Friday, May 6, 2011

Beautiful Farmer's Market Find

Despite, the rather poor quality Iphone pictures, are these not the coolest looking bean pods?! I happened to go to the farmer's market yesterday as I was in the area for work. My boy loves to go there so we stopped in. I was just commenting to a friend that I have never seen fresh beans in our local grocery stores other than green beans. I saw these beauties out of the corner of my eye and had to buy some.

These beans are cranberry beans. I have seen dried cranberry beans at a fruit market downtown, but have never tried them. I have never shelled beans before, but these were much easier to open than I had expected.

Each pod had between 4-6 beautiful speckled beans in them.

I shelled all of the beans, added them to a small pot and covered with water. I added a bit of olive oil, chopped garlic and about 2 ounces of chopped bacon. I brought it to a boil and then simmered for about 30 minutes. The beans lost quite a bit of their beautiful color. I am wondering if I let them boil too long. That's not really the reason I don't have a picture of the finished product. It may also be that I ate most of the beans myself ;) They were absolutely delicious. I would even venture to say the tastiest beans I have ever had. I saved about 9 of the shelled beans to see if they will grow in the garden. I sure hope so since I am wishing I had picked up more than the 3/4 of a pound that I purchased!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Northern Lights

Today while working on astronomy, a lesson about the earth's layers turned into a conversation about the earth's magnetosphere which turned into a conversation about the Northern Lights. Homeschooling is just like that ;) Below is a video we found an amazing video of the Northern Lights taken in April of 2010 in Fairbanks, Alaska.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Garden Update

My fellow farmers and I have been diligently working in our garden this year. I have gardened off and on since my oldest was born, but have begun to take more of an interest in it recently.

We buried our pumpkin in the garden when it started to rot as compost. That pumpkin lasted from September through after New Year's, by the way! We were quite surprised to see that some of the seeds from the rotten pumpkin had sprouted and we now have a pumpkin plant. The flowers are huge and beautiful!

We planted 3 packs of Bush Blue Lake green beans back in February and have harvested about 5 dinner servings worth of green beans so far. My little one loves green beans. Unfortunately, she mostly loves the canned variety, but we're working on getting her to enjoy the fresh, too!

The cucumbers have been really tasty. Chase was willing to try them, but did not like them :( So far, I have been the only one to eat them!

We are growing cucumbers, yellow summer squash, Tom Thumb zucchini, yellow pear tomatoes, grape tomatoes, Homestead tomatoes, green cabbage, purple cabbage, green beans, corn, broccoli, and some other tomato varieties as well as a variety of peppers.

The broccoli is pretty much done at this point. We may get a few florets off of the last plant left. We harvested the broccoli twice. Not too successful. We have harvested a whopping 2 yellow pear tomaotes, 1 grape tomato and 2 cherry tomatoes. We lost a few big, no name tomatoes to blossom end rot so far and several yellow squash to the same problem. We've harvested about 6 cucumbers, 4 yellow squash, 2 cubannelle peppers, a few jalpenos and 1 poblano pepper so far.

We love our garden!

Another Book About the Great Depression

We read another great book about the Great Depression in school today. "The Babe and I" is written by David Adler and is about the bond between a boy and his father as they work to provide for their family during a difficult time and the nation's love of baseball at the time.

Friday, April 15, 2011

The Great Depression

We've been learning about the Great Depression in our school this week. We checked out some great books from our local library that we really enjoyed.

"Leah's Pony" written by Elizabeth Friedrich is a heartwarming tale of a little girl and her pony during the Great Depression. Chase says it is a must read for anyone learning about the Dust Bowl and the hard times of the Great Depression.

"The Gardener" by Sarah Stewart is another precious book that takes place during the Great Depression. It is the story of a young girl who is sent from her on the farm to live with her uncle in the city when her parents are affected by the financial turmoil of the Great Depression.

Even if you aren't learning about the Great Depression, these are great books to add to your children's library.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Friday, October 9, 2009

What I've Learned This Week

1.) Having a chronically ill loved one really sucks.

2.) Teaching long division to an 8 year old who has no interest in learning long division will make you want to pull every last hair out of your head. But when said child FINALLY gets long division, you will feel like you just climbed Mount Everest. At least temporarly.

3.) When your garden has finally started to actually produce beautiful, big ears of corn, which your non-veggie loving husband and children will acutally eat, don't get too excited. When it is just about ready to be picked, the neighborhood hoodlums, rather deer, will come and trample your garden and eat... EVERY. LAST. EAR.