Fresh Friday 11/21/14

Hey everyone!

I’ve had so much going on lately! I’m sure you all are in the same boat. Such a busy time of the year.  We have a shake-up of staff at work so that’s been going on, prep for holidays, and a mother who had surgery at the start of the month. There has been a lot of highway driving to go to the hospital, rehab center, and her place to hang out or to get things prepped for her return home. We (well, really, the Huz) installed a stair-lift at mom’s place for her to get between the 1st and 2nd floors. That was a HUGE ordeal, but after 2 weeks, it’s all finally taken care of and installed. Mom is thrilled. I’m glad that she can be more independent in her home now.

Last night, the Huz and I went to see Interstellar at the IMAX. Oh man! It was beautiful! I want to go into so many details with you on here, but I hate spoilers, so I’ll just give you the highlight reviews. No spoilers.

I mean, everything was beautiful. The plot, the actors/characters, graphics, sound effects, music (Hans Zimmer…great job!), concepts. Just beautiful. They did an amazing job of getting me to relate to the characters and their plights. For the raw content review: no sexuality, not much language, some violence, some intense frightening situations. I would not take a little kid to see it. Apollo 13 was an emotional movie, but this was more intense on that regard. I got choked up and teary in several spots. If you’re worried about non-Biblical philosophies, there was no mention of religion, except for a sarcastic comment about prayer to an object. It was a pure science-fiction movie and one with no agenda besides getting people curious about space again and what could be out there. That was very refreshing.

I am not one of those people who thinks there could be life “out there” in space somewhere. I think the Earth is God’s unique creation. But the universe is so enormous and so diverse! All of it was created to give God glory and I think it does an amazing job of that. I have always had an explorer spirit so the idea of going to see something brand new would be incredible. I would not be able to survive in space though. Yipes! But I enjoy (most) movies that take me there instead.

One comment by Anne Hathaway’s character was so poignant and, I thought, almost a hint of the Gospel, but not quite there. She made a comment that love is something that could not be a survival instinct. Love for the dead especially, but that it must be a kind of artifact of a higher dimension. I whole-heartedly believe that the higher dimension is God. He put the capacity for love in our hearts and it is beautiful.  Anyway, I would highly recommend this film and if you can see it at an IMAX, it is well worth the price!!!

Before heading out for the movie, I had some time to make some cookies. Our local Kroger carries persimmons and I have been dying to find more things to do with persimmons. I found a few cookie recipes on Pinterest and tried of them out. Yum, this recipe is so good!!!

You’re welcome and enjoy!

Fresh Friday – Foodie/Wander Edition (Traverse City Food Stops)

To continue with the Traverse City recap, I’m sharing some of the places we stopped for food in the and around the city.  Of course, being northwest mitt-Michigan, you can expect lots of cherries featured on the menus. Some of my favorite things I tried was special-made cherry chipotle humus and cherry barbecue sauce.

House of Doggs140607 - TC House of Doggs

Website

120 S Union St, Traverse City, MI 49684
(231) 922-1348

***UPDATE (1/3/16) The only location for House of Doggs is now in the Mall.  Here’s the address: 3200 S. Airport Rd., Traverse City, Michigan***

Now, if you want to talk about chili dogs, you talk about Cincinnati. That’s a firm statement and fact. I don’t even know why I bothered getting a Cincy-style chili dog outside of Cincinnati, but they did only alright. I’ll share that my companions LOVED their dogs, though. Matt’s mom heard that this place was on one of those foodie TV shows and so, it was our first stop the very day we got there. It was very good, and I enjoyed the theme of the joint – all dogs have their own quirky regional name, like: Be-Bop, Grand Funk, Disco, James Brown, etc. The brother in law got a real strange one, I think it was the HOD Fusion, which included crushed potato chips.

The Underground Cheesecake Factory140608 - TC cheesecakes

Website

1375 Yellow Drive, Traverse City MI 49684
231-929-4418

The Huz and I stopped in here because, hello, it’s cheesecake! We were in the area called The Village, which includes the renovated Old State Hospital grounds (apartments, shops, restaurants) for the annual Traverse Colantha Walker Dairy Festival. Naturally, they are incredible for their cheesecakes, but they also serve soups and sandwiches. We got our cheesecake to go but ate our lunch outside. So good!

