Mavis Mail – Cool Chicken Coop Photos

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cool chicken coop photos

Shelly from Washington writes:

I love your blog and as a fellow Washingtonian I wanted to share my coop with you! This is my first year with chickens and I am totally hooked. After about a year of fiddling with the idea of getting chickens I found a coop on craigslist that I loved, for $100! It was such a great deal so with some help I convinced my husband it would be a good idea to get chickens and we picked up the coop that weekend.

chickens and children

We have six hens that are all one year old. Jo and Jack are our Ameraucanas and Meg and Beth are Buff Orpingtons. Jo, Jack, Meg and Beth lived together for a year before we got them and all get along well with each other so when Elinor and Fanny joined the flock they were shown their place at the bottom of the pecking order. It took a few weeks of adjusting, but they are all getting along now. Elinor and Fanny are our Black Stars and lay the most beautiful extra-large brown eggs almost every day.  

blue chicken coop

We have a pen for the girls so they can come and go from their coop as they please without getting into too much trouble, but the coop is safe when it’s closed up and large enough that they aren’t crammed in there when the coop is locked. Our coop can hold up to 30 hens, and I’m sure the day is quickly coming when we max it out. 

roosting rods chickens

The roosting rods are set over an open floor to minimize cleanup needed, and make easier collection for the compost bin. For the first month or so the chickens huddled in the corner every night and refused to use the roosting rods, even when I would place them on the rods the ladies would jump down.

When Elinor and Fanny joined the flock and immediately started sleeping on the rods, everyone else joined in and started sleeping on the roosting rods as well. The nest boxes on the side of the coop are at perfect collection height for the kids, and my oldest son loves to collect and count the eggs. Thanks for letting me share!

~ Shelby

And yes, I laid sod in my chicken coop, because what fun is it to have chickens if you don’t spoil them once in a while? ;) See more of Shelby’s cool ideas HERE.

nesting boxes

A big THANK YOU to everyone who has sent in their photographs and stories. I hope by sharing other peoples pictures and stories here on One Hundred Dollars a Month we can all glean some ideas from each other.

~Mavis

If you would like to have your garden, chicken coop or something you’ve made featured on One Hundred Dollars a Month, here’s what I’m looking for:

  • Your Garden Pictures and Tips – I’d especially like to see your garden set ups, growing areas, and know if you are starting seeds indoors this year. If so,  show me some picture of how you are going about it.
  • Your Chicken and Chicken Related Stories – Coops, Chicks, Hen’s, Roosters, Eggs, you name it. If it clucks, send us some pictures to share with the world.
  • Cool Arts & Crafts - Made from your very own hands with detailed {and well photographed} pictures and instructions.
  • Your pictures and stories about your pets. The more pictures and details the better.
  • Garage Sale, Thrift Store and Dumpster Diving pictures and the stories behind the treasures you found including how much you paid for them.

If I feature your pictures and the stories behind them on One Hundred Dollars a Month, I will send you a $20.00 gift card to the greatest store in the world: Amazon.com.

Go  HERE for the official rules.

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.



Mornings with Mavis – Free Kindle Books, Sanita Clogs, Colgate Coupons, Apple Peeler, Country Gardens

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one hundred dollars a month red boots

When you have 10 bazillion plants growing in your backyard, some days you feel like Bill Murray from Groundhog Day. Nuf said.

Here’s a few deals I spotted this morning while I rubbed visions of tomatoes from my eyes. ;)

Happy Thursday everyone.

Mavis

Amazon Deal of the Day - Swiss Legend Men’s Expedition and Commander watch sets $44.99

free kindle books

Available Kindle Books I think are cool…

Fix, Freeze, Feast: Meals for a Busy Family – Free
Best Pie Recipes - Free {I grabbed this one}
Food Drying: How to Safely Dry and Store Food - Free
Dip Recipes – 13 Easy Dip Recipes - Free
World of Geekcraft: Step-by-Step Instructions for 25 Super-Cool Craft Projects $2.51
The Beginners Guide to Knitting- Learn How To Knit The Easy Way $2.99 {Great Reviews}

The prices on Kindle Books can change quickly, so grab them while you can.

anchor hocking glass gallon jarI use these Anchor Hocking storage jars to store my flour, sugar and homemade granola.

