The lines have fallen to me in pleasant places; Indeed, my heritage is beautiful to me. ~ Psalm 16:6 nasb

Thursday, May 31, 2012

For Mother's Day

My guys gave me another absolutely wonderful, incredible gift for Mother's Day:  the gift of doing.  They've been doing work in my garden throughout the spring, and given the problems I've been having with my neck and back, I have appreciated every minute of their time and hard work.  On Mother's Day, they gave me the entire afternoon of work.  How wonderful a gift!!

Fernando began my special afternoon by mowing the front yard

The plan was to get all the compost that Fernando and I bought into the garden beds, then to plant my plants which had been patiently waiting.  I had already made out a plan for each bed, except the one which Lori will use this summer.

The guys rolled up a portion of the chicken-wire fence enclosing the raised bed gardens, and started mixing in the compost.

Thomas worked some lime into the soil where the tomatoes were to be planted.  This will hopefully prevent blossom-end rot on my tomatoes.

Joseph separated out all the tomato plants by variety--plum, eating, and cherry.

Once everything was planted, Jacob kindly watered it all.

In the below bed, I planted green beans (in the foreground).

Carrot seeds were planted in the below bed (empty space on the right).

Since I didn't have any stakes this year, I half-buried old pie tins around the pepper plants.  The shiny silver of the tins wards off the birds who mercilessly saw off pieces of the little plants.  In the past, I've hung the pie tins on stakes so that the tins bang against the stakes.  The noise plus the shiny tin have worked great to keep the birds away.  We'll see what happens this year.

See my beautiful lettuce that came in quite surprisingly this spring?  I love just standing there and looking at the huge heads and awesome leaves!

My pea plants have sprung up around my web of string on which they will climb.  In the foreground, I planted jalapenos and onions around my new strawberry plants.  Hopefully they will be able to co-exist!

Three of the beds, all in a row

Here are the five beds.  I'm gardening in four of them, and Lori has that empty one on the right.  Her plants will be in shortly.  A growing, green vegetable garden is a beautiful sight!

Back to life,

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Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Time to Prepare

May 5.  Another garden day for us!  This day was Fernando's and my time to go get some compost.  We saved the $80 delivery fee by taking our pickup truck and having them load the compost right into our truck.

That's not loose dirt or anything flying off in the wind--it's steam!  The compost was super warm.

After two shovels full of compost, and after I saw the back of the truck sink lower and lower, we decided not to get any more.  It would be an interesting drive home with all that weight in the bed!

Back at home, the guys went to work.  Since it was going to rain fairly soon, the goal was to get the compost into the back yard and covered with tarp.  We would work it into the gardens on another day.

A large chunk of loose compost

After the guys' work in the garden last week, the beds are ready for their yearly dose of compost!

I really do have some great workers.  I love my guys!

Back to life,

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Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Where There's Frisbee...

Where there's Frisbee, there's friends!

You didn't think this was a post about Frisbee, did you?  Nope.  I didn't see a single Frisbee the whole evening.  We dropped the guys off at the Frisbee field for their game, and then Fernando dropped me off at our friends' house.  Here's what I saw when we pulled into the driveway:

Through the car window

Gail gave me a little tour of her yard, and the various growing things she has beautifying her yard.

She and her husband made a beautiful garden in their back yard, and they planted blueberries!  I sure hope they get a great crop.

Blueberry blossoms

I wonder if we can grow blueberries one day...  Now I'm dreaming again.  :)

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Monday, May 28, 2012

Growing Things

May 3-4.  In between attending Danny's Phi Theta Kappa induction ceremony, I managed to get over to The Growing Place (with Danny!) to hunt for a few garden things I didn't have yet.  My mom told me about this nursery, and since my beloved Sid's closed last year, I have nothing close to home.  I had passed this nursery many times on the way to photography classes in the past, but I never knew what was behind that little driveway.  I wasn't expecting this!

I hung my camera around my neck, and no one said a thing.  I sneaked in a couple of shots of various locations within the nursery to give you a feel for its size and the variety of things they were selling.  But, these shots don't do it any justice at all.  The place is huge!

I purchased just a few things:  onion starts--even though it's later than I wanted to plant them, rosemary, cilantro, and a four-pack of marigolds to plant near my green beans as a pest deterrent.

I've never purchased onion starts before, but they came with directions for planting, caring, and harvesting, so we'll see how it goes.  There's a variety of red and yellow onions, and I think there were at least 50 or so onions in this little pack!



Since Lori grew some awesome green bean plants last year, and my pole bean plants died before even a single harvest, I decided to purchase the same beans Lori had used last year.  Every year I keep saying that I'm not going to plant beans, and every year I plant beans.  Hopefully these will be good to me this year.  The boys aren't really big on beans, but I am, and Fernando likes them, so here we go again!

I read that marigolds deter those pesky Japanese beetles that love green bean plants, so I'm planting these hardy golden beauties in the corners of my green bean square.  We'll see if the advice pans out.

As of this post's date, I've planted everything.  You'll get an update soon, I hope!

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Friday, May 25, 2012

Honor Student #2

On May 3, we had the privilege of attending a ceremony of Danny's induction into Phi Theta Kappa, the National Honor Society for two-year colleges.  Jacob had been inducted last autumn, and we were looking forward to another evening of celebrating the achievements of another son.

Danny waited in line for his turn.  I think he was nervous, but he acted very calmly.

Unlike Jacob's ceremony, this one provided for a time where their official photographer would snap a shot of each inductee when he got up on stage.  I sneaked up next to the photographer and snapped my own shot.

Danny signed the official register.

After the ceremony, we enjoyed an hors d'oeuvres reception with lots of tasty appetizers and sweet treats.  I shot just one of the appetizers before Fernando ordered me to put my camera away.  :)

Right before we left, I got a couple of neat shots of Danny with his grandparents.  Sweet!  I'm so glad they're involved in the lives of their grandchildren.

Congratulations, Danny, on your accomplishments!  We love you!!

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Thursday, May 24, 2012

Put Me to Work!

April 29.  A work day at our home.  First, though, we said hello to the squatters...

...then waved goodbye when they flew away.

Then we got to work.  Well, let's just say the guys worked and I documented it all with my camera.  Little by little, we've been laying down newspaper in the walkways of my raised bed vegetable gardens, then laying grass clippings on top.  This way, we have a soft pathway to walk on, and the boys don't have to figure out how to get the lawnmower into the garden and up and down the walkways.  It takes a lot of grass to fill in the walkways, and even after two years we're not done with every path.

Fernando was a sweetie and pulled the larger weeds while Jacob followed behind him with layers of newspaper.

Look at my surprise lettuce, grown up from seeds planted last autumn!  I've been enjoying this throughout our early spring.  It makes me happy just to see it growing in my garden.  :)

The squatters waited patiently on our neighbors' roof while we worked in "their" back yard.  ;)

Thomas diligently weeded the beds.

At the end, some weed-whacking remained to be done, but otherwise, the gardens were ready for compost and plants.  I was one very happy gardening lady!

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