Thursday, March 4, 2010


Well good morning to all my wonderful readers out there! How are you doing this beautiful sunny day? I am doing wonderful really! I had a great day yesterday! But I told you I wouldn’t be able to have a slow relaxing day! I don’t care… I had fun. Since yesterday I worked on a lot of gardening stuff, and that’s what I’ll be discussing… so guess what today is? YEP Its the first GARDEN COMMENT day! I want to hear about your gardening plans… are you going to do any? Even if its just a container of tomatoes, I’d love to hear! Or anything else… see the post on February 26th post for your rules and regs.

Once I got off the computer, I went and put up the stuff I got from the store. Then the DH and I went to the Houston Garden Center. Here he is pushing my cart of baby veggie plants. They were on sale 10 for $12 and most of them looked pretty healthy. Their strawberries are on sale for 98c each and they had tons here! I signed up for their free gift card offer, so when I get it (supposed to be in the next 7 days), then I’m going back! YAY! PLUS the circulars today had a HGC ad in there with a bunch of coupons… and you know me and coupons! Oh they had so many plants I would love to bring home! I’m gonna add a couple of fruit trees to the mix this year too… just not sure which kind yet… maybe peach or apple or pear or- gosh how about all of them LOL!

Then we went over to Lowe’s to buy some more soil. I got 5 bags and I was shocked at all the new plants that they had for sale too! In just a few days they have gotten so many more wonderful things! Berries, grapes, veggies, you name it! WOW… I could have EASILY dropped HUNDREDS in there! But I got 2 small sweet banana peppers for $1.78 and then my 5 dirts and I left. LOL too much temptation! These roses were there on sale for $25 a tree… OMG I wanted to take them all home with me. They were gorgeous, don’t you think? I think they would look good in my FRONT yard!

Here I am back home with my flat of new babies! I picked up Habanero peppers, green bell peppers, yellow bell peppers, cayenne peppers, eggplants, and sweet banana peppers. If you are new to planting/gardening and are planning on purchasing veggies or even flowers, remember that you have to buy at least 2 of each plant type so that they will pollinate and thrive. I say the more the better! The sun was so in my eyes, but ya didn't hear me complaining! LOL!

This WAS a picture of me holding the first clipping of the season off my rosemary plant but I cropped by bright red swollen face out of the picture. You can still see how swollen I am by the size of my pudgy little fingers! Anyway, I clipped it and used it on the chicken I made for dinner. Oh the smell that was on my hands from the fresh rosemary was absolute heaven! I love Rosemary! Isn’t it so pretty?!

Here is our dinner last night- Rosemary and garlic chicken with lemon, fresh green beans and new potatoes, and mini butter croissants. Delish! DB and the guys devoured that chicken let me tell you! I love feeding my brothers… since they are bachelors I know they don’t always eat properly (either cause they are on the go, working, etc.) and when they come here and eat they are getting a home cooked balanced meal with the nutrients they need! Just like mom used to make us growing up! I think a meal just tastes better knowing the ingredients were fresh from either the garden or market or whatever… wouldn’t you agree?

Oh, remember I told you I have been having Cardinals come up to the food at my kitchen window? Well I got better pictures of them both! The one from my phone with the female is rather dark and hard to tell, but here is the bright red male sitting in the tree staring at me. We were having a face off… he was staring me down LOL! I won cause he flew away… and I got his mugshot as a bonus!

Alright now… I’m gonna share with you a craft for your garden… it’s the raised bed garden box… yep just like the one I made. Now I did mine a little different than the video I found it on, but the concept and end result are both the same!

Craft Idea of the Day: Planter boxes or containers

Really anything can become a raised planter. IF you have old rubbermaid tubs, drill holes in the bottom for drainage. Same goes with cat litter buckets (as with my strawberries) or even old chairs, commodes, and tires! But to make a planteer box out of 2x4 pieces is fairly easy. Check out the Lowe’s DIY Video on How to make a Raised Garden Box for complete instruction… but here it is in a nutshell.