Anchor Hocking Heritage Hill Storage Jar 1 Gallon $9.99
Set of 2 Dry Goods Scoops $5.74

sanita clogs

Wow! Zulily has Sanita Clogs on sale today for up to 75% off!

Already a Zulily Member? Go HERE to Get This Deal

apploe peeler corer slicer

 

Amazon has the Apple And Potato Peeler, Corer, and Slicer on sale for just $12.99. This ships free with Amazon Prime. {Get a 30-Day Free Trial}

how to make apple chips dehydrate applesIf you’ve never made homemade apple chips before, here is an easy peasy recipe.

swingline laminator

Amazon has the Swingline Laminator on sale for just $15.13. Laminate all those important documents or precious artwork.

Country Gardens Magazine

Discount Mags is offering a 1 year subscription to Country Gardens for only $9.99 a year when you use code MAVIS at checkout. This deal will expire tonight 9/26/13 at midnight EST.

vertical garden planter

And the Adams 36-Inch Deluxe Garden Planter on sale for 32.48 shipped.

cookmoore_recipes

Sign up for Cookmore now to gain access to recipes, cookbooks, meal planner, calorie counter, grocery list, and so much more! You have access to LOTS of FREE recipes–with something for nearly every diet or culinary preference. But, even better than that, you have access to visually appealing {and delicious} recipes, inspiring food concepts, and award-winning chefs–designed to meet your needs.

Cover Girl Eye Shadow Coupon

Get Cover Girl Eye Shadow for as low as $1.39 shipped when you clip the $1.00 coupon {must be logged into our account to see the coupon} and use the subscribe and save option at checkout.

colgate toothpaste

Print a coupon good for $0.75 off any Colgate Toothpaste

Find More Printable Coupons

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Vegan Friendly Quinoa Pilaf w/Pistachios Apricots and Mint

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Quinoa Pilaf wPistachios Apricots and Mint

I’m obsessed with quinoa lately. I can’t get enough of it. I guess there are worse things to be obsessed with like Big Macs or something. Here is my latest and greatest favorite quinoa recipe:

Ingredients

2 cups cooked quinoa {find quinoa online}
1 small onion, diced
1 sweet pepper, diced
3/4 cup dried apricots, chopped
1/4 cup shelled pistachios, chopped
zest and juice of 1 orange
3 tablespoons fresh mint, chopped
1/2 teaspoon crushed pepper flakes {optional}
1/2 teaspoon salt

dried apricots

Directions

Cook your quinoa. I like to cook it in either a rice cooker or a slow cooker. It cooks just like white rice, so the most important thing to remember is to use the ratio of 1 part quinoa to 2 parts liquid {I use vegetable stock most of the time}. For example, 1 cup of liquid to 1/2 cup of uncooked quinoa. If you’re using a rice cooker, your quinoa should be done in about 15 minutes!

If you do not have a rice cooker simply add the quinoa and broth in a saucepan, bring it to a boil and then reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook covered, until the liquid has been absorbed and quinoa is tender {about 20 minutes}.

Remove shells from pistachios and toast at 350 for 10 minutes. Sauté shallots and red bell for 5 minutes, adding water if needed to keep veggies from sticking to pan. Add cooked quinoa, apricots, orange zest and juice, mint and red pepper flake and cook for 5 minutes, season with salt and garnish with pistachios.

The Quinoa Cookbook

Looking for more Qunioa Recipes? The Qunioa Cookbook is awesome!

