Green Thumb?

This summer I tried my hand at gardening for the first time.  Somehow I think that the basil I managed to grow in pots in my apartment over the last few years just didn’t count.  No weeds to contend with.  No severe weather.  No critters that demolish plants before they even get a chance.

This lone tomato brings sheer delight!!  I actually squealed when I saw that my green, rock hard tomato was starting to turn red.  After failed carrots (planted them too close to one another), lettuce and broccoli (which may be fine, but they still look funny), I was hoping that these tomatoes would respond to all the love I’ve given them… and they did!

We picked this tomato over the weekend and it is a beauty!  Now I just have to decide what to make from it before it spoils.  And if the cold air and frost hold off a little longer, we have at least a dozen more on the vine waiting to ripen.

The problem is that this one tomato is making me feel like a better gardener than I really am.  Perhaps the satisfaction of it will be motivation enough next spring.  But this is still true: I hate pulling weeds, I have no idea what to do about bugs or how to protect plants from storms or hail (which we had plenty of this year).  In all honesty, I have no idea how we even got this one tomato (considering I once had 9… count them N-I-N-E tomato plants in the space that two are currently residing).

What do you think, too soon to start planning next year’s crop??

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This really isn’t all about food…

Before this summer, I had lived alone for over 6 years!  (Well… some wouldn’t call living in a dorm living alone but I was the only one who slept in my space).  I decided in the spring that I needed another living thing in my apartment so I thought I’d try my hand at gardening.  We have these wonderful south facing windows in our apartment that let in a ton of light and I figured it would be perfect for growing plants.  I went to Home Depot, bought some seeds and dirt and hoped that there would be directions somewhere.

This beautiful basil plant has been through a lot!  I planted the little sprouting seeds in the pot in May and soon after left with Grant to spend the summer in California.  I figured they would surely die inside and that there may be enough rain or humidity to keep them alive outside.  When we got back from the wedding we had so much basil!  Unfortunately, we left the following day to go on our honeymoon and when we returned the basil bush was scorched from the sunlight and lack of rain.  I thought it was surely doomed but after some pruning it has come back to life.  (As you may notice, the pot next to it of other herbs did not fare so well.)

Now that we have basil around, we can enjoy homemade pesto!  Yum.  And thanks to the Taylor’s, we learned to freeze the pesto in ice cube trays so they are perfectly portioned out every time we want to use them!

As for my other cooking adventures this weekend… I found myself craving apple pie.  I have yet to make a good tasting gluten-free pie crust but I was feeling inspired to try it again.  The Gluten Free Pantry Perfect Pie Crust mix worked pretty well, although was extremely difficult to roll out.  The result, a pie crust that looked like a patch-work quilt.  This is my pie before:

This is the pie after:

I think it looks delicious… but what pie wouldn’t in this beautiful pie dish that Grant’s parents gave us!

This blog really isn’t meant to be a food blog, but I suppose it is one of the more creative parts of daily life for us.