Higher Grounds Trading Co

Website

806 Red Dr, Suite 150, Traverse City, MI 49684
877.825.2262

It was a little chilly on the day of the Traverse Colantha Walker Dairy Festival. Of course, Michigan is a little further north than southwest Ohio, so we should have been prepared. We welcomed a stop into this coffee shop, which is just around the corner from Underground Cheesecake Factory.  This place has all the earmarks of a great local coffee shop, which I love! One super-cool thing is that they gave us our coffee in real ceramic mugs. The catch? We could bring them back when we were done and they’d be cleaned and reused, or we could take them if we really wanted. We returned ours, but mine had a Santa on it, which was fun. The mugs are donated to them and it would definitely reduce the waste from the shop. I’m pretty sure I saw that they offer the used grinds to small-garden farmers. Here’s the description they post on their website about who they are:

Higher Grounds Trading Co. roasts fair trade and organic coffee from around the world. We stick to high standards not only for ethical and environmental reasons, but also because we’re obsessed with quality: we believe these standards produce the best-quality coffees around. Our close relationships with farmers help us bring delicious coffee from the field to your cup.

Millie’s on Main – Mackinac Island140609 - Millies on Main

Website (couldn’t find a true website, so this is their Yelp page)

7294 Main St, Mackinac Island, MI 49757
906.847.9901

If I’ve been walking a lot before eating (which is all you really do on Mackinac Island), I am not usually up for a big meal. So, yes, I did go to a nice restaurant on Mackinac and only got chicken tenders and fries. But they were so good! Also, the special chipotle lime bbq sauce was amazing!! I loved it. I don’t think I would’ve thought to put lime in a bbq sauce, but I’m so glad THEY did because I could have probably drank it and been just fine. I can’t remember much else about the place, though, except that I had to take a pic of the bathroom. There were paintings in them by a guy with the same name as one of my friends, which was funny to me. Anywho, check them out. There isn’t a huge variety of food options on the Island, but this was probably one of the better options minus the Hotel.

North Country Grill and Pub140611 - suttons bay cherry chipotle humus

Website

420 N Saint Joseph St, Suttons Bay, MI 49682
231.271.5000

I’m jumping around, but I had to put this place in here. We stopped here for lunch one day on our way up to Fishtown (back from? I can’t remember which came first) and, again, we had been doing a lot of walking, so I went light on my meal. I snagged the Cherry Chipotle Humus. If you know anything about Michigan, it’s that it’s Cherry country. They did not disappoint. It was fruity, spicy – everything they promised. The inside of the place is amazing too; lots of beautiful wood, fireplace, giant bar. It was gorgeous.

The Cherry Hut

140613 - TC cherry hut 03Website

211 N. Michigan Ave. (US 31), Beulah, MI 49617
(231) 882-4431

I was told to stop here by a customer. The Cherry Hut was also featured on a reality foodie show, so we figured we had to check it out. They are, as the name would imply, all things cherry. The Huz had a burger with cherries mixed into the meat. I had a regular burger with cherry barbecue sauce – soooo good. The father-in-law ordered a “Complete Dinner” which came with just about everything on the menu. It was unreal how much food he had, and he loved every bit of it. They have a store of take-home treats that is very comprehensive. I bought some chocolate-covered cherries and gummy cherries to bring back to the office. They were gone within a few days. I would highly recommend a visit here for lunch or for dinner. The decor is real sweet too, like a 50’s dinner with cherries!

Moomer’s Ice Cream

Website

140608 - TC moomers

7263 N. Long Lake Rd., Traverse City, MI 49685
231.941.4122

There are a few different spots where you can find Moomer’s Ice Cream. We stumbled upon it at The Village in the downstairs of the State Hospital (don’t let that scare you) and also at their main store, which sits next to a dairy farm. I love local flavor and you don’t get much more local than ice cream from local dairy farms and other local ingredients. If you like Moose Tracks ice cream, you will love their Cow Tracks blend (pictured to the right).

Union Cantina

Website

UClogo

127 South Union Street · Traverse City, Michigan · 49684
(231) 941-5038

This is a great little Mexican bar in downtown Traverse City. My biggest takeaway was that I could actually order a DR. PEPPER and it came FROM THE TAP! Yeah! it is so hard to go through northern states sometimes. I must live right on the line where Dr Pepper stops being a thing in the north. The food was pretty good, but seriously, I can only remember the Dr Pepper. 😀 Oh, and there’s a crazy massive antique mall on the same block.

