Tuesday, June 30, 2015

A New Dolly


Our desktop computer is dying, yesterday our phone lines were out because our line had gotten too frayed, and I'm just hoping that's the end of broken things for a while (knock on wood!). It feels good when I get a chance to make something... and not have to worry about fixing. I'm so glad we have Jake's laptop to fall back on until we can get another desktop. This dolly is literally getting made in minutes here and minutes there. I definitely feel that inner scream bubbling up lately, but crafting is definitely my exhale. Now this little dolly just needs some clothing and perhaps a name.

Joining in with KCCO over at Frontier Dreams

26/52 New Swing Set




"A portrait of my girls, once a week, every week in 2015"


 
Oona and Elsa: thoroughly enjoying the new rustic swing set Daddy built... the plastic swings were a gift from a friend, and the logs were a gift from the Earth! I thought a swing set would be a good distraction while I gardened,  but I didn't count on that persistent  question, "Mama, can you push me?"

http://www.practisingsimplicity.com/

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

These Summer Days

 These summer days...
- are full to the brim with ice cream and sunlight (homemade passion fruit ice cream with nectarines... yum!)
- smell of peonies and roses and fresh mint
- have lots of hours spent in the dirt (some in the garden and some in the puddles)
- make for long play dates with good friends playing on swings and jumping through the sprinklers
- leave you in awe of all that nature has created
- are perfect for trail walks and swims with the family at Blueberry Lake


- are full of building and creating and more ideas than a life time can accomplish
- make your crochet hooks find light and cooling yarns like hemp and cotton
 - are perfect for stories about girls visiting the moon


- are perfect for watching the moon as the sun fades away


-leave you ready for bed as soon as your head hits the pillow and eager to get up again when the sun shines through the window


Happy Summer!

Also joining in with KCCO over at Frontier Dreams .

Sunday, June 21, 2015

25/52 June Balloons







Oona and Elsa: dancing off the blues of going to a balloon festival and never seeing a balloon take flight because of the wind... ok, neither of them was phased at all. They just played and had fun. It was Mama who was boo-hooing all the way home. 

http://www.practisingsimplicity.com/

Saturday, June 20, 2015

In the Garden: Midsummer


Happy Midsummer Night's Eve! I do believe I hear the fairy bands tuning up their instruments outside right now. If not, the lightening bugs are sure celebrating something. In honor of the day, I harvested most of our scapes and made some delicious garlic scape pesto for dinner.  I modified the recipe by increasing the basil amount to about a cup and adding flax seeds instead of almonds (just because that's what I had on hand!). There's still plenty more scapes in the fridge, and I want to try this kale-scape recipe next.



I picked up a dining bug cover to use on our tiny bit of strawberries. It seems to be working okay so far. I am still being cautious and picking when they just turn red so that the slugs and bugs don't feast first. I love strawberries, but I don't think growing them is my thing.

calendula
I am already beginning to dry herbs and whatnot and trying to do meal planning around our garden gifts. This coming week it's time to start adding cilantro to some of our dinner plans. 



I'm also making sure to take advantage of all the wild flowers on our morning walks. There's a steep hill by the river covered in daisies. It makes me so joyful whenever we go by, and usually I have to take a few back with me. These wild flowers were for a special purpose... midsummer flower wreaths.



 The peonies are flooding our senses everyday with their beauty and aroma. I think there's a mason jar with one in every room of the house.


I made a little birch bark teepee woven together with yarn for the fairies to sit by the garden. Oona is very fond of it and wanted to keep it indoors with her toys... 




For our flower wreaths, I made crochet loop bands that we could all wear for our midsummer bonfire.


And just in case you're skeptical of the garlic scape pesto, here's a picture. It is indeed yummy.


 It's nice to have evenings like this to sit back and enjoy the all the labors of the gardening season. I sat on a picnic blanket and wove flowers into crochet bands while the girls collected more.


Oona volunteered to get mint for Daddies wreath.




Music was played, fairy wedding arenas were set up, and the teepee was adorned with flowers and artwork.



There's a little fairy drawing over the doorway.


Sacrifices of mint were thrown on the fire and a drawing was made of a garden for the fairies.


Oona left it for the fairies on our stone bench. She explained to me that the fairies will turn the picture into a real garden when they see it. Sounds good to me.


 I hope all this fairy magic blesses our garden and our home. Enjoying the changing of the seasons and I hope you look to see what wonders are blossoming all around you.


Here's my previous garden posts from this year:


Thursday, June 18, 2015

Crochet and Mushrooms

I finally got a chance to sit down with the new issue of "Taproots" and a crochet hook.

