Wow! What an exciting past couple of days its been! I got a new rabbit, some of my seeds are sprouting and of course, most exciting, Joe proposed!!! More on those other things later but I wanted to share our engagement story with everyone now.
Joe has been on the road doing campaign stuff for about 4-5 days straight. We hadn't seen each other and had only talked on the phone for a few minutes each day. Campaigns can be hard to deal with but I have kind of gotten used to it over the past several years. Anyway, Joe said he thought he would be able to spend some time with me on Friday but not until after four. I decided to hit up some garage sales that morning (didn't find anything exciting). As I was headed home (around 11:30), Joe called and said he got finished early and would be at the house in about an hour. I asked him to pick up lunch for us before he got to the house.
I got back to the house and was doing some research on raising rabbits when I heard Joe pull up in the driveway. Normally I would have gotten up and unlocked the door but I wanted to finish reading something first. I met him at the door as he was unlocking it and I took the bag of food from him because he hands were full. I set the food on the table as Joe said he was going to go upstairs and change. Then all the sudden he was in the kitchen asking me what I wanted to drink. I told him to go change and he said no, that he wanted to help me get everything ready. That was kind of weird but I dismissed it.
I then went and grabbed our to-go plates. I put mine down but Joe said he wanted a plate to put his on. I grabbed his to-go plate and brought it to the kitchen. He said he wanted some sauce that was still in the bag to put on his plate so I went to grab the sauce. I was kind of worried because he acted like he really wanted the sauce but I did not remember seeing anything else in the bag but I went to look anyways. When I looked in the bag I saw a ring and I thought, that's funny, someone from the restaurant dropped their ring in here we better bring it back. As I turned around to tell that to Joe, he somehow came from the kitchen to where I was standing and was on his knee in no time flat. He started talking but I thought he was kidding so I kind of kicked him (gently) and told him to get up. He didn't. He kept talking and I told him to stop playing and to get up again. Then I heard the words "will you marry me?" All that I said was, "are you kidding me? This is a joke right? What are you talking about? You're not being serious are you?" All the time I seriously thought he was kidding. He wasn't and I realized I needed to answer him so I said yes and tada, we are engaged!
His proposing was a COMPLETE shock to me. I had no idea it was coming for several reason first of which is about a week ago, he came home with a pearl necklace and bracelet for me. This really through me off the scent of getting engaged anytime soon. Then we have talked about getting engaged but not for a little while. Finally, I never expected to find my engagement ring in a plastic bag with to-go food. Wowza!
Anyway, so now I am so happy to be engaged and to begin the wedding planning process. I have no idea where to begin but I am sure it will all make sense soon!
A perk of having chickens is that there are ALWAYS plenty of eggs in the fridge. Because of this I am always on the lookout for good egg recipes. I have tested out a couple of quiche recipes and have one in particular that I highly recommend.
- It has to be cooked in a deep dish pie shell otherwise you will probably make a mess as you put it in the stove. Even though I use a deep dish pan I still put a flat pan under the dish to avoid spilling the egg mixture.
- Cook the pie shell for about 5-10 minutes until it is done before you fill it with contents (otherwise the bottom will be a little doughy). I cover the flat edges at the top with foil (during the pre cook) to keep them from getting too brown. Remove the foil before you add the contents to the pie shell.
- I use 1.5 cups of half and half (instead of 2 cups)- using the full amount results in a more custardy quiche
- I always add in extras based on what I have on hand. I have used left over ham, breakfast sausage, and bacon as meat and a wide variety of veggies. I really like adding jalapenos for the heat but add whatever you like. I also usually add in spinach because I buy the bags of it at the store for salads and it always seems to go bad before I get through it.
- When adding in extras use less than you think you need otherwise your quiche will be way too full. Last time I made one I use 1/2 lb sausage, 1/2 a red bell pepper, and about 4 jalapenos and had plenty
- I do not use the fancy cheese listed in the recipe, I just use what I have on hand. I have tried cheddar, Monterrey jack, mozzarella, and a combination of all three based on what I have and what sounds good. I also do not measure my cheeses I just grab about 1.5 handfuls and sprinkle it over the top
- I do not have white pepper so I use regular pepper
- I always need to cook it for about 10 minutes longer than the recipe calls for. This could be because my oven temp is off or because of the fillings I add, I am not sure. It gets to be too mushy if you do not cook it long enough. The middle should be somewhat firm to the touch and slightly browned
As you can see from above, the recipe is very versatile, just use what you have on hand. I have only been unsatisfied with the recipe twice- once was because I used some new (and as I discovered later, funky) dried tomatoes in the recipe, and the other was when I did not cook it long enough. Its a great dish to cook on a Sunday night have have throughout the rest of the week for breakfast/ lunch. Enjoy!