Fresh Friday – Wander Edition (Traverse City Iris Farm)

I promised that I was going to post the highlights of the trip to Michigan back in June, buuuuuuut I’ve been a bit of a slacker. I mean, I’ve had stuff on my plate this summer, but not enough to really excuse it. This week, we got a package which reminded me of that promise, so here is a post about one of my favorite finds near Traverse City, MI.

It was not on my list of things to see, but we drove passed it a couple times and I KNEW I had to make a stop at some point during our visit. The irises were in full bloom and absolutely gorgeous!

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It was very cloudy the morning we decided to stop. I was sad, because the colors were so vibrant in the sunlight. We were not the only ones with the idea to stop, though. A group of ladies were setting up chairs and easels to paint the beautiful colors of the flowers. The sun was trying its best to make an appearance, and did in spots.

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There are so many kinds of irises with so many creative names. We put in an order for rhizomes to be mailed out to us once they were ready. We ordered 5 different types: Seakist, Immortality, Forty Pinochle, Wabash, and Neutron Dance. They finally came in the mail after I had almost forgotten about them!

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If you are ever in the area, you should definitely stop by! Peak season would be late May-early June. You can pick out which rhizomes you like and they will be delivered to you the end of October/early September. They come bare root (as you can see), so there’s no worry about invasive species making their way into your community. It even includes a Certificate of Quarantine Compliance! If you’re a “native” junky like me, you will love that they take this extra precaution. Irises are beautiful but not worth the spread of Japanese beetle or plant disease. I am very excited to see what they look like next Spring. The goal is to plant them in the garden bed on the side of the house, using old tire halves to make raised beds for other annuals. I’m so pumped!

Iris Farm in Traverse City

 

5385 E Traverse Hwy
Traverse City, Michigan 49684
(231) 947-9040

on Pure Michigan Website

 

Fresh Friday – Parks Edition (8/8/14)

I have a goal to visit all the nearby state (Ohio) and county parks by the end of the year. I’ve been to several of the Butler County parks, but I haven’t explored too many north of there, particularly in Warren County, where we live.

I’m also a huge fan of lists. They help me organize my thoughts, and while I may not get to all of these by the end of the year, it’s a goal to get me outside and to learn more about the part of Ohio I moved to when we got married.

So here is the list of the parks for Warren County, Ohio:

Bowman Park

County Park
50 acres – 200 Corwin Ave, Waynesville, OH 45068
http://www.co.warren.oh.us/parks/parks-list/bowman.htm

Caesar Creek

State Park
3741 acres – 8570 E St Rt 73, Waynesville, OH 45068
http://parks.ohiodnr.gov/caesarcreek

Caesar Creek Gorge

State Nature Preserve
483 acres – 4080 Corwin Rd, Oregonia, OH 45054
http://naturepreserves.ohiodnr.gov/caesarcreekgorge

Clint Fultz Park

County park
30 acres – 6102 Corwin Ace, Corwin, OH 45068
http://www.co.warren.oh.us/parks/parks_list/clint_fultz.htm

Fort Ancient

Ohio Historical Society
764 acres – 6123 St Rt 350, Oregonia, OH 45054
http://fortancient.org

Gulley Park & Trails

County Park
119 acres 0 2168 Middleboro Rd, Clarksville, OH 45113
http://www.co.warren.oh.us/parks/parks_list/gulley.html

Hall Creek Woods

State Nature Preserve
278 acres 0 3232 Morrow-Mason-Millgrove Rd, Morrow, OH 45152
http://naturepreserves.ohiodnr.gov/hallcreekwoods

Hisey Park

County Park
158 acres – 5443 Middletown Rd, Corwin, OH 45068
http://www.co.warren.oh.us/parks/parks_list/hisey.htm

Landen Deerfield Park

County Park
95 acres – 2258 W St Rt 22/3, Maineville, OH 45039
http://www.co.warren.oh.us/parks/parks_list/landen_deerfield.htm

Mathers Mill Nature Preserve

County Preserve
42 acres – 5349 Wilmington Rd, Oregonia, OH 45054
http://www.co.warren.oh.us/parks/parks_list/mathers.htm

