Tuesday, November 24, 2009


When I was a kid, Thanksgiving was one of my favorite holidays. But I think Thanksgiving should be one of every kid's favorite holidays, other than maybe Halloween. Unfortunately, as so often happens in today's society, people forget the true meaning of Thanksgiving and the story behind the holiday. When thinking of this holiday meant for giving thanks, unfortunately many folks traditionally think of Thanksgiving week-end with "Black Friday" which is the beginning of the traditional holiday shopping season. Please don't fall into that trap.

With Thanksgiving drawing near I am reminded how very blessed I am. I enjoy family, friends, my volunteer activities, my business and the many warm relationships I have formed through these activities. I hope you'll take a moment and reflect on the blessings in your own life. One of my favorite things about Thanksgiving is getting together with family and friends, and when that is not possible, reminiscing of the past Thanksgivings when I could.
When we count our many blessings;
It isn't hard to see
that life's most valued treasures
are the treasures that are free.
For it isn't what we own or buy
that signifies our wealth.
It's the special gifts that have no price
our family, friends and health.
Happy Thanksgiving to you ....

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Adult Sandbox????? Want to play?

My weekend project in the works.....
For some time now I have been contemplating doing a "raised bed garden". My problem was not how to do it, but how to make it happen, as I do not have the proper tools to build it nor the vehicle to get the necessary stuff home. Well that problem was worked out! Home Depot in Lake Mary, Florida was kind enough to offer to cut the pressure treated wood, drill the holes in it as necessary and put it together for me. All I needed to do was come up with a way to transport it home. My "full-service Mortgage Broker" and friend, Mickey from Thomas Mortgage, came to the rescue and offered to be my "Man with a truck". So, my bottomless box is ready for the next step. Materials needed: pressure treated boards 1-12 footer & 1-8 footer & a box of 3 inch screws for outdoors & this type of wood. Voila a 6 foot x 4 foot garden bed waiting to be filled. The moles in my yard actually did me a favor. Their underground tunnels made the ground really soft & it was easy to pull out & rake up all the grass in the area......so no chemicals were needed to eliminate the grass.....and I could proceed. I blended a mixture of peat moss, perlite, potting soil and compost to fill the bed and to ensure a pest-free planting site to begin. The raised bed provides a neat garden- and an easy way to organize the garden. I will follow the Square-foot gardening technique thereby utilizing all available space. Rows are eliminated and each square foot of garden bears a harvest from 1 or more plants to maximize production. Because of my late start this season, I have started with planting transplants ready for the garden. They are 4-6 inches tall and have already grown several sets of true leaves.

So far I have planted: Broccoli, Brussel Sprouts, Eggplant, Red leaf lettuce, Peppers, Parsley and Basil, with lots of room still for many more varieties of edible harvest.
As I do with most things, I over calculated the fill that I purchased and most likely have enough peat moss & perlite to fill raised garden bed # 2.....which may be my next project in the Spring.
On another note, in my back yard this week I experienced something which could have been really dangerous if I was outside when it happened. Actually I was at home in the house with all the doors and windows closed and heard and literally "felt" a crash. I looked out the front window but saw nothing. So I didn't think about it anymore until I went out in my back yard. This massive, about 20 foot long tree branch broke off and fell from my Oak tree. If I were outside at the time and got hit, it would not have been pretty. Something else to be thankful for this upcoming Thanksgiving.
Now I just have to figure out how to get it cut up and removed from my yard. Again, I never have the proper tools.
I really don't know what made this happen, the tree shows no signs of being stressed, rotten or dying. At the time this happened it was sunny out, no rain or lightning and no memorable winds. I guess the moral of this story is to always be careful of what might fall from the sky.
Watch for updates as my garden grows!