Summer vacation is officially in full swing for my preschool girl. We have no grand plans except to enjoy every bit of sunlight and water time that we can and certainly do some camping, too. Now that the rain has stopped for the moment, we've been getting outside more and enjoying the wonders of the kiddie pool, sandbox and yard.  I like to have a little craft/ reading basket to bring outside with me and sit on the porch when I'm too tired to garden. Lately I've been making tiny little flowers out of hemp cord and adding beads to them for earrings. I want to make some crochet and bead necklaces too. I've also been working on a few other tiny crochet projects that I'll have to share soon.



 Above is a finished dream catcher, yet another baby gift. I think dream catchers are definitely a favorite baby gift to make these days.

Oh, and that rather large mushroom was merrily sitting in my garden after days of rain. I wish I knew anything about mushrooms. I was going to try to find out if it's edible, but Elsa saw it and gleefully tore it apart while outside with Daddy. Ah well.

Sunday, June 14, 2015

24/52 Beach Holiday



"A portrait of my girls, once a week, every week in 2015"

Oona and Elsa: forget gardening, these girls are just interested in fun and sun these days

http://www.practisingsimplicity.com/

Friday, June 12, 2015

In the Garden: Pumpkin Patch and Cagey Tomatoes


These days the garden seems to be at the center of all things.  It is alive with veggies, flowers, worms, insects, children and soil. I'm planting, harvesting, and waiting ever so patiently for the next thing to ripen. I'm trying to stay connected to it all by digging in the dirt with my bare hands and going barefoot as much as possible. I put on the shoes and the gloves only when I'm using the big shovel or rack.  I've planted more seeds this week and transplanted nearly everything at this point. I have a few stray plants that still need a spot, but they'll find their way. I have a lot of thinning to do. I never seem to be able to keep up with that task. Our weekends (which our Monday and Tuesday) have been rainy, so I haven't been able to build all the stick teepees we need, but I can't argue with Mother nature doing her part of the watering.



 Jake built a rustic branch and twig cover for the sandbox and I am waiting for the Dutchman's pipe we bought to climb up it and make a leafy awning. One of the plants does not seem to be climbing and I'm worried it was damaged by frost. I also transplanted morning glories to grow up a metal framed gazebo we have in the yard.


The peonies are still teasing me, but the lupines are in full glory. I love the rich pink of this particular one.



 Elsa is helping by racing around on her tractor.


 Oona is helping by caging herself in a tomato cage.


 So many seedlings have emerged. Next year I'll start more indoors and do row covers, but this year I took it a little easy.


Only part of my pumpkin patch has sprouted. It's hard to tell in the photo, but they are planted in hills. Some of the seeds are saved seeds and I'm worried they're not working, so I might replant in the next day or so.


I'm giving eggplant another go, even though I have been mostly unsuccessful with both seedlings and starters. This year I purchased starters. The bugs are already at it. If anyone has useful tips for helping eggplant along, let me know.


I'm keeping my peppers and larger basil in pots on the porch. Peppers have not done well in my garden, either, so I figure I'll at least be able to monitor them more closely in pots. I only have a couple pepper plants, but I companion planted them each with a stem of basil to hopefully help with the bug problem.


 The garlic seems to be doing great and I spied the first scapes yesterday. 


I am squeezing things in every which way. I planted a small herb patch around a cherry tree... leeks around another cherry tree. Hopefully the cherry trees don't mind the neighbors. I snuck a few watermelon hills along the hillside.


 I don't think it's going to be a great year for tomatoes because I didn't get my seedlings started early enough, so I had to purchase four plants in addition to my little plants. I'm also a bit worried about blight. Last year was the first year we got it. I rotated the plants to the opposite side of the garden this year, and I hope it stays away.


In the patch above I have cauliflower, cabbage,  and potato plants. The potatoes got a late start, but should be sprouting soon.


Radishes are still abundant and they look so pretty in bunches. The girls tried them, but were not fans. Jake has never liked them so I'm the only one in the house that eats them. If anyone has any good suggestions for radishes, besides just eating them or putting them in salads, I'd love to hear. They are fun to grow, and I know the girls like picking them, even if they don't eat them. I like having their little garden so we can all experiment with veggies we haven't grown before, and the girls can try new things. I already thinking about what we should try there next year. If anything, it gives them a pretty place to sit on a stump and stare at the greenery.


What's growing in your garden? If you do garden posts, please share your link! I love to see what's going in other people's gardens.

My notes: 
-next year do row covers and start seedling earlier... start tomato seedlings 8 weeks before planting date
-research egg plants, broccoli and cabbages this week

Here's my previous garden posts from this year:
May 29th
May 11th

And here's last years posts:
May 28th
June 20th 
June 26th
July 16th
July 17th
July 26th
August 15th
August 20th
September 11th
September 26th
October 10th