Sometimes life just gets in the way

It’s good to be loved.  It’s good to know that people not only read the words I write in this blog, but actually enjoy and learn from them.  Feeling blessed is only the beginning of the gratitude I have for all of you who come to Vampire Gran’s Kitchen.  Thank you all for your kind comments, especially the funny ones!   

 I’ve been getting a lot of “What’s ups?” from many of you.  Some via email and comments here, and some walking down  aisle  1 at work.  Thank you, Cat, for scolding me ever so nicely!   

So, what is up?  Well, summer time for one thing.  I made a conscious decision to enjoy the hot weather this year.  Anyone who knows me well, knows I am not a big fan of hot weather.  That’s why I moved to Portland, after all, for the most-of-the-year cooler weather.  But this year I have been determined to like the summer heat.  Fortunately, we have only had maybe three days this year that reached 100 degrees.  Thank you, Universe, for your support.  This has been a glorious summer, weatherwise.   

We’ve been spending a lot of time outdoors.  Running the streets of downtown Portland, leisurely walks along the Willamette, enjoying street fairs and just hanging out in our park like back yard.  And, I have been working in the garden – a lot.   

It's gotten crazy big since the last time I posted about it

In fact, I think the last time I wrote about the garden I was harvesting beets.  Those are long gone.  I also harvested shelling peas, lettuce and broccoli.   

Here are some of the lovely peas from the garden

I have a whole new crop rotation happening now.  I planted five hot pepper plants, jalapeno, hot cherry, Serrano, Thai and something our neighbor gave us.   

Hot Cherry pepper - it will turn red when it is ready

Thai chili - will also turn ready when it is good n' hot

Pepper from the neighbor - he says it's mild, not sure what kind it is

I work in a nice grocery store where we are well taken care of.  One of the perks we receive is free food and plants!  I spent some time checking out the back lot every day in search of homeless plants that needed some TLC.  I rescued a scraggly tomatillo plant and it blossomed into this:   

Now, what am I gonna do with all of these tomatillos?

All of my tomato plants were freebies, too.  Three from my neighbor and three from work.   

I can always use tomatoes

There's a nice big 'un

Every garden has to have one - the obligatory zucchini plant

The final garden picture is the butternut squash plant.  I am in awe of how one tiny plant can take over the entire garden, if I let it.  The garden expert neighbor told me I could cut it back and it would still live and produce.  Thank god, cause I thought it was gonna attach itself to everything, including me if I didn’t move fast enough!   

Hard to believe that is one plant

Ok, I lied.  Here are two more shots because these squash are so photogenic.   

Look how pretty that guy is. And there are those grabby tendrils, just poising itself to latch onto anything in its path

Another thing we have been having fun with is dinner and a movie al fresco.  We set up the computer on the patio, haul our dinner out and presto – instant good time.  

Yeah, I look like crap. It's hot, what do you expect?

What’s the pink stuff on our plate?  Beautiful candy stripe beets.  So good.  

Steamed golden and candy stripe beets tossed with orange muscat vinegar, kosher salt and cracked pepper served on a bed of steamed beet greens

So many more things have been going on this summer, but I think this post has gone on long enough.  I will be participating in the Blog Challenge on Foodbuzz so there will definitely be more to share with you as that progresses.  The work on my self published cook book  continues and looks like I am  about a quarter of the way done with that.  So much to look forward to.  So enjoying this journey called life.


4 Responses to “Sometimes life just gets in the way”

  1. August 25, 2010 at 9:03 pm

    You are so adorable! And….. I’m feeling nostalgic for those candy stripe beets…. mmmmm….

    Too bad we can’t capture in pictures the feelings of love between us and how those feelings continue to blossom and grow faster and bigger than any squash plant ever dreamed of. This summer with you has been the best of my life…. Thank you for making me a farmer’s wife.


  2. August 26, 2010 at 12:43 am

    This has been a wonderful summer, hasn’t it? And I, too, am missing those beets, so tender and sweet. I’m going to plant a lot more next year. I wonder if I planted some now if we would have some in November? Well, I know we will have butternut squash and brussel sprouts!

  3. August 26, 2010 at 3:29 pm

    Patricia…so nice to read that everything is well with you.
    I truly believe that enjoying the greater moments of our short Summers is very wise indeed.
    I too, decided to cut down on my posts to once a week. My work and daily routine is unfortunately still too much in my way.

    Those photos…STUNNING…especially the butternut squash…my favourite besides the ‘buttercup’ squash.
    I’m planning a day trip with Mom where yearly we visit a squash farm…great times…can’t wait to share it with all of you.

    Well…here’s wishing you continued liesurely time on and off blogging.
    I for one can’t wait until you surface this great cookbook in progress ;o)

    Ciao for now,

  4. August 26, 2010 at 6:57 pm


    So great to hear from you, as always. Thanks for checking in. Yes, we all need to take a little break from our blogs now and then. I look forward to your photos from your squash farm trip. Sounds like a fun day for you and your Mom.

    Take care. I’ll be checking in on you and your blog soon.


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