Sunday, December 4, 2022

Our 2022 Travel!

 It is hard to believe that it is already Decemeber! I realized I haven't posted about our travel for the year! Get ready for a long post! :) 

This year we have gone to Seattle, WA; Florida and Las Vegas (twice)! 

For Joey's job he needed to travel to Seattle and was able to hold off in going until it was my Spring Break! I was able to go with him to all the different studios to help him complete an audit of the AV and Technology. It is the same thing that we completed in Florida last year. 

The weather in Seattle was drizzly, but we actually got 2 days with no rain!! The rain was not that bad since it is not like our rain here in Texas, but it was chilly for us. Our favorite parts were not actually in the city- the surrounding areas were much nicer. 

The scenery around Seattle is so beautiful!!

Mercer Island had the cutest houses along the shore. 

The fog from the chilly rain falling. 

We stayed in Redmond for a couple of nights. 
We ate at the Bai Tong Thai, which the locals recommended. I got the crispy chicken there and we shared a pot of jasmine tea. 

Surprisingly, the food you will find the most in Seattle are: teriyaki/Asian, pizza, and coffee. 

One of my favorite Old Fashions ever was made at Tavern Hill in Belvue. It was the perfect mix and so yummy after a long day of traveling and visiting studios! 

In June we went to Florida for Joey's job as well. Our visit last year was the big audit, so this year wasn't as full. 

We flew into Fort Lauderdale since it was cheaper to do and rent a car to drive to West Florida than fly into Tampa. Joey got to show me Orange Theory Cooperate Headquarters, Boca and the cute shops there. 

The coolest thing though was Joey took me to see the Atlantic Ocean and then by that evening I was able to see the Gulf! 

The Atlantic

The Gulf at Sunset

I love this man so incredibly much! 

Florida was filled with good food and we even got to eat dinner with one of Joey's coworkers that is such a sweet person! 

In July, we made our trip to Vegas! This is a trip I always look forward to! We've been going to Vegas almost every year since about 2013. 

I ALWAYS love going to see what's in Bellagio's Conservatory each visit. It is a must do for me every time. 

One of biggest highlights of the trip is we got to see Martin Garrix at Omnia!! 
He was incredible! At one point you could feel the balcony moving because everyone was dancing and jumping. We both look forward to seeing him again! 

We made sure to take a visit to Mirage since it has been bought by Hard Rock and will be turning into one sometimes soon. 

We saw Mad Apple at New York New York! We highly recommend this show! It has a variety of different acts and was very fun. 

We had some drinks  in Superfrico's Ski Lounge in Cosmopolitan 

We met up with our friends and visited Area 15. We visited the Meow Wolf Mega Mart which was very fun and could definitely spend many hours there. 

Art installation 

The Mega Mart has many funny type products that you can actually buy. 

On one of the nights we went to Freemont Street. Honestly, my favorite spot is Circa. It's 21 and older, they check your ID at the no junkies/sketchy people in the place like you see walking around outside.  

8 East 
Gotta try the brisket fried rice Vital Vegas style (with chicken skewers) 
It's perfect before or after a night of partying! 

Again, one of my favorite places. The Legacy Club at the top of Circa. 
The bartenders are some of the best in the country and each drink they have is delicious!
This one was the Green Felt Jungle. 

Well then school started for me pretty soon after our July trip. A few weeks into it a big change occurred and that's all I feel like sharing about it here since it's not so positive or happy. The outcome I am still trusting God in leading me with. 

Anyways, we made a weekend trip back to a place that I feel the most relaxed, Vegas. 
Joey was gone all earlier that week in San Diego at a cooperate event. So he changed his flight to go to Vegas, that Friday my father-in-law picked me up and took me to the airport. I met Joey in Vegas for a great weekend. 

It was a weekend just Joey and I and was so good for me! I am so thankful for Joey and my father-in-law (who took me to the airport and watched Ziggy).  We spent Friday night, Sat- Monday there. 

I got to see Bellagio's Fall display for the first time ever. 

We visited Westgate, the hotel that Elvis had a residency. On the way we got to see the progress on the globe shaped arena they are making. Once it's done, the entire outside will be a screen. 

We went to Skyfall Lounge which is at the top of Dellano (which is connected to Mandalay Bay). 
We saw the sunset from there. 

We started at Skyfall and then ended the night at the Legacy Club. So from one end of the strip, to the end of Freemont Street. 
Beginning of the night

End of the night 

We've had some great adventures this year. As always it is such a blessing to be going through this life with Joey. I can't wait to see what else is in store for us in the years to come!

Wednesday, June 22, 2022

2022 Garden

 Wow it has been a hot second since I have blogged about my gardens! I post pictures all the time on Facebook and Instagram, but never on here! 

This year's garden! I planted when we got back from Seattle over Spring Break (March 19th). The weather was milder and cooler, which I think has helped. 

Everything is planted! (March 19th)
Of course Ziggy joined the annual picture

In the right bed this year I have: 

Buttercrisp lettuce- an experiment of mine to see if it would grow. It is doing well and I recommend it, it has a nice mild flavor. 

Slicer Tomatoes- I normally get Roma's, however there were none left at the nursery. 

Tam Jalapeno- not sure what the difference is of yet with them, but they are growing nicely. 

Ghost Pepper- I saved seeds from all my peppers last year and grew the first plant from seed. Sadly it was not doing well so I replaced it with an established plant. 

