July Garden

This time of year is exciting in the garden – the tilling, weeding, watering, and waiting has paid off and we are harvesting now.  While my tomatoes are all duds, the plants have wilted and died, I do have some successes this year.

okra

The okra is flourishing – I planted Hill Country Red from Seed Savers Exchange in Decorah, Iowa.  I love to make gumbo out of okra, I also think they would make beautiful stamping tools, when dried out.

pumpkin

The two pumpkins – Pumpkin Musquee de Provence are growing rapidly.  Right now they are about basketball-size and propped on top of pieces of block foam to keep them from rotting on the damp dirt.  They should be a lovely dark mixture of green and orange when they mature.  The kids are most excited about the prospect of growing one’s own pumpkin and are dreaming up ways to use it.

kale

I had two kale plants that survived the winter, thanks to leaf mulching, and being nestled against the south side of the house.  They have once again absolutely exploded!  You can see the size of the root from the mammoth kale that did not survive the winter, here.

corn

One of the other fun experiments this year, has been growing corn in the front yard.  This is Japonica Striped Maize, an ornamental variety from Japan.  As of the most recent count, we have five ears of corn.  The kids have been delighted at watching the corn grow taller than them, and grow purplish tassels.  I figure they will make great autumn decor, or still life subject matter for my classroom.

One of my favorite things this year, has been watching my volunteer squash grow.  These two came from seeds in our compost, so I am not entirely sure what they are yet.  I think the white one is possible a white acorn squash and the green is a zucchini.  We will wait and see!

Mommy’s Musings

There are plenty of good things going on around here this week.  I for one, am so glad it is already Wednesday.  It seems like this house cannot make it more than 2 days without some sort of illness.  Anyone else got this going on?  Onto the things going on around here this week…

More Valentine’s Day cards are rolling out this week.  This year I decided to combine my love of collage and sewing and go for the sewn paper technique.  I have been loving it – the quickness of stitching the paper allows for a faster pace than my typical glue or glue stick method.  More of these to come later on.

Lots of yard work going on due to the extra daylight.  I love coming home to the prospect of working outside, walking, or playing with Greta for an hour or two after work.  We found this little guy in the front garden bed.  He was moving pretty slowly though so we placed him near the house.  I don’t think he made it – I found a crumpled little snake on the sidewalk a couple days later.

Greta is a bookworm.  She loves to bring her books, blanket, and Winky (her stuffed pink lamb) into her tent and read.  Usually she demands that mom or dad climb in with her – the quarters are a little cramped then.  This little bed/tent is fantastic – it zips from the outside, has an inflatable air mattress, and is perfect for travel because it folds flat into a nice little disc.

Good breakfast’s galore.  We have had some tasty breakfasts lately.  This one was my most recent favorite – cinnamon raisin french toast with cottage cheese and apricot jam on the top.  You have to try this!

If you like Goodnight Moon, check out Goodnight iPad.  You won’t be disappointed!

Monday, (last) Monday

This weekend yielded the first pepper from the garden.  We have several beautiful tomatoes going, unripe red raspberries, bountiful her garden, and okra plants going strong.  I finally got around to filling one of the raised beds and planting some peas and beans.  It will be a late crop, but oh well.  
  

I added my new compost bin (left) – more on that later.  To fill the raised beds though, I used compost from the old pile.  I aimed for the mixture of 1/3 soil, 1/3 sand, and 1/3 compost.  All the beautiful weather this weekend made it hard to get back to the grind.  

Many Mondays I am left wishing it were still the weekend, however today is different.  This Monday, today, is the last Monday of the school year.  Which means I will be spending a lot more time doing the following activities in a mere 5 days…

Watching the zoo that is my house.
Playing in the new sand box.

Gardening.

Painting, but NOT painting the garage.

Teaching has its perks!  Happy rest of the week y’all!