Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Four Ingredient Dessert

Sometimes it is good to have some normalcy, especially with everything that has been going on around here so crazy!  Friday night on our way to go pick up our daughter, we drove down the main strip in Joplin, Rangeline to see some of the heartache.  Oh WOW!  And I hear that if you go down 26th street it's even worse.  We're still trying to stay out of the way for the clean up personnel.  My dad and another guy went over yesterday to help a few people out.  He said, if you haven't been down through the heart of it all, you haven't seen anything. 

So anyway, back to the "normalcy".  Every year on Sunday of Memorial Day weekend is my grandma's side of the family's family reunion.  I was wondering if it would happen this year with everything going on, but it did.  Usually the way it happens we all meet up around 12-1 at the church out side of town and we all bring covered dishes.  I thought it might be fun for Tbug to contribute something so she and I went to work making a dessert.  I'm through the strictest part of my diet, so I even though I wasn't supposed to have any, I nibbled a small piece just to try since this was a new recipe.  YUMMO! :) 

Tbug and my mother-in-law had made plans to have a sleep over the last time we had Tbug so when she went to Memaw's house on Saturday night, I guess they made sugar cookies and my mother-in-laws wonderful Chocolate chip cookies.

Anyway here's this really cool 4-ingredient dessert.  It's not to bad, especially if you LOVE peanut butter.  I myself really only like it on toast, but it's not bad here either :)  And these are SUPER easy & quick... possibly why the name :)

Speedy Little Devils
1 pkg Devils Food Cake Mix, 1 stick melted butter (cooled), 
1-7 oz jar marshmallow creme, 3/4 cup creamy peanut butter

Combine melted butter and dry cake mix until crumbly.
 This is melted butter, even though it looks like eggs...
and sometimes you just have to get in there and work it with your hands...

Reserve 1 1/2 cups of this mixture.

Pat the remaining crumb mixture into an ungreased 9x13 pan.

Next mix the peanut butter and marshmallow creme.

Spread evenly over the crumb mixture.

  And this is about the time I lost my helper...

Crumble the reserved cake mixture on top of the peanut butter layer. 

Bake for 20 minutes at 350 degrees.  Let cool and cut into bars.

Speedy Little Devils
1 pkg Devils Food Cake Mix
1 stick melted butter (cooled)
1 7 oz jar marshmallow creme
3/4 cup creamy peanut butter

Combine melted butter and dry cake mix until crumbly.  Reserve 1 1/2 cups of this mixture.  Pat the remaining crumb mixture into an ungreased 9x13 pan.  Next mix the peanut butter and marshmallow creme.  Spread evenly over the crumb mixture.  Crumble the reserved cake mixture on top of the peanut butter layer.  Bake for 20 minutes at 350 degrees.  Let cool and cut into bars.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Horse Knowledge - Troy Marshall

Last year I shared some wisdom from Troy Marshall comparing marriage and your dog.  If you don't remember it, I would recommend you go read his wisdom.  Today, I'm at it again, imparting more wisdom, but this is based off your relationship with your horse.  Again, it is Troy Marshall's words, not mine, so don't yell at me :).  I just like what it said and thought I would share.  If you don't agree, that's all together fine too :)

Everything I ever needed to know I learned from the back of a horse.

To start, I should say knowing something and actually applying it, aren’t exactly the same thing. Secondly, I believe – as do probably most parents – that I've been blessed with some pretty good kids.

It was 10o F. the other night, the wind was blowing 40 mph and we were arriving home fairly late after a school activity. We pulled in the yard and all three kids went inside, put on their chore clothes and headed outside - without me having to mention it and without a complaint. I loved showing cattle and horses when I was a kid, but my appreciation for youth livestock programs has truly increased by watching their effect on my kids. That was the inspiration for this article.

When I was in college, I did an internship with a reining horse trainer who taught me quite a bit about horses but more about life. I'll always remember the day we were all riding in the indoor arena when the trainer dismounted and just stood there with his back against the wall holding his horse.

I figured there was something wrong and rode up to question him if something had happened. The trainer just shook his head and said he was growing frustrated and decided to stop and get his emotions under control before he "ruined six months of training in 60 seconds." I've never forgotten that lesson – you can’t control a horse unless you've first learned to control yourself.

The motivational speaker Zig Ziglar tells a story about a boss acting inappropriately to an employee who then takes it out on one of his employees; the chain continues until eventually a young kid kicks his cat. Ziglar made the point that it would have been much simpler if the original boss would have just drove to that kid's house and kicked the cat.

