Well, get ready to cringe!
The brew shop was closed on the day I went by so I didn't get the chance to get what i wanted, and I didn't really feel like driving all the way out there again so decided to see what i could do with what was around the house.
The only yeast I could find was either fleishmans or a couple packets of old Red Star that my dad had stashed away, one champaign and one pasteur champaign, both expired in mid 2012. I put a pinch of each in separate jars of warm water to see if they would take and they did so I added more warm water and a tbsp of honey and dumped the rest of the two packets in the starter. Then I took what I had so far of dandelion flowers, greens removed: 8.6 oz. and diced up what celery I was willing to sacrifice: 9.4 oz. and simmered both at about 190 degrees for around 15-20 minutes. Meanwhile the starter was growing such a huge head it was starting to look like one of those ash snakes I used to play with on New Years eave so I had to transfer it to a larger container.. haha!!
Put about 6 cups of sugar and a tsp of Irish moss into a different container and poured the dandelion/celery on top of it and let it meld for 5 minutes. Sliced an orange (yes, pith and everything) and put that with eight of my moms fresh grapes (forgot to get raisins at the store..) into a sterylized 1 gal glass pickle jar. Added a little bit more water to around 1.075 sg, checked that it wasn't too hot anymore and pitched the yeast. Rubberbanded a plastic bag over the top and set it in the cooled room in the house which seem to average the usual 68 degrees.
That was around a week ago and it's been going really well so far, and smells great! I removed the orange slices today.
This may seem strange but of all the batches of both wines and meads (mostly meads) that I've made I almost always get better product when I make these little 1 gal batches. Not really sure why.
I'll try to post a pic real soon.