Thursday, July 31, 2008

Media Appreciation Dinner

Last night Chad and I went to the 2008 Annual Media Appreciation Night dinner sponsored by the Fresno County Farm Bureau. It was held at the Clovis rodeo grounds. The food and wine were great, as I was expecting it would be. Harris Ranch beef tri-tip was the main dish, along with chicken, sausage, corn, cheese, stuffed mushrooms, dip, veggies, ice cream and lots of other good stuff. Fresno State wine was served at the bar and their Cabernet was really good. (So far I'd recommend all of the Fresno State reds I've had.) Halfway through the event they gave awards to the local media for excellent stories relating to local agriculture. CBS47 was awarded the first runner up prize. Congratulations! (And thanks to Chad for being a good sport and getting on the tractor for my photo.)

After the awards they gave us canvas shopping bags to pick local fruits and veggies from the main display. Here's some of the loot we ended up with:

Monday, July 28, 2008

Corn Shmorn

After a weekend trip to the Bay Area we came home to a garden that looked like this:

Yikes! If there's much more growth our neighbors will have a garden too. Anyway, inspired by how well our plants are all doing we decided to harvest the corn to see how it turned out. Maybe we'd even have some for dinner! Chad chose the biggest cob with the driest, brownest silk to get us started. We then plucked all the others that looked like they were done growing (which was most of them, really) to see how our crop turned out. The suspense was killing us. Here's a proud moment for me:

Not the biggest cobs but hey, we weren't going to be picky.

Looks just like corn, right? Right! Until we shucked them... Here's a photo of our best corn.

We tasted the kernels and they were really sweet and juicy, but we weren't about to have the rest of them for dinner. Can you blame us? Oh well, we tried. I must say growing corn was a fun experiment and I'm glad we did it. We're not discouraged because the rest of our vegetables are doing so well!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Harvest Update

Here are a few photos from our garden. In order they are: a bell pepper finally turning red, a watermelon (that little squash-looking thing), three gourds, a pumpkin (looking like a watermelon), and finally, corn!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Card Rack

Look what I found! This weekend Chad and I went to the Pottery Barn Outlet in Southern California--what a store! They had furniture that matches our new entertainment center from Pottery Barn but at a much cheaper price. Too bad we didn't need the extra stuff in our living room because their prices were good. Anyway, as I was walking through the store I noticed this card rack and went right for it. The original price was $129 but at the outlet it was $39. I was not letting this one go and now it's in my room. I love it!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

New Arrangement

For the past few months I've been searching everywhere for a cactus like this one for our patio. When Chad and I hit the coast earlier this month we stopped by a shop that had one! In fact, they carried lots of unique plants and we enjoyed browsing around. We decided on these three little cacti (including the green pearl necklace cactus I'd been looking for--the one in the front) and brought them home. Last week we found the perfect pot for them and planted them on Monday. We love how it looks--what do you think?

Friday, July 11, 2008

Look What We Got!

Our world-traveling good friend Loren sent us an awesome souvenir package late last night. She took a trip last month with her mom to the the Galapagos where they enjoyed a fancy yacht cruise around the islands. They saw lots of great sights and so many interesting critters (tortoises, birds, sea lions and - eek - huge iguanas) and as she said, "it was a trip of a lifetime." So cool! Anyway, here's what she mailed to us yesterday. Let me tell you this package was a total surprise and we were so excited when we saw what was inside. If you can't tell from the photo we got pretty note cards with dried flowers from Ecuador (the Galapagos are in Ecuador--I didn't know that either). The paper was recycled by hand with used paper from local schools and offices--isn't that neat? She also gave us a beautiful framed photograph of a butterfly. Two things I really love: stationary and nature photography! Oh, and Loren, of course!

She's such a great, generous and thoughtful friend.

Monday, July 7, 2008

The Coast

Our holiday weekend was spent at the coast. Friday night we had dinner at Avila Beach. Saturday morning and early afternoon we enjoyed downtown San Luis Obispo. We ate breakfast at the Big Sky Cafe, walked along the creek, looked at Chad's old place (now boarded up and condemned), shopped, and people-watched before hitting our friends' wedding. The wedding ceremony was in Shell Beach and the reception in Los Osos. The weather in Shell Beach couldn't have been more perfect for their big day and everyone was happy to feel the sun and the light breeze. Los Osos was Los Osos: cool and foggy. Good thing the reception was inside!

Sunday before heading home we decided to walk along the newly opened Point Buchon Trail just past Montana de Oro. The land is owned by PG&E and they've done a nice job of keeping the area natural. The full trail is 3.5 miles each way along the rugged ocean-lined cliffs. We plan to take the full walk next time we're in the area.

Friday, July 4, 2008

Garden at 9 Weeks

Here are a few more photos of our garden. Everything is growing well and we even had a few tiny grape tomatoes with our dinner last night. The second photo is a tiny watermelon starting to grow. The large yellow flower is from our pumpkin and look!--there's a bee pollenating it this morning. Yay! Next you'll see our red bell pepper that's still green. I'm not sure why we aren't getting more peppers but this one is so big I'm OK with what we have. And finally we have tassels on our corn!

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

New Skewers

When we were in LA a month ago we bought these cute skewers to go with our new BBQ. Last night we finally busted them out to see how well they worked. I found a marinade recipe online and soaked our ingredients in a variety of juices and spices for about 5 hours. Here's Chad putting them all together. He took over after I stabbed myself with a skewer and had to get a band aid.

This made plenty of food--good thing Chad likes to eat leftovers at work!