While the story is kind of humorous, it illustrates just how destructive anger and frustrated outbursts can be. Unjustified punishment or out-of-proportion discipline – even if just in the form of words – creates frustration; a lack of understanding that usually starts a negative spiral of events. That's the great thing about horses; you must have your emotions – especially your negative emotions – under control. Horses are among the most perceptive animals and they pick up on our moods and attitudes in an amazing way. Self control is foundational for clear thoughts and positive actions.

Another lesson I've learned from horses is that shortcuts don’t usually work. Often in life, we want a desired outcome but are unwilling or unable to put in the groundwork to make it happen. There would be a whole lot more horsemen if one could create a finished horse in 20-30 rides, but a good horse is created through a couple of years of good fundamentals applied on a daily and consistent basis.

A beautiful flying lead change, for example, is a lot of fun, but the hours of loping circles, building true collection, and doing leg yielding exercises can be boring and downright monotonous. It's those who do the little things on a consistent basis who put themselves in a position to compete for the big prizes.

There's no substitute for elbow grease and wet saddle blankets. One thing my kids learned early on is that showmanship classes aren't won the week before the fair but in March and April. Long flowing manes, hair coats that pop, and those winning runs are created through hard work and practice. While talent certainly plays a role, the difference between a blue and red ribbon more often than not is decided by commitment and hard work.

You can’t put a square peg in a round hole. Suitability to purpose and passion matter, of course; if you don’t love it, you probably should let someone else do it. To be good at something, one has to love it or they won’t be willing to pay the price that success demands.

At the same time, with enough work and patience, you can make a racehorse lope slow, or a draft horse spin, but they'll never be great at it. I don't believe in destiny, but I know God has created all of us with a purpose and we need to discover what it is. To truly succeed, you must follow your life's calling. High Brow Cat may be one of the greatest cutting horse sires of all time, but if you tried to turn his progeny into jumping horses, it would be an entirely different story.

Details matter. Horsemen know that a performance is only as good as the preparation. Everything from the horse shoes to the horse’s diet must be done right if a performance is to be maximized. In all life's relationships, you must take care of the small things.

I could write a book about the many lessons you can learn from your horse. But perhaps none is more important than knowing that if you build trust, if you're totally committed, and you have a positive outlook, not only can you rely on someone else but the partnership can create something far superior to anything you could achieve alone. A cowboy without a horse, or a horse without a rider, is simply incomplete.

Investing in a relationship takes effort and time, but is well worth it. And, yes, there is that rare time where you simply don’t click and it's in both the horse and rider's best interests to go separate ways. Most of the time, one didn’t perform their due diligence in the purchase and got caught up in the color, size or pedigree of the horse. In those cases where things started smooth and turned out sour, it usually isn’t the horse's fault; rather it's a rider who lacked the knowledge, experience or patience to solve the problem.
-- Troy Marshall

Friday, May 27, 2011

45 Second: Memoirs of an ER Doctor from May 22, 2011

I found this on the mercy.net website.  This is from an ER doctor that experienced the tornado first at at St. John's Regional Medical Center, part of the Mercy Hospital Group.  (the above link takes you to this same wording down below, I just wanted to share)

