Tag Archives: rocket

What a week! On to the 4th!

On Friday, the Supreme Court of the United States handed down their historic decision ensuring marriage equality for same-sex couples. What a great way to wrap up June, which is LGBT Pride Month, and to kick off 4th of July celebrations. For Independence Day, we are sharing our rocket craft ideas and baked bean recipe. Of course, we also include our garden update. Photo source: Bing images/WH.gov


IMG_4274 (3)

We first created the wine rocket pictured on the right as a hostess gift years ago. It was inspired by Roy’s work on two productions of the classic play, “You Can’t Take It With You”. The family in that play – the Sycamores – make fireworks in their basement – with explosive results! Roy did double duty (both times) on that show, making the prop rockets (among other things) and acting. We used the same design idea to create this fun “wine rocket”. It’s a great way to bring a bottle of wine or other item as a hostess gift to 4th of July celebrations. We also created the rocket on the left from a paper towel tube for smaller gifts (think lottery scratch tickets). Fun!


IMG_4237 (2)

You will need: One cylindrical wine gift box; red, white or blue construction paper; white poster board; scotch tape and a bottle of wine or other gift of your choice that fits in the gift tube.

To make: Use poster board to wrap wine box like a gift, folding and securing paper at the bottom and cutting slits in the sides if needed for the string holding the top to container. Decorate with contrasting paper. We used 1-inch stripes, but a spiral design would work well, too. Attach pipe cleaners or wired garland to base to create wick or tail.

For the cone top:

  • Trace a 10-inch dinner plate onto construction paper to get a circle.
  • Cut circle in half. Each half makes a perfect cone when you join the sides.
  • Use tape to fasten to bottle holder.


A paper towel tube is perfect to make this smaller rocket.

You will need: An 11-inch paper towel holder, a 5×5 inch napkin with a July 4th or flag pattern, double stick tape, construction paper.

Open napkin and place with design side down. Center tube on napkin as shown below with one side flush with napkin and one side hanging over. Draw a line on the tube where it hangs over the napkin and cut slits in that end. Tuck slits into tube to make a base. Using double stick tape, attach napkin to tube. Cover base with circle of napkin.

To make the top: Follow same directions as cone for the wine rocket above, but use 7-inch plate to trace the circle onto the construction paper.

Secure cone over open end with tape and create flames for base of rocket by attaching strips of construction paper.

These rockets are easy crafts to make with your kids and work great to hold candy, lottery tickets or whatever small gift you like! Also make great, simple 4th of July decor.


IMG_4244 (2)

IMG_4247 (2)


IMG_4229 (2)

Baked beans are a delicious, traditional side dish for picnics, but the canned ones can be a little bland. We like to doctor them up to them more interesting and tasty.

You will need: 28 oz. can baked beans (we like the vegetarian style), 2 tablespoons yellow mustard, 2 tablespoons ketchup, 1/2 cup sautéed onions, 2 tablespoons breadcrumbs.

How to make: Mix mustard and ketchup into beans, top with onions and breadcrumbs. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 to 45 minutes.

Experiment with your own baked beans by adding ingredients like bbq sauce or your favorite veggies. Yum!


IMG_4252 (2)IMG_4289 (2)

PEPPERS Our Shishito peppers, which reach 3-4 inches in length when fully mature, are doing great! We are close to picking 2 of them.

IMG_4287 (2) IMG_4279 (2)

TOMATOES We have lots of cherry tomatoes in various stages of growth on our two plants. (Kevin stopped counting at 30 on the Super Sweet 100 variety pictured on the left.) On the right, two nearly ripe tomatoes on our Husky Cherry Red plant are almost ready for a salad.

IMG_4284 (2)

BASIL Our basil survived a big soaking. We solved a drainage problem by drilling holes in the bottom of the container, and are now sheltering the pot during heavy downpours.


What kind of socks does a gardener wear? Garden hose!                                                                 (source: thegardendigest.com)

More Independence Day food and decorating ideas in the next blog!

This week, and every week, we are proud to be Americans!

Roy and Kevin