I ALMOST met the $1500 veggie garden challenge

The big spoiler is that I came close, but no banana, to growing $1500 in one year and in only 70 square feet.The below freezes (21 degrees!) we had in December put paid to the harvest that would have put us over the top. Just about everything but the green onions and some radishes were killed dead as a doornail.

Then the freeze we had a couple of weeks ago killed almost everything I’d planted for a January-February harvest. We are going to get some radishes, green onions, parsley and dill over the next month but not much else.

Still, I’m not despairing and am renewing the garden challenge. I’m not upping it to $1700 as I’d planned, but I am sticking fast with a determination to at least get to $1500 worth of home-grown goodness during 2017. I’ve learned a lot and, one of the most important thing I’ve learned is that every year is different. You definitely can’t count on Mother Nature to be consistent.

I’ve got a new game plan on for the summer when it is hot enough to fry an egg on the sidewalk and we simultaneously need to conserve water for our monthly bills’ sake. I’m trying some new things for the early spring and scrapping some things we grew last spring. No cabbage this year (save the few cut and come agains from last spring that survived the brutal summer) but hopefully a lot of sugar snap peas. 36 swiss chard seedlings are going strong and I’m planning a lot more. I’m trying out Kohlrabi as an experiment and we’ll have to wait and see how that turns out. The last freeze killed all 24 of the Kohlrabi seedlings in their cradle but I’ve got more started.

You can check out just how close I came to meeting the 2016 goal at the DARA garden: http://garden.darasanctuary.com/


Hanukkah Sameach and Merry Christmas

I’ve got an Obama rant coming but tonight is not the time. Tonight, after the family lit our candles, my focus is on family, continuity and, in that vein, the miracle that is Israel and our forever undivided capitol of Jerusalem.

Wishing you all a Chag Sameach, and, to my Christian readers, a very Merry Christmas!

Quick update among the holiday craze

I’ve got five minutes to do an update and that is pushing it 🙂 My bro and his family will be arriving tomorrow and we are in full-scale cleaning mode that puts Pesach cleaning to shame, namely because my niece is highly allergic to kitties. The weather has so not cooperated with us. I’m also working two jobs: One is seasonal and the other is putting my coding skills to use. I’m not sleeping much 🙂

I hope to update the DARA Sanctuary garden challenge in the next few days — sad spoiler alert: I’m not sure, but I think, I am going to be just short of meeting the challenge, when all is said and done, by the end of this month. The serious freeze we’ve just had has decimated a ton of my plants. I was able to harvest green tomatoes and immature peppers and so forth but, really, we took a serious blow. The October and November tallies took us pretty close to the goal (hope to get them up in a couple of days) but I’m not sure the December tally will put us over the top.

My MVP – so close and yet so far

I’ve gotten a ton done on my Recipe Bee app. I’ve gotten the client written except for creation of the logos and other images to use with it (and their corresponding config.xml file) and the server-side is largely done. I’m having database issues, however. Right now, I can’t even spin up the server.

Last night, I was able to track down and fix four major problems, two of which were caused by very minor glitches (get the girl a spell-checker!). I’d forgotten to create my env file. Argh. I’ve got to use a different gui and am on the trail for a replacement. I’m going to be doing a deep dive into the Mysql documentation this week to try to sort things out.

Currently, the project is using Angular with (I know, kinda ‘cheating’ but it makes life a lot easier) the Ionic framework. Server is node with express and the database is MySQL.

Once I get it done and fully functional, I’m going to do a re-write, and create it using React rather than Angular.

