Spring gardening

We did a little family gardening today.  Arlo dug some big holes, my mom bought pansies, and I planted them.  I saw Mother Earth planted crocuses around the yard as well.  All was good until Arlo decided to keep working.  Poor pansies didn’t stand a chance!  :/  I brought him in, replanted the flowers, and will now hope for the best

1. Arlo digs holes 2. I plant pansies 3. Arlo unplants pansies 4. Mother Earth plants crocuses

Eve decided to plant her daisies on Daisy’s grave as well. For some reason that whole part of the lawn is a soggy, muddy mess! We planted the seeds anyway, ’cause that’s how we roll.

Planting daisies in the mud.

Now we sit back and hope that the weather cooperates and doesn’t freeze our little flowers and seeds!

Gardening

Eve and I planted a garden this morning in the backyard. This garden area is now on it’s third incarnation. It started as a veggie garden way back when, then turned into a dirt box for a few years where the kids played with their trucks and dug holes to China, and now it will (maybe) become a beautiful flower garden.

I’m teaching Eve the laziest gardening skills. Last weekend we pulled up as many weeks as we could and used the shovel and rake to level out the space (no more huge mountains and deep lava pits) and loosen up the dirt. Then a week went by and the weeds grew back. This morning we went out again, pulled up more weeds, and planted seeds. During the week Eve had drawn a few plans for the seed planting, based on the heights of the flowers and the angles of the sun, but when we went out this morning she ended up just sprinkling them in loose rows. We’re working with seed packets from last summer, so I don’t know if they’ll even grow! Once all seven types of flowers had been sprinkled about the garden we dumped a giant bag of potting soil (also from last summer) on top and use the rake to spread it all around, destroying any semblance of seed rows we had. Then we sprayed the whole thing with water from the hose. Easy peasy!

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I told her we should make a journal and keep track of what we planted and when, but probably we’ll both be too lazy busy to make that really happen. Hopefully nature will cooperate with us and Eve will have her big, beautiful flower garden this summer. If not, maybe I’ll teach her the right way next summer. :)

Gardening

Eve and I planted cherry pits and popcorn kernels this morning. I will have one very excited girl on my hands if they grow!

eve

I made her wear her boots so she didn't get all dirty before school, and she chose her raincoat over sunscreen. :)

Flower love

We planted chocolate mint and freesia today. The chocolate mint (repotting, really, Lex and I bought the plants already growing at the Home Depot!) went into an old pot of dirt that had something else growing in it last year. I don’t remember what. For the freesia bulbs I dumped a bag of manure on the wood mulch where our tree came down last year. Then we tucked the little bulbs right in and poured a bottle of water on top. I’m a top-notch expert gardener, have you noticed?

eve gardening

Garden girl

Lex and I packed up and started to move on to something else. Eve sat there for awhile, patting the dirt. Then she said, “Aww… I love these flowers. [brief pause, more patting] I want to hug the cow poop.” How can you not laugh at that girl!?!

Waste of time?

We had a busy afternoon today. Alan and Lex worked together to put in the air conditioners while Eve and I did some gardening. I read in a magazine that cats don’t like the smell of lavender, so I thought I’d plant some lavender around the yard and see if that reduced the amount of cat poop we are always cleaning up. I got two packs of seeds awhile ago but failed to read the directions or do anything with them. Then I thought it would be easier and more immediately effective to just buy lavender plants instead of starting from seed. I haven’t made it to a plant store though, so today we decided to just throw the seeds in the ground and see what happens. You are supposed to plant them indoors, wrap them in a plastic bag for awhile (humidity, I presume) and then slowly acclimate them to the outdoors. Or put down some dirt, drop in a few seeds, watch what happens. A total waste of time? We’ll see!

lavender around the tree stumps

Fresh dirt, seeds...

watering - p1

Water, water, everywhere...

watering - p2

This was her favorite part of the process.

After that I prepped the old iris garden in the back yard, right next to our raised bed garden, and we planted some pumpkin seeds. Also potentially a waste of time. I’ve tried them in the past but we’ve never actually gotten pumpkins. This year they are in their own bed, with more space, and were more properly planted. Once again, we’ll see :) That seems to be my philosophy on gardening. Toss in some seeds and see what happens!

planting pumpkins

happy girl

Something that is not a waste of time is our CSA this year. Look at what we had for dinner! Sesame tofu on a bed of romaine, spinach, and tatsoi. Soooo yummy!

dinner

One healthy photo per dozen cakes/cookies photos. That's a good balance, right?

The kids are in bed so I’m going to bake some Alaskan Sourdough bread (KAF mix from their overstock sale today!), try hard to stop eating animal crackers (though I’ll probably sample some fresh bread tonight!), and crash. I’m tired! Hoping my voice comes back tomorrow. Eve insists their is a frog stuck in my throat and my voice can’t get out. I love how kids hear expressions and run with them. At some point in time I’m sure she heard someone say “there’s a frog in my throat” and now she thinks the one in my throat is so big the voice can’t get past. Sweet silly girl.

