Monday, March 24, 2014

Catching up with the Cuckoos..............

Whew, another fantastic Celebrate Oz is in the rear view now. Like all good things, the anticipation is so exhilarating and the ending is so.....empty and the relief that comes when the responsibility is finito it is glorious.

But there is always next year.

I swear to you, I got so many more lovely comments both here and on my facebook about all the wonderful folks participation in Hues of Oz. So many clever and insightful posts. So many wonderful prizes and stories to read. Wow, ya done it again lovelies. Thanks. It was so much fun.

So Saturday morning dawned and the Cuckoos began the work, work, work of getting ready for our newest endeavor in gardening. First we had to finish the front yard cleanup. Sweet Man lead the charge as we went to battle the Ponderosa Pine tree and it's messy winter crop of fallen needles. 6 bags of needles alone. Of course the tree is 50 years old. Big ole mamma jamma. We have rock in our front yard. Yeah for those of you who live where Mother Nature waters your lawns, uh I stand in amazement. We put in landscaping rock when we moved into this house because we had a choice, lawn and the water bill or food. I love cook so we chose to rock the front yard. And it's all good. There is only one house on the whole block that still has a lawn and it is only a small percentage of what it used to be. Drought does that to ya.

Anyway it took us less than two hours to complete the task. The grands have gotten very good at these outside jobs now and when we finished we all had that really good feeling of accomplishment. Ry said he was now a master cleaner upper. Uh, well maybe outside his room but inside, not so much.

GK was phoneless for the two hours and was still breathing and walking and everything. Shock and wonder. She really has gotten much better since she (as she puts it) "got dumped by that loser". Yes, sportsfans, the romance of the century has come to an end. Thanks be to the universe. GK came away with many, many lessons learned and is back to her happy little snarky bird self. It is a real joy.

So on Sunday, I bought them tickets to the Coffee and Chocolate show. Shelley and the kids went and came back with all kinds of fun stories and some really good chocolate. They had a super time and even made a visit to the flea market. Made it back with some band merch as GK but it. T-shirts and other finely aged junk.

Then we all got busy out in the backyard making way for our strawbale garden. It our first attempt at this gardening approach. Set up strawbales, ply them with nitrogen and water for a couple of weeks to get them ready to receive soil, manure and plants. The bales serve as a composting water holding medium for all sorts of plants and should last two seasons in our area. It's worth a shot. The weeding is at a minimum, the bales make it high enough for me to tend, you can plant earlier because of the bales themselves keeping temperature and I don't have to watch Sweet Man kill himself to till the soil. All that is positive enough to encourage us to give it a try. Plus we all love fresh veggies so much.

Last year I bought GK an old full size bed at a yard sale. It is pretty far gone. And after we looked it over we decided it was going to be way too much effort to make it look like she wanted it so we bagged that idea and left it to sell at our garage sale. Then Shelley and I were planning what we would sell and decided that it was perfect for a "garden bed". We also have an orphan side table that we are going to set up next to it and have an outdoor light (already here) so the plants will have a night light (on a timer). And thus was born our nutty idea of using the bed to house bales of straw and our salsa garden. I'll take pictures as soon as we go get our bales and begin the set up.

Today is that day. As soon as Shelley gets out of work, we're off to get our bales and begin our next nutty adventure. Poor Sweet Man is just shaking his head and acting like he has other things to do. Can you blame him???????

So we have been busy with work, work, fun. Maybe not so good for joints and muscles but great for thinking about heirloom tomatoes, chocolate bell peppers, black jalapenos, and all the other organic veggies we hope to be stuffing our faces with this summer. Oh yeah, Cinderella pumpkins (lumpy green ones) and Moon and Stars watermelon (rind is dark with yellow spots) too. If we still have enough um pa pa after we finish the "garden bed" and the set up for squash and beans etc, we will go for another bunch (or do you call them a herd?) of bales and set up a corn growing section on the south side of the house. The great thing about this system, you can even garden on top of concrete.

Wish us luck and I'll see you at the end of the week for the announcement of the winner of the Hues of Oz shoe cards. Smooches and squoozes, Oma Linda, head Cuckoo at the Casa


  1. I'm so glad that "Celebrate Oz" was such a rousing success. Don't overdo it with the gardening, although it does sound like an interesting project. Take care.

  2. Home grown tomatoes! Nothing like them or as Guy Clark sings: "I forget all about the sweatin' and diggin' every time I go out and pick me a big'en!" I'm sure all the work you put into your straw bale garden will pay off big time for many years.

    Thanks again for all the effort you put into making the Celebrate Oz event such a fun time. Everyone had such cool posts, each one so different. I wish I had written my post a bit differently but there is always next year!

  3. I need a nap after reading this adventure! I'm i the rested in planting in straw bales? Your so clever! Bottle that energy and send it north!
    XoDebi in Northern Canada, still under a snow blanket!

  4. I have friends who did the straw bale gardening and had good results. It is helpful where there is no soil.
    So glad Oz was a success but then there was no doubt. You live your passion and deserve the rewards.

  5. I've missed the backstory to this, but I laughed out loud:

    "Yes, sportsfans, the romance of the century has come to an end. Thanks be to the universe."

    Celebrate Oz was brilliant! Thank you!!!

  6. Oh my this makes me want to run out into the garden and PLANT!!! Love the idea of the garden bed LOL, I have never heard of straw bale gardening before, sounds very self sustaining in many ways, is the straw like 'tied up' in the bale and you plant on top? I got Big F all these heirloom seeds one year because I had read a Vanity Fair article on that A-Hole Monsanto company, couldn't believe it, so went into Armageddon mode... still didn't really get me in the garden, our yard is more suited to mountain goats... anyway, I will be really interested to see how your garden goes/grows :) One more thing... THANK YOU!!! I had fun, I felt a real lot of Oz love, and I can't believe how amazingly creative the Oz partiers are, Oz has evolved into a magical land where each & everyone of us can stamp our identity on a piece of it... oh my, really, how cool is that! :)

  7. So the romance ended and you will bale plant - Lovely - give GK the first big un to celebrate your victory garden. We have a garden as well, but not surrounded by a bed frame and bales of hay(wonderful idea). Enjoyed your "OZ" fun n tales. WE are in for another big ole snow storm, this one said to be the storm of the century? Tomorrow, the snow, wind and two storms will collide with each other and our land will benefit from both. Glad I haven't put the shovels away just yet. Have a wonderful day Oma :)

  8. It's going to look so cool, your hay bale bed. We are putting in a minimal garden this year. Probably just tomatoes and beans. Just too busy with work and we are gone too much and just don't have time.

  9. A teenage girl with no phone for 120 minutes? What kind of mad house are you running? Haven't you consider the made-up-psychological effects?

    Hugs. ;-D

  10. Love the sound of the garden, especially the new bed :oD

  11. Oh Wow Oma Linda! I hope you take some pictures! I am really excited to see all of this! For me, I am going to have some fun in the backyard too! My mom has a broken chair, I am going to use. I got some cool cement skulls and I made a cool sign to put on top! Can't wait to show everything! And, I have already preordered some plants ;o) Thanks for another great party ;o) xooxxo


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