2 Gypsy Peppers- I grew these from seeds. One was replaced with another seedling I grew that was doing better. 

Dill- I got to have dill for pickle making! 

Straight 8 Cucumbers- on a trellis is the only way to go! 

In the left bed I have: 

2 Habanero- last year we did not have good luck with them after the 1st plants died. This year so far so good. They were the first peppers to grow buds. 

Sweet Chelsea cherry tomatoes- I put these on a trellis and from now on I think I'll do that! Since these cherry tomatoes ALWAYS outgrow their cage, this is a better option. 

Jalapeno- I got an extra jalapeno plant from my mom, I figured why not. 

2 Scotch Bonnets- I grew these from seeds from last year's plants. I had to replace the first couple I planted with seedlings that grew better that I had. I decided to plant 3 just to make sure they'd make. 

    We like to make a mango scotch bonnet hot sauce that makes a fantastic marinade on chicken. 

1 reaper- Ms. Carolina is back this year! We made hot honey last year with a pepper. It's basically infusing honey with a reaper pepper. 

Yellow Squash- It has been a few years since I tried squash. In year's previous I have gotten vine borers that kill my squash. This year I decided to cage it- keeping the leaves off the ground and so far *knocks on wood* it has done fantastic! The leaves are bigger than my hand and the plant is very tall! Today (5/1) I picked my first squash!

March 23rd (Almost 1 Week)

April 3rd (Week 3)

April 3rd 

April 13th (Week 4)

April 19th (One month later)

The lettuce surprised me and grew very well!

Harvested lettuce! 

April 26th 
My squash had SO many blooms!
The leaves were bigger than my hand!

May 7th (Week 7)
The garden was rocking at this point! 

May 6th 

May 10th 

May 12th 
1st Cucumber picked

May 20th 

June 4th (Week 11)
By now the cucumbers were starting to show more brown leaves, but still showing growth. 

I killed the dill, I think by getting too much off of the plant at one time. I read you can only trim to a certain percentage of the plant. Who knew?! 

As I am finishing this post (6/22/22) my garden looks like: 
Squash- I have trimmed off one of my stems from the squash. I am thinking vine borers got to it. It has that yellow powdery type stuff on the remaining stalk. I did not get any more squash after that picture above. Overall I am happy with the production and getting anything from my squash plant was awesome! I saw a video of someone adding aluminum foil around the stalk base to ward off any borers, I may try that next year. 

Cucumbers- I have no idea what their issue is. The older leaves started dying a lot, new growth was happening at the very tips of the vines. The bases looked a little split, but that can be normal at times. I started with 2 vines on each side, they are both now down to one on each side. I'm not sure if they will make it with the over 100 degree temps we've been having. 
I did get about 4-5 cucumbers off of it. Nothing like my best harvest (which was a crisper drawer full), but better than the last couple of years. 
Side note: keep cucumbers at room temp, putting them in the fridge makes them spoil faster. 

Tomatoes- My slicer tomatoes are not my favorite. They make tomatoes, however every one of them splits. 
Cherry tomatoes had leaf-footed bugs BAD for a few weeks, I used DE to try to get rid of them and neem oil- that didn't work. Not sure what caused the hoard of them to come, but they are pretty much gone now! Right now the cherry tomatoes is growing new vines/stems, but not a lot of fruit. These cherry tomatoes seem to have a tougher outer layer than some cherry tomatoes. 

Habaneros- the bush closest to the fence is ROCKING!! Each good fruit I've gotten has been from this bush. The one next to it has curled leaves, looks like something is eating the tips, no visible pest though. The fruit would have bites taken out of it. Looks like a bird pecked them. 

Scotch Bonnets- I replaced the ones I first planted since they were having trouble growing. I kept the other germinated growing in the pot, so I transplanted 3 of those. Now we have 3 scotch bonnet plants. One plant (furthest to the left) has many bonnets on it. The middle plant is not as tall, but doing well. The one closest to the aisle is smallest and the leaves are not as big. 

Carolina Reaper has at least 2 fruit on her. One is starting to turn to a red color so it will be ready to pick before long. 

Gypsy Peppers- they are growing well. They need a lot of water so they do not start drooping in this HOT weather.  These peppers have to go in the fridge as soon as you pick them. They can sit on the shelf.

Jalapenos- I am actually liking the extra plant my mom gave me more than the Tam Jalapeno from the nursery. The one from my mom makes bigger jalapenos. I have picked many off of each bush. Store these in a paper sack within the fridge. This way they will last quite a while. 

Ghost Pepper- this one also got replaced from our transplant. It is a picky little plant. It wilts very easily. It has not grown very tall and the leaves are curly. It was the most happiest when I was watering 2x a day as evident by it's leaves. It has not started bearing any blossoms yet. 

Lettuce- the lettuce stalks have gotten tall! It is putting out little leaves, but is still growing. I pull off the leaves that have yellow or brown on them. Since the heat has picked up, growth has definitely  slowed down. I am just happy it is still alive! 

The new thing I have not done this year and other years I have is that I do not have soaker hoses out in the garden. That worked really well with our wet April and milder temps.  Now that the weather is getting very warm and we are starting to get into travel season, I have purchased soaker hoses. I just haven't put them out yet. 

I believe me hand watering each day definitely helped with me staying on top of growth, weeds, and pest control. 

Overall I am happy with my plants and what has grown for us so far!