilantro, watermelon, and raspberries!  (The herbs, watermelon, and raspberries I have around the house in different places…)  We PLANTED, and now we do a whole lot of nothing.  We water maybe once a week.  The GRASS came back, turns out Bermuda grass is a beast. So the grass is growing very nice and high up and around most of our vegetables.

I’ll get to the good part, this zucchini sautéing in butter and spices:

zucchini

And this batch of 100% garden salsa:

Garden Salsa

And this basketful of a day’s harvest:

All in a day.

I think what I am trying to say to you is this: God grew this garden, and hasn’t He done a fantastic job of feeding me this summer?

What has God produced in your garden this year?

See ya’ round,

Tasha

p.s.  My son LOVED planting onions, almost as much as he loves picking and eating the greens.

 

The Moment You’ve All Been Waiting for…Bug Spray!!

Last week we left our heroes battling the MOSQUITOS in the bogs of South Central Nebraska. The vicious critters had staked their claim on the defenseless town of York. This week, our heroes have discovered the ancient art of Essential Oils.

So never fear: The Baking Beauties, NE are here with their new toxin-free, Sweet Summer Bug Spray.

Here’s the deal, folks. I like things that I’ve made because then I KNOW what’s in them. Some of those chemical processes… we, at least I, don’t know how that all happens. Like most coconut oils for example, they use a chemical to get the oil out of coconuts, but what is that chemical doing hanging around later? Being gluten-free (Danae) I feel much safer knowing what’s in my product, then perhaps misreading a label and having an adverse reaction; this is not only annoying but can be hazardous to my health. I also feel much safer putting these products on Baby A. because I know they’re not going to do him any harm–short-term or long-term. “p-Mentane-3,8-diol is the chemically synthesized version of oil of lemon eucalyptus” (http://www.epa.gov/opp00001/health/mosquitoes/ai_insectrp.htm), why reinvent the wheel? Why not just use oil of lemon eucalyptus?

Here’s what we did:
We went shopping!

We did research!

We consulted a safety expert! And we put it all in a big mixing bowl *Insert Trumpet Fanfare* and out came our magical bug spray elixir!

… not really, well kinda.
Okay, I can’t speak for the ticks, but the mosquito’s sure don’t like it. It’s been tested tried and true…

My sister (Michelle) and I went out late one night into a thickly mosquito infested swamp… otherwise known as her backyard, though still mainly inhabited by blood sucking skeeters. I wore the elixir, freshly spritzed on my radiant skin. She foolishly did not. The moral of THAT story is that she was savagely eaten alive by the vicious brutes, while I remained completely unharmed. I felt remorse at the doomed fate of my sister. I ran to her aid and spritzed her (with the magical elixir, of course). She then reveled in her safety.

What is this magical elixir, you ask? Well listen up, folks, and I’ll tell ya.

This bottle:

Filled with: Witch hazel, and these essential oils: Grapefruit, Citronella Java, Tea Tree, Lemongrass, and Eucalyptus. We also added a bit of castor oil and glycerin to better diffuse the oils with the witch hazel.

We have so named them “Sweet Summer Bug Spray” and are selling them for a meager $5.00 at the York Farmer’s market, Thursday’s 5-7. Comment, or email bakingbeautiesne@gmail.com to inquire about purchasing one of these little beauties.

And now I adjourn to gallivant through the mosquito loving Nebraska countryside in perfect peace.

See ya ’round,

Tasha

P.S.

Tune in next time for the start of our Christmas in July festivities.