July 5, 2014

The garden is still booming!  We have some blank spots where we’ve pulled up greens and haven’t replanted yet.  Tomatoes will go in some of those spots and others will be winter squash.

The little rooster needed to come out of the big girls coop.  We didn’t want his daddy to start seeing him as competition.  So last night Kelly put him in with the little girls.  Unfortunately they are being mean to him.  Sigh.  I’m not sure if we’ll make him tough it out or put him by himself until he is a bit bigger.

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June 28, 2014

We’ve hit Peak Garden!  This morning I harvested: radishes, turnips, lettuce, chard, mesclun mix, zucchini, yellow squash, cucumber.

Coming soon: sweet bell peppers, tomatoes, blackberries, watermelon, and cantaloupe. There will still be zucchini, yellow squash and cucumbers for a long while.

Done until Fall: chard, strawberries, lettuce, spinach, mesclun mix, and lettuce.

Our garden is much smaller this year since all 4 of us are still working and we didn’t get all the beds prepared in time. I’m actually pretty happy with the size. I was out there for an hour this morning and got it all tidied up and harvested.

I think I’ll get Kelly to convert the remaining 1000 square feet into wildflower beds. That would look really pretty and be low/no maintenance once established. This year we have flowers planted among the garden plants. It looks lovely and gives me such happiness when I pull down the driveway.






Starting summer right:  green smoothies and exercise.

Goal:  Reduce or eliminate migraines.

I;m drinking one pint of the green smoothie/juice 30 minutes before every meal.

New Smoothie Recipe:  3 c spinach, 1 c lettuce, 2 c kale, 1 banana, 1/4 c blueberries, 1/4 c pomegranate, 1/2 lemon, 1/2 c apple juice, and enough water to stretch it out ot 1/2 gallon of “juice”

June 14: in the garden

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open letter

Dear Mr. Rush Limbaugh,

Hello. My name is Kim and I am the very proud mother of a 25 year old with Aspergers’ Disorder.

I read a transcript of your show from May 27, 2014.  A segment of your show concerns me.  You were speaking about Aspergers’, but didn’t seem to really know much about it.  As a social commentator on a national stage, I found that very discouraging.

Let me tell you a bit about Aspergers’.  It is a pervasive (meaning effects multiple systems) developmental (meaning neurological development) disorder (meaning something has gone “wrong”). Being part of the Autism Spectrum means it not simply “similar to autism”, but it is, in fact, autism.  Aspergers’ brings with it challenges and obstacles that are unique.

It is not “terrible” and it is not a “disease.”  Approximately 1 in every 88 children is affected by Autism.   It is a diagnosis that changes families and lives.  Most of us are out here doing our best to raise good kids.  We have the added task of dealing with gastro-intestinal disorders, sleep disorders, anxiety, sensory integration disorders,depression, IEPs (Individual Education Protocols), and other co-morbid conditions too numerous to name.  We balance psychologist appointments, physician appointments, and home life.  We love our kids:  both the autistic and the neurotypical.

Now let me tell you a bit about my son.  He is 25, very bright, very intelligent, and a very hard worker. He has held his current job 6 1/2 years.   He reads voraciously and deeply.   He can converse with anyone on a huge variety of topics.  He is kind.  He is thoughtful.  He is compassionate.   He is a truly good man.

We have always tried to teach him that he is valuable, capable, and worthy of respect. We have taught him that a person’s value is a God-given blessing.  It doesn’t matter what a person can contribute to society.  It only matters that they exist.   We have taught him to look beyond externals.

We have fought against ignorance and prejudice.   I believe that is why I am concerned about your portrayal and generalization of Aspergers’.  Your comments were completely misinformed and hurtful. I realize that this is your “schtick,” but there are many of us out here in the real world fighting every day for our children. Your words remind me that the general population remains ignorant and uncaring.

Your words remind me that we have a long way to go before we can rest.

I’ll stay quietly in the background, continuing to fight the daily battles of autism.  Continuing to help my son find his own level of independence.  Continuing to remind him that even the “mighty man of the airwaves” can be wrong.  Dead wrong.

While here in the background:  I pray that you will issue a public apology.  I’ll pray that God will have mercy upon you. I pray that you will find a hint of goodness and fairness in yourself that will allow you see how very wrong you are about this.

Kimberly M Hotz-Hedges

333: sort of



I’ve seen this project on Courtney’s blog and on Facebook. I hadn’t really though much of it, since I’m pretty minimalist in my clothing anyway. For some reason, I keep thinking about it. At odd times, the question will pop into my head, “333?”

So this long Memorial Day weekend, I took a good hard look at my closet. There really isn’t much in there. In fact, I’m pretty sure I’m just a few items over 33. However, what I really noticed is a lack of style. Work uniform shirts, jeans and jean shorts. Tank tops, t-shirts and shorts that are only good to wear in the garden or cleaning house, exercise clothes, one skirt and 3 church/nice shirts, 4 t-shirts that I only wear when heading out but not needing to look “dressed up,” tevas (oh, how I love my tevas), sandals, workout shoes, work shoes, and farm shoes, one jacket for chilly morning walks, and one rain jacket. I have a scarf but never wear it as the colors don’t match anything in my “church” section.

Accessories? Hmm, really just my sunglasses, purse, spare purse (almost exactly the same, only slightly larger for those trips when I need to carry more), my rings, watch, and my favorite tree necklace.

Of course, I also have a basket of socks, bras, unders, and my pjs. But those really don’t count on the Project anyway.

Here are the pictures.  Like I said, a real lack of style is showing through.  My favorite thrift store needs to get in some stylish clothes.  Of course, I might not even recognize them if they were there.


Garden mid-May

It doesn’t look like much. Yet.

Our weather has been cooler and wetter than normal. That keeps the plants just a wee bit stunted. Warmer weather starts this week and should prompt lots of growing. When it ramps up, we are going to have plenty of food.

Kelly has 11 beds dug, 2 long beds being made into compost, 2 short beds being made into compost, and about 10 beds to dig. I don’t know if we’ll get it all in this year. That’s ok. We’ve had a busy stretch.

The Silver Gray Dorkings are doing marvelously. They are really digging into their woodland/grassland nature. Most commonly we find them along the fence edge napping or resting. During their active periods they will be all over the yard. Scratching, pecking, calling each other. The eggs have super dark orange yolks, so I know our girls are super healthy. The little ones are doing quite well. They keep up with their momma really well now. It is too soon to know if they are boys or girls. It shouldn’t be too much longer though.20140522-164948-60588260.jpg

The chicks from the feed store are really looking “awkward.” It is normal, but funny. I still can’t quite figure out what kind they are. We’re hoping to move them out of the greenhouse and into a chicken tractor this coming weekend.


One thing I’ve noticed having chicks the same age, but one set raised by momma and the other set dependent on us, is that the momma raised chicks didn’t have this really awkward phase. I wonder if it is because they are outside, in the elements, with varied temperatures from day 1. Whereas the feed store chicks live in a “climate controlled” house.

The rabbits did not successfully have babies. There were babies, but the moms were too out of sorts to nurse them properly. I am saddened by this. I really hoped for a little Linden to keep. The girls are eating mostly grass, some willow clippings, and whatever I can find in the yard that is good for rabbits. They still have access to pellets, but they don’t seem inclined to eat them. Smart rabbits!








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