45 Seconds: Memoirs of an ER Doctor from May 22, 2011.

My name is Dr. Kevin Kikta, and I was one of two emergency room doctors who were on duty at St. John’s Regional  Medical Center in Joplin, MO on Sunday May 22,2011. 
You never know that it will be the most important day of your life until the day is over.  The day started like any other day for me: waking up, eating, going to the gym, showering, and going to my 4 00pm ER shift. As I drove to the hospital I mentally prepared for my shift as I always do, but nothing could ever have prepared me for what was going to happen on this shift.  Things were normal for the first hour and half.   At approximately 5:30 pm we received a warning that a tornado had been spotted. . Although I work in Joplin and went to medical school in Oklahoma, I live in New Jersey, and I have never seen or been in a tornado.  I learned that a  “code gray” was being called.  We were to start bringing patients to safer spots within the ED and hospital.
At 5: 42pm a security guard yelled to everyone, “Take cover! We are about to get hit by a tornado!”  I ran with a pregnant RN, Shilo Cook, while others scattered to various places, to the only place that I was familiar with in the hospital without windows, a small doctor’s office in the ED. Together, Shilo and I tremored and huddled under a desk.  We heard a loud horrifying sound like a large locomotive ripping through the hospital.  The whole hospital shook and vibrated as we heard glass shattering, light bulbs popping, walls collapsing, people screaming,  the ceiling caving in above us, and water pipes breaking, showering water down on everything.  We suffered this in complete darkness, unaware of anyone else’s status, worried, scared. We could feel a tight pressure in our heads as the tornado annihilated the hospital and the surrounding area.  The whole process took about 45 seconds, but seemed like eternity. The hospital had just taken a direct hit from a category EF-4 tornado.
 Then it was over.  Just 45 seconds.   45 long seconds.  We looked at each other, terrified, and thanked God that we were alive.  We didn’t know, but hoped that it was safe enough to go back out to the ED, find the rest of the staff and patients, and assess our loses.
“Like a bomb went off. ”  That’s the only way that I can describe what we saw next.  Patients were coming into the ED in droves.  It was absolute, utter chaos.  They were limping, bleeding, crying, terrified, with debris and glass sticking out of them, just thankful to be alive.  The floor was covered with about 3 inches of water, there was no power, not even backup generators, rendering it completely dark and eerie in the ED.  The frightening aroma of methane gas leaking from the broken gas lines permeated the air; we knew, but did not dare mention aloud, what that meant.  I redoubled my pace.
We had to use flashlights to direct ourselves to the crying and wounded.  Where did all the flashlights come from  ?  I’ll never know, but immediately, and thankfully, my years of training in emergency procedures kicked in.  There was no power, but our mental generators, were up and running, and on high test adrenaline.  We had no cell phone service in the first hour, so we were not even able to call for help and backup in the ED.
I remember a patient in his early 20’s gasping for breath,  telling me that he was going to die.  After a quick exam,  I removed the large shard of glass from his back,  made the clinical diagnosis of a pneumothorax (collapsed lung) and gathered supplies from wherever I could locate them to  insert a thoracostomy tube in him.  He was a trooper;  I’ll never forget his courage.  He allowed me to do this without any local anesthetic since none could be found. With his life threatening injuries I knew  he was running out of time, and it had to be done.  Quickly.  Imagine my relief when I  heard a big rush of air, and breath sounds again;  fortunately,  I was able to get him transported out. I immediately  moved on to the next patient, .an asthmatic in status asthmaticus.  We didn’t even have the option of trying a nebulizer treatment or steroids, but I was able to get him intubated using a flashlight that I held in my mouth.  A small child of approximately 3-4 years of age was crying; he had a large avulsion of skin to his neck and spine.  The gaping wound revealed his cervical spine and upper thoracic spine bones.  I could actually count his vertebrae with my fingers.  This was a child, his whole life ahead of him, suffering life threatening wounds in front of me, his eyes pleading me to help him..  We could not find any pediatric C collars in the darkness, and water  from the shattered main pipes was once again showering down upon all of us. Fortunately,  we were able to get him immobilized with towels, and start an IV with fluids and pain meds before shipping him out.  We felt paralyzed and helpless ourselves.   I didn’t even know  a lot of the RN’s I was working with.  They were from departments scattered all over the hospital. It didn’t matter.  We worked as a team, determined to save lives.  There were no specialists available-- my orthopedist was trapped in the OR.  We were it, and we knew we had to get patients out of the hospital as quickly as possible.  As we were shuffling them out, the fire department showed up and  helped us to evacuate.   Together we worked furiously, motivated by the knowledge and  fear that the methane leaks could cause  the hospital could blow up at any  minute.