Gardening, knitting, coding, kitties update

Today I started seeds: 20 Swiss Chard, 20 Buttercrunch Lettuce, and 20 Arugula. I got a nice-sized Cilantro and a dill transplanted. I also planted some flowers- a big Lantana and some pansies and Johnny Jump Ups. I mowed the yard and it looks very nice and neat, if I do say so myself. The weather has been so warm that we are still getting green beans, okra and peppers and the peppers, tomatoes, and two remaining eggplant plants are still flowering and setting fruit. Every morning I rush out to check the progress of the butternut squash –getting big and looking good :). This week I will probably go ahead and pull out the green beans, though, and plant in some sugar snap peas. Cutworms got all 15 of the lettuce I planted out last week and in just one night! Grrrr.

In every spare minute I’m working on Hanukkah gifts. I’m knitting a shawl for my Ema and have finished an identical, smaller one for my niece –a Mini Me (Maw) shawl. I plan to sew some glittery beads on the little ones’ version so it looks like something “Anna” –yeah, Frozen and Fairies are ‘the thing’ at the moment — might wear.

I taught myself how to crochet last night and have gotten a good bit finished on a play sandwich for her. I’ve got the two slices of bread done and now just need the cheese, lettuce, tomato, onion, and pickle. I also want to make her a fried egg, spaghetti, french fries and sushi pieces so she can go to town in her play kitchen with washable and non-toxic toys. If I get those all done, I might try my hand at a doll.

I’m doing two versions of my MVP. One version is with React and the other is using Angular and Ionic. I’ve completed the database and server-side code for both. I’m 90% done with the API for the Angular version –it is going to have some more bells and whistles, I think, than the React version just because I know how to implement them already (ability for the user to add pictures and so forth). Not sure if I’ll go to the bother of doing that with the React version. I’m going to finish the Angular version first (still have the client to do), and then get to work on the API and client for the R version. React still feels like a foreign creature.

On the cat front, Batya has gone back into a diabetic phase and so is getting insulin twice daily and can only be on wet food. Shyla we are worried about. She was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and given 3 weeks to live — but that was 6 months ago. I think she just has pancreatitis. She has, however, in the last week, needed to have a pepcid (heartburn) pill twice a day rather than just once and she is a bit off her food. We’re watching her closely. Gypsy, who was also diagnosed with cancer, is responding really well to the liquid steroid he’s getting once a day and the swollen lymph node (it was the size of a softball!) is now back to normal. I’m not sure I am buying the cancer diagnosis.

Israeli politics is corrupt but not as corrupt as Hillary Clinton and co (video)

I’ve not said much on the political front of late, largely because I barely have time to eat much less blog politics. This latest video by Project Veritas, however, has pushed me to make time. It is worth your time to watch the first 3 investigative videos that preceded this (slogging through the so far 30k Podesta emails is asking a bit much, but definitely don’t expect the MSM to be covering them either a) at all, or b) with any sort of accuracy –and those leaks show exactly why you won’t be seeing the MSM covering them). If you check nothing else, check this:

A fairy coat handmade by my Ema –my niece is over the moon with it!

My little niece, who has just turned five, is currently all about Tinkerbell and fairies. This past summer, when she visited, she made a point, every single day, of reminding her ‘Mee Maw” that, for Halloween she would be needing ‘my fairy coat’ to go with her Tinkerbell costume. ‘Mee Maw, have you started sewing? It might take a long time. I’m a fairy and I need a coat. Have you started making it?’

Her grandmother/savta (aka Mee Maw), of course, went into action. My Ema is an amazing seamstress. She got a look at pictures of the fairy costume my niece will be wearing and went into action. She found complementary fabrics that matched for the outside and lining (the coat she made is actually reversible as it is as beautiful inside as ‘out’). She studied videos starring the cartoon Tinkerbell. She created her own pattern and design.

My niece got her coat in the mail this past week and is over the moon about it (she had to be prevented from sleeping in it!). Alisa is a taskmaster when it comes to detail (she wants everything to be ‘exact’!). Her Tinkerbell coat has clearly passed muster. Below are a couple of photos of the fairy coat creation:

This pic has the “in person” colors –yeah a bit ‘bright’ but perfectly matches the costume it will accompany: