Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Thanksgiving Video

For some people they don't consider anything official until it makes it on Facebook.  In our house nothing is considered official until Andy makes a video of it!  Teasing aside Andy's Grandma could not make Thanksgiving this year and thus he was asked to make a video so she could share in the day with us.  And I thought why not share it with all of you so you could share in our quirkiness because we do things like play Thanksgiving Pictionary and randomly break out in song.  Enjoy!

FYI all the kiddos call her Grandma even though she is really their great grandma because all of their grandmas have names like Nana or Mimi which to them makes her just Grandma.

Monday, November 28, 2011


This past week I had a harvest again!  I pulled out about half the parsnips.  I can not recall ever eating a parsnip so I am excited to try them.  The only reason for planting them this year was because I knew they would give me winter harvests.  I made the mistake of trying to pull them when the ground was still wet.  Our clay soil did not want to release them.  With all the rain we have gotten today and will be getting this week it looks like I won't be harvesting the rest for a long time.

Sunday, November 27, 2011


I posted last year about my enamor with the Coca-Cola Santa.  I was brainwashed by some advertising back in the early nineties as a child.  Now every holiday season I buy Coca-Cola products just to see Santa smile at me from inside my fridge anytime I open it.

This year I went to the store to buy my Coke products only to find that Santa is absent this year from the holiday packaging.  I try not to be consumeristic but this one really bummed me out.  So much so that I scoured their website and could not find a place to send complaints so I have penned a letter and put it in the mail to Coca-Cola.

My letter reads:

Dear Coca-Cola,

I am not a regular Coca Cola consumer however since childhood we have always made sure to buy "Santa Packs" during the holiday season.  Your Santa packaging is a welcome reminder and sign of the holidays.  I appreciate your efforts towards Polar Bear preservation and awareness and enjoy seeing them on the Diet Coke products.  However I wish that next year the Santa packaging is brought back as it is a part of our holiday traditions as I am sure it is for many other families.  We will choose not to buy Coca Cola this holiday season solely because of the packaging and the absence of the Santa.
                                                 Happy Holidays,
                                                           Vanessa Kennedy

Out of all the things in the world that I could take my time to fight for I wrote to Coke about Santa packaging.  Yep, it's official, I am a bit ridiculous.       

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving

Today is Andy's favorite holiday.  And what isn't there to love: delicious food, family, friends and recalling all the things we have been blessed with for the year.  We have plenty of things to be thankful for this year and we will be celebrating them with 36 Kennedy family and friends.  I hope that all of you are able to spend today with someone important and are able to give thanks.

This year I am in charge of the green bean casserole, appetizers and oatmeal pie.  Yep oatmeal pie, think pecan pie but with oatmeal instead.  It's delicious and Andy's favorite so I have learned how to make it almost by heart.

Despite not quite mastering pie dough this Summer I decided to attempt the homemade version anyways.  I made two batches of dough and baked the extra in small squares thinking I might be able to use them in some fashion later on.  When they came out I tried one and after months and months of miserable failures the pastry was buttery, light and flaky.  You would have thought I won the lottery.  Here's hoping that the pastry in the actual pies turned out just as well, my fingers are crossed!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Too Soon?

Every year I struggle with the tension between getting all the Christmas stuff out so that we can enjoy it for as long as possible but at the same time not getting it out too soon.  I like to have all my harvest/Fall decorations up for Thanksgiving but the day after it all gets taken down and Christmas goes up.

I am a Christmas Freak!  I love the season, the cheerfulness, the winter decor, the gatherings and all out good cheer.  I love Christmas.  I struggle with not listening to music before Thanksgiving.  My sister has a strict no Christmas music rule until after Thanksgiving.  However I have sneaked a few songs in, but on Friday it will be Christmas music all the time until December 31st.

I won't break out the tree, garland or poinsettias until Friday.  But this past weekend we went ahead and put up the lights outside.  It was quite comfortable Saturday and Thanksgiving weekend is always so busy with family, friends, and decorating inside that we thought it would be good to get a head start.  But now that they are up I want to turn them on at night, but we will wait as hard as that may be.