Now, Warren county aside, Matt and I decided to go exploring another nearby park this past week. It had been a long time for him and a first time for me to visit the Germantown MetroPark. We didn’t spend a ton of time there, but we enjoyed what we did see. I am looking forward to going back another time and trying out one of the other paths. We walked only part of the orange trail and then drove up to where the scenic overlook is – um, majorly disappointing, but I was spoiled on all the scenic overlooks up in Michigan at Sleeping Bear Dunes National Park (I’ll work on getting those posts up soon enough). I think that, even with conservation and such, I would either trim down the trees in that spot, OR build the platform higher. The Five Rivers Metroparks are all about the Greater Dayton area. I’m going to have to go check them out as well at some point. But I am going to focus first on the list above. Yep, I’m going to be good and stick to one plan. 😀

Germantown MetroPark

Five Rivers Metroparks
7101 Conservancy Road, Germantown, Ohio 45327
http://www.metroparks.org/parks/germantown/

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American Bellflower

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We dubbed this the fire tree. It looks like a flame.

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Isn’t he handsome?

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Germantown Dam on Twin Creek

Norwex Body Cloth 30- (er maybe 50-) (er maybe 75-) Day Challenge

Let me just preface that this post is filled with waaaaaay too many photos of myself. I am very much out of my comfort zone. Yep.

———————

A couple months ago, I ended up with a severe allergic reaction to some expired Proactiv moisturizer. I haven’t had an active subscription with them for a few years now (I think I stopped it a few months after coming home from Japan, so 2010-ish), but no matter how long I scheduled the intervals for delivery, I still had way more product than I could use. So, I did what any normal human being would do – I kept it stocked away until I went through each bottle.

140408 Proactiv Reaction

Not any more. I needed an extra little boost to my skin one morning, so I smeared some of the medicated (should have been my first warning) repairing lotion on my face, like I was wont to do every 4 days or so when I remembered, and walked out the door to work.  About 45 minutes after getting to work, my chin started to itch…and then my cheek right under my right eye…and then my forehead. I asked a coworker if my face was red and her expression was all I needed. I went to the bathroom to check my face, and just about every spot that I had rubbed the lotion in was bright red. And itchy! I wasn’t getting hives, but the reaction was so much. My skin was hot, itchy, and just a mess.

Like I’ve said, I’ve been using Proactiv for years, I’ve been using lotion from old bottles for years too, and I’d NEVER had a reaction like this before. Sometimes my skin decides to turn into a 13 year old monster, but for the most part, my skin is pretty OK. I had recently switched birth controls (now I’m using Sprintec…and loving it! I might do a review on my experiences with Sprintec vs Lo Loestrin a bit later) so I called the pharmacy to be sure there was no recorded reaction between the two. They had nothing, in fact, they said there should never be a reaction like that. I called my doctor and the nurse who answered told me that I was having an allergic reaction, that sometimes the medicine inside things like that just get stronger as the expiration date flies into the past. She recommended I go and get some Benadryl and gently wash the stuff off my face with just water.

I took the picture above as proof of what had happened, and the next time I went to the doctor, it was passed around the office. General consensus was that I had a chemical burn.

****RULE OF THUMB****

If you have something with medication, or prescription drugs, or even over-the-counter meds – be very cautious of the expiration dates. The doctor told me that it is common for people to hang on to medicine (guilty as charged) long after the expiration date and when they have a certain symptom, they will take it because it “worked before and is probably just weaker the older it gets.” WRONG! The chemicals in medication can, and usually will, get STRONGER as time goes on. It’s more potent and effective and sometimes it will even change into a whole new chemical! Rule of thumb is, if it’s past the expiration date, toss it. And by toss it, I mean, find a local prescription medication drop-spot so it can be destroyed properly. That does not mean, throw it in the garbage, or flush it down the toilet. That just makes it available to people who might have addiction problems or messes up the public water system, respectively.

Ok, back to Norwex.

I have a dear friend who saw the picture above and asked if I would be willing to try something out. She recently became a consultant for Norwex, which produces a Body Cloth that is great for the face. Norwex makes a line of microfiber products for a variety of uses around the house. Honestly, the amount of stuff they have is amazing. What is great about these cloths is that you don’t HAVE to use any cleansers with them. Just water. JUST WATER! Isn’t that great? We’re always reading about how certain cleaning chemicals are hazardous to our health, or don’t mix such ans such together, etc. Well, with these cloths, you don’t have to worry about it at all. (They do have specially designed cleansing products, in case you feel like you absolutely have to see suds or smell soap to be clean.)