 

 

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

How to Grow Your Own Food – 9/25/2013 Garden Tally

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This year I’m on a mission to grow 4,000 pounds of fresh fruits and vegetables in my suburban backyard. In 2012 I was able to grow 2,028 pounds, and in 2013 I’m going double or nothing. I have absolutely no idea if I’ll be able to achieve my goal. But, as with any adventure, half the fun is getting there. ~Mavis

*******raised garden beds

It seems like we harvested a little bit over everything this past week in the garden. Everything from pumpkins and carrots to heirloom tomatoes and potatoes. Pretty stinkin’ awesome if you ask me. The temperatures are getting cooler though and before you know it there won’t be much left to harvest but carrots and kale, and let me tell you Bob, I’m not looking forward to that. ;)

~Mavis

Here is what I have harvested so far this year:

fresh basil

Basil – 1 pound 3 ounces

We are currently out of fresh basil right now. Although we’ve enjoyed making fresh pesto and strawberry basil jam this summer.

beets

Beets – 120 pounds 8 ounces

We’ve been eating beets and giving them away like crazy lately. I didn’t like them as a kid, but I sure do now.

organic gardening bok choy

Bok Choy – 12 oz

The bok choy we planted in the pallet garden is finally ready. It’s a nice change from kale and Swiss chard that’s for sure.

head of broccoli

Broccoli – 13 ounces

The slugs have not discovered our fall broccoli yet. I’m keeping my fingers crossed they’ll stay away.

puggle puppies cabbage

Cabbage - 40 pounds 14 ounce

Still waiting to harvest our fall cabbage!

heirloom carrots

Carrots – 26 pounds 14 ounces

We are harvesting carrots daily now and we feed Lucy the trouble puggle the little ones.

herb garden thyme

Chives – 2 pound 1 ounce

We cut fresh chives as we need them.

lemon cucumbers

Cucumbers 9 pound 6 ounces

We pulled up all the cucumber vines this past week after harvesting the last of the lemon cucumbers. :(

How to Collect, Clean and Store Chicken Eggs

Egg Count – 2,018

We collected 51 eggs last week from our backyard flock of hens. Our baby chicks won’t stay laying for another 8 weeks or so, but once they do, look out world, we are going to have an abundance of eggs.

elephant garlic bulb

Garlic 9 pounds 2 ounces

Our garlic has been harvested for this year and I am using it in practically every dish now.

garlic scapes

Garlic Scapes 11 ounces

We used these to make Garlic Scape Pesto. Yumm!

green beans

Green Beans 16 pounds 14 ounces

We didn’t get as many beans as I had wanted from of tepee poles this fall but there are still a few beans left t pick.

curly kale

Kale – 28 pounds 14 ounces

Feeding it to the chickens every chance I get. {Shocking, I know}

kohlrabi

Kohlrabi 5 pounds 10 ounces

romaine lettuce

Lettuce – 36 pounds 13 ounces

We have enough lettuce for one big salad before we’re out of lettuce. I’ll be planting more in the greenhouse pretty soon though so it won’t be too long before were have more.

microgreens

Microgreens 5 ounces

My favorite way to eat microgreens is with egg salad sandwiches.

blueberry jam with mint recipe

Mint 13 oz

I made some blueberry mint jam and also harvested some mint for tea.

oregano container herb garden

Oregano - 1 pound 9 ounces

I been using fresh oregano for my heirloom tomato sauce.

onions

Onion – 25 pounds 6 ounces

We still have a few onions left to harvest. Note to self- get out there and pull them up before they rot.

pear butter recipe

Pears 47 pounds 7 ounces

Pear butter is AWESOME!

growing peas in a greenhosue

Peas – 42 pounds 9 ounces

We’ve got peas growing in the greenhouse and in a garden box. I’m keeping my fingers crossed we’ll start to see tiny white flowers soon.

How to Harvest and Store Potatoes for Winter

Potatoes - 263 pounds 15 ounces

How to Harvest and Store Potatoes for Winter.

