Garden Update: Summer 2018

Hi there! Long time no read huh?! We’ve been finishing the school year, and summer-ing it up over here at the Yellow House and although I have three different posts I’m working on (it is a creative junk drawer in my brain right now) in my drafts folder for the last month, I haven’t finished one of them….until now.

Before I share what’s going on in our garden-which we are VERY excited about-I want to share some other things I grew, and am VERY proud of.

Landon graduated from the sweetest little preschool of all time.

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He did so well in school this year. He had the best teachers, he learned so much, and I am confident he is ready for Kindergarten. We are so proud of him.

Also, he is currently in his awkward, unnatural smiling phase accompanied by goofy thumbs up. In every picture. It’s like a reflex now, it’s like he can’t help himself. *mom holds up her phone to take picture* = *goofy smile and thumbs up*. SO many things we’ll never understand.

AND, Carolynn finished First Grade.

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She is that kid that just does school. She likes learning, and wants to do well. I had to make her laugh for this picture because she is still residing in “awkward smile for posed photo phase”.

After her class party, we met daddy for lunch at one of their favorites places for Carolynn’s favorite food-burritos.

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This picture cracks me up every time. They are so goofy.

They smile all the time, I swear. Getting a smiling, serious picture from these two is akin to getting a picture of bigfoot, or a unicorn.

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There’s also this, which does capture Carolynn’s genuine feelings in the moment.

Oh well. I’ll play some sudoku, take Ginko Biloba. Maybe I’ll just remember their natural smiles. *sigh*

Anyway, we are so blessed with two great schools where we had another great year.

Since the title of this post is “Garden Update” I think I should probably get to that….I’m so excited to show you!

Back in the spring, I posted about our garden, (read it here) and how we (Brian and the kids) prepped it, planned it and planted it. Here’s a picture of the garden from that post. (we built the beds last year)

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These are our potatoes and onions.

And here’s the potatoes we’ve pulled up, and eaten since then! We’ve never grown potatoes, and it was so fun to pull up the plant and count how many spuds we’de grown.

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Another first, we grew cucumbers! We were so excited to see these beauties on the vine.

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We’ve picked two of them so far, and used them to make refrigerator pickles. We haven’t eaten one yet, and we are not so patiently waiting for them to be ready to eat in…32 hours. But who’s counting?

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We’ve also got lots of tomatoes coming in and I have many ideas for these tomatoes. My first idea is to EAT THEM. But also, freeze them, sauce, tomato jam, sun dried tomatoes and learning how to can/preserve them. I am nervous about the canning…but not the eating.

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Last fall, we had a random spaghetti squash plant come up in our compost. Carolynn with her blessed, childlike hopes, planted it in the garden and it actually produced several spaghetti squash. When we recently found another little sprout, we planted it and hereis it’s little baby. Hopes grow spaghetti squash. But we also water it and stuff.

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Brian recently put up this shade cloth to protect the plants from that scorching afternoon sun.

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In this bed, we also have onions, 4 okra plants, roma tomatoes, 2 green bean plants and two cucumber plants.

In the ground, we’ve got some tiny little melons growing. Look how cute:

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And some tiny zucchini:

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Like everything we’re trying to establish here, this season’s garden has been a learning experience. We have read a lot and tried a lot and we are still getting the hang of it. We’ve watered, and wiped off aphids, pulled weeds and walked through the garden everyday looking at each plant. There is such a joy, and personal satisfaction of caring for the plants that grow actual food.

We have made three batches of pesto (a pesto post-o is one of the above mentioned drafts I’m working on) from the basil we’ve grown in this garden:

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This bed also has cilantro, dill, rosemary and strawberries. We haven’t had a large strawberry harvest, but both kids have eaten their fair share of them plucked right off the plant.

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Having this land gives us the opportunity and space to have a garden, and having a garden is another way we can honor this land and be blessed by it.

Do any of you have a garden this summer? Anyone know how to can? Want to show me, or direct me to any good blogs on the subject? I’m ready to add another skill to my, “Adventure Life Resume”: “Master Canner”….Or maybe just, “Canner”…..Or “Can if she has to”.

Thanks for being here, and keeping up with our adventures! Always, always glad you’re here on my little blog, to follow along with our adventures.

