Sunday, August 13 – Summer cookout with friends

We did see friends today – two friends at their lake place (we invited ourselves over for an afternoon swim and they joined us after their very athletic bike ride to the lake) and then two other friends came over for cocktails.

Then we cooked out, but just for ourselves.

Monday, August 14 – Tend to compost pile

I do have a compost bin. I haven’t added to it at all this year. I used to add to it all the time, and had a compost bin that I really liked that I kept under the sink. But then the bin became too stained, and it got too gross to even have under the sink. I thought I would replace it with a stainless steel one but each time I consider buying one I’m surprised by the price. I guess they don’t go on sale either. But now that I’ve said that, maybe I should look later this month, perhaps there will be one on sale as a kind of “end of season” item. There is a company here that does the composting for you, you put out scraps and they bring you compost. I’m not sure how much it costs, I’m sure it’s way more than me buying a new compost bin, even one as fancy as the stainless steel ones. To be honest though, even though I faithfully added to my compost pile I never turned it, or watered it, and it didn’t seem to do much. I bet the eggshells are still whole, and they’ve been in there well over a year.

Tuesday, August 15 – Fertilize roses

Thank goodness Martha reminded me. When I bought the climbing rose I was told in no uncertain terms to fertilize May 15, June 15 and July 15, and definitely no later than August. I think I forgot to feed it in July. At least, I think I did. Will it hurt it to be fertilized an extra time?

Wednesday, August 16 – Order bulbs for fall planting

I’m not planting any bulbs this fall but I stopped at a local nursery today to pick up a small ivy plant for the planter that we hung on the front of the garage (it has a cute elf sitting on the edge, which now of course makes me think of that elf on a shelf thing). I then spotted day lilies on sale, and before I knew it had to get a cart with wheels because I had selected 5 red day lilies, 2 yellow – and then some nice pink cone flowers too because just the other day I was thinking about how I needed more cone flowers in the garden.

I had to stop myself from also picking up cone flowers in some very interesting colors, a pale yellow with green center and a gold color. I might go back though in a few weeks to see if those go on sale.

Thursday, August 17 – Go antiquing

I spotted a sign for an estate sale on Saturday and made a note. I love estate sales. First of all, I love going into houses and looking around, and second of all, there is something about such a large quantity of random items that I find exciting.

Friday, August 18 – Make tomato salad (see page 102)

I am planning to go to the farmers’ market tomorrow and will pick up tomatoes for a salad for tomorrow night’s dinner for my dad’s birthday.

Saturday, August 19 – Go on a nature walk with Jude and Truman

Today started with a stop at the estate sale where I missed swooping up shell shaped Belleek demitasse cups by maybe 5 minutes, which on the one hand is devastating because I have the sugar and creamer from an estate sale two summers ago – but on the other hand is ok because what on earth am I going to do with demitasse cups anyway. My husband found $1 worth of random items, including a tea strainer that he’s planning to use for cocktails that I’m planning to use for tea.

Then on to the farmers’ market where we picked up gorgeous heirloom tomatoes, baby turnips, Swiss chard, some beautiful poblano peppers and some fresh basil. I’ll count this as a nature walk, we did cut through the park to get from our car to the farmers’ stalls.

In a very Martha-like activity I iced the birthday cake on top of a lazy susan, remembering to turn it as I iced it. It looked pretty great, and tasted even better. There was some left over cake, but I now also own a permanent piece: “I saved you a piece” made by my dad. This is not the type of sculpture he usually makes.



This week’s tip from Martha: How to fill and frost a cake like a pro