The secret ingredient? Tiny bits of silver have been infused in the microfiber. The grade of silver they use is actually antibacterial, so the cloth can even clean itself (I’ve had mine for as long as this post title suggests and only just washed it for the first time. The microfiber also has an exfoliating aspect to it.

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I took these pictures soon after the chemical burn had gone away, I was also gearing up for a cycle of breakout on my skin.

140603 Post-Norwex

I know that there’s more lighting in these second set of pictures, but I’ll explain how my skin has changed since using the Norwex Body Cloth.

I love the exfoliating aspect of this cloth. That’s one of my big issues, dry patches of skin on my face, and I have had a dramatic decrease in that regard. My skin feels perkier, softer, and overall, healthier. When I first started using it, using “just water” was kind of drying out my skin, so I bought a Neutrogena naturals moisturizer. I’m avoiding anything with medication, but this moisturizer is rich with vitamins and anti-oxidants.

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I will say that I still get breakouts, but they don’t seem to be lasting as long as before, and they don’t seem to be as deep either, which is fabulous. My skin will never be perfect, with any product, but this really seems to be helping my skin get better.

If you are like me and about 50% of the world’s population and suffer from keratosis pilaris, this is a pretty great product. The short version of the condition is that my skin grows over my hair follicles. This happens on my arms, legs, and chin, mostly, and makes for bumpy, rough, and sometimes redden skin. Keeping skin moisturized and exfoliated is a great, non-medicated way to keep these bumps down.

If you are interested in learning more, go to the Norwex website and read up!  Like I said, they have all types of products besides Body Cloths, so check out the goods and revitalize your home in a clean, safe way.

Also, if you’re looking for a consultant, feel free to check out the website, or contact my friend, Kristy Gantz. I know she would be glad to chat with you. You can find her here: http://www.kristygantz.norwex.biz/.  You can also give her a call here: [937][935]-[o925].  Oh, and she’s on Facebook!

Enjoy!

Smoky Weeknight Chili – BHG Recipe

I subscribed to the Better Homes & Gardens magazine. It brings me so much joy when it shows up in the mailbox each month. If you follow them elsewhere (Facebook, Instagram), then you’ll find even more inspiration. I thought that I would challenge myself this year with making one of the recipes that comes each month in the magazine. I…decided to do this starting last week, so I hadn’t made anything from the January or February editions. So, here you are, the Smoky Weeknight Chili, featured on page 101 of the BHG February edition. (I’m going to have to do something hunting for the January magazine…I can’t seem to find it anywhere…)

Now I’ve never made chili before. This looked like a fairly straightforward recipe, so I figured it would be a good one to start with. Plus, there is cocoa powder, and when you grow up in Cincinnati, you know that cocoa powder can make the chili. This recipe makes 4 servings of 1 1/2 cups each. I also added ground beef, because I cannot serve a meal to the Huz without meat…and I prefer meat in my chili as well.

Smoky Weeknight Chilichili 140307

Prep Time: 10 mins (unless you’re like me and prep while you cook)
Cook Time: 35 mins

Ingredients

1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 medium green sweet pepper, chopped (3/4 cup)
1 medium onion, chopped (1/2 cup)
1 15-16 oz can chickpeas (Garbanzo), rinsed and drained
1 15-16 oz can great Northern beans, rinsed and drained
2 tbsp chili powder (more or less for taste)
1 15 oz can tomato sauce
1 14 1/2 oz can fire-roasted diced tomatoes, undrained
*1 lb ground beef, browned and drained
1 tbsp packed brown sugar
1 tbsp dark unsweetened cocoa powder
*1 tsp cinnamon (optional for more of the Cincinnati variety)

Directions

1. In a large saucepan, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add sweet pepper and onion. For great tip on how to cut bell peppers, which I did not do, click here. Cook and stir 4-5 minutes, or until tender. This took a bit longer for me, maybe 10 minutes. I think I had my heat turned down though.

2. Add beans and chili powder. Cook and stir 2 minutes.

3. Stir in tomato sauce, undrained tomatoes, ground beef, brown sugar, and cocoa powder and cinnamon, if desired. Bring to boiling and reduce heat. Cover and simmer 25 minutes, stirring occasionally.

4. Serving style: Optional toppings of sour cream, green onions, and chili powder. I shredded a bar of my Tillamook cheddar cheese and we used that as topping. It was so yummy!