We donated some potatoes to the food bank last week and have been using them like mad around here. Just for kicks I think I might wrap some up and give them to my Husband for Christmas since he loves them so much.

french breakfast radishes

Radish - 22 pounds 2 ounces

Note to self- Plant more radish seeds.

bucket of raspberries

Raspberries – 21 pounds 7 ounces

Raspberry season is officially over in our backyard. Boo!

rhubarb

Rhubarb – 39 pounds 9 ounces

Rhubarb is rad! I think we have about 5 or 6 rhubarb plants sprinkled around our yard. I’ll have to dig up the crowns this fall and move them all to one location.

purple sage

Sage – 14 ounces

pumpkins squash

Squash 48 pounds 15 ounces

We harvested a few pumpkins this week and set them on the front porch to cure. We still have more pumpkins, sweet meat squash, Butternut squash to harvest. Hopefully it will stop raining soon so they don’t rot on the vine.

fresh organic spinach

Spinach - 15 ounces

I planted more in the greenhouse for a winter harvest.

mung bean sprouts

Sprouts -2 pounds 15 ounces

Here are instructions for growing your own sprouts.

Strawberry and Nutella Crepes with Bananas

Strawberries 23 pounds 14 ounces

Besides eating them fresh, so far we have made strawberry kiwi jam, strawberry freezer jam, strawberry pie, and homemade strawberry shortcake. There are just a few left to pick and then we’ll be done harvesting berries for the year.

garden swiss chard

Swiss Chard 40 pounds 12 ounces

Chickens LOVE chard. ;) Me? Not so much. But it sure is pretty. :)

heirloom tomatoes

Tomatoes 206 pounds 0 ounces

Mama Mia! That’s a lot of tomatoes.

cut-wheatgrass

Wheatgrass - 7 ounces

zucchini

Zucchini – 55 pounds 8 ounces

Can someone please explain to my why I didn’t see these before they grew this big? Holy cow, it’s looks like a few hundred loaves of vegan zucchini bread are in my future.

Total Food Harvested in 2013: 1095 pounds 8 ounces

Total Eggs Collected in 2013: 2,018

If you are new to gardening or just want to learn more about organic gardening, my #1 favorite garden book is The Gardener’s A-Z Guide to Growing Organic Food By Tanya L.K. Denckla.

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Easy Kitchen Tip – Sanitize Sponges in the Microwave

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Sanitize Sponges in the Microwave

I like having a sponge in the kitchen to clean up with, wash dishes, etc., but they can get kind of gross after awhile.  They aren’t like dish cloths that you can just throw into the washer when they start to smell or get dirty.

But I learned this little trick awhile ago,  sanitize them in the microwave. Since then, I pop my sponge in the microwave daily {Yes, I have OCD}. ;)  I feel better, my sponge definitely smells better.  The world it a happy place.

How to Sanitize Sponges in the Microwave

To sanitize your kitchen sponge, make sure it is wet.  Dry sponge = fire hazard.  Pop it in the microwave for 2 minutes, and then let it sit in there for another 2 minutes, because it will be ridiculously hot to the touch.  {If you are feeling really ambitious, you can use the steam the wet sponge created in the microwave to wipe down the walls of the your microwave {the steam loosens grease, etc.}.  It’s like two chores in one–though, if you’re like me, then you want to sanitize the sponge again.  Ha!

How about you, do you sanitize your sponge this way?

~Mavis

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Growing Vegetables in a Greenhouse – Fall Clean Up

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growing vegetables in a greenhouse Yesterday I spent the afternoon outside cleaning up the plants in and around the greenhouse. garden gutters I removed all the gutters I had installed in the spring and set them outside.  I plan to re-plant the strawberries elsewhere, and then add the soil from the reaming gutters that held basil, peppers and chard to the compost pile. magnum glass greenhouseThe greenhouse looks  kind of naked now. :( Luckily I still have a few pots to move in there for my winter garden. I’m not sure what I’m going to plant yet so if you have any suggestions, that would be great. I’m thinking lettuce and a couple root vegetables like carrots and beets might work well. tomato tree Our two green zebra tomato plants are now 10 feet tall and look like those giant tomato trees you see in cheesy magazine ads promising you 20 foot tall tomato plants for just $2.99 with shipping. green zebra tomatoes I wonder how long the tomato plants will keep producing? growing tomatoes in a greenhosue I think I’m going to plant some lettuce seeds at the plant base later this week. meyer lemons in greenhouse   In case you were wondering, Lemon the Meyer Lemon Tree is still hanging in there.growing peas in a greenhosue And the sugar snap peas are growing like crazy!

growing lettuce in a greenhosue

And check out the 3 -tiered stack planter. Doesn’t it look cool filled with lettuce?