2x4 lumber- untreated
4x4 post
landscape fabric or plastic
wooden deck screws (2 1/2 inch work well)


Measure the area you want to put a planter in… length and width. Cut your 2x4 pieces to fit your measurements. My box is 5 foot by 3 foot- utilizing an entire 2x4 piece. Place 3 pieces side by side and measure them across. That is how long you want your 4x4 post piece. (I made mine slightly taller than the actual box.)

Secure the 4x4 to one side of the 2x4 with wood deck screws and repeat with 2 more pieces. Repeat on the other end. This will be the length side (or in the event you are making a perfect square, then it will be the first side). Repeat the process for the other side.

Take your 3rd and 4th sides and secure them on the other side of the 4x4 post (the post should be on the INSIDE of the box). Make sure the edges meet and are flush on each corner. Repeat with remaining boards. You should now have a box frame.

You can put this in the ground as in the video, putting the landscaping fabric under the box OR you can put this on a deck, patio, etc. I will be lining the bottom of mine with plastic sheeting with drainage holes it the bottom. Its really easy to make and really doesn’t take much time. You can make any size to fit your space. Add bottom panels if you want for an enclosed box too!

Ok, my other favorite topic time… FOOD! YAY! We love food around here! Now I already showed you my dinner from last night, so I want to share a recipe for fresh fish today. Yes I am on a seafood kick peoples LOL! Summer’s comin’ and that’s when I “indulge” the most in delicious nuggets of golden yummy from the sea! LOL! So try this one on for size…

Blackened Tuna Steaks with Mango Salsa


2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons lime juice
2 cloves garlic, minced
4 tuna steaks
1 fresh mango - peeled, pitted, and chopped
1/4 cup finely chopped red bell pepper
1/2 Spanish onion, finely chopped
1 green onion, chopped
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced
2 tablespoons lime juice
1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil
2 tablespoons paprika
1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon onion powder
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon garlic powder
4 tablespoons olive oil


Whisk together the olive oil, lime juice, and garlic in a bowl. Rub the tuna steaks with the mixture. Place the steaks in a sealable container and chill in refrigerator 3 hours.

Combine the mango, bell pepper, Spanish onion, green onion, cilantro, and jalapeno pepper in a bowl; stir. Add the lime juice and 1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil and toss to combine. Chill in refrigerator 1 hour.

Stir together the paprika, cayenne pepper, onion powder, salt, pepper, thyme, basil, oregano, and garlic powder in a bowl. Remove the tuna steaks from the refrigerator and gently rinse with water and then dip each side of each steak in the spice mixture to coat.

Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Gently lay the tuna steaks into the hot oil. Cook the tuna on one side for 3 minutes; remove to a plate. Pour the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil into the skillet and let it get hot. Lay the tuna with the uncooked side down into the skillet and cook another 3 minutes; remove from heat immediately.

Spoon about 1/2 cup of the mango salsa onto each of 4 plates. Lay the tuna steaks atop the salsa and serve immediately.

*** A few tips for those of you struggling with the recipe: 1. While the directions were written for Tuna, it does work well with other fish but the cook time must be adjusted accordingly for the type of fish you are using and the thickness. For salmon I would recommend ditching the garlic -lime marinade, it really is specific to tuna or a similar fish. 2. For those struggling with the heat there are three things: - The recipe is designed to be eaten bite for bite with the mango salsa recipe included, if you serve it without it you'll likely need to adjust the heat level by dropping the cayenne. - For those who just aren't into the heat, you can simply reduce the amount of cayenne, by half is about appropriate. - A nice alternative I've found to the mango salsa is sour cream (about 2tbsp per serving) mixed with a bit of sugar (about 1tsp per 2tbsp of sour cream). This can be served in a ramekin or drizzled over the fish, whatever your heart desires!

Ok kids, I’m gonna get off here and try to get some more work done… not sure on what yet though LOL!… I hope you have a wonderful day in whatever adventures you partake in and remember… big sister is watching LOL! Anxiously awaiting to hear from you all… HUGS!

1 comment:

  1. Your plants look very healthy and Spring in your home looks beautiful! I am so jealous. Tell me what all do you plan on growing? Love from Vermont!