Rewards of a Rose Garden
Roses have the reputation of being difficult, fussy plants that
require a great deal of attention and time. Although it takes
some effort on your part to maintain the beauty and health of a
rose garden, the reward of numerous blossoms in wonderful vibrant
colors is sufficient reward for most gardeners. A little water,
fertilizer, and spray, on a weekly basis, can be a pleasant excuse
to spend time in your fragrant garden.
Your rose bed should be planted where it receives full or
partial sunshine at least six hours a day. There are varieties
of roses that thrive in more shade but they will not be as fragrant
as the others.
Good drainage is also critical for roses. They like a lot of water,
but do not like wet feet, so a raised bed of at least ten to fifteen
inches high is a solution. It also makes gardening chores easier.
Roses do best in loamy soil with high humus content. Amend the soil
with organic matter such as compost, peat moss or cow manure and be
sure to test the soil to determine the acidity.
Check with a nursery in your area for tips on when to transplant roses,
but generally, any time from spring to fall, or when the plant is dormant
and the ground is workable. Water every 3 or 4 days, soaking the soil to
8 inches; and fertilize depending on your type of soil, but usually about
once every 4-6 weeks.
Lots of varieties of roses are available. The choices include climbing
roses, tree roses, miniature roses, hybrid perpetual roses, grandiflora
roses, and antique roses to name a few. Look at your space and the view
from the house to determine how you want to define the space for planting.
The rose can serve many functions including becoming a fragrant hedge and
then providing bouquets of fresh cut flowers to decorate the inside of your home.
Give roses a try. The rewards are many and the satisfaction of seeing a
perfect rose that you have grown makes it well worth the effort.
Add Fragrance to Your Home
Potpourri is a great way to add fragrance indoors. Most potpourri is made of
lavender and rose petals. Combining different herbs makes a distinct change in
fragrance. Here is a recipe for Rose Petal Potpourri.
3 cups dried rose petals
2 cups dried lavender flowers
1 cup dried lemon verbena leaves
1 tablespoon powdered allspice
1 tablespoon ground cloves
1/4 oz. essential oil of rose
Mix all ingredients together and store in an air tight jar for several weeks before using.
At Home In The New Millennium
Now that we are in the new millennium, we can see major changes from the way we lived in the 1980's and 90's. One of
the most noticeable is the downscaling of our lives. This has become obvious in the corporate world in the cut
back expense accounts, discontinuing the two martini lunches, and downsizing the firm.
But family life has also changed. Schools are more intense, with more competition to
excel, and extra activities such as hockey, tennis, and academic challenges to take up our time. Home becomes even more important; so we try to find time from busy schedules to relax and enjoy.
People are not eating out as frequently, choosing instead to stay home and entertain friends there.
The old saying "that the party always ends up in the kitchen," is true once again as people are choosing
to focus their attention and decorating dollars in the kitchen.
Turning the clock ahead to the new millennium has been a monumental event. We now look at life a little differently, looking at where we live, and how we live.
We need an environment that doesn't date itself and works as well in the years to come as it does today.
The 80's and 90's were decades of trends.
The new millennium is a time of establishing history for the home. Collecting antiques, collectibles, or reproductions will be an important part of decorating. One can still be contemporary, but vary it with a more eclectic look using a few important pieces.
For example; the focus of a room might be on an antique clock, a pull up chair, an antique chest, or an oil painting. A French chair that has been in style since the 1700's will obviously not go out of style in the next ten years. These timeless pieces will be the basis for your home.
If you still want a contemporary look, you can still use large pieces to achieve the desired affect. For example, start with a simple tailored contemporary sofa, but instead of a black lacquer coffee table, one might use an antique iron gate with a custom made base topped with glass - a truly one of a kind feel.
Geese Fly Further
Did you ever notice the way geese fly in a V-formation? As each bird flaps it's
wings it creates an uplift for the bird immediately following. By flying in a V-formation the whole flock adds at least 71% greater flying range than if each bird flew on it's own.
Basic Truth Number 1:
People who share a common direction and a sense of communication get where they're going quicker and easier because they're traveling on the trust of one another.
When the lead goose gets tired it rotates and someone else takes over. It pays to take turns doing hard jobs with people as well.
Basic Truth Number 2:
Whenever a goose falls out of formation, it suddenly feels the draft and resistance of trying to go it alone and quickly falls back into formation.
If we have as much sense as a goose, we will stay in formation with those who are headed the same way we are going.
"I find that the great thing in this world is not so much where you stand as it is what direction you are moving.
To reach the port, we must sail sometimes with the wind and sometimes against it, but we must sail, and not drift nor lie at anchor."
Barbecue Ribs... A Summertime Favorite!
Barbecued ribs have long been a back yard favorite. Here are a couple of ways to prepare succulent hickory smoked ribs that your whole family will love.
