Friday, August 30, 2013

Rain, Today's Harvest and a Tomato Review....

Lots to write about today!

I'm so NOT ready for Summer to be over... it's almost September and schools starting on Tuesday!
My "little" baby girl is starting 7th grade! 
What? Where has time gone? Anybody know?

moving on.....
check out my Rain Chain overload! We had a crazy thunderstorm come through yesterday and it poured!

It was about 70 degrees out and my plants LOVED it, it was like a tropical storm... warm and wet.
I finally got to sit in my new chairs today...
Here they are in yesterdays down pour, 
I would like to Thank the Designer for adding the drainage hole in the seats, they work very well here in Seattle.

Now for...

My Personal Tomato Review
Here is what I'm growing this year, I picked five different plants for the garden and
I did plant all these late in the season, around the end of June. 
(They are next to the house, in a raised bed facing about 208 degrees SW,lots of heat and all day sun)

"Early Girl"
As you can see the plant is full but shabby, I had to cut this plant back three times, it was so full of green tomatoes that the branches were braking and the fruit wasn't turning red. I started picking them and forcing ripening them inside, in the sunny windowsills (wrapping them in newspaper and letting them sit for a day or two does the job) now that I thinned out the plant they are turning red.
I normally like crisp and slightly under ripe tomatoes, however, this one (to me) tastes much better and sweeter, when it's softer and very ripe (very good used fresh on sandwiches)
These, for me, did not produce "early" I have only harvested about a dozen so far.
With many more to come as you can see...
 Here's a picture of a delicious grilled sandwich my son made me with the early girl in it...
(Whole Grain flat bread, egg, ham, cheese, and tomato)

"Viva Italia"
(Roma Tomato)
Had to trim this lovely back twice because it got out of control in size and is doing much better now.
I like these Roma's best because I can pick them under ripe and they last longer in the kitchen, plus it's easier to scoop the seeds out ( I don't like tomato seeds in my food)
These are more dense and have a more tart, meaty flavor, (think spaghetti sauce)
This plant has been giving me about 3-4 ripe fruits a day.

 "Lemon Boy"
This is my first time growing this one, lots of fruit on the plant, I was waiting...and waiting... and wondering why they haven't turned red on the plant so I was trying to force ripen them....until today...
Well, their not turning because they are NOT a red tomato, they are a YELLOW tomato!
(lol! yep, I didn't read about them)
So, today I picked the three ripe ones and will try them tonight with dinner...
I have no idea what they taste like.... I'm excited to find out!

"Sweet 100"
This plant is HUGE!
I trimmed up this giant sweetie four times! Right now it's about 7ft tall and climbing the trellis.
These are great in flavor, size and colors, they're great for snacks and salads.
 I couldn't even tell you how many I have picked so far but just today I picked 44 red ones!  

"Toma Verde"
First year growing this one too, it is just starting to get the papery husk forming so I haven't harvested any yet, looks like anothe couple weeks before they will be ready.
The plant stands about 5ft tall and has hundreds of yellow flowers, that attract 100's of Bee's, so don't plant one of these if your allergic! I'm excited to try these once ripe, the most exciting part is watching how the fruit forms on the plant, first the yellow flower, then the husk forms into a bell shape resembling the
 Chinese lantern flowers except green, once it's about 1" round the fruit starts forming on the inside, so cool!
I think I will have a lot of these to eat soon!

This is today's tomato harvest
44 Sweet 100's, 3 Lemon Boys (see their yellow *rolling eyes*)
6 Early Girls and 6 Roma's
elsewhere in the garden...

I picked Sweet Basil, Thai Basil, Thyme and Pineapple Sage
The combo of the four herbs smell like a Hawaiian Pizza! 
When the cold comes I will harvest all the herbs, dry them and keep them for winter cooking.

More of today's picking brought me 6 Banana Peppers and two big handfuls of Green Beans!


Sunday, August 25, 2013

New Growth on the Urban Farm

The Gardens are taking off now that we have had a month of sun!

Right now I have Broccoli, Tomatillos,
Banana Peppers and Cucumber ripening as we speak....
and lbs upon lbs of tomatoes!
So many that I've cut back the plants twice and there still full and tipping over, I started picking them and force ripening them in the windowsills.

Prepping last nights healthy dinner...
Herb up Pasta with Onions and Tomatoes and Brussel Sprouts on the side..

Loving the colors and taste of fresh veggie, I feel so much better eating fresh,healthy and whole grains....

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Projects around the homestead...

The last few days I've got a lot of random projects around the house finished...

I bought some cotton, black Roman Shades for my Ikea Expedit shelf, 
It was looking to cluttered with all the books so I figured and inexpensive and easy fix is just to add the shades.. It looks 100% better (to me)
here's the before and after:
I also found a geometric shaped Fondue stand that I painted hot pink and made into a plant stand
and we have two visitors to the house for the week, my parents dogs, here's "Buddy" and my bunny "Olive", They have nightly stare downs, their slowly becoming friends...
and I received my Ikea PS Vago chairs for our front deck,
They look magical...
all for now!

Friday, August 23, 2013

From Gold to Hot Pink - Tutorial

I've had this plastic gold mirror in my office for some time now, I do like the gold against the black walls but I felt like it needed to be updated and I wanted to brighten up the room a little....
First I taped off the edges of the mirror/glass with painters blue tape, then added the white tape to the larger section so I wouldn't get over spray on the glass itself.
I prefer to use Montana brand spray paint, it has a matte finish, covers great and dries fast.
look at that hot pink!
Let the paint dry (I did two coats)
Remove the tape and Viola! 
Here it is hanging!
Brightens up the corner and looks super Kitschy! 
Just what I wanted...
What do you think? Do you have any hot pink accessories in your house?


Thursday, August 15, 2013

New Urban inspired Cushions

I've been working with a great fabric company this year to turn some of my paintings into custom fabrics for my new housewares line. It's taken a few months of hard work and design.
So, I would like to announce that they finally are here!

Introducing my Fall/Winter 2013 Line of  urban inspired cushions, all designs are based of my original paintings.
Printed on soft Linen-Cotton Canvas, each design is slightly different making each cushion unique and one of a kind. Each 16"x16"cover has a stylish black and white stripe envelope back.
Order with or without cushion insert.
Available on my official website 
Retail and Wholesale inquiries welcome

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Blooming Brassia and Lazy Bunny

Just thought I would share that one of my Brassia Orchids decided to bloom for me again!
 You can read more about Brassia Orchids HERE

and Olive the bunny is have a lazy summer....
can you spot the her?
she loves taking her naps on the couch with the pillows....