Mary, Mary, Quite Contrary

yellow pear tomatoes ripening...

How does your garden grow? It grows very well, thank you. In fact it’s growing too well. My tomatoes grew faster than I could keep up with and now the branches are huge and heavy and not off the ground like they are supposed to be because I didn’t tie them up in time. I’ve been doing my best, climbing through the jungle of leaves and vines and green tomatoes and tying them up as tightly as I can before the branches themselves break from the weight but it’s not going so well. I may lose a lot of them.

bumper crop

Which won’t be the end of the world because I think I have about a thousand green tomatoes. If I lose 50 of them, I think I’ll still have more than I could ever eat, can and make salsa with.

smashed up tomato patch

An unfortunate thing happened this last weekend. I decided to leave my dog, Holly, out for the day and let the neighbor feed her that night instead of taking her to my mom’s like I usually do. I didn’t want to do this because the weather has been oppressively hot and my dog, who used to be an outdoor dog and stayed outside for five years of her life, is spoiled rotten now and likes to spend most of her time indoors, sleeping under the air vent. It was so sad. As I locked her out she looked at me with giant puppy dog eyes and her tongue hanging out.

But sometimes dogs have to stay outside. The patio was cool and shaded and she had some nice cement to lie on, I thought. So I put it out of my mind and went onto our normal weekend activities in Orange County.

hot dog

Well, Holly got hot. Do you know what dogs do when they’re hot and bored? They dig into the nice cool dirt in the tomato patch. She dug to China and made all kinds of tunnels through the tomato branches on her way there. Broken branches, busted leaves, green tomatoes everywhere. It was not a happy sight to come home to. But I couldn’t be too mad at her. I probably would have done the same thing if I’d been left outside all day in one-hundred degree weather when I’m used to the five star resort that is the indoors.

So I’ve forgiven her and promised I’ll never leave her out again.

green tomatoes

Anybody have any good fried green tomato recipes?

99 degrees in the shade

gurlz in the hood

Dude. The over-100-degrees weather I dreaded since I moved out here to the sticks (aka desert), is here.


I’d say we’re coping quite well.

Super Chic and Boo

Fitting in with the natives.

Bugalug Secret Agent Bug

But then it’s not like we didn’t have practice.

neighborhood kitten

bathing beauties

So far so good.

my dad

By the way, my dad is here. He was even here on Father’s Day! Which was really cool. We didn’t do anything special for him which pretty much sums up my dad: We love him to pieces and we take him for granted. Rapunzel is baking him an entire batch of chocolate chip cookies for him to take on the road with him. So there’s that. But it’s not even a drop in the bucket compared to how much he does for us. He fixed my swamp cooler and killed about 99 black widow spiders I had living around the outside of my house the first day he got here. The rest of the time he’s spent helping my mom move back into her old house. (Yes, we’re kinda sad. More on that later.)

I love my dad so much.

And I didn’t even make him his own Father’s Day cd or buy him that Archies album he’s always talking about (which one was it again Dad?) Sheesh.

farmer bren

He’s been raving about my sugar snap pea garden and begging me to blog it. So this is for you, Dad. Here’s a picture of me behind my row of sugar snap peas, or were they snow peas? I always mix them up. Anyway, they are not supposed to grow in the desert. It’s like some kind of freak gardening event and my dad has been flipping out about it because they remind him of living in Northern California where they grow all the time and bring back memories of his childhood.

sugar snap peas from my garden!

See! Sugar snap pea harvest!


Truth be told, my mom and I had a whole mess of seeds. Some I had ordered off the internet blindly, not paying attention to what region of the earth I live in and others were just random things that people had given us from 1986 and beyond. Most of the seeds got left in this little wheel-around card/stool thing my mom has and were the unfortunate victim of a hose accident. They got soggy, they molded, the end. But some of them survived and that is what we planted. That is how we came to have about 20 pea plants growing in my backyard. Usually they would have croaked and died under the scorching hot desert sun but because we had such an unusually cool spring they survived! You could even say prospered since I’ve picked them twice now and there are still more flowers coming.

dinner with garden peas!

They were delicious in dinner.

p.s. I’m posting about my weight and working out over on my review blog. But there’s also a little video of my dog poop and weed infested backyard you might want to spy on so you don’t get too jealous of my mad gardening skillz. And of course there’s $$ dangling at the end to make you comment.