Make Your Own Recycled Self-Watering Gardening Pots

Laura asked how I made the self-watering pop bottle pots in this photo:

5/18/06 - Key lime (right) and tangerine (behind the key lime container on the left) seedlings in homemade self watering pots

The instructions can be found here: Topper’s Place – Pop Bottle Pots

It’s a quick project, and a great way to re-use all of those 2-liter diet soda bottles and milk cartons you might otherwise just toss out. I like to keep herbs in mine since stuff like basil and cilantro isn’t too happy about missing a watering and mornings can get a bit busy for me!

Tonight I’ll see if I can come up with a tutorial on how I make my origami seed starting pots that won’t confuse the heck out of everyone. I’d say that it’s around a medium difficulty level for someone who is familiar with the basic origami folds. They are a bit time consuming at 5-7 minutes apiece, even when you know what you are doing, but hey, might as well stay busy while watching re-runs of CSI, right? I made about 36 of these out of old newspapers earlier this summer to start up my fall pepper and eggplant seedlings.

5/12/06 - I figured out a way to make throwaway seedling starting pots sans stupid looking flaps with a square of paper cut from

Chocolate Protein Fudgsicles / Popsicles

Chocolate protein fudgsicle

One unhealthy food craving that I have not been able to quash completely has been my obsession with ice cream. I could give up all other desserts forever, but a life without frozen creamy goodness is not worth living.

I’ve tried a few different protein-based ice cream and popsicle recipes in the past, but it wasn’t until I started using Dymatize Elite whey that I succeeded in making a popsicle that wasn’t hard as a regular ice cube. So in addition to Dymatize whey’s superior mixing properties and taste with plain water, milk, and soy milk and the effectiveness of its integrated lactase enzyme formula for lactose-intolerant systems like mine, I can happily report that the stuff somehow retains a softer, fudgsicle-like consistency when frozen.

I made the following popsicle recipe this weekend and tested it on my picky husband. He loved them and said that he couldn’t tell they were mostly protein. No additional sweeteners were needed since the protein powder and pudding mix were already sweetened.


I get 8 rocket-shaped fudgesicles out of this recipe, and eat 2 of them as a snack with 1/2 oz. of nuts or by themselves if I just need a protein boost.

Dymatize Elite Protein Fudgsicles / Popsicles

– 1 box sugar-free instant Jello Pudding mix (French vanilla, chocolate, or butterscotch)
– 2 cups 8th Continent Light Soy Milk Original Flavor (This brand is ~ 50 cal/cup. Use of other brand or skim milk may change stats slightly.)
– 2 scoops Dymatize Elite protein powder (Gourmet vanilla, Rich chocolate, or Butter Cream Toffee)
– 4 T. baking cocoa powder (Optional if you are already using chocolate pudding mix AND chocolate protein powder, or if you want a non-chocolate pop)

Mix the ingredients together according to the instructions on the pudding mix box. Pour into popsicle forms, ice cube trays, paper or paper cups. Freeze for several hours until solid.

Makes 4 servings.

Calories: 121
Carb: 11.3 g
Protein: 16 g
2.1 g
Fiber: 1 g

TTBW P1 W3D1: A little change of schedule

After two weeks of experimentation with my original workout plan, I’m changing up my workout schedule this week so I can alternate home workout days with gym days. It was inconvenient to do half of my workout at home and half at the gym in the same morning. My gym doesn’t have any handy stability balls or a conveniently accessible unassisted chin-up station, so my TTBW sessions just work better at home, but I passionately HATE running outside in Florida heat, so I’d have to drive myself all the way to the gym just to knock out 20 minutes worth of intervals.

I bought Rune Factory: A Fantasy Harvest Moon for my Nintendo DS last week, which should make the post-HIIT sessions on the recumbent bike fly by in no time at all. Rune Factory is a farming simulation/dungeon-crawling roleplaying game hybrid in which your character basically gardens, makes money, beats up monsters, makes friends with the townies nearby, fishes, crafts stuff (weapons, accessories, medications, etc.), upgrades his home and equipment, and cooks.

I will more or less be playing a miniature simulation of my real life while pedaling away, except for the bit about beating up monsters. (Don’t ask me why virtual life sims are so addictive to me. It’s probably a chick thing. Most chicks don’t know why guys can’t get enough of frenetic first person shooters either.)


Daily Activities: 15 minute Yourself Fitness Cardio warmup before AM workout, 15 minute walk during lunch, and 15 minute YF Yoga/Meditation Garden after work

Mon: TTBW A + Forza
Tue: HIIT Run + MISS Recumbent Bike
Wed: TTBW B + Forza
Thu: HIIT Run + MISS Elliptical
Fri: TTBW C + Forza
Sat: HIIT Run + MISS Recumbent Bike
Sun: Yoga X

(HIIT = High intensity interval training; MISS = Medium intensity steady-state)

– Forza DVD

M1: 50 g oat cereal, 1/2 c. light soy milk, 1 slice cantaloupe, 8 grapes, 3 egg whites
M2: 1 c. light soy milk, 3/4 scoop protein powder, 1 T. cocoa powder, 1/2 oz. walnuts
M3: 3 oz. chicken breast in raspberry sauce, 1 c. mixed veggies, 1 nectarine
M4: 1 plum, 1 unsalted rice cake, 1 T. SF preserves, 1 T. ANPB
M5: 3 oz. Tunisian flank steak and egg whites, 3 c. spinach/lettuce salad, 2 T. light dressing, 1/2 oz. walnuts
M6: 1 chocolate butterscotch protein popsicle, 1 c. veggie stir fry