Monday, 30 April 2012

stress bomb day!

 whole wheat pasta salad, before i added the pasta
 I saw a movie set yesterday!I haven't seen one of those since I lived in Vancouver, but recently Northern Ontario has become a hotspot for cheap filming. It was exciting but i also feel bad when I'm in the way of one. They let the mall where my husband works stay open during filming though. Didn't see any actors but the Director of photography apparently worked on Deer Hunter and Close Encounters of the Third Kind! oooooooo! When I find out the name of the movie that was shot here I will post.
 Waaay over there was a set made to look like a local food market. Apparently Heather Graham was shooting in it all day before I showed up.

 All of their stuff. Not much actually.

 I have about 6 herb plants sprouted now. The little seedlings are so cute. Not sure what is what. Will have to google what my seedlings look like later.
 Theres teeny tiny round leaved ones and then larger thin leaved ones. And theres one growing in my peppers pot, not sure how the seed made its way in there!
Today was stressful and long and isn't over yet. Still have to go to my evening Statistics class ewwwww! Paying 6 bucks for parking as well because the lines were so long to buy a parking pass I had no time to get one!
But I see this face and remember what I'm doing it all for!

Sunday, 29 April 2012

cool ethan and jim morrison kinda day.....what?

AFTER I cleaned up the livingroom, he decided he needed to move all of his toys out of the way to get one specific toy in his toy shelves hahaha.

Well, since nothing much is happening today yet, I decided to unload my brain and write in here all my "things to do"

1. Quit coffee.......again
2. Get back on my 1500 calorie a day diet ....
3. Get back on my 1500 calorie a day diet by taking the time to sit down and plan my meals then make a list based on those meals, then go and get those items at the grocery store, then pre-make some of the meals for the week
4. Check out Bulk Barn at its new location and see what groceries I can get in bulk for cheap.
5. Go to Fabricland and price tulle, and see if they even have it.
6. Clean my house, one room at a time (will be 1-2 rooms a day), and by clean I also mean organize, donate, throw away - declutter!!
7.Tomorrow is my first day of school and I have a load of paperwork and tasks to do just based on that


oh yes, and because I am shampoo free and hard water and chlorine make cleaning hair difficult, (which is why they add things like harmful sulfates to soap) I purchased this filtering system and hope to get my son into taking showers now...eventually I'd like a filter for the whole water system in the house but those are thousands of dollars.

Saturday, 28 April 2012

stuff is happening!

 My day began with a lovely coffee from a generous coworker. Just what I needed after a 6 hour sleep and being awakened several times by a discontent cat scratching at my bedroom door with dull, loud, freshly trimmed nails
 they gave him juice in a Starbucks cup, i thought that was funny
 he considered his take out container a noise maker
 despite being knocked over and the soil spilling out all over the floor and counter there is still ONE herb plant growing. I don't know which container this was so it is a mystery herb as of now. It was so exciting to see the little guy.

 My basil seeds are sprouting! Perhaps that is the first herb in the soil as well. I should transplant these tomorrow.
None of the other herbs on the plate are showing signs of sprouting yet.

I was contacted by my professor who was assigned to guide me through my thesis experiment and he informed me that I will be starting as soon as Monday on preparations for the experiment because the sea lamprey larvae that we will be studying have already come in. I'm excited and nervous and will probably spend the rest of the weekend just reading about sea lamprey. I 'm nervous but also feel like my time in college doing more hands on stuff has given me the confidence I needed to do this. Money well spent.

My experiment will consist of observing whether or not sea lamprey larvae have a behavioural response to chemoreceptor chemicals (an alarm signal) released by other sea lamprey when they are attacked by a predator. This will consist of placing some sea lamprey flesh and fluid in a tank that contains a larva burrowed in a substrate of clear glass beads. The tank will have lines on it that will measure the depth in the substrate that the larva is at initially. If they move, I will have a way to measure how far. If they don't move, then we will know that these chemosensory chemicals are not effective in controlling larval behaviour. Because larval sea lmaprey are sedentary and buried in sediment in a river bottom, not many studies have been done on them and most sea lmaprey control is done on adults. This research will contribute to the growing body of knowledge about invasive sea lamprey control. Exciting!

Friday, 27 April 2012

more garden planning

 my son is a natural born comedian
 her eyes glow, even in the daylight
 decided to make some pasta sauce from scratch. baked a bunch of halved plum tomatoes, a few carrots, an onion, some celery, and some garlic. peeled the skin off the tomatoes and food processed it all, then simmered it with some chicken broth and dried italian herbs and spices.
 added some shredded cheese as I was out of grated parmesan and my son and I shared a plate
he enjoyed it very much, repeatedly saying "mmmmmmm!"

