Thursday, June 25, 2015

This and That Through the Unplanned Blog Break

If you follow along on Instagram, you may have seen that I ended up having my gallbladder removed almost two weeks ago.  So the feeling sick before and recovery after stopped the blogging world.  That, and kids home for the summer!  This is a post surgery selfie with my little girls. (And, I'm doing great post surgery now)

A brief Tank Garden update:

Of course this space needs some attention.  So it goes.

I found a great variety of herbs in the garden shops this year so added the three rusty buckets you see here in front of my other herb tank.  Plus, I have herbs scattered in other tanks and baskets too.  I so enjoy smelling them.  (And, using them!)  I have a jar of tea dried so far and should begin to harvest some basil.

This guy was visiting the garden last night.  He still has duck weed on his shell from the pond, that's quite a trek he made!

And, I didn't see when this visitor was in the garden, but he left me a gift.

Chamomile and annual baby's breath.  

Our little girls each wanted their own space in the garden this year and I caught this one in quite a stoic gaze as she took a break from hoeing.  (She wasn't the most effective hoer, but she tried!)

On a side note:  Those overalls were thrifted  a number of months ago for her to alter into a skirt as a 4h project.  When she put them on, she loved them and didn't want to cut them up!  So, we went back to the thrift store and found a skirt to convert to a bag. The skirt is way too big for her so no worry of her wanting to keep it, ha!

4H update:
Our club went on a tour of a small cheese factory and a produce farm.  I just loved seeing all the lush vegetables growing there.

These are cucumbers being trained up vertically and they had tomatoes being trained the same way.

Beautiful leafy lettuce.  (He said it was actually too big now and was going to be pulled out)

He sent us a head of this leafy lettuce home.  
You can see the gorgeous cabbages here I posted on Instagram.

(Our vegetable garden looks pathetic compared to this farm! Oh well, I still enjoy it.)

A shot from the cheese factory.  The smell was a bit overwhelming and one of my girls had to go out, so I didn't get the whole tour.  I think it'd be interesting to try once to make cheese at home.

You can see in this Instagram photo that we are underway with some 4h projects.

Update from the sewing room:

I played a little with some scraps.  All of it is still works in progress though.

A Family Update:

My second to the youngest turned 10 on Monday, so Sunday we went to Omaha to celebrate her birthday and Father's Day with lunch out, a movie, and then cookies and presents at a cafe.

My daughter and granddaughter came for the day yesterday and we sorted buttons!  I had just picked some up at a garage sale that morning.  When I asked my granddaughter if she remember what we did with buttons one time she was here, her face lit up and she said "lined them up!"

All the photos are from my phone.  Sometimes that's all you have time for....what a blessing to have that convenience though.

I hope you are enjoying your summer and that you don't attach too many expectations to it.  I have to work on that every let go of too many expectations. 

I hope you all are well!

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Moss: Up Close and Personal

All on a stick about 1 1/2 feet long on my back step. I put it there as I liked the way it looked and all this extra moss grew.  A little world of beauty that you could almost miss. :)

Have  a great weekend!

Monday, June 1, 2015

Depends on How You Look At It

I asked my husband to cut me some peonies from the farm last Friday.  I'd forgotten there were even bushes up there and hadn't really seen them in bloom.  I was so excited for a bouquet of them.  When he brought them home I have to admit I was a bit disappointed.  They are a single petal variety and really were just floppy and not very pretty.  I had them in various stages of open-ness and am trying to keep some buds in the refrigerator to see if they can be stored.  Just for fun.

But, as the day went on they began to open and although not gorgeous blooms, it was really fun to watch them open.  And, now fully open and dropping their petals, they were fun to play with.

I found some garden fairies in those blooms!  When I asked my younger daughters what they saw on my board, they both said "flowers"....huh?  And, then I realized they were looking at them from the other side.

They did indeed see flowers with yellow root balls.  :)

So I asked them what else they could imagine and one pulled a little bloom from the chamomile I also had in a vase and said:

"A little fairy microphone!"

Three fairy microphones!  The other two fairies were way to shy to sing with theirs.

And, as I was putting petals in jars....some were shaped like hearts! They were a little darker than the others and really photographed darker.

Jars of flower parts.

