Monday, July 20, 2009

A few different updates

Hair: Still struggling with my styling stuff. I found some 1 oz. bars of beeswax for 59 cents each at Marlene's Market, a natural food store in Tacoma, and bought four. I tried to make some more curly pudding with it, using one-third of one bar of beeswax, melted; a quarter cup of shea butter, melted; a quarter cup of aloe; a few drops of essential oil for scent; and I also added a couple tablespoons of olive oil so it wouldn't be as thick as the last batch. And this time I blended it! It looked good when I first finished, much like Ms. Jessie's Curly Pudding, a commercial product my sister uses.

About an hour later, all the yellow stuff had gelled into a big glob in the middle while floating in some clear liquid, which had to be the aloe. I stirred it around, and checked it again in the morning. The mixture remained mixed this time, and was more creamy and pliable than the stuff I made the first time (most likely due to the addition of olive oil). However, there are small pieces of goop within the mixture, so I have to rub it really well within my hands to melt it all before applying it to my hair, or else I get small pieces of yellow goop in my hair. So... my homemade curly pudding works, in the sense of making my hair curl, but it's still not satisfactory as a great styling product. I'll continue to work on it.

The garden: Hubby's deer repellant seems to work, since we have tomatoes growing back. His green beans are growing well, both the ones he started from starter plants and the ones he started from seeds, but no pods have yet appeared.

My lettuce is starting to die, which was expected, since lettuce usually can't take the really hot days of summer. However, this means that it's time to plant some more lettuce seeds indoors, to be transferred outdoors in a few weeks for a fall harvest.

Of my herbs, the basil took the longest to sprout, and even once it sprouted, it didn't taste like much, while the chives and parsley had very strong flavors from the get-go. However, the basil is now growing like crazy, threatening to take over the entire herb container, and it tastes really sweet. I know this for sure because my daughter has started pinching off basil leaves to munch on. :-)

Speaking of growing like crazy, dear daughter's sunflowers are as well. To date, only one of the four has flowered, but the other three look ready to burst open any day now. The starter pot the seeds came in was about 3 inches deep and 3 inches in diameter, and the pot we replanted to is about 2 feet deep and 2 feet in diamester. The plants are now about a foot tall each, and I wonder how deep their roots are. I should check in with the Master Gardener program, because I probably should replant them in the yard soon. I'm just nervous about it, because I don't want to harm them in the transfer, since they're doing so well now.

I just looked up sunflowers on Wikipedia, and learned that they're an annual, so however big they grow this year will be the extent of these particular plants' growth. According to Wiki, they can grow up to 10 feet tall, and I know I've seen sunflowers in people's yards that are at least five feet tall. Somehow, I don't think ours will get that big, but maybe we can hope for 2-3 feet.

I also learned this cool fact from Wiki: "Sunflowers in the bud stage exhibit heliotropism. At sunrise, the faces of most sunflowers are turned towards the east. Over the course of the day, they follow the sun from east to west, while at night they return to an eastward orientation." I'll have to pay attention to this, and share it with my daughter.

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