Andy decided he wants lights on the bushes below the window so we will be adding more next week.  But for the most part it is done and we can't wait to have them on at night!

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Colorful Leaves

These leaves from our Maple are long gone but they were beautiful while they lasted!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Dead Bees

Unfortunately this time of year seeing dead bees will be a common site around the hive until Spring.  Hopefully our hive's numbers will stay up enough to last through the winter.  Fingers are crossed!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011


I recently passed this field and wondered at this point in the season (once Halloween is over) is there high demand for decorative pumpkins?  What will happen to all of these?  It makes me sad to think they might just get tossed.  I would be more than happy to take a few off their hands.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

For Real?

I have posted many times how I do not like my neighbor's magnolia tree such as this post or this one.  It's a beautiful tree but it was planted in the worst spot possible.  Now is the time I dislike this tree the most because all of its thick waxy leaves end up all over our property and in our garden. 

However many of the leaves also fall in our neighbor's property.  The house is actually rented out so a lawn service comes and does all the yard work.  Friday I came home to find that all the leaves had been blown into our property.  Yep instead of using the leaf blower to blow them to the street it was just easier to make them our problem.  The piles of leaves are just as tall as the raised beds.  The pictures don't quite do it justice to show just how much they blew into our yard.

I passively aggressively kicked some of them back over but it's not the renters fault.  I want to call the owner and complain that the lawn service does this every year and could she ask them to properly dispose of the leaves on her property.  But I am afraid then we will get an earful from her about how we have hacked at her tree even though it has been within our legal limit since it hangs over our property.

I really want the tree to somehow just disappear, PLEASE!  I did however rake up all the leaves plus the ones I kicked over because I knew it was the grown up thing to do.

Monday, November 14, 2011


The weather has become cooler and frost has set in so it was time to plant garlic.  The past two years I have planted soft neck varieties that have always ended up a bit puny.  I'm not sure if its been because the soil isn't loose enough, the garden center was selling crap product, or the variety.

So this year I bought garlic from the Farmers Market to plant in my own garden.  The garlic was sold to cook with but I figured if the Farmers around here are having luck with this variety maybe I will too.  They actually had a couple of garlic options and I bought "Music" because I wanted to try a hard neck variety to see if it would make a difference.  I have also read that Music is a good variety that it is easy to grow, hardy and stores well.

I planted 32 cloves six inches apart in all directions and 2 inches deep per standard garlic planting directions.  We will see how well it does come next Summer!

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Garden Updates

I am backlogged on pictures and topics to post because last week I had parent teachers conferences and I just had a lot to do.  One of the major updates is that the garden is looking very different these day since last weekend I pulled all the tomato, eggplant and pepper plants.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Dear Mother Nature

Dear Mother Nature,

I really enjoyed the mums when they were in full bloom but they have died and I trimmed them back so that the second crop of buds can bloom.  This week the burning bush and maple have turned beautiful, brilliant reds.  They are gorgeous!  By the time the mums have blooms again the tree and bush will be leafless.  I was hoping that somehow next year you might be able to coordinate them to be in color at the same time.  I really wanted a picturesque post card perfect Fall picture of our house.  This year I will settle for a flowerless Fall picture but I hope next year might be a little bit different. 


 Actually I think it's pretty anyways!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Sunday, November 6, 2011


We try to eat seasonally but pears are one of those things we like year round.  Fall is when they are in full swing and so we get to enjoy even more than normal.  I have yet to find a good local source but I found these stark crimson, danjou, and bosc pears in an assortment bag at the store.  We love pears because they are delicious many different ways.  Here are a couple of the ways we eat them:

On their own as a side or for snacking.

In a grilled cheese on pumpernickel with swiss cheese and dijon mustard.

Or a salad of arugula, blue cheese, and raw pumpkin seeds.


Friday, November 4, 2011

Planting Bulbs

The school I am teaching at has an excellent garden program that the students participate in weekly during the Fall and Spring.  Last week was the last class for the Fall.  The first graders learned about bulbs and planted them in their class plots for the Spring.