Health details available (sans ground beef) at the original recipe link above. I revised the recipe format a little. They had steps 1-3 all compiled into one step, and that makes too much reading through while I’m cooking, so I separated it for you.

Hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I did! Have any chili recipes that YOU love? Care to share them?

Review: Huffman Park – Fairfield, OH

A couple of weekends ago, my mom and I went to a new park in Fairfield to make some rain barrels. I’ve been wanting a rain barrel for a while. We have well water at The House, so water isn’t a challenge here, but I really want to be a better steward of the resources God has given us. Rainwater is one great resource.

But before I get going on how great rain barrels are and how we made ours, I want to share about the park!

Huffman Park

2100 John Gray Road
Fairfield, OH 45014
513.867.5345 (Fairfield Parks & Recreation)
Website

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left: rock at the entrance with benefactors of the park. right: windmill used to aerate the pond through an underground tube.

This park has a very cool back story. I remember hearing about it a year or so ago, and now, having seen the finished product, I’m very impressed.

The Huffmans owned the property, 22 acres, and maintained the property as natural open space for their kids to play in. When the couple died, the family donated the property, land and buildings, to the city to be turned into a public park. The two conditions were that it had to be a learning park for families and all the materials in the house had to be repurposed (whether in the park or through the Habitat for Humanity Restore facility). I believe the park staff said that 92% of the house was salvageable and repurposed in some form or another. Even if that’s not the right number, the percentage was very high. Some of the trees on the property were repurposed into playground equipment.

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clockwise from top left: tunnel with an overhead viewing spot in the center; wood balance beam and a rock circle; bumble bee monkey bars (there is some metal on this but even in the hot sun it was cool to the touch); pond with native aquatic plants to attract waterfowl.

Not only is there play equipment for recreation, there are quite a few places for learning more about nature. The property includes several learning spots like a butterfly garden and a fruit and nut orchard. We even saw a persimmon growing on one of the tiny trees growing there.

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clockwise from top left: orchard learning station; tiny persimmon tree with fruit; more playground equipment and tree steppers; beautiful flowers to attract butterflies.

Last year, I took a community garden class down in Cincinnati. At one point I stopped attending (I’m not sure if we were done, or I pooped out), but I learned so much about natural gardening techniques. I would love to take more classes like that (especially for the free price) in the future, but I was so excited to hear that they would have community garden plots at Huffman Park. I had to check them out while I was there. They are completely self-service, so if you don’t maintain them yourself, they will die. But it’s a great idea and there was some good stuff to see.

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This was late in the summer and the plants were already getting brown and scorched in that heavy heat, but I bet it looked great during the growing season!

Baby corn and some peppers. Yum!

Baby corn and some peppers. Yum!

Ok, back to the rain barrel class. Sara was our teacher and there were 6 of us there making 5 barrels. My mom wanted to make one and I have wanted one for a while, so we both made our own. She ended up giving hers away, but ours is proudly out front in its bright, bright blue (that will soon be remedied with some spray paint…it is kind of an eyesore right now). We quickly went through the process and started at it. The hardest part was the hole saw. We had it figured for either not enough torque or too much. One of the men came over and helped stabilize the saw for me while I guided it because it was just too strong for me. I have two little snags in my t-shirt from where it shot off the top of the barrel towards my stomach. I was not harmed. I felt like wonder woman!

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clockwise from top: two of the “students” and our teacher Sara on the right; mom snapped a pic of me in action!; cutting the big hole to sit under the downspout.

We had a great time and learned a lot more about the park and made a couple of friends. Sara is the first naturalist on staff with Fairfield Parks and she is very enthusiastic about her job. She is looking for more ideas of things to teach Fairfield/Butler County residents. The classes are open to anybody, but they are a little more expensive if you live out of the area. Costs seem to be primarily for supplies. They have concerts, painting and photography classes, yoga, bird watching/learning, stargazing, etc. There are tons of activities for kids. Call or visit the city website (above) for more information. http://gettotheBC.com has a lot of great information about other activities throughout all of Butler County. It’s a definite must-visit for the local tourist.

In the meantime, I’m going brainstorm how to paint my new rain barrel and get it ready for next year’s growing season!

Yes, I realize that the spout is too close to the ground. We're working on that as well. :)

From start to finish!  Yes, I realize that the spout is too close to the ground. We’re working on that as well. 🙂