An Alien in America

An alien's perspective on life and everything else

Archive for the ‘Home Improvement’ Category

My Gardening Attempts II

Posted by nickxyz on July 26, 2008

I thought it was about time to give another update on my gardening attempts. We had seeded our little dirt patch this year with quite a number of different things, hoping that maybe a couple or three would actually take. Well, guess what. All of a sudden, they all sprouted and not just in a skinny, dry, just here to make an appeareance kinda way. No, full bloom, turning the little dirt patch into a full grown jungle on a small scale.

Here is what came out of the ground:

  • Peppers
  • Heirloom tomatoes the size of softballs
  • Cherry tomatoes
  • Chamomile (well, that’s more like a flower / tea plant than a fruit plant)
  • Parsley (boy, does it grow like a weed, or what?)
  • Canteloupe melons
  • Sweet corn

And today, we were able to harvest the first fruits of our labor. The peppers are delicious (the first one already volunteered for your BBQ this afternoon). I attached a small selection for your viewing pleasure.

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My Gardening Attempts

Posted by nickxyz on October 14, 2007

Most recent pepper harvestAs mentioned previously, I stubbornly and repeatedly try my hand at gardening. Mostly with less than desirable results because I seem to be lacking the proverbial green thumb.

Nevertheless, I go out and plant “stuff” all around the house and my little specialized patch of dirt in the backyard. This season I tried my hand at cherry tomatoes and green peppers. The tomatoes yielded a nice crop throughout the spring and summer, nothing to write home about, but very handy for salads and the occasional dip of color in our meals.

Now, the peppers on the other hand are an entirely different story. I planted some seeds fairly late in the season (slacker), hoping I would get at least one or two plants this year. Well, all of the seeds actually have grown into nice sized pepper plants. They did not appear to be producing much fruit over the summer, a little small pepper in odd shapes here and there; so my expectations for them were not too high either. Over the last 5 or 6 weeks, those plants have gone berserk… outputting fruit of unheard amounts. Really good sized, plump, juicy and great smelling peppers (yes, peppers can have a pleasant smell… mind you, that is before they start to rot!) … It is the middle of October now and there is still blossoms on the plants. Just today, I went out to take a look after the torrential downpour yesterday to see what was left over. And ended up with 8 really nice specimen…. at least 4 more are waiting to be picked within the next few days as well. My luck might be turning around after all. 

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My Pirates Booty

Posted by nickxyz on August 10, 2007

My better half took a stroll this week through an antique shop (more by accident than planned, as he is not the “antiquing” kind usually) and found an old steamer trunk. As the good person that he is, he calls me right away, since I have been looking for an old steamer trunk for eons now. He describes it and I need to have. Veni, vidi, vici 🙂

Now my new treasure chest sits out in the garage awaiting restoration… it is gigantic, has metal bracings all around and this trademark “hump” at the top within the lid that makes it look just like a pirate’s chest. It appears that at one time it also had some dark blue felt like fabric all around.

The inside is absolutely huge with original compartments and dividers. Granted, I don’t think that all of them can be salvaged, but the majority I think can be restored. Or maybe build all new ones from some kind of nice and sturdy wood…. not sure yet.

Research on how to best proceed with the restoration of this new jewel will begin this weekend.

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The American Dream – Land Ownership

Posted by nickxyz on July 22, 2007

The American Dream of owning one’s own piece of heaven, be it a fleck of dirt, rich farming soil, a paddock for the horses or the cows….. owning a piece of land somewhere is gaining more and more popularity. Especially for the city dwellers, who would just love to have a weekend getaway or retreat.

Well, being the good citizens that we are, we bought into that very same dream 🙂 So we went and began to scout out possibilities of owning land close to home. Have been doing that for about 2 months now. This weekend now, we actually went to look at the first property.

It indeed is BFE, off a dead end road that has some gravel, surrounded by forest. Strange enough, my cell phone still got reception as my mum from overseas happened to call me right as we walked the perimeter. The land itself is very much interesting considering our intentions of owning hunting ground. Plenty of deer and turkey abound, it even has a small pond with some fish in it. On the down side, the owner is not quite sure yet, if they actually want to see it… that would beg the question as to why it is even available for showings…

The area is quite nice, it is not too far into town, less than 3 miles, but secluded enough to truly get away from the dreaded weekend work calls and would provide the opportunity to truly be one with nature. We did get a first taste of that concept yesterday. Lots of mosquitos, all sorts of bugs and best of all, quite a few ticks… despite having sprayed down prior to our treck into wilderness.

So now what? Came, saw it, liked it… are we going to actually buy it? No definite answer on that front; we are still deliberating all the pros and cons, not to forget that the current owner would like to see a considerable amount of cash exchange hands prior to him parting with the land title…

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Streichen – again

Posted by nickxyz on May 27, 2007

Die eine Aufgangsseite ist nun fertig. Habe gestern den Uebergang zur anderen Seite gestrichen. Sobald die Farbe trocken war, hat die helle Farbe doch einen ziemlich erhellenden und freundlichen Eindruck auf den gesamten unteren Eingangsbereich geworfen.

Auch wenn ich am Anfang etwas besorgt ueber den Farbton war, hat es sich doch als DER perfekte Farbton fuer unseren Treppenaufgang herausgestellt. Fuer die zweite Seite des Treppenaufgangs (der in den Keller, und somit zu unserem Wohnzimmer geht), habe ich mir etwas besonderes ausgedacht. Anstatt die Wand nur einfach gelb anzupinseln, werde ich ein Gemaelde eines kubistischen Kuenstlerns “kopieren” und mit Wandfarben auf meiner Kellerwand verewigen… mich sozusagen als Kopierkuenstler betaetigen. Das Bild in Frage ist bereits ausgesucht, die originalen Dimensionen auf meine Kellerwand uebertragen, jetzt muss es “nur” noch angepinstelt werden…. Stay tuned for the first look here!

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