Things were no better outside of the ED. I saw a man man crushed under a large SUV, still alive, begging for help; another one was dead, impaled by a street sign through his chest.   Wounded people were walking, staggering, all over, dazed and shocked.   All around us was chaos, reminding me of scenes in a war movie, or newsreels from bombings in Bagdad.  Except this was right in front of me  and it had happened in just 45 seconds .  My own car was blown away.  Gone. Seemingly evaporated.  We searched within a half mile radius later that  night, but never found the car, only the littered, crumpled  remains of former cars.  And a John Deere tractor that had blown in from miles away.
Tragedy has a way of revealing human goodness.  As I worked , surrounded  by  devastation and suffering ,  I realized I was not alone.  The people of the community of Joplin were absolutely incredible.  Within minutes of the horrific event, local residents showed up in pickups and sport utility vehicles, all offering to help transport the wounded to other facilities, including Freeman, the trauma center literally across the street.  Ironically, it had  sustained only  minimal damage and was functioning (although I’m sure overwhelmed).  I carried on, grateful for the help of the community.   At one point I had placed a conscious intubated patient in the back of a pickup truck with someone, a layman,  for transport. The patient was self- ventilating himself, and I gave instructions to someone with absolutely no medical knowledge on how to bag the patient until they got to Freeman.
Within hours I estimated that over 100 EMS units showed up from various towns,  counties  and  four  different states. Considering the circumstances, their response time was miraculous. . Roads were blocked with downed utility lines, smashed up cars in piles, and they still made it through.
We  continued to carry patients out of the hospital on anything that we could find: sheets, stretchers, broken doors, mattresses, wheelchairs—anything that could be used as a transport mechanism.
As I finished up what I could do at St John’s, I walked with two RN’s , Shilo Cook and Julie Vandorn,  to a makeshift MASH center that was being set up miles away at Memorial Hall.  We walked where flourishing neighborhoods once stood,   astonished to see only the disastrous remains of flattened homes, body parts, and dead people everywhere.  I saw a small dog just wimpering in circles over his master who was dead,  unaware that his master would not ever play with him again.  At one point we tended to a young woman who just stood crying over her dead mother who was crushed by her own home.  The young woman covered her mother up with a blanket and then asked all of us,  “What should I do?”  We had no answer for her, but silence and tears.
By this time news crews and photographers were starting to swarm around, and we were able to get a ride to Memorial Hall from another RN.  The chaos was slightly more controlled at Memorial Hall.  I was relieved to see many of my colleagues, doctors from every specialty, helping out.  It was amazing to be able to see life again.  It was also amazing to see how fast workers mobilized to set up this MASH unit under the circumstances. Supplies, food, drink, generators, exam tables, all were there—except pharmaceutical pain meds. I sutured multiple lacerations, and splinted many fractures, including some open with bone exposed, and then intubated another patient with severe COPD, slightly better controlled conditions this time, but still less than optimal.
But we really needed pain meds.  I  managed to go back to the St John’s with another physician, pharmacist, and a sheriffs officer. Luckily, security let us in to a highly guarded pharmacy to  bring back a garbage bucket sized supply of pain meds.
At about midnight I walked around the parking lot of St. Johns with local law enforcement officers looking for anyone who might be alive or trapped in crushed cars.  They spray painted “X”s on the fortunate vehicles that had been searched without finding anyone inside. The unfortunate vehicles wore “X’s” and sprayed-on numerals, indicating the  number of  dead inside,    crushed in their cars, cars  which now resembled flattened  recycled aluminum cans the tornado had crumpled  in her iron hands,   an EF4 tornado, one of the worst in history, whipping through this quiet town with demonic strength.   I continued back to Memorial hall into the early morning hours until my ER colleagues told me it was time for me to go home.  I was completely exhausted.  I had seen enough of my first tornado. 
How can one describe these indescribable scenes of destruction?   The next day I saw news coverage of this horrible, deadly tornado.  It was excellent coverage, and Mike Bettes from the Weather Channel did a great job, but there is nothing that pictures and video can depict  compared to seeing it in person. That video will play forever in my mind.
I would like to express my sincerest gratitude to everyone involved in helping during this nightmarish disaster.  My fellow doctors, RN’s, techs, and all of the staff from St. John’s.  I have worked at St John’s for approximately 2 years, and I have always been proud to say that I was a physician at St John’s in Joplin, MO.  The smart, selfless  and immediate response  of the professionals and the community during this catastrophe proves to me that St John’s and the surrounding community  are special,.  I am beyond proud
To the members of this  community, the  health care workers from states away,  and especially Freeman Medical Center, I commend everyone on unselfishly coming together and giving 110% the way that you all did, even in your own time of need. St John ‘s Medical Center is gone, but her spirit and goodness lives on in each of you.
EMS, you should be proud of yourselves.  You were all excellent, and did a great job despite incredible difficulties and against all odds
For all of the injured  who  I treated, although I do not remember your names (nor would I expect you to remember mine) I will never forget your faces.  I’m glad that I was able to make a difference and help in the best way that I knew how, and hopefully give some of you a chance at rebuilding your lives again.  For  those whom   I was not able to get to or treat, I apologize whole heartedly.
Last, but not least, thank you, and God Bless you, Mercy/St John for providing incredible care in good times and  even more so, in times  of the unthinkable, and  for all the training that enabled  us to be a team and treat the people and save lives. 
Kevin J. Kikta, DO
Department of Emergency Medicine
Mercy/St Johns Regional Medical Center, Joplin, MO

Let me tell you...

... Just how awesome of a company I work for!!

