Welcome to Growbox Hill

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Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Get off my lazy butt....

Haven't had much to write about since the campout. Why? Cuz I've been lazy. Just catching up on some housework, online stuff... hanging with the cats and enjoying the early changes of fall coming on.
Today I finally got off my butt and did stuff. First order of business was get over to the in laws place and plant in all those ditch lilies. We had already talked about where she wanted them to go, and it was really rather easy to just plunk them in. I had a little raking to do to deal with the mulch, but the digging was a breeze. I tried to make it as neat as possible so it didn't look like someone just ran around digging up the yard, heh. All of the erm, lilly bulbetts? in the crowns looked healthy and plump, so I'm really hoping they take well. Of course while I was there I took a few moments here and there to just pause a moment in the sun and enjoy the lake. It was magnificent, with the pale blue sky above and perfect cresting waves breaking over the color layers in the water.
Decided to take the highway back up north for a bit, and I'm glad I did. Got to hit a local farmers market- and confirm that yes indeed it's the place with the excellent knife sharpening guy. Picked up three varieties of local garlic, 2 heads each. The sellers couldn't really tell me what exactly their garlic was, but the beauty of such places is that they are willing to break open a clove so you can get a good idea of if it's what you are looking for. Also got to get a jar of honey- It's the young lady that sells pumpkins and flowers roadside by me, but they don't usually have honey out. I was well pleased to get it- I 100% know the place where it comes from and that's super cool. I splurged and picked up a really nice and large apple gourd. Not sure what it will be made into yet, but I'm going to be careful about it's drying. And the seller knew it had been well cross pollinated, so if I save the seed I could end up with all sorts of crazy cross breed. Which is actually kind of interesting.

So I decided to keep going up the highway for a piece after that. And lordy is there a gadgillion little antique shops in that area. Other cool tourist and craftsman shops too.
And I decided heck, why not, and hit the Sawyer Market. My mum in law had been there and confirmed it was good. Holy shit. It's sprawling huge! Ya pull up into the parking lot and don't realize just how much building is behind the produce area. I ended up parking in what I'm pretty sure is employee parking in back- there just was no where up front.
Of course since it's that time of year.. They have an extraordinary selection of pumpkins, gourds and squashes.  Ok, the gourds and "eating" squashes were pretty norm. By eating squashes I mean those that most folks regularly think of like acorn or butternut. But their pumpkins, drool. If I could afford it, I would pick up one of each kind. It would be incredible to have that kind of tasting assortment through the winter. Mmmmm squash and pumpkins.. sigh..
Anywho, daydream over, lol. I did pick up a couple of nice eating squashes and resisted temptation on the pumpkins. And some golden beets, tiny eggplants, a couple of rutabagas, a lovely head of red cabbage, and some giant shallots- all Michigan grown! They carry some other USA produce too, and clearly label all their produce. Like they had USA grown shallots and in the MI section, MI shallots. And a little bee bell on clearance, and a couple of interesting soup mixes.. It took me a while to wander around looking at everything. They have a ton of different stuff. No nutmeg grinder, lol. I totally fell in love with some bee dishes :) Saw all sorts of interesting beverages. And great outdoor pots- Huge lovely outdoor pots of goodly size and quality.
It was a little weird though in one way. I entered in through a decor area, and Halloween bled into thanksgiving, then a clothing and gift area, then into summer clearance and at the back Christmas stuff. Having that many holidays under one roof was a bit surreal.
Some of their stuff was a bit pricey for what it was, but a lot of stuff was also really good buy.

So here's the days bounty from running around :)

Ok, so that was Saturday, and today is Wednesday. Still being a lazy butt. I think I have a bit of depression going on, with the onset of fall it's enjoyable, but I can't seem to be motivated about anything.

I've gotten in some seeds... A couple kinds of hardy hibiscus which should be absolutely lovely next year, and a couple kinds of sunflowers- those are going in for some happy.
Been mostly puttering around the house- catching up on some work, prepping some for when I'm gone for the first part of October. My hubby will still be here, but I get to go momsitting and hang out there for a while. I'm kind of looking forward to it, I don't get to spend nearly enough time with my mom since I've moved.
Found out that when you pick a bunch of pears to finish ripening and forget about them in the solarium, it will breed a frigging cloud of fruit flies of proportions to make one cover their mouth just to breathe. And that the trap cap my love printed out for me works wonderfully! Just a little apple cider vinegar in the jar and screw on the cap- and with an hour about two thirds of the flies were dead in the jar.
Made chicken stock last night... Making white chili this weekend :)
If making stock at home seems just too messy or not worth the effort of straining the liquid off from the mass... Try these tips to make it easier/cleaner...

Before you start loading up your stockpot, put a steamer basket in the bottom of the pot. Ya know, the fold out metal ones that are meant to be submerged in liquid.
Then heap in your big stock bits like bones and mirepoix...
Then on the top, put all of your seasonings into a coffee filter- like your thyme, bay leaves, parsley, ect... Either use a paper one and tie it off like a giant tea bag, or if you have a metal one, you can just nestle the basket into the top of the heap of big bits.
Fill with water, simmer... And when you are done, you can just take out the coffee filter, lift out the steamer basket... And have stock without having to strain or filter it after to get all the little gunky bits out. 

I suppose I should post... Till next time :)

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