For Dragonflies And Me

  (Snover, Michigan)
Enjoy the everyday life I love to live!
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The Organic Life: How To Get There and More Market Fresh Recipe's!

What does Organic mean to you?  I think everyone reading this would have somewhat of a different answer.  Personally,  I want 'organic' to be the way I breath, eat and sleep... it's the life style I want for myself and my family... it's a personal choice... you can't make someone 'believe' it if they don't want to or they don't care.  An organic life style isn't easy by any definition of the word... especially if you live in the city! No offense there my city dwelling friends! I have come to understand your back yard isn't even your own to grow your food if that is what you want to do... that is unless you get 'their' permission.  This is incredulous to me... as many of you who know me personally and have leaned over my market table where we have vented together on these issues!  So many of you ask me for advice on chickens, gardening and canning... I wish so badly I could do more than just give you 'tips'... but that is where it's at I guess.  So today I am going to give some reference materials along with more 'tips' on how to get a piece of the organic life for yourselves... and of course some more yummy market fresh recipes!  Enjoy friends!
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A Companionate Herbal for the Organic Garden and Yummy Herb Butters Recipe's!

Summer is here and we are in full swing! I am finding it harder and harder to get to this blog with all the responsibilities I have around on the farm.  I am constantly thinking of things to write about and share, but finding the 'thyme', or should I say making the 'thyme' is just taking more effort than I would actually like.  But here I am and of course I love being here.  Lets talk more on herbs shall we? I just can't seem to get enough of herbs, they are so versatile and useful in so many areas in life... the kitchen, bouquet and right into the personal care line! I love to go out to the gardens and pick them... as I brush against their leaves they just welcome me there with their lovely aroma's telling me to pick & enjoy!  I have often touched on companion planting and I recently came across a great list that I thought I would like to share with all of you. Today I am going to focus a bit on the personal care end with of course a few yummy recipes for Herb Butters! Thanks for coming... see you again soon!   [Read More]

Starting Seeds, Easy Liquid Fertilizer, Deterring naughty critters from gardens, flower beds & keeping good ones-

Starting Seeds in doors is very easy and extremely rewarding!  All you need is a few everyday household items~
*If you buy organic baby lettuce, greens or spinach than you will have access to those handy clear plastic containers with lids.  These are perfect for seed starting.  Be sure to poke several drainage holes on the bottom of the container.
*Fill your container about 2/3 way full with a good organic potting mix. Plant your seeds as package describes.  Be sure to follow planting dates on packet. Water accordingly.
*Put the lid on, which will give a greenhouse effect.  You will not have to water due to the condensation that will be created.
*Put in a sunny window and wait until seeds start to sprout- see seed packet instructions.
*Once the seeds start to germinate, remove lid and water according to packet instructions.
Another easy but more extravagant way is to set your flats on a table and hang lights on 's' hooks with light chains from the ceiling  in a warm basement or other room.  The lights must be no more than 3 to 6 inches from the top of the flat (or the plants once they start growing), so be sure to make your light set up adjustable.  Plain old florescent shop lights work best for starting seeds, or you can even purchase 'grow lights' from greenhouse supply companies or seed catalogs. 
*You can go to any big box retailer and purchase really slick 'seed starting' kits.  Follow instructions on kit.... and enjoy!
Transplant outdoors following packet instructions.

Easy fertilizer~ to give your house plants an extra boost, add 1 teaspoon of Epsom salt and 1 teaspoon of fish emulsion plant fertilizer to 1/2 gallon of water, then stand back and watch'er grow!  Extra fertilizer water can be stored at room temperature for up to 3 months.

Humane Critter Deterrent~
I know we all have a pet that we love & cherish, but we also have flower beds we work very hard to keep beautiful and when that pet trompples the new shoots of that cherished peony or knocks down the Heirloom tomato plant loaded with green tomatoes, things can get a bit frustrating.  So here are a few 'humane' ways to deter our beloved cats & dogs from our beloved gardens.  This will also deter rabbits, squirrels and ground hogs- not so beloved.
~Sprinkle a mixture of 3 parts Cayenne Pepper and 1 part ground Citrus peelings. Sprinkle liberally around perimeters of beds and directly around specific areas that you want to keep Fido & Kitty out of.  Reapply weekly or after the surface soil dries after a rain.~
You want Toads!  They eat literally thousands of insects a week and they are the best friend of any organic gardener!  If you have a pond- (no fish they eat toad eggs) or an area you don't mind un-mowed and natural; there is no need to throw away broken clay pots, these make lovely toad houses and look too cute hidden among flowers.  These are all perfect toad hiding places. Toads have enormous appetites and faithfully feed on grasshoppers, cutworms, slugs, flies and most of the bad bugs that drive all of us gardeners crazy.  It is crucial you use NO pesticides as they are easily absorbed through the toad's skin.  Be sure to educate your children on good toad behavior- no smooshing!

Try some yummy muffins for breakfast or snack, these are a winner!
Peanut Butter Muffins

1 cup Whole Wheat flour from Garden Gate                                                                1/3 cup Applesauce
1 cup Oatmeal                                                                                                                        1 1/2 cups milk
1 Tbsp. baking soda                                                                                                          1/4 cup honey
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 cup Creamy Peanut Butter

1.  Whisk together flour, oats, baking soda and salt.  Add peanut butter and applesauce; beat with an electric mixer on low speed until smooth. 
2. Stir in milk and honey. 
3.  Spoon batter into paper lined or greased muffin cups, filling about 2/3 full.
4. Bake at 350 degrees for 12 to 15 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean from center.
Cool in pan for about 5 minutes; transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling.
makes about 1 1/2 dozen.

Happy day,

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