Saturday, November 30, 2013

Dumping Day for District 34

There is a very good chance that you've never heard of Dumping Day, it could be a National Holiday where everyone goes to the Garbage Dump and gets rid of their undesirables. It could also be the end result of a taco eating competition. Fortunately, for everyone, it is neither of these things.

Dumping Day is well known to the locals on the South-Western tip of Nova Scotia. It is the very first day of Lobster Fishing in District 34 and Lobster Fishing is the life blood of this community. It is probably the most dangerous day of the year as the lobster boats are piled high with pots ready to be "dumped" into the ocean. Most of the boats have all of their gear split into two loads because they can't fit it all on the boat at once. This isn't a problem for the larger vessels.

The hubby brought me out to the wharf last night on our way home after a gig in town and I tried to grab a picture but we left before I had the chance to grab a good one and I didn't speak up.

He's out on the water today, he's been up since 4 this morning and should be back fairly soon to sleep. They can officially start hauling up the pots after midnight tonight. He'll be home long enough to sleep for a couple short hours and then he will be back on the water. He'll be a sore, cold, smelly man when he comes home. After I hand him a bar of soap, wash his clothes and pack him enough food to get him through what will most likely be a 20 hour day tomorrow, it will be time for him to get up again.

If you ever sit down with some lobster, or seafood in general, remember all of the hard work that goes into putting it on the table in the first place. I'm grateful each day for the safety of the men and women out there on the water.

Growing Windowsill Garlic Pt.1

If you read my post: Don't Play With Sharp Things, you might remember that I recently stabbed my finger with a wooden skewer stick while wrestling with a piece of ginger. What I didn't mention was, I had also found a piece of garlic which also happened to take root in a plastic baggie. 

I carefully separated each clove from the bulb. I placed them in a cup on my windowsill, seated in small amount of frequently changed water. I will plant them in soil later on in the week. I might even keep a couple cloves growing in water just to see the difference in growth between them. I won't grow a full bulb of garlic from the ones kept in water but I will at least be able to use the mild tasting garlicky greens in cooking.

To Be Continued!

Sunday, November 24, 2013

If The World Ends, Grow Kale.

If the world ends, grow Kale! Actually, grow it anyway, it is really good for you.

Kale is a detox food, a cancer fighter, a cholesterol reducer. It is filled with antioxidants and it is very low in calories. Kale is considered the beef of the veggie kingdom because it contains more iron than beef! It also has very high amounts of fibre.

It is a very versatile green. Steam it! It has a longer cooking time than spinach because it is a little tougher. Eat it raw! Toss it in a salad with some Chards and other greens. Bake it! Make some Kale chips with some light seasoning. Juice it! Throw it in the juicer with some apples, celery, ginger, carrots and whatever else tickles your fancy. Remember, the general rule of thumb is: 3 part veggie - 1 part fruit.

Kale is really easy and inexpensive to grow and doesn't need a lot of space. It thrives in cool conditions, it is November and we have had frost and mild amounts of snow and I still have tons of Kale in my garden that I have been collecting and juicing. Like Brussels sprouts and Dandelion greens, Kale is sweeter after the frost as some of the starches are converted to sugars. 

If you purchase Kale, make sure it is organic, as Kale (and many other greens) can absorb the chemicals used to grow it. 

Saturday, November 23, 2013

The Holidays are Coming

The holidays are fast approaching. I haven't made it my mission to make the house look seasonal yet. I have one strand of lights framing a doorway and a couple table ornaments out. Most of our strings of light need replacing this year. So, I won't bother going nuts with the decorating until then.

The return of the season also means that the hubby will be back on the water. He lobster fishes for the first part of the season, which is the busiest time. It means a big shift in the household routine for about 6 weeks and weird hours for him. It's also pretty dangerous work and I worry about him a lot. 

In the first couple of weeks, anytime at home is desperately spent trying to catch up on lost hours of sleep while you suffer through the body aches. I try to make things as easy for him as I can around here. He really enjoys the holiday season so I want to really give him a nice holiday ambience to come home to. Something that says, family and love. 

Don't Play With Sharp Things!

A few days ago, while in my kitchen, I found a piece of ginger growing in a sandwich baggie. Naturally, the hobby gardener within me saw an opportunity to grow something in my window over the winter.

It was a windy, messy day outside. My husband and I had both had wind induced nightmares throughout the night.   I didn't sleep very well throughout and found myself returning to bed after I sent the kids off to school. This happens often, since Mat and I are both night owls and creatively accomplish much more after the children go to sleep. After a couple hours of sleep I had a bad dream that left me upset, anxious and a little angry with my spouse. I knew it was a dream and I wasn't really upset with him, but I was so disturbed by the dream that I couldn't stay in bed with him. I needed to get out and calm down. 

My motions were laced with anxious haste. I went down stairs and quickly put last nights clean dishes away. The wind was blowing and the house was cold. I started a fire in the woodstove and went back into the kitchen to make a cup of tea. This brings me to the ginger...

I picked it up and decided that I would place it on the windowsill in a container with some water. Our well water is hard so it is filled with minerals and has a great ph balance. I didn't want the ginger to sit right in the water though. I want the roots to work for their water. I took a wooden skewer stick and pierced it through the ginger. It wouldn't push all the way through, I broke the stick in half. I thought I could push the other half into the other side so I could rest the sticks on the edge of the container, holding the ginger above the water slightly. While breaking the stick in half, I stabbed myself in the finger and gave myself a fairly deep wound. I'm on the mend now, but it serves me right for being hasty. The time would have been much better spent calming down, maybe a walk in the wind.

I did stand in the middle of the garden in between bouts of rain, just before the skewer stabbing. The balmy wind was powerful and threatened to blow me away. It felt invigorating, maybe even slightly unsettling... But that could be the lingering feeling of dark dreams. 

The moral of the story is simple:

No matter how much you like to grow things, if you feel stormy like the weather outside, don't play with sharp things. 

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

The Birth of the Phoenix, Part 1

My tattoo outline is completed. I'm super excited about it. It is the first step in the slaying of the dragon and soon when the shading has been completed, it will be no more.

Danielle at Riot Styles in Yarmouth, NS is the tattoo artist and I love her work. Her lines are beautiful. I return at the end of January for shading. I can't wait to see it completed, you aren't even going to know that dragon was there. I'm already trying to think of ideas for the other arm.

I'm really fortunate that my tattoos, or rather - mistakes from my teenage years, aren't uncoverable. For years, I've worn them with shame because I didn't like them. I'm so happy to have something that so much thought was put into, with an artist that was sought out. I'm grateful.