Today in photos

riding to school

Lex rode his bike to school this morning. Alan ran along. I took pictures :)

snack

Snack under the "club house"

on the swing

Chillin' on the swing, waiting for someone to push her :)

planting

We transplanted some flowers the kids brought home from school last week. Lex's is a sunflower and Eve's is unknown. She can't remember. I'm hoping they grow just so we can find out what she planted!

lex planting

He was really interested (for a few minutes anyway) in learning how to properly transplant a flower.

lex

We decided to decorate the club house with the plants. Lex carefully placed them and watered them.

plants

Looks good to me.

slide race

Slide race!

cake 1

Cake for tomorrow's bowling party!

cake 2

I rock! :)

Planting peppers and peas

We are entering our fifth summer in this house (wow!) and I still do my gardening by the seat of my pants. Hmm… let’s throw a few seeds here and see what happens. I like to think I’m a logical, organized person, but I’m pretty sure I’m not really. I plan the heck out of some things, such as an eight day car trip for four people, but other things get barely a thought. Poor gardens.

We joined a CSA this year so I wasn’t going to bother with a vegetable garden. I was pretty confident in that decision, but as the snow melted and my sad little garden bed appeared I started having second thoughts. I also thought the kids may be more involved this year, a thought I have every year! So on impulse at the garden store one day I bought peas (because they’ve eaten those from the garden every year!), peppers (because we haven’t tried them yet and Lex usually likes peppers), and pumpkins (because, well, because I wanted pumpkins).

Today we went out to spread some grass seed, which was purchased with zero research and thrown around a dry lawn by two kids… I expect a lush lawn in just a few short weeks. Once that was done the kids wanted to keep gardening so we planted the peas and peppers. Is it the right time? Who knows. Who cares. I looked up our latest frost date awhile ago and it was something like early June (ahh, Vermont). I asked Lex to read the directions for the peppers to me while I put a layer of topsoil down. I had to convince him that it’s ok to skip the “plant inside and slowly migrate outside” steps. I’m sure it will be great. I’m expecting large, juicy peppers in just a few short weeks.

planting peas

Planting peas

planting peppers

Planting peppers

Anyhoo… hopefully something grows in the backyard (the dandelions are doing quiet well this year!) and we will enjoy a bountiful supply of fresh veggies from our local CSA all summer :)

Outdoor fun

Here are a few pictures from today. It was a quiet day spent mostly playing outside.

new shoes

Check out Eve's new shoes. We went shoe shopping at a "buy one get one" sale on kids shoes. They both got new sneakers and they both chose sneakers with laces. Guess we have some tying lessons in our future!

sunflower garden

Check out our sunflower garden. The sunflower plants are HUGE, but no sunflowers yet. I'm confused. We have a handful of morning glories growing, but all about knee height, none have made it to the top.

climbing eve

Eve is getting adventurous with her climbing lately. She makes up here, up to the top of the other play set, and even tried climbing out across the swings like Lex does. She's growing up so fast!

Irises

Check out my new garden work! I spent the morning transplanting irises (after spending two days digging them up and separating them!) I didn’t want them back in the same bed, so I put some in the front garden, some by the mailbox, and many, MANY more in plastic bags to give away! :) I can’t believe how many were packed into that tiny space.

pool full of irises

As I separated them I threw them into our kiddie pool. It filled the pool and then some!

mailbox flowers

New foliage around the mailbox.

front garden

There was a bare spot in this front garden (not sure why), so I put some irises there as well.

Now for the day three update. Tired of this potentially never ending story yet? I got Lex to look at the table tonight before he scurried upstairs. I made the most basic kid-friendly meal possible – Annie’s DW mac & cheese, steamed broccoli, and fried tofu, with carrots and cucumbers on the side, both veggies he normally eats, but he wasn’t interested. Oh well. He was quiet upstairs and went to bed without much fuss. Though he did say “I’m ready for this new meal plan thing to be over with soon!” :) I told him it would not be over with anytime soon and once again encouraged him to work with me to find meals he might be willing to try. Guess what he said?! NO! Sigh. At least the rest of us are eating well. Eve loved the mac & cheese, which in the past she would never taste because he wouldn’t either. She ate that and broccoli and was happy.

However, the lack of dinner doesn’t appear to be affecting his brain power. Check out the train setup he made today. It’s the first time I’ve seen him raise the station and build tracks under it. Cool, huh?! Earlier today he was elevating all of the tracks with random things, like flipped over cars and monster truck tires. It was awesome to watch him experiment. He even put the station on the end table at one point and had hills going over the arm of the couch and down to the cushions. He was excited about that, but took it down when I told him he couldn’t leave it that way over night. Where would I sit?! :) So he rebuilt on the floor.

tracks from the front

tracks from the back