April 2007


Well, for those of you who know me pretty well, you know I like to have a garden. While we were in the apartment in SLC this was not possible, but I thought I might be able to swing a little bit here. So, knowing that their vegetation is all on a dripper system and that a few of the plants had died and that there are “empty” drippers, I asked if this would be okay. They agreed, and Father even got a patio tomato plant to put out there. I think I get my gardening “gene” from him. He has almost always had something “gardenish” growing. I guess growing up on a farm just doesn’t get out of your blood! What is that saying, “you can take the man out of the garden, but you can’t take the garden out of the man” or something like that. When they moved here, they had the entire yard done so that it took almost no work. However, he will plant something, still, like a small tomato next to a tree. So when I suggested planting so things he thought that was great.

I didn’t want to try things like peas, beans, cauliflower or broccoli, but some other things that would be easier. I went with watermelon, zucchini and butternut squash, along with the tomato he had planted and I also got a grape tomato. I planted the watermelon seeds and zucchini in march (you can do that in the middle of the dessert!) and just waited for them to come up and grow. By April 24th this is what they looked like:

**Watermelon**
watermelon

**Zucchini**
zucchini

Now, I don’t know if you can tell, but I am actually closer to the watermelon! It is in a raised bed, a foot or so closer to the camera. Okay, so I have never grown zucchini before. For all you LDS people reading this, zucchini has a bad rap. People tend to grow too many plants and then try to “gift” the zucchini to others just to get rid if it all! We all know that zucchini is really only good for making zucchini bread, right? Well, you can only make so much of that! Actually, it is okay fried or in stir fry, too, but again, you can only eat so much of that too! So to be on the safe side I only saved one of the three plants that grew!

Well, we finally went geocaching again! Christopher and I went and found 2 that weren’t very far away.

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It was a beautiful day, and these were both clever, yet easy!

I was watching the Oprah show today and it was all about Going Green. In other words, making changes that will effect our planet for the better. They encouraged watchers to choose 1 or 2 things they could do after watching this show to make a difference. I have, for years, tried to be earth friendly in my own little un-knowledgeable way. After watching her show I really wanted to share what I learned, so I will be doing some of my blogs on the info I gleaned from this episode.

The first thing Oprah asked was “When you go to the supermarket and they ask you if you want paper or plastic, what is your answer?” Most people said paper, but even I knew that taking your own reusable bags was the answer. Somewhere along the way I had heard or read this and had wanted to do it but never put it in to practice. The Oprah people have made canvas bags that they are selling (oprah.com) for cost ($9.50) for those who want to use those. They said that we should also get reusable produce bags so we don’t use those plastic produce bags. Plastic bags take 1000 years to decompose in the landfill. That is a lot of years! We use 14 million trees to make 10 billion paper bags each year, too! That is a staggering amount of trees!

I paused the show on my Tivo and got on the internet. I found a cite called reusablebags.com and found some bags I like better than Oprah’s “grOcery” bags. They fold up really small and I can keep them in my purse. Okay they are not cotton canvas, but they are reusable! I got produce bags too! I try to go through the self-checkout so I can use my bags, but can’t always do that , so I decided when I have to use those plastic grocery bags I will just put them all together and take them back the next time and put them in the recycle thingy at the store.

Speaking of those bags I happened to see that reusablebags.com has a photo gallery of pictures people have taken of places bags are found (stuck in trees, or on banks of rivers, etc), and I started noticing all the bags just flying around, especially here in Vegas! I see them flying away high up in the sky like it is a balloon!! Reusablebags.com has a button and bumpersticker that says, “Plastic bags blow…BYOB, bring your own bag”.

Here are some pictures I have taken while driving around town:
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The first time I saw this tree it had 2 bags stuck in it.
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Then the next time I noticed, it had 3 stuck in it!
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Then this one right next to where I work! Vegas has them EVERYWHERE! All over the empty lots with lots of other garbage that blows with the wind. Sometimes I see them just blowing down the middle of the road!

In the past I have had one of those tape things that sticks into your tape player to get your music to play from a cd player through the tape deck player. I was wondering when they would come up with some way to play your mp3 player through the cd player, except that I could see no way to do it. I also have wondered for years now, why they did not just include a way to just plug in things with a head phone jack type of way on the car stereo.

I was in Wal-mart yesterday and accidentally ran across something to solve this problem! It is the

Belkin TuneCast I Mobile FM Transmitter.

For only $20 you get this:

“Now use your iPod, PDA, MP3, CD, cassette player, PC or laptop to listen to your favorite tunes through any FM stereo receiver. The Belkin TuneCast Mobile FM Transmitter wirelessly connects portable music players to your car or home stereo quickly and easily.

 

  • Simple to use: Plug the FM transmitter into the headphone jack of your iPod, PDA, MP3, CD or cassette player; or connect it to your PC or laptop computer
  • Then tune your car stereo or home stereo receiver to the clearest FM frequency, and enjoy your digital music with great sound and convenience
  • Works best when you are within 10 feet of the FM transmitter, but you can still get good results up to 30 feet away
  • Also offers a fast and convenient way to enhance your home audio experience. Simply connect the FM transmitter to the 3.5 mm audio-out port on your digital camera or video game console, and enjoy surround sound through your home stereo system.
  • 2 AAA batteries included”

Honestly, I was very skeptical that it would actually work, but Christopher and I are leaving for SLC on Thursday and wanted to listen to the audio book of Eragon on the way. I don’t have enough CD-RW’s to burn it to and I really didn’t want a permanent copy. Christopher’s new phone has a memory card and plays mp3’s and for his birthday Father and Mother gave him a 2 GB memory card so I had thought we could just download the audio book on to it and then each of us stick an ear bud in one ear.

So I was willing to give this new gadget a try. If it didn’t work I can take it back, right? It WORKED!! There is a $30 version that lets you program any radio station you want, but this one has 4 preprogrammed ones and was fine! The other one also comes with a car charger, but to save 10 bucks I will bring 2 extra AAA’s.

It’s about time they came up with something like this. I has probably been out for some time, but to me it is new! Woohoooooooo!