It shouldn’t be too much longer before it;s ready to harvest.

Keep calm and garden on. ;)

~Mavis

gardening-books-the-winter-harvest-handbook Are you planning for a winter harvest? The Winter Harvest Handbook By Eliot Coleman is a great book!

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Mornings with Mavis – Cast Iron Cookware, The Resilient Gardener, Cable Knit Hats, Keens, Glad Garbage Bags

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lucy the puggle dog

Caught in the act!

Yesterday I went outside to check on the baby chicks and ended up harvesting a few lemon cucumbers without a container. I set them on of the patio chairs while I went to pick a few more and when I turned around, there was Lucy the trouble puggle, stealing one of them. 

What a stinker!

Mavis

Bosch Oscillating Tool Kit

Today’s Amazon Gold Box Deal of the Day - Bosch Oscillating Tool Kit $97.00 shipped.

MagnoGrip Magnetic Wristband

If you don’t have one already, the MagnoGrip Magnetic Wristband is awesome. The HH and I both have one and use them all the time when we are building stuff.

Lodge 5-Piece Cast Iron Cookware Set

Back in Stock!

Amazon has the Lodge 5-Piece Cast Iron Cookware Set on sale right now for only $65 shipped.

The Resilient Gardener Food Production and Self-Reliance in Uncertain Times

Looking for a good gardening book? I just ordered The Resilient Gardener: Food Production and Self-Reliance in Uncertain Times. The reviews are great and I think it will make for a great read this winter when I’m planning my garden.

cable knit hatsBlack Oversized Cable Knit Beanie Hat $4.12 shipped
Brown Oversized Cable Knit Beanie Hat $3.48 shipped

angel soft toilet paper

3-Pack Lysol Disinfecting Wipes $3.22 shipped when you clip the $1.50 off coupon {must be logged into your account} and use the subscribe and save option at checkout.

6-pack Bounty Paper Towels $5.67 shipped when you use the subscribe and save option at checkout.

Glad Tall Kitchen Drawstring Garbage Bags 13 Gallon $6.64 shipped when you use the subscribe and save option.

Angel Soft Double Rolls 40 count $16.35 shipped when you clip the $0.50 off coupon {must be logged into your Amazon account} and use the subscribe and save option at checkout.

Learn About Amazon Subscribe and Save

bebe-bella-designsBaby Bella Designs is offering 70% off Satin Backed Multi Dot Blankets and Satin Backed Sherpa Blankets.  These blankets are super cute and oh so soft; sure to please your little one!  Enter code Satin70 at checkout.  Sale runs through Sept. 26th

flowing and figure flattering  tops

Zulily is having a Simply Irresistible sale with flowing and figure-flattering tops starting at $16.99.

Already a Zulily Member? Go HERE to Get This Deal

amazon toy deals

Hot Wheels 9-Car Gift Pack $8.00

LEGO DUPLO My First Construction Site $14.40

12 Pack Self Adhesive Assorted Fake Mustache $1.05 shipped

Japanese Iwako Erasers-Hedgehog $2.84 + Shipping

keen shoe sale discount

6pm has Keen and Merrell Shoes and Boots on sale for up to 50% off, plus you receive FREE SHIPPING too!

essential oils

Amazon has the 14- Piece set of Edens Garden Essential Oils on sale for $39.90. I have a set of these oils and love, love,love them. The quality is super awesome. weight watchers magazine

Discount Mags is offering a 1 year subscription to Weight Watchers Magazine for only $4.99 a year when you use code MAVIS at checkout. This deal will expire tonight 9/25/13 at midnight EST so be sure and grab your subscription before then.

macy's coupon

Living Social has a Macy’s Coupon good for an Extra 20%, 15%, or 10% Off Your Purchase.

