Life on a little urban homestead in the making, with ideas for self-sufficiency, DIYing, organic gardening, food preservation, chicken keeping, cookery, crafts, thrifting, vintage stuff,
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Jun 5, 2016

Independence Days Challenge, Record Heat!

Independence Days Challenge- 
Sometimes I forget that while we live in an urban area all kinds of "wildlife" comes out :)  A cute little American Quail pair visited last week. I always love the little flag on top! The female is on the ground right below near the 4"x 4". Fun! Here's a run down of some things we've been doing lately here at our little homestead!

1. Plant Something-
We planted our veggie garden the last 2 weekends, most of it with our 3 days off last weekend for the holiday. No more "summer break" for me, sadly! I planted my herb box, and seeds for calendula, nasturtiums and tons of basil. I love to make little jars of pesto to freeze. I did cheat by buying a large pot of basil! Yum yum.

2. Harvest Something-
Herbs and eggs. I found 2 eggs last week, one a little bitty one! I think one of the hens laid 2?

 3. Preserve/Store Something-
Nothing right now. I will be canning and freezing fruit later this summer with a good crop on our 3 fruit trees. 

4. Manage Reserves- Get a Good Deal/Barter/Stock Up/Prep-
 I got a new watch little Timex digital "gardening/dirt" watch on Amazon for $15.00, a blouse on eBay, a polar fleece jacket at a yard sale, and some thrifted baby clothes for my new grand baby! We were gifted with a bag of baby things from my hubby's co-worker who used to run a day care center. One of those gifts was a fold up playpen/crib! Free is a very good price! I'll buy a thicker piece of foam and make some sheets :) I told hubby to thank her profusely!

We also had a free dinner with points built up on our saver card at our fave local Greek restaurant. Opa! Speaking of which, we saw My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 last night. It is hysterical if you want a good laugh!!! We found some nice 50' soaker hoses for $10.00 each at Home Depot. We are now using those in the veggie gardens. We stretched them out for a week in the sun, mush easier to use-

Kale, french radishes, green onions and herbs planted

Bush bean seed planted with soaker hose, previous shed area. Now food production!
I sent the hens in there last weekend and they did a great job tilling the soil :)

Tomatoes, squash, 3 kinds of peppers planted

5. Eat the Food- Try New Foods/Recipe-
I made a new blueberry cobbler, now working on freezer food. Tonite I sauteed 1 huge purple onion with a little olive oil, balsamic vinegar and salt and put on top of brats, yummy! Cook down for about 45 minutes till nice and soft.

6. Build Community Food Systems-
Giving my kids eggs, and I may start selling some at work. No local farmers markets yet, too early.
I may sell some excess fruit at work this year, with peaches, apples and pears coming in strong this year! 

7. Recycle/Re-Use-
Donated some clothes to charity, bought baby things. I made $40.00 selling used, leftover fencing on Craigslist today-

I also have a like-new Fossil purse for sale I bought for $3.00 at a yard sale last summer. It's too small for me. Easy way to earn some money! It also keeps things like the fencing out of the landfills.

8. Skill Up-
I am learning a LOT about infants. Big changes since 27 years ago when I had mine. We got more familiar with the soaker hoses we bought. Smaller than the ones years ago and more water efficient. I knew with working thru the summer that I wouldn't be watering as much on my off time. I bought 1, then we bought a 2nd. They use less water and you can turn them on and walk away. 

9. Regenerate What is Lost/Salvage Something-
I will be re-copper leafing a metal star for our home's exterior. More later on how to do that! I saw this inspiration yesterday at a Re-Store store, cute! Maybe some furniture painting in my future?

I might do something like this...

Record Heat!
96 was in the forecast for today, with more heat again tomorrow. That is HOT, but it's 115 in Phoenix so I won't complain too much. We may get a thunderstorm tonite and tomorrow night, hopefully with rain and not starting any forest fires. We deep cleaned the chicken waterers today and we've been watering extra the last 3 days. I think it was about 95 today. Tomorrow I will set up our mister for the coop. I water around the coop as well and in their shade area-

Cool shade area for the hens, wraps around behind the coop. One of my better ideas! 

Last year's veggie garden, good shade in the afternoon...

What's the temp where you are???


Mama Pea said...

Have I got a deal for you! We are about floating with the constant rain we've had for almost 2 weeks. Yes, it's nice there is no longer any wildfire danger, but enough is enough. Having a heck of a time getting the last of the garden planted because it's too wet. Our temp has also been very cool -- down to 40s at night, no higher than 50s during the day. The sprouted plants in the garden are not growing, but rather just (shivering and) holding their own. So I'll send you some rain and relief from your too hot weather if you'll send me some sunshine and warmth. Deal?

Little Homestead In Boise said...

LOL, I hear you, it's always too much of something! Sending some sun your way :)

Jennifer@MyFlagstaffHome said...

Thanks for sharing at My Flagstaff Home.


Anonymous said...

One thing I learned about gardening in Boise is to use cover material on all my beds and around plants and trees. Use mulch, or better yet, straw. You may even want to plant clover there too. With the heat the way it is here, it was the best thing for maintaining the water in the soul and not evaporating so easily. I always came away with bumper crops. FYI clover is great for keeping bad bugs and weeds down.

Little Homestead In Boise said...

We mulch everything and use a lot of our coop pine shavings with manure. With the wind we don't like straw, it blows around too much. Our hens do a great job keeping weeds down in the veggie areas. We really don't weed that much. I'm a Master Gardener so I know lots of great tricks!

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