November 27, 2009

Happy (Belated) Thanksgiving!

This is one of my favorite holidays because I love to spend time with family and friends and of course eating good food while doing that. One of the things that I love about this holiday is that every family has one or two dishes or a whole meal that they repeat every year. There is something so comforting about revisiting those favorite dishes. It takes me back to my childhood and makes me feel at home no matter where I am spending the holiday. Southern corn pudding is one of my absolute favorite dishes. To make this dish you need:
2 cans of corn
3 eggs
One teaspoon of salt
1/8 teaspoon of pepper
3 tablespoons of melted butter
3 tablespoons of sugar
5 tablespoons of green pepper chopped up
1 1/8 cups of scalded milk
Sauté green pepper in butter. Scald the milk. In an oven safe casserole dish mix in all of the ingredients. Beat the eggs in a separate bowl with a fork a little before added them. Preheat the oven to 325 and cook for 40 minutes or until when you check it with a knife and the knife comes out clean.
What is your favorite dish at Thanksgiving?
I hope that you had a great Thanksgiving and are now enjoying the leftovers!!

November 17, 2009

How to Make a Compost Pile

This is something that I have wanted to do for years; and it has inspired the illustration above. My Grandmother has three different piles going at once all in different stages: one that is ready to use in her garden, one that is in the process of composting and the last she is actively “feeding”.

In my illustrations I have depicted all of the elements that you need to get you started!

1. It is recommended that you dig a shallow area where you would like your compost pile to be. It should be in a sunny area that receives shade during the course of the day. There are two reasons for digging out an area. The first is that it gets your pile closer to the wonderful little worms that help decompose your pile and second it helps contain the pile so it doesn’t slowly spread across your lawn. Some people prefer to buy or make bins to help with the spreading problem.
2. Place a layer of twigs on the bottom of your dug out area. They should be skinny about the width of your fingers.
3. Next add a layer (a few inches) of dry material, such as: leaves, twigs, newspaper, cereal boxes and egg cartons.
4. A few inches of green material comes next, for example: fruit and vegetable leftovers, tea bags and coffee grinds, egg shell and fresh grass clippings.
5. Water the pile so it is nice and damp, but not drowning in water (no puddles).
6. To finish the pile off put a few shovel full of dirt on top. Don’t pack the pile down, you want to keep all of the air pockets to help with the decomposing.
7. Don’t stop there! Keep on feeding your pile with the above ingredients over the weeks and months. Do not worry about placing the exact layers as stated above, but try to keep an equal amount of dry and green materials. When you feel like your pile is full. Then it is time to let it rest so it can do its magic and create wonderful soil for your garden!
8. Start another pile!

Creating a compost pile has a lot many benefits. One of them is that it will cut the trash that you throw away down dramatically. As you can see, it isn’t that hard to create a compost pile; and there are lots of wonderful sites where you can get more details on creating your own pile!

November 9, 2009

Rainy Day Fun!

I have been having so much fun creating with the program painter!
Above is an illustration that I just finished.