Thinking about switching your auto insurance? Get a quick and easy auto insurance quote simply by inputting your zip code.

Mars Halloween Variety Bag coupon

Print a coupon good for $2.00 off ANY ONE (1) Mars Halloween Variety Bag

Find More Printable Coupons

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

White Chicken Chili with Poblano Peppers

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White Chicken Chili with Poblano Peppers

Chili is one of my favorite fall recipes to make because it’s so simple and such a warm fall-ish meal. It’s another recipe that’s perfect when life gets crazy around here with fall sports! But sometimes we get a little bored with regular chili, so I’m spicing things up with this recipe. Literally.

Ingredients

2 {14.5-ounce} cans white beans
1 tablespoon canola oil
2 medium poblano peppers, finely chopped
1 large onion, chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 1/2 teaspoons ground coriander
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 cups chicken broth {I get mine from Vitacost}
2 limes, juiced
1 lb {3 cups} shredded chicken {I use Zaycon chicken}
1/4 cup chopped cilantro leaves

shredded chicken

Directions

Drain and rinse the beans. In a medium bowl, mash about half of the beans with a potato masher until chunky. Set the beans aside.

Add the canola oil to a large Dutch oven and heat over medium-high heat. Add the peppers, onions, garlic and salt/pepper to taste. Saute until soft {approx. 5 minutes}. Add the cumin, coriander, and chili powder. Saute for 1 more minute to toast the spices. Stir in the chicken broth and lime juice and bring just to a simmer. Add the beans and continue to simmer for 20 more minutes.

Stir in the shredded chicken and cilantro, and simmer about 5 more minutes. Serve hot. We like to top ours with sour cream, crushed tortilla chips, and lime wedges.

Loved this chili recipe? Check out this cookbook:

chili cookbook

Chili Madness: A Passionate Cookbook

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Geocaching

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Geocaching

Have you heard of the whole geocaching craze?  It’s basically an outdoor treasure hunt using GPS coordinates.  Once you get the coordinates, and your job is to find a container that is hidden at that location.  Unless it is a private geocache that you or a friend/family member has created, you don’t take the container, but leave it for the next geocacher to find.  The fun of the game is just being able to find the location.

I  know a family who makes their own geocaching hunt for their family reunions.  Then, they split into teams to see who can find all of the locations first {each location has enough tokens, slips of paper, etc. for each team}.   When you find the location, you grab your proof and then move onto the next coordinates.  They all have a blast trying to race to the coordinates.

If you are interested, you can log onto a geocaching website to find local hunts, or if you are on vacation, and want a free activity, you can type in the zip code of where ever you are, and find coordinates.  Pretty much all you need is a GPS device and and sense of adventure.

I have to admit, I am intrigued.  It sounds kind of fun.  So, I have to know, has anyone tried it?  Is it fun?

~Mavis

a complete idiots guide to geocaching

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Mavis Garden Blog – Today’s Harvest – Squash, Carrots, Beets, Tomatoes and Potatoes

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heirloom tomatoes

Can you believe it’s nearly October and the garden is still producing awesome amounts for fruits and vegetables? We had a less than stellar summer here in the Western Washington and I keep thinking we are going to get hit with an early frost or some sort of wickedly bad weather any day now.

pumpkins squash

I picked a few pumpkins and other types of squash today. I think I’ll go ahead and set everything on the porch to cure while I figure out what to do with it.
beets carrots root vegetables

I also picked a few fresh beets and carrots.

root vegetbales potatoes carrots beetsAnd more potatoes of course. A day doesn’t go by around here without some fresh potatoes being dug up. ;) The HH is Irish after all.

mavis garden blog one hundred dollars a month

Today’s Harvest

Beets, a pound of potatoes, fresh carrots, squash, squash and more squash, heirloom tomatoes and 3 giant zucchinis. Not to shabby for the end of September if you ask me.

chicken and roasted vegetablesDinner is in the oven.

So what are you digging up these days?

Mavis wants to know.

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Recipes Garden Frugal Canning Chickens Travel