Monthly Archives: June 2015

Up Close and Personal: Indoor Plants

A few years ago Ray got really into gardening. He researched, bought heirloom seeds, built a raised bed, used natural homemade pesticides, and took care of our vegetables. With Ray having multiple surgeries and feeling relatively awful for the past 9 months, we majorly scaled back on our outdoor garden this year. We only planted tomatoes, peppers, and herbs.
To unintentionally make up for our smaller garden this year, I think we’ve doubled (tripled?!) our indoor plants. I love having something alive and growing in our home. Ray lives like a vampire with all curtains closed all the time, which isn’t very conducive to growing house plants. Thankfully, we have a tiny sun room at the front of our house, too small for furniture but perfect for plants.
The other day I was playing around with macro lenses, not planning on posting or using these photos for anything. But guys, look how fun they turned out!
IMG_0463IMG_0461IMG_0465IMG_0473IMG_0469IMG_0470IMG_0462IMG_0472And now the best part! Teeny tiny cactus spikes! We had a cactus that was a little beat up by Black Cat. He usually doesn’t mess with our plants too much, but I guess he really liked this one. We moved the sad cactus outside in hopes of reviving it. After it didn’t improve, Ray cut it into strips and left them in the pot. Several weeks later we discovered teeny tiny baby cacti growing from the cuttings!!IMG_0475IMG_0478IMG_0477IMG_0480

Current Projects

IMG_0413IMG_0374IMG_0419Right now, Ray and I both feel overloaded with projects. But to be honest, we don’t hate it! Blog projects, garden projects, work projects, comic projects, podcast projects, art show projects, convention projects, plant projects, house projects, and the list goes on.  So, all of this has been keeping us super busy for the last few weeks! Here’s the problem – I don’t like being busy! I like watching Netflix! Hahaha, so this summer is surly going to be interesting. 😉

Baked Rosemary Parmesan Potato Chips

IMG_0447IMG_0422Guys, I’m not trying to brag, but my dinner side dishes have been killing it!!! My best has definitely been baked Rosemary and parmesan potato chips. Instead of just giving you a recipe I’m going to take you through the journey of accidentally making the best chip ever. Originally, a friend of mine mentioned salt and vinegar zucchini chips on facebook. I thought “Ooooooooh, that sounds delicious, I’ll make them for dinner” but then immediately remembered that Ray hates zucchini. I also remembered that we didn’t even have zucchini, so that was out. I moved on to potatoes. Ray loves them, I love them, and we had some at the house! Score!
I figured that russet potatoes would probably work best, but of course we only had red potatoes. Whatever, they worked fine. We don’t own a mandolin cutter, but I managed to cut the potatoes into pretty thin slices despite using a dull steak knife.IMG_0425 First, I decided to boil them. I figured if they cooked a little bit before going in the oven, maybe they’d have a better chance at getting crispy. Now remember, at this point I was still planning on making salt and vinegar chips, so I added 10-12 splashes on red wine vinegar + salt to the water. I boiled those guys for about 10 minutes, or until they were fork tender.
While the potatoes were boiling I checked out my garden to see if we had any fresh herbs available. We had an abundance of rosemary and mint. I decided against mint potato chips and gathered a bunch of rosemary.IMG_0431IMG_0434IMG_0429IMG_0439 Next, I transferred the potato slices to a cookie sheet. I painted (I mean, I’m an artist) olive oil over the slices and added salt, pepper, and lots of the chopped fresh rosemary. Around this time I forgot my goal was to make salt and vinegar chips and my brain switched over to rosemary chips. I put the potatoes in a 350 degree oven. After about 15 minutes I remembered we had fancy parmesan cheese in our fridge. I took the potatoes out, shredded (crumbled?) the cheese and sprinkled it on top. Again, just getting farther and farther away from salt + vinegar. I put those bad boys back in the oven for 20ish more minutes until they were golden brown.
I’ve made these several times in the last few weeks and they just keep getting better and better!! (Don’t mind me, just tooting my own horn.) You must try them!
IMG_0440IMG_0442IMG_0449IMG_0450Husband approved!!!
Also, I still want to try to make salt + vinegar potatoes! I came across this recipe on pinterest recently and can’t wait to try it!

