Sunday, September 15, 2013

Stuffed Pepper Soup

Phil found this recipe online and I knew right away it was going to be one we were going to like. We "tweeked" it a little bit to fit the ingredients we had here and this is what we came up with.

Take one pound of hamburger and brown it in a pan (mine is  a deep frying pan so I could do it all in one pan), with one small diced onion and some peppers. The recipe actually called for one green pepper but I was using the peppers that I had frozen through the year so mine were red, yellow and green and I put in more than what would equal just one. Probably 2 or 3.
Cook these together until the hamburger is done and drain off the grease.

While this is cooking you need to cook some rice. Enough so that you have about 2 cups when cooked (I cheat and use Boil n' Bag rice because I have never made good rice).

To your meat mixture add a couple of chopped garlic cloves (I was out and had to use powder), salt and pepper and 1 tablespoon sugar. Then add one can of tomato soup and one can of diced tomatoes with chilies (if using your own just add the tomatoes and a chopped up chili or two.). Add a can and a half or so of water. Mix well and add in your rice.

Cover and simmer for about 15 minutes.

Sprinkle with cheese and enjoy! We used an Italian blend of 5 different cheeses.

We all really liked it. This was really simple and quick to make and I am sure we will be using this recipe again.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

So do you like my pond?

Yup, that's what I asked Phil after I got off of work and he said he had never even looked at it...and by then it was dark.
So the next day I came home and said, "So did you like my pond?" and he said, "No" and I thought I had...misheard... and I said, "What?" and he said, "No." .......and it must have been something in the way I looked at him because he quickly said, "It needs more plants around it."
So to clean up what I said back to him," No kidding....", ok, there is no way to clean up the rest but suffice to say, he understood that it would take time for me to collect up what plants that I wanted around it and to make it as nice as I wanted it to be :) In defense, I was tired and I have wanted a pond for a long time and love it already.
But today I felt like I had to get more things to make it look nicer so I struggled with getting one of those big bags of mulch on my cart at the store. I am not a weak person and move 50 lb bags of feed all the time but these things are wet and really, really heavy to move but I managed it (and later about killed myself trying to get it in the trunk...but I managed it!). At another store they had pretty little miniature rose bushes on sale an I seem to have a thing for roses lately and I got one. Later I stopped at the fish store to get the fish. The fish store lady loves me (what's not to love, I have 4 aquariums, a frog tank and a betta bowl and now a pond). She had a koi with lots of babies so I got 20 (yes, I know that is too many but did you know you can eat koi?) and she gave me 23 for just $ .70 each. Can't beat that. Seriously if it gets to be too much, I'll give my friend a few. She has a much bigger pond.
I got home put the groceries away while the fish were acclimating in their plastic bag in the pond. Then I got out there and let them go and got to putting that mulch around it and planting the rose bush (I still haven't planted the three from last week--but I know where I want to plant steps.. Oh and I managed to cut the power cord than ran everything outside with the first shovel full of dirt--I thought it was a root- but I am thinking that since that cord has been there a good 10 years or so that it was probably time to change it anyway--which I did).
Phil came home with a surprise in his truck. He had gone to do a job and when he got there could  not get in the house he was supposed to work on and then when looking through the window found that the job was not ready for him anyway. However, he did find a bunch of sod in the dumpster! Apparently, they finished the lawn and had some left.
We put it around the pond and watered it in good and will have to keep watering it because even grass doesn't root in this clay easily. Michelle says the pond now looks like our little oasis in the backyard. I agree but we do plan on getting some hay so we can spread some more grass seed and hopefully get more growing.

Maybe you can see the fish in this one.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

A Pond

I have always wanted a little pond and lately I kept looking at the kiddie pool we had for the ducks thinking it would make a good pond. I even dug the hole and tried it out but it just really didn't look right so I got online and went looking for pond liner. Pond liner is expensive! But there was a little kit on eBay with a pond liner, pump and frog "spitter" and it was only $26.99 with free shipping so I got that. It came in yesterday and I was quite pleased with how nice the frog decoration looked. This morning it was time to get to work on that long wanted pond. I had to dump the pool and dig the hole out more. I know I have mentioned our red clay way too many times but I did get lucky with my choice of the spot because I only ran into one root and since there are woods all around and roots all through the back yard that you can actually see on top of the ground, that was pretty lucky.
The liner was 5 ft x 5 ft which was just the right size.
I put the pool in the hole first though...
...then added that liner.
Then it was time for rocks and water. It seems so easy just collect rocks from your yard and put them around it but rocks are few and far between in our part of Georgia and since we killed the copperhead on the lawn the other day (I posted that on facebook), I was a bit more careful with my rock hunting.
 It does lean slightly to one side. I am hoping when it rains it will runoff a little spillway that I left at the lower side.
Now here is the frog "spitter". Isn't it cute?
Ok, here is the almost finished product. Well, I am done for today anyway. I plan on digging up several hostas that are getting over grown in the front yard and putting them around it and I also bought some irish bulbs to plant around it. I'll also put some water conditioner in it and take one of the filter media out of one of the fish tanks and put it in the pond so that it will instantly cycle. Then I can add some goldfish.
I also have some water plants in the aquariums that I can use. If it ever rains again I am going to get some grass seed I have spread out there in the back yard as it is bare from the ducks being out there and eating everything.
I also want to show you my new fountain that Phil brought home for me. It is broken on the top and someone he was doing a job for didn't want it anymore. I think it is lovely (Excuse how dirty it is. It sits under the trees and the oak trees especially are dropping leaves and tons of acorns this year. I hope to get out to clean it this weekend.