So we are mainly the components people.  We make parts that we sell to other sectors and they make the finished product.  Very seldom do we actually put out the finished product, but in some cases we do.  We manufacture parts that are found in most homes, offices, and automobiles, just as an example.  From the beginnings in 1883 where the first coil spring bed was manufactured, the company has grown to 19,000 employee-partners in 140 manufacturing facilities located in 18 countries.

But I think this goes above and beyond all of that....

We had at least 35 families in our company who lost everything and unfortunately we lost 1 employee-partner and his wife.  But our branches located all over the country as well as some of our customers (you know who buy the parts we make so they can make the finished product) have contacted our corporate office here and said,
"We want to help, this is what we can offer.  We're waiting to see what you need."

Seriously, how freakin AWESOME is that?  You want beds, we make beds, and at that, they are building beds for the families that lost everything.  One of my husbands friends lost his cell phone, our company bought him a new one since they had absolutely no way to contact friends and family (and their families live in Kansas).  One branch is sending a pallet load of plastic tubs, because boxed ones will draw moisture and mold what these people have been able to save with what's left.  People in the company are pulling strings to get these people in houses.

It's just this type of thing that makes my heart SING SONGS OF JOY!

On top of that our company along with at least 3 other companies that I've heard of (it may be more now) are donating $1 Million just to help Joplin recover.  One of the banks is donating $10,000.  The Carthage Senior class of 2011 donated $10,000.  A Joplin family has said they will match dollar for dollar to one organization up to $65,000.  I heard of another family up more in the St. Louis area doing the same.  Look at all this support!

I just had to brag just a bit... sorry :)

And remember, when all else fails, Pray!

And I ask for special prayers for my {step}daughter... Her mom and her husband (Tbug's {step}dad) lost his brother in Sunday's tornado.  Today is the funeral.  Please send extra prayers up for them in their time of hurting right now.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

I present you with, Italian Chicken, of sorts :)

Today I had to talk about something different.  So I chose one of my favorite topics, Food :)

Now this is kind of adapted from a recipe that Jill @ Teenage Bride gave me, but that's because I couldn't find one thing she was talking about, secondly when I got home my parmesan cheese was molded (both containers), YUCK! So I improvised and am still pleasantly surprised and pleased with the results.

So without further Ado,

Italian Chicken, or sorts :)

Chicken, 2 cloves of Garlic, some Cheddar Cheese, Italian dressing, Italian Seasoning & Pimentos

First things first, rub each piece of chicken you are using down with the garlic.  I actually ran my garlic through a press and then left some bits and pieces on each chicken breast as well, but either way you do it is fine.

Then you sprinkle with the Italian seasoning, covering each piece of chicken.

Now here I put Pimentos (couldn't find the hot peppers in a jar Jill told me about :(...) so I spread a small handful across each chicken breast.

And I used cheddar cheese as opposed to Parmesan because... mold... yuck!  That's cheese is going to my neighbor's piggies! :)  Sprinkle as little or as much cheese as you'd like.

And then top it with Italian dressing, or in our case we used Bruschetta Italian Vinaigrette.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and bake for 40 minutes.

And here's what it looks like out of the oven! 

And serve with some green beans or your dish of choice (Jill said garlic mashed potatoes but I'm not allowed that yet... so I went with green beans) and Enjoy!

On another note, if you are a praying person, Please keep Joplin in your prayers.  And this weekend is going to be very trying for the City and our state as a whole.  If you want more info on my vagueness, please leave me a comment and I'll be happy to email you back.  If you don't have your email linked up to get returned messages, please leave it for me or email me personally.  And I will not get into talking religion either, but if you pray, please pray.  If not, that's fine too.

And also...  MU (University of Missouri, Columbia) has created a "One Mizzou" t-shirt to help raise funds for the Joplin, MO area.  If you are interested, the link is below. 

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Help Find Will Norton

**Update 5/30/11 - They found his body in a pond.  Here is a newslink that explains it.**

**Update, I found a link to the NY Times that explains a little more about him**
**Although I wish the update was news they found him.  continue to pray!!!**

There are a bunch of people still missing from Sunday's Tornadoes.

And since we've been classified now as having an EF5 tornado that means winds over 200 mph.  There is a boy missing and his family is trying to find him.  I thought I would post this here in case people east of us might know if his where abouts.  I'm sad to report that there was a 4 year old little girl found in Miller, MO which is about 60 or so miles from Joplin. 