My last quiche- spicy sausage, 1/2 red bell pepper, and jalapenos
PS- if you have egg recipes you would like to share let me know!
I love spring, the fresh flowers, nice weather, veggies from the garden and all the other things that come with it. What I do not love is how much it cost to buy the plants so that I can enjoy flowers and veggies throughout the summer (I found out just how expensive plants were last year as I tried to start flower beds from scratch...). I decided try my hand at growing plants from seeds. This seems like it should be a simple process- buy small containers for growing plants from seeds, fill with dirt, put seeds in dirt filled containers, water, and wait. It's not quite that simple though. It can actually be quite daunting.
I started the growing plants from seeds process this afternoon at Lowes. Walking it I see about 20 different versions of the containers to grow the seeds it. There is environmentally friendly (I'd rather go wallet friendly), some that you just have to add water to (the dirt grows when wet, kind of like the sponges that would grow from little pills I used to love to play with growing up), containers that are actually in the shape of small pots, and plain containers that are like the 6 pack you can buy at the store that already has plants in it (except the plain containers I was looking at had 72 spots to grow plants from seeds). Then they have all the types of containers for about 3 different brands, each with slightly varied offerings. After walking around the two different parts of the store that these containers were on display, I chose the plain container style with 72 spots to grow plants in. My particular package had 3 trays, each with the 72 spots. This means I have 216 spots I could plant plants in from seeds. I know, its a lot of spots but as I mentioned earlier, I really like plants.
Then it was off to choose my seeds. I thought I had a lot of choices with the container to plant the seeds in, I had was vastly unprepared for what was to come... There were literally hundreds of seed packets to choose from. I have always walked past the seed section(s) and never really paid a whole of attention to it. I've even bought seed packets before but never on this level. My goal was to fill my garden with plants all grown from seeds. Pretty ambitious right? So I'm back at the seed section and I first look at tomatoes. Then the peppers, then various squashes, then beans, and on and on. It would not be so bad if I just had to choose between the color or size of my future vegetables but there were so many varieties of each of the veggies- there were at least 15 types of tomatoes alone to choose from. I actually was sitting on the floor, choosing between the perfect for slicing and the excellent flavor varieties of tomato. It was pretty ridiculous but I finally made it out of the store with about 15 seed packets and a plan for the rest of the afternoon.
I filled 2 of my seed trays and decided to leave one empty - I know I will end up at the store wanting to try out just a few more plants before the planting season is over. This way I can avoid the whole buying the container to grow my plants in process later on.
So as of now, my fingers are crossed that baby plants will actually grow from all the seeds I planted. I know people do this every year but I am pretty skeptical. We shall see!
Here is what I've got so far-
And this is what I am hoping for in a couple weeks-
So I have been wanting to start a blog for a while, primarily to document my first years (and adventures) of home ownership (I bought my house in 11/08), raising chickens and other surprises along the way. Several times I have made home improvements to the house, got my first chicken egg (that really only happened once), or created a new flower bed and thought gosh, I really should do a better job at documenting these moments. Finally I decided I would create a blog if for nothing else then to have a scrapbook to look back on for my own memories.
So what will this blog consist of? My whimsy's of course! More specifically, I plan to include updates to the house, stories about my dog and the chickens, garage sale finds (or as Joe would say, my "spoils"), and ideas I find inspiring along the way.
To start, here are a couple pictures of my house from this past year. It was a really hard summer on my new grass because of the lack of rain, but the grass finally started perking up and trying to spread towards the end of the summer. Hopefully next year will be better for the lawn.
House Spring 09
Garden Spring 09
At the end of the summer I added 2 pallets of grass to increase the size of my immediate lawn. It has taken pretty well considering the big freeze we got but we will see for sure in a couple weeks.