Tuesday, May 28, 2013

The 1st Tomato of 2013!

I was starting to think that the cherry tomato plant I bought this year was in fact a plant for some other variety of tomato. Why? Well, because I'd had a cluster of tomatoes growing for what seemed like FOREVER and they just kept getting bigger, but not turning that orangish red color where you know it's time for picking!

I was really convinced it was another variety. That is...until YESTERDAY!!! 

While outside watering yesterday morning, I noticed that overnight a couple of the lil tomatoes had started to ripen! I was SO happy to know I'd be enjoying tomatoes soon.

And soon really did come soon because I got to enjoy my very first tomato of 2013 this evening after work. Judging by how fast this one got ripe, I think the others will be ready tomorrow, or Thursday at the latest!

Monday, May 20, 2013

Grain Greek Salad

One of my go-to lunches (and favorite lunches in fact) is a Greek Salad grain mixture. You can use any grain you'd like - but I tend to prefer quinoa and have recently decided I liked the combination of quinoa and Israeli couscous. The vegetable chopping takes a little time, but I always make a BIG batch and get to enjoy the salad all week! It's so easy once it's made and I'm full for hours after eating it. 

Take a look at the salad making process and you'll be amazed at how simple AND delicious it is!

The Goods:
Israeli Couscous
Olive Oil
Balsamic Vinegar
Cherry/Grape Tomatoes
Persian Cucumbers
Green Onions
Kalamata Olives

Cook the grains...

Israeli Couscous

And Quinoa for me!

Chop the Cucumbers

Chop the Green Onions

Chop the Tomatoes

Chop the Olives
(I ran out of Kalamata so used Green Queen ones too!)

Add the Feta! 

And the Quinoa.

And FINALLY the Israeli Couscous.

Toss it all together with fresh squeezed lemon juice, olive oil and balsamic vinegar.
Add a little salt for flavor if necessary. 

The finished product! 

This salad can be eaten alone, or enjoyed on a bed of mixed greens tossed in fresh lemon juice as I usually do!

Grab some spring mix.

Toss it with more fresh squeezed lemon juice.

And add the mixed grain salad on top!
Dig in and enjoy!!!

Sunday, May 19, 2013

How The Garden Changes In A Week...

Since my garden has been growing like CRAZY, I thought it'd be interesting to document the progress in a week. The first pictures were taken last Saturday afternoon, and the second ones were taken just yesterday. Take a look below to see all the changes that have happened in just seven days!

Three pretty poppies.

Now only one. 
But the good news -
I saw more buds today!!! 

Pretty window boxes...

are really filling out!

I love marigolds! 

And they tend to grow so well!

This was right after planting.

Thriving a week later!

Basil, parsley and mint growing like crazy.

And still doing well even with using most of the parsley!

More herbs doing amazing!
Rosemary, oregano, sage, dill and thyme.

Still doing amazing for the most part...

But this stupid caterpillar thought he was invited to enjoy my sage!

Stupid caterpillar!!! 
I hate them and hope this was the last I see of them this Summer.

Oh hello huge jalapeno plant!

And hello TINY praying mantis too!!!

It just keeps getting bigger and bigger and bigger!!!
It had 22 peppers on it at last count and I'm sure there are even more now.

My poor tomato plant is not living up to my expectations.

But it does have this one awesome bunch!

Looking a little better this week, so there's hope!

When will they start to ripen!?! 
They're getting SO big for cherry tomatoes...

The raspberry plant had a berry last week...

And the blueberry plant is growing like a weed!

Sadly, it was too hot and the raspberry didn't make it! 

But the blueberry plant continued to grow like crazy.

And the carrots are BEGGING to be thinned.

Yup, still begging...
I've been a little busy (hence the lack of posts).

The lime tree is THRIVING!!!!

And I cannot believe it's gotten so big!

Check back for more garden updates in the not to distant future!