They think that the boy has been checked into the Freeman ER there in Joplin, alive, but has been transferred to another hospital.  If he didn't have ID and didn't know who he was, he may be checked in as John Doe. 

Here is his description off his facebook page.
This is Will Norton, 6'4", blue eyes, no tattoos that I know of. He might be in a hospital out of the Joplin area. People were transferred to KC, Fayetteville, Springfield, Tulsa, etc.

There isn't much I feel like I've been able to do with the search/rescue of the Joplin Tornado, however I felt like this might be a wild shot in the dark, but maybe it'll work.

Here is his facebook page.

• PLEASE send any solid information to us at FindWillNorton@gmail.com or call 757-751-9455

News Release Jasper county Sheriff's Office

Click on this to make it bigger to read.  Apparently there was a large barrel of unknown substance that wound up on someone's lawn in this area.  I'm just posting this in case anyone in the area stumbles across this.

Let's Be Honest

With the recent events that have happened that have happened, I'm back to thinking about this song:

Then I heard another song this morning that just brought peace to me.  I have to tell you, "My name is Nicole and I do NOT do well with severe weather."  I've never taken it lightly.  One night when I still lived at my parents house I stood at the basement door with my shoes on, my clothes on (not pj's), My purse on my shoulder, keys in the purse and a flashlight in my hand until the tornado warning went away.

One thing they said on the tv is people used to not take it seriously.  Well by golly, I think it'll be a while before people don't freak out when even a thunderstorm passes through.  That's actually what the Joplin Tornado started out as in Kansas and when it crossed into Missouri went into Tornado mode.

Last night they were saying there was a possibility the Tornadoes that raced through Kansas and Oklahoma causing destruction would hit us last night between 8pm and 2am.  About 9:30ish (so I missed the finale of DWTS :(... LOL) they broke in and were watching the storm.  I went into scared mode.  I know panicking isn't a good thing and I heard once if you think you're going to panic, pray so that's just what I did, but we wound up with some 10 blankets in our closet.  My {step}daughter's room and our closet are the 2 safest rooms in our house and living in a Berm house, our house is like a basement since it is surrounded by dirt on 3 sides.  PC told me I had to quit with the blankets or we might not fit in the closet.

Tornado sirens went off in Joplin, Webb City, Carterville, (all together and all headed my direction).  Then they said it was headed up the hwy I live off of.  But it luckily fizzled out and we just had lightning, thunder and rain.

So I've decided that I need to look at something other than tornado destruction so here are some photos I took last night of my garden.  I know that's like a 180 turn around on topics, but I needed something else to focus on, even though I focused a lot on that tornado!

Now don't make to much fun of my garden.  This is the first year and getting rid of the grass roots has been an issue, if you can't tell!  We're going to have to till the crap out of the garden this fall (again) and hope for the best.  This is my first ever garden too, so I'm learning as I go.  Have tips, share please!

They sent us home from work at 4pm yesterday due to this weather heading our way.  Here's the sky at around 6pm.  I couldn't watch the devastation on tv anymore.  After the press conference I went and walked around outside.

 Woohoo, my potatoes are doing good... now when do you pick them?

Here's what pretty much all my potato plants look like.

and oddly enough some of my Leeks are coming up.  I've never used a leek, what do you do with it?  I've just heard of them so I decided to try growing them :)

I have 6 strawberry plants.  One actually has a berry almost ripe!

And I don't even remember what this is.  I planted Squash, Zucchini, & Cucumbers.  This is one of the 3.....

Some of my pepper plants.  I planted Poblano, Jalapeno, Habenero, Green Bell Pepper, Orange Bell Pepper, Red Bell Pepper, and Sweet Banana Peppers.  I hope they produce...

My Corn row.  This end is taller than the other....

It's definitely going to hit knee high by the 4th of July (although I'm not sure that pertains to gardens, maybe just field corn... this is my first ever garden)

You can't tell but this side is shorter...

My greenbeans are starting to look better.  They looked puney for a while.  And the row next to them is doing horrible :(

Our onions are doing very well though!

And this is one of those 3 plants I know I planted but can't remember which I planted where....

Oakley knows she's not allowed in the garden.

 So you can't completely tell because I have grass in my garden, but she's just at the edge.

I think she knows I'm talking about her... shhhh!

Here's one of our Apple trees.  It is baring fruit on one side, but not really the other

It's a work in progress....

And I'm sad to report that my cherry tree didn't produce hardly ANY cherries this year and what it did produce just fell off, they didn't even ripen out.  I think this crazy weather is playing into that :(


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