Saturday Weird Day

I knew Saturday was going to be weird when I started picking out my clothes. I normally do laundry every Sunday evening, but I was really sick the previous Sunday, so only essentials were washed. I was going to a church-lady wedding shower for my friend Kayla and wanted to look at least somewhat cute. This is mostly because I don’t see those ladies very often and I didn’t want them to think “Well, Allison has really let herself go.” Surprise, none of them cared and several of them thought I was my sister. Anyway, I picked out this weird-o outfit of a too-big shirt/dress I had to pin, leggings, and a pink cardigan that was way too hot for summer.
Before going to the shower, I needed to stop by a hardware store to pick up some gardening gloves to add to my gift (which included gardening tools, a hose nozzle, and some flower seeds). Ray and I almost exclusively shop at Lowes, but I decided to go to Home Depot because it was closer. Guess what, I don’t know where anything is located in Home Depot! I couldn’t find gardening gloves, a man WORKING IN THE GARDENING DEPARTMENT told me they were in hardware, once I got to hardware no gardening gloves were to be found, another employee ended up finding them back in gardening section next to the cash register. Whew! At that point I was sweaty (remember my too hot cardigan) and still had to assemble my gift in the car.
I made it to the shower, enjoyed several glasses of coffee punch, watched Kayla open presents, and had the chance to visit with people I hadn’t seen in a while. Once I got home, Ray was waiting for me to decide what we were going to do for the rest of the day.
We browsed the internet looking for events or happenings in the area. We found a winery in Gainesville and decided that’s where we needed to go.IMG_2748

But first, we stopped at Bev’s for cheese burgers. We love Bev’s! One of my first ever blog posts was a review of Bev’s!IMG_2754
After Bev’s, we made our way to Bluefields Winery in the middle of nowhere North Florida. They make blueberry wine and muscadine grape wine. Florida wine, if you will.  We did a wine tasting and while it wasn’t our favorite, we both enjoyed a few of the varieties. Here’s an awkward photo of me preparing to try wine: IMG_2755Next, we decided to continue south to Ocala. We stopped at Vibranium Comics first. This was actually a nightmare. Here’s why:

1. I got into an argument WITH A COP about movies. He said Pitch Perfect 2 and Tomorrowland were better than Mad Max. Now, I haven’t seen PP2 or Tomorrowland… but clearly Mad Max was better. This is why people don’t trust cops!!!!
2. I was trying to avoid an awkward loud family giving opinions on every superhero movie ever made. They would never leave! Or stop talking!
3. It felt like we were there for 100 years.
Our next stop was Clark’s Comics, a much nicer atmosphere and no annoying cops. I got an ice coffee from a coffee shop next door and listened to 90’s punk rock (Clark’s choice, not mine) while Ray looked through hundreds of long boxes. IMG_2757As we were leaving, we noticed a shop called Vintage Toy King next door to the comic book shop. It was awesome!! They had Action figures of all kinds, toys, games, legos, etc. We were also able to talk with the owner for a while about Infinity Con.
After that we made our way to downtown Ocala. We were planning on just getting dinner, but we saw an antique shop on the way and decided to check it out. We tend to go through phases regarding antique and vintage shopping and lately we haven’t really been into it. I’m glad we stopped though. Here’s Ray dancing through the store: IMG_2761And here is me in a forest of driftwood: IMG_2768We had dinner at Feta, a super delicious Greek restaurant in downtown Ocala. I ordered a Greek salad and Ray ordered kabobs. We HIGHLY recommend this place! After dinner we drove home.IMG_2777

I love having plans and things to do on the weekends. If I sleep all day or end up laying around the house I always feel like I wasted my time. We have a lot of busy weekends this summer, so expect more long blog posts recounting every detail and semi-blurry iphone pictures for documentation. 🙂