Wednesday, December 4, 2013

A is for Apples


The first of many updates here on Thirtyfivebyninety Urban Homestead. 
I'll start alphabetically ... with the Apples trees my daughters and I planted in 2008

We were/are trying for the Espalier method which since I'm not French has grossly alluded me as you can see. We had planned to pune way back this year but it was a great season for Apples in New York State including city orchards, we just couldn't bring ourselves to saw.  
So we didn't. 
The small window dead center is the kitchen.
I got a big kick out of  first seeing Apple Blossoms then Apples growing outside my kitchen window. Reminded me of the character Ma Joad in the Grapes of Wrath, when she talked about oranges outside her window. 

Summer 2013 
Notice how shady the Apple trees and house are. I was very surprised we got a harvest @ all.


Winter 2008
Proof that you don't need feet of space to have an Apple Orchard - this bed is just a bit over 12" wide and almost 15' long.


An Apple for Snow White

Golden Russets

Golden Russets 
The 4 in 1 Apple tree produced half a bushel of Golden Russets. Disappointing no shows for the other 3 varieties but  never the less good with cheese.
Preservation method of choice - storing in the cellar for fresh eating this Winter.


~~ pelenaka ~~

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Tarp Blue


Ghetto Slip & Slide just add dish soap and a helmet.
 The lovely view out of my up stairs bathroom window. On a bright & sunny day the tarp blue glow, smoothing and shall I dare say tranquil reflects off the walls of my bath ... yeah what a load of  ... this is the twin of my house which sits about 12 feet away with it's newly tarpped roof.
Apparently a bank owned home can be tarpped without repercussions.
No certified love letters speaking of fines & confinement in the big house. Oh no sweet salutations from the code man for those people.
Poor bastards.

For me a common homeowner I just work two jobs and continue to interview roofers. Hopefully I'll have til late October to earn enough.

Wouldn't a tarp camouflaged roof be the bomb baby ?

I'm gonna need a helmet.


~~ pelenaka ~~













Thursday, June 21, 2012

French Connection

Checking out the Make  Magazine website for an outrageously awesome gardening idea for those of us who are spacial challenged. A design team from Paris, yeah as in France, came up with a tilt in tilt out window box holder thingy. I could so see just about all of a couples fancy salad green supplied with one or two of these holders utilizing succession planting.
If you haven't ever been on Make's site or picked up a copy of the very thick mag that plays more like a book I encourage you to do so. Usually I hang under the Home Garden section although I do enjoy checking out the electronic hacks even if it projects are way over my head.

I see a DIY project in hubbies future, lol. 

Monday, June 18, 2012

Ye of Little Faith


I really need to put my faith in God much more than I do.
Despite this Springs wild weather & late season wet snow fall we have Peaches on the trees.

The first pic is the tree closest to the garage which produces smaller Peaches as well as a smaller harvest.
Hopefully all that will change this year. We were told by the next door neighbor who is facing foreclosure that the bank will have ownership next month. I plan to lobby hard on having the 150 year old Maple that blocks out the sunshine, cut down. I'll be using phrases like litigation, damage to our many quality tools and possessions in housed in our garage when a limb decides to come crashing down.

In the meantime the Mylar mirror I've been erecting has been working out well all things considered.

Second pic shows what some sun light can do for a tree. Would you believe that there is only a distance of  8 feet between the two ?
Apparently 8 feet can mean all the difference whether it's shade or the Berlin Wall.



Mylar Garden Mirror on the garage wall ...

Bigger than a golf ball smaller than a tennis ball.


~~ pelenaka ~~

Monday, June 4, 2012

Sabbatical Ends

Heads up this blog is still active, just a bit slow as of late.

I've been working six days a week (cue the Beatles Classic) which has been a great blessing because the borrowed time we've been living on has come to an end. The roof which needed replacing when I bought our old house 13 years ago, has finally sprung a leak.
So for now the electrical will have to wait while I come up with all those dead presidents to keep the rain & all too soon snow off our heads.                        

Last week the gods realized I had a steady paycheck & broke my laptop. Yeah that's right it was the gods who were also responsible for a few other unexpected bills that watered down the roof fund.
Such is life.

It times like these that I am glad we live well below our means; cheap rent, cheap tastes, no car note. I know that in the prepping movement everyone prepares for the "Big One" but for us it's more of being able to weather all the little ones.
Having the skills to live comfortable on almost next to nothing is what I'm talking about.

Sunday my day off I canned up 14 jelly jars of Strawberry Rhubarb Jam. Both were left overs that were gifted by a gf who worked the food bank last Friday. And so the 2012 canning season begins !

I also got a portion of the garden planted which made me feel better about the sad state of my city lot. Section after section of weed and no it's not that  cash crop just Gill-over-ground, Plantain, Rye Grass, Feverfew, Buttercup, along with a perennial Primerose Sundrop that has taken over like a bad case of poverty.

My grand plans were to thin the landscape plants like a boot camp barber, pot up, then barter or sell but that will have to wait for next Spring. What little time I have will be devoted to filling the pantry shelves. The majority of the mason jars are empty due to my lazy efforts last year.


~~ pelenaka ~~


Tuesday, May 22, 2012

I Made the Buffalo Paper

and no it wasn't the Police blotter ... I had a phone interview with Tim Graham, a staff reporter for The Buffalo News both an online & hard copy newspaper. He wanted the low down from real life local preppers . 

Actually acknowledging to myself that I am a prepper has never been easy. 
I along with most of America has always thought of preppers as a gun toting fringe group hold up in the boonies. Cast members from the remake of Deliverance ... cue the banjos. 
Because to me in my mind the way I live my life wasn't prepping ... it was being prepared & being ghetto fugal ghetto Amish ... cue the boom box. 
As much as I'd like to say that I feel the need to use non-electric tools because I am green to the core or I worry about EMP issues the real truth is I'm cheap. In the past the cheaper I could be the less I needed to work outside the home when my babies were small. Now, well it's about hard economic times & saving for our old age.

I really didn't didn't expect to make the final cut of the article because to tell you the truth I was expecting a sensational over the top piece about the local preparedness movement here in Western New York ala Nat Geo's Doomsday Preppers. I had hopes that the subsection of preppers who prepare for lifes trails & tribulations like hubby's recent & ongoing unemployment wouldn't be excluded. 

I was pleasantly surprised ! Thank you Tim.

Here's the link - I'm mentioned under the heading Canned Goods not Zombies 




Some old homes have bats we have TP & old fans
The toilet paper was free thanks to Swagbucks which had $5 YaySave gift cards last month. Unforgivably the gc are no more which is a real heart break 'cause they were cheaper than the $5 Amazon gift cards. I bought the max allowed in March & April which was a total of ten = $50. Last year Swagbucks had the premium membership a $19.99 (free shipping & extra discount) value so I bought that with my swagbucks points. So yeah I got free Charmin no cost shipping. In fact the 4 roll Charmin packs also got me swagbucks so it was a double win win.

Now if I could only get Woods, to sell that finger tip slicing fan ! He said no, you never know when you'll have to slice up zombies with it.


~~ pelenaka ~~