We were cleaning out the flower beds in the front yard when JP discovered these "paper lanterns". I recognized them as part of the gooseberry family because I have grown tomatillos before. I didn't know if they were edible (I didn't even know what they were!) but after a quick search on Google we identified them as ground cherries, a.k.a. cape gooseberries.
I had absolutely NO idea on how they ended up in our front yard flower garden. I know I didn't plant them! While we were harvesting them off the ground, JP noticed that the plant was located beneath the bird bath and came to the conclusion that a bird must have eaten a gooseberry "then pooped the seeds while drinking at our birdbath".
I don't know how they got there (but JP's answer is probably the most feasible!) but I'm glad they found their way into the garden. I'm going to save the seeds from a few of them to plant in the backyard next spring. The rest we'll make into a ground cherry pie. I'm so excited over this find ('cause I'm nerdy like that!). I'm even more excited that this plant can take harsh conditions and doesn't mind being neglected in the garden. Hopefully by this time next year we'll be make pints and pints of ground cherry jam!
Oh, and in case you were wondering, ground cherries taste like a mixture of banana and pineapple with the texture of a tomato.
My poor, sad little garden has been neglected for quite some time now. I initially turned my back on it about four months into my pregnancy. Some how stooping, weeding, and sweating just wasn't appealing back then. Also, we had one of the hottest, driest summers ever last summer here in Texas and most plant life took a beating. So I just ignored my little garden boxes while my attentions went to our new baby....and trying to stay cool!
I ventured out to the garden today to check on the sad state of things only to discover that a little neglect might be a good thing. Here are dried up eggplant and pepper plants amongst thriving red onions!
And even more onions among the weeds!
The turnip seeds I scattered a few weeks ago need thinning...BAD! I hadn't even realized they spouted because we've had one day of rain and several nights of freezing temps.
Even the swiss chard spouted and is growing.
The garlic JP planted is just now sprouting and should do just fine over the winter. We'll cover the bed with leaves and straw and harvest the garlic in the spring.
I think I'd like to spend a day tending to the garden and getting it ready to "put to bed" for the winter. I miss not being in the garden, but it will have to wait until next spring to get any more attention from me.
I sure wish the kids and house could stand a little neglect like the garden, 'cause just for one day I'd like to get "put to bed" for a bit and take a long nap!
On Doug's day off we went on a little family excursion to the Wharton County Historical Museum to see their nativity scenes display. In all the five years we've lived here I have never visited the museum. I have to say that it is a great place to visit! There is lots of history in this little town and the whole family thoroughly enjoyed it.
But there was one thing that was perplexing...
Trying to explain a switchboard to a smart phone generation!
Me and my little soux chefs spent the day making tamales. It only took me three days to get to the point of assembly, but the kids didn't mind, and we had a wonderful morning just talking, laughing, and making at the kitchen table.
It's the stuff memories are made of.
In the end we made five dozen tamales for Christmas Eve dinner after Mass.We'll have enough left over for Santa and his reindeer (and any elves that want to come for a visit over the holidays!).