Use 3/4 to 1 pound of pork or beef ribs per person (I prefer baby back pork ribs). Cut ribs into serving pieces -
3 to 5 ribs per piece; remove any excess fat. Place ribs in a large roasting pan or Dutch oven;
add enough water to cover ribs; pour in 1 (3 1/2 oz.) bottle liquid smoke.
Cover and simmer over moderate heat 20 - 25 minutes. Drain well.
Grill (well drained and unbasted) ribs 3 to 4 inches from moderate coals for 20 to 30 minutes per side. Start basting with barbecue sauce (both sides). Continue to cook ribs (re-basting often) until done, about 1 hour.
Note: I prefer the indirect method of cooking on a grill. Stack your hot charcoal along two sides of the grill with the ribs in the middle. This will prevent your ribs from cooking to fast and possibly drying out.
If you are using
the indirect method to barbecue, it is important that you keep the grill covered and well vented.
To Cook on Rotisserie:
Lace or weave well drained ribs onto rotisserie rod, balancing ribs for even cooking and turning; secure ends with holding forks. Arrange medium hot coals at back of firebox; place drip pan under ribs. Cook ribs until done, about 1 hour, basting frequently with barbecue sauce
1 Bottle (28 oz.) Open Pit Barbecue Sauce (original flavor)|
1 Bottle (20 oz.) Heinz Catsup|
1 Bottle (6 oz.) Heinz 57 Steak Sauce|
1 Bottle (6oz.) A 1 Steak Sauce|
1 Cup Dry Red Wine|
1/2 Cup Brown Sugar|
2 Tablespoons Lee & Perrins Worcestershire Sauce|
1/2 Teaspoon Garlic Powder|
1 Tablespoon Liquid Smoke|
Mix well and bring to a boil, turn down heat and let simmer for 10 minutes.
Refrigerate unused barbecue sauce. Makes 2 quarts.
Great with ribs, chicken, or beef. Enjoy!
Note: When it's time to put the barbecue sauce on your ribs, try this - Take the ribs off the grill and simmer them in the hot barbecue sauce for 5 to 10 minutes.
Return the ribs to the grill and continue to turn and baste until done.
Documents To Be Kept Safe
Keeping your important papers, documents and insurance policies in a convenient
location, which is known to you, your spouse, and your loved ones, will save
time and frustration. You could save thousands of dollars in the event of
an emergency, death, or illness.
Here's a list of the items the organized homeowner should keep together, in a fireproof file cabinet, safe, or strongbox.
Bank information: Your account numbers, loan documents, statements, and deposits, as well as your most recent canceled checks.
Car Documents: License, registration, insurance policy, extended warranty, repairs, and other key information.
Education Records: Official transcripts, report cards, test scores for each student.
Insurance Policies: Life, homeowners, health, disability, and any others.
Tax Returns: IRS suggests you keep your tax returns for three to five years, just in case.
Official Documents: Birth Certificates, passports, legal papers, deeds, and wills should probably be kept in a safe deposit box. However, you may wish to keep copies on file at home, with instructions as to their location attached to the file.
Additional Record Keeping Responsibilities
Here are a few ideas for accounting for the items inside your home, as well as the home itself:
For your home inventory, make a video or photo record and retain receipts for any specific
items that are valuable or unique. Remember to add those items,
especially jewelry, computer equipment, stereos, etc. to your insurance
policy as specifically scheduled items. The additional cost of the
insurance is low, and the peace of mind is worth every penny.
You may wish to organize the information about personal
property onto a form. This form and the video or photo
record will be a perfect partner, if needed, to answer
questions in the event of a loss.
It is important to keep lease or mortgage documents, as well as
receipts for all home improvements in a secure place. Improvements
are defined as those things which add value, extend the useful life,
or adapt to a new use. Replacing a roof, building a fence or deck,
or adding a garage are all examples of improvements. By retaining
this information for all of the homes you own, you will be able to
show that your profit or capital gain upon the sale of your last
home is lower than the IRS would otherwise think.
When you do sell your last home, or move to a less expensive home,
the IRS will require documentation of this information.
If you would like to download a great little home inventory software program (freeware)
that is perfect for tracking all of the purchases you make for your home - click here.
Included along with this fun and easy to use program is a handy mortgage calculator.
This home inventory program allows you easy navigation with room by room control,
inventory reports, fully customizable printing, and blank inventory forms.
Great for submission to your insurance company and placement in a safety deposit
box! (1.37MB unzipped)
Fall Newsletter Lineup Includes...
- The Backwards Birthday Party
- Healthy Lunch Box Ideas
- Make An Ordinary Day Special
- A Carefree Perennial Garden
- Accessories Make Your Home Unique
- Super Spaghetti Sauce
- Pasta Perfect-The Inside Look
- Plus a couple of surprises!