Saturday, August 11, 2007

Cooking at the Tiny Bungalow Part 2

I can't believe we never tried this before. Tonight we decided to make pizzas on our grill. A few years ago, we tried this after seeing it on an episode of Martha Stewart. Martha grilled the dough directly on the metal grate of the grill and then added the toppings and re-heated. When we tried it, it was a disaster. This time, we decided to throw our pizza stone on the grill, stoke up the coals, and see what happens. There are still a few temperature issues that we need to work out but all in all, I would consider it a success. We were able to use several tomatoes from the garden (we have tons) and we used quite a few herbs. We have tons of fresh herbs as well. I never thought I would tell my wife to just throw the leftover basil and oregano in the compost bin but we can get so much more out of the garden. The pizza came out great.I have spent another week doing nothing on the house. I am studying to take the LEED AP exam on Monday so I have been a hermit. The more I study, the less confident I feel about passing. Nice feeling. I have a couple of days and hopefully it will turn around. Studying, I've spent a lot of time in my dining room. This has compounded my angst as I am surrounded by pealing paint, broken plaster and poorly finished wood - all that I need to fix some day.

It has been raining in Chicago for a week straight. Serious rain. Inches of rain. Our garden may appear happy but it isn't. Everything is pretty much falling over. I spent a day staking up the sunflowers and other plants. The clematis is blooming again - though the plant looks a little anemic. Maybe these are supposed to be miniature??? The plants are all filling in and have taken over. I have given up on trying to control things for the time being.
We do have one pleasant surprise that seemed to come with the rain. Down the alley (about 6 houses), our neighbor has the nicest morning glories - massive leaves and stems and deep violet flowers. Very cool looking plants. The other day when I walked by my back fence, to my surprise, I have the exact same morning glories blooming there. These were not here last year and my wife and mother in law cleaned out the entire fence area on the alley this spring. It was once covered with choke cherry, baby ash, and raspberries. Now we have morning glories.


Our Little Bungalow said...

Mmmmmmmm grilled pizza. Did you use sauce? Dear hubby doesn't "do" grilled pizza. What can I say, he's from the U.P.?
Good luck your exam. It's better than my excuses these days, meeting with attorneys and sick children!

Fargo said...

Those morning glories are a mixed blessing. The flowers and foliage are attractive, and they grow quickly - useful if you need to cover an ugly area. However, they are extremely invasive.

When we moved into our place last year, our entire back fence and much of the side fence were covered with morning glory vines, and they were taking over most of the raised bed in the back of the yard.

I spent an entire weekend ripping most of it so that I can actually grow something besides morning glories. The mound was large enough to fill an entire standard Chicago garbage can.

Since then, I've allowed it to grow in small areas (mostly to avoid a full view of the garbage cans from the back yard), but I have to constantly rip out new vines. They will climb on and smother anything, given the opportunity. These suckers have sent underground runners so far that I have vines popping up 4-6' into the lawn.

If I let them go for a year or two, I think they'd cover the entire yard. I consider them the Chicago equivalent of kudzu.

Tiny Oak Park Bungalow said...

I passed my LEED exam - one load off my back. I'll have to celebrate a bit tonight.

On the morning glories: Thanks for the advice, I can see how they might take over. We have a not-so-attractive variety that is smaller; on the other side of the yard. It has been a war to keep them out. These ones are very attractive but I will heed the warning to try and keep them under control. If they took over the garbage cans and rear entry, it wouldn't bother me. I would even love it if they covered the other side of my garage (the one without sunflowers). If they went any further, that might be a problem.

Christina said...

congrats on passing the exam! I echo the morning glory sentiment. I originally loved them covering up a rusty old chain link fence. But, I'm now at the point that I might just rip them out and plant clematis or something. One of them I'm conviced killed one of our rose bushed when I was out of town.

I hope yours are better contained.

Crazy Nana said...

So glad you passed your exam. I had no doubt that you would pass it !! I love morning glories but you do have to keep on top of them. The yard looks fantastic !! You need to send a picture of the wild flowers in the front. Keep up the good work ! The furniture in the bedroom is so nice-love the piece in the front entry !!