It's Friday night, which means in a couple of hours, our block will look and sound like this:
This place is essentially two doors down from us. It's annoying, and the atmosphere outside the bar often feels unsafe. The bar used to be a sedate place where neighborhood drunks went, but due to a change in ownership, it is now hopping.
It's a complicated situation with the liquor license, and I don't want to give full details here because it's boring. A few folks in the area are working on a protest petition, and I sincerely hope we're able to get the liquor license revoked.
But on to more fun things...
We've been doing a lot of neighborhood cleaning/gardening activities recently. Last Saturday was the cleanup blitz, and we worked on our alley with six other people. We picked up a lot of trash, raked up a ton of leaves, and generally made things look neater. On Sunday, we attended our community garden organizational meeting, and are gearing up to plant things tomorrow.
Yes, planting day finally! We will be planting in the community garden and in our own backyard.
Actually, we've already planted some things at our place. Here are radishes, spinach, and sugar snap peas:
This photo was taken last week, and things are much bigger already. We also have onions and beets coming up in this bed.
In the other beds, we have a ton of volunteer plants: self-seeded tomatoes, squash, peppers, and other unknown things. I've been pulling up these volunteers because I already have seedlings that I want to plant, and it is really quite sad. I decided to leave a couple of tomato plants, and today I found them chopped off!! Damned cut worms at it already!! Or maybe squirrels...grrrr.
We have so many unknown squash plants coming up, this year I will remember to not put squash seeds into the compost bin!
Our most interesting volunteer is this guy:
At first I thought it was cabbage, and then cauliflower, but it is now much taller and has broccoli-looking things forming. This plant, and two others that I pulled out, are growing from leaves that I had composted (in situ, maybe). It is really quite strange. I remember getting broccoli in the fall through Fair Shares, and I remember it having leaves and some stalk associated with it. I'm letting this one grow just for fun. If I get some broccoli out of it, even sweeter.
Speaking of sweet, we have a million strawberry flowers!
Okay, not a million, but very close. We let these plant run loose and haven't been cutting the runners off. I'm surprised we have so many flowers.
And check out these flowers:
Blueberries! Very exciting.
Other food stuff...
Last week I mixed up some olive oil dough from Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day, and Porkchop made us mini pizzas using the dough:
This is mine and is pesto and sundried tomato (actually ovendried because these are tomatoes we grew last summer, dried, and froze). We enjoyed these pizzas so much, we had them two nights in a row.
This week has been all about beef brisket. We had Suzi and Dale over for dinner on Sunday, and I cooked an 8 pound brisket using this Smitten Kitchen recipe (we also had mashed potatoes, roasted asparagus, fresh baked bread, and pound cake with strawberries picked last summer and whipped cream). The brisket was delicious, but there was SO much of it. If you combined all the previous times in my life that I've eaten brisket, it would be less than how much I've consumed this week. We have 1 and half pieces left, and I do hope Porkchop takes care of those.
I've also been baking a lot of my favorite whole wheat banana bread. This is the second Friday night in a row I've made it. But, this loaf is for tomorrow's community garden planting.
I can't wait to start having fresh vegetables again!
Porkchop found a perfect switch in the yard:
She and her switch are not to be messed with.
Keetah is the most photogenic of all of us:
It's too bad my head is in the corner of this picture. Otherwise, it would be perfect.
Have a great weekend!