Steph

 

 

Two Girls and a Gallery

Brian’s dad recently gave Carolynn a print of two kittens that always hung in his grandmother’s living room. She was over the stinkin’ moon. She hugged it, and exclaimed, “I love it! I’m going to put this in my gallery!”

Where could Carolynn, a 6 year old, have gotten the idea that she wanted a gallery you ask?

Maybe from our stairwell?

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Our hallway?

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The playroom?

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(ugh. That TV is so dirty. Who cleans this place??)

The “office” area?


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That’s not even all of them…When I started writing this, I counted SIX different areas in the house where we have hung pictures, signs, quotes, and treasures in the gallery style.

 Too much? Meh. Oh well.

 Here’s what we were working with in C’s room:

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There were a few character building (for both of us) discussions about listening to other’s ideas, and it’s ok to disagree with someone…..and not interrupting even if you think you don’t like the other person’s idea. Two first born children putting up a gallery wall here. The struggle.

She had a few things already hanging, so “we” (read above paragraph) decided to work on that wall to incorporate what was already on display.

 There were those conversations, building our characters, but we also had a sweet time together making a plan and getting it all put up.

The way I figure out a gallery, is by first laying everything out on the floor. I move this here, that there until it looks right to me. I try to stick to groupings of odd numbers. I also like to balance out one big picture with two smaller ones under/above/next to. Or an item (a wreath, a sign etc) with something less dimensional, like a photo or sign.

Here’s how C’s gallery turned out:

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There’s the kittens! C has done that needlepoint herself. She’s almost finished.

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It still needs some work, but as you can see, she’s pretty pleased with it and there’s room to add on more treasures.

I better get to my “addicted to gallery wall” group meeting! Thanks for reading!!

XO,

Steph

Awkward space turned little girl’s dream office

Hey hey everybody! It’s FRIDAY! I am so excited to share a really fun makeover we gave this very awkward space in Carolynn’s bathroom. We spent about 2 hours, and only used things we already had around the house! C and I had lots of fun with this, and spent nothing, except time. Which was special and sweet and a memory to treasure.

Isn’t that a funny space? It’s right across from Carolynn’s sink in her strangely large bathroom.

While planning this makeover, one of Carolynn’s expectations for her office was that it had a Welcome mat. She made that “mat” herself from a roll of brown paper. She really took her time adding each detail.

 

We used this wrapping paper as wallpaper.

 

A roll of this brown paper cost less than $5 at Wal-Mart. I used it to roll out on our floors on muddy days, and as a table runner that we could write on. It’s pretty durable and I have a ton of it left.
Here’s a mega roll, available on Amazon.
On the wall, Carolynn can draw and color on it.

 

We had this chalkboard in the playroom, but it didn’t really have a place and just was moved around for the kids to play with. Now, it has a home, but can still be taken off the wall if they want to play with it somewhere else. It serves as another medium for Carolynn to write, draw or color.

Making a “door” was tricky since the doorway is awkward, and let’s face it, the whole space is awkward. I used two daisy hooks and hung this Spring tablecloth ( Get it at Target ) with drapery clips.

Just for fun, if I were out picking my ideal materials for this space, I would probably chosen a lighter, cheerier wall covering paper to brighten up the dark space. Like maybe this gold and pink paper from containerstore.com

Also, this super cool, self-adhesive wall paper from Amazon. I am loving all the floral prints, and the aqua and pink in this one is so sweet.

Although C had to have a Welcome Mat, my ideal little nook would have a runner, or small rug inside. Like this gingham cutie from Target. Because GINGHAM.

I am really happy with how it turned out, but it’s fun to shop. Sometimes I go shopping online, with no intention of purchasing just to get ideas and be inspired. Pinterest is great for that too. (are you following me on Pinterest?) You can see someone else’s great idea, and realize you have just what you need, or a version of it to create the same look. Being economical is so creative. And so economical. So, duh.

Carolynn is so proud of this little space, and so am I. We had so much fun creating this together. Thank you so much for reading about it’s transformation from, “what are you going to do with that?” into Carolynn’s cozy, little office.

Thanks so much for stopping by! XO, Steph