Did some more research today on what we will need for our garden, and since deciding to DIY a rain barrel with an old lidless garbage bin we have, i ordered a  rain barrel kit from amazon. What sold me on this one was that it includes the saw blade for the holes you have to make. I can always go and buy my own rubber and taps for the next rain barrel I make and use the blades again from this kit. We also looked up how deep gas lines are usually dug to make sure we weren't in danger of coming across it as we were mixing up the soil, haha.

I also made a list of things I am going to need/want for a successful garden. They include: 

cheese cloth (for the top of the rain barrel
cinder blocks (to sit the barrel on)
tulle fabric (to protect from weather, insects when plants are younger- going to look at a fabric store)
a dual hoe/fork tool
organic slow release fertilizer
calcium? maybe
plant labels - i'm going to retain my son's popsicle sticks for this
wood that will border the garden and allow it to be slightly raised - possibly from my uncle's sawmill for free
stakes for vine plants
string to tie between stakes
possibly a cheesy sign post that we will paint a name for our garden

That's all I can think of for now. So far I have spent $55 on seeds and $32 on the rain barrel kit. My pots I have been using for starting things indoors have all been donated to me by family and friends or are containers I bought salad greens and spinach in at the grocery store. I will keep a running tally of how much the start-up of my garden costs me and post it once it's is up and running.

Thursday, 26 April 2012

the sun is coming out!

 woops that was me this time. no cardio in the livingroom when the plants are on the top shelf. hahahaha. plus, the herbs weren't falling because of the cats. as i was sitting here the other ones just fell off the window sill on their own....sigh
 then i watched The Secret Garden for some inspiration's so beautiful it disgusts me. the ending still makes me misty eyed every time.
 coffee before my meeting, this christmas cup is chronic ..never gets put away...
 So I planted some perennials last fall to see what would come up in the spring...I will have to wait until these flower to know what they are..there are two types...that ONE star shaped spiky one with the two round leaves at the base surrounded by...
all of these three leaved dudes. i must have planted 6 different kinds, and i got far anyway.

no sun today...drizzle drizzle

 3 days worth of compostables
 some reading material..haven't gotten to it yet
 my seeds came in!
 and since my cats love to knock things over on the window sills i had to restart my herbs, this time i just misted them and covered them in saran wrap, when they start germinating i will plant them. hope it works!
 tomato seeds
 mixed sweet peppers
 starting these both inside . in the "seed starting" moist soil they go. i read that i should mist and cover these in saran wrap as well.
 i moved some furniture around in my livingroom so i had room for an old computer desk against the southern window - a new home for my plants...i hope! i am so afraid they won't even germinate.
 then i watched my son play with his trains
 and a cat sleep
and cooked supper. marinated pork tenderloin with asparagus and new potatoes. my son is a snacky child who eats here and there from the time he gets home. he had a bit of pasta, some grapes, a lot of milk, and he sampled everything on my plate but wasn't too impressed.

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Seeds have shipped! Still waiting...

 Checking out what we did
 Upgraded these with a few drainage holes on the bottom and some plates underneath
 Breakfast. Back on the workouts today..guuhh
We bought this at Home Depot for 30 bucks. Has a section on composting, which I've started but need to get better at. It also has detailed pictures of how to harvest, plant, and care for different vegetables.
 It also has a canning section! My next big learning experience IF i get some shit to grow

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

Now we wait....

this is how i clean my hair. that's right, i haven't used shampoo in 2 months. more info here: why go shampoo free? i also treat my scalp with vinegar about once a week because it's dry.
I am trying to reduce buying packaging and plastic when its not necessary, so i found these bar soaps at info on the brand   here. These 4 bars only cost me about 6 bucks and will last me at least a month each (two people using them). I still buy Damien a liquid soap in a plastic bottle because its tear free and makes bubbles for him, but it is 99% natural. Once he's a little older I'll switch him to bars.
 Did some more pricing today, might need some chicken wire for the garden, not sure yet
 We checked out The Country Store and Home Depot and it looks like Home Depot had  more of what I was looking for. Organic compost, singular wooden stakes for my tomatoes, beans etc. and mid-range pricing on nice looking garden tools. (Also a charcoal bbq Evan was eyeing up)
 Based on this blog post, Evan and I bought a tarp (11.5 x15.5 ft) and taped garbage bags to the bottom (which we'll probably have to fix on a less WINDY day, sheesh) to kill the grass in preparation for the garden.
 then we pegged it down and threw some rocks on for good measure. hopefully in a month the grass is dead. I am going to reuse this tarp to do the same thing in other places where there are thorny vines and stuff in my yard. The busy person's way to prep your yard for landscaping haha.
right next to the compost to easily throw in weeds from the garden
Evan is getting excited about it too!