I'm hoping we can experiment with dying fabric with these flower parts.  The yellow stamens are so bright! I know nothing about dying fabric and want to just boil some water, pour over the pieces, throw in my fabric, and see what happens.  But, I should probably do a little research first. Or not.

And, of course I have no idea if I can keep these in a jar for later use.  I assume so, but maybe they will mold.  We'll see.

I welcome any advice on using them for dye.

So, that not so pretty bouquet actually ended up bringing lots of enjoyment!

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Saturday Digest

►As we were planting yesterday one of my daughter's came out barefoot and asked if I'd ever walked in the garden barefoot?  She was loving it.  Of course this part of the garden is very sandy so it is nice and soft.  I'm pretty sure I've never gone barefoot this deep in the dirt.  I'd like to say that I just kicked off my shoes and joined her and how wonderful it was feeling the earth squish between my toes....but, instead I said I didn't want to have to clean the dirt out of my toe nails and that I'm not a big fan of barefoot.  How stodgy I must be.  I wear shoes or slippers all of the time even in the house.   
I feel empowered and ready to work with shoes on!

How about all of you?  Would you have kicked off your shoes and joined her?

► The chamomile is blooming!

►Our late blooming lilac bush is also blooming.  So nice to get another few blooms to scent the room.

 ►Easy dessert idea for you:  A refrigerated pizza crust rolled out on the pan, sprinkled with cinnamon sugar baked according the the crust instructions.  Then drizzle it with a simple powdered sugar glaze.  Fast and pretty tasty.  A ratio of about 1/4 c sugar to 1 T cinnamon works well.  But, adjust to your tastes.

►FlorLarios has 50% off in her Etsy shop this weekend: Use code HAPPY50  I have purchased a lot of her wood blocks and stickers.  I have them in my home and have given many as gifts.  Her art moves me.

►We celebrate Memorial Day here in the USA this weekend.  It makes me emotional when I think of the sacrifices that have been made.  My Mom can recall the story of what they were doing when the news came on the radio that Pearl Harbor was bombed.  If you have a chance to hear the retelling of the war stories of "back in the day"  you've been given a gift.

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Sorting Buttons...Sorting Life...

I was sorting a jar of buttons for a bead project I was working on and as usual, I got far more caught up in the button sorting than the project. (See here and here for other sorting buttons posts.)

When I went back to it today, I was so drawn to what wasn't buttons in the button jar.  That which didn't belong, but did belong because this jar belonged to someone who had tossed the little pieces of this and that in there.

So much could be said about this as a metaphor of life.  

There are those who feel misplaced, not belonging, not appreciated, not noticed, cast aside for the prettier ones in the jar.....

tarnished, broken...


There is a God who does notice you, who sees your value, and wants to pick you out and admire you. 
For you.  
For who He created you to be.

And the irony?  That most of those in life that you perceive as the shiny buttons would relate themselves to the
"out of place what-not" in the button jar.

We're all in this together.

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Finally...the Planting Begins....Repurposed Planters

This is our shade garden space behind our garage; the ground cover looks great.  Around the corner of the garage...not so much.  :)

 The Lilly of the Valley and Columbine are in full swing here too.

I'm jumping on to the succulent bandwagon this year.  We'll see how it goes, I'm skeptical that I'll pull it off.  

But, for now just planted?  Love them!  This is a glass shade from a ceiling light fixture.  The hole in the bottom was rather chipped up and I knew it would never sell and I had no other use for it.  I'm wondering how the glass will fare with the water over the summer.  Will it get discolored with water deposits?  Probably so. Why do I have to be so realistic?

Now, here's another light part turned planter.  It's an old metal ceiling light fixture and I love this as a planter too.

Water deposits won't matter here!  Any advice on growing succulents is welcomed!

These are coming back in the house.  I've grown baby tears successfully as a house plant, but can I grow them without a drainage hole?  We'll see I guess!  I hope to macrame a hanger for the one on the left. The woman who I bought these from has been dividing and propagating her grandmother's baby tears plants for years.  Neat, huh? I bought one plant from her and divided into three pots.  The other is already hanging in the house.

I was able to plant quite a bit in the tank garden yesterday after it quit raining and hopefully will finish today.  We've had access this year to a few more varieties of annuals and I am excited about it!!
I don't have any of our vegetable garden in yet though. 

Have a great weekend!


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