Saturday, May 21, 2011

Week 20 - From the Garden

One of my goals for this year was to have a successful garden, well at least a bit more successful than in past years. Armed with two wonderful organic gardening books (here) and (here), which were gifts from my parents over the holidays, I set to work reading, planning, purchasing, sowing, tending and watering this little garden of ours.

Although some might not define these spaces in our backyard as a success, we sure do! Oh yes, the heat and lack of rain (despite my frequent watering using the rain water we've collected with our rain barrel) have taken their toll, but we're being persistent. I'm hopeful that we'll produce enough tomatoes to make a dinners worth of spaghetti sauce or have enough zucchinis to make a full batch of muffins instead of a half ( which we made with our first homegrown zucchini - and better yet, Grace ate them!) or perhaps have enough fresh flowers to add a splash of color to our kitchen table through the summer.

Would you like to have a look around?

A climbing bean being supported by a corn stalk.

Roma tomatoes ripening on the vine.

Sweet onions growing a bit bigger by the day.

Our first homegrown zucchini was cause for celebration.

A sunflower which just fully bloomed.

We have much to be hopeful for in this garden of ours. But until the bounty arrives, we'll be keeping our fingers crossed. Happy gardening!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Week 19 - Family Bike Rides

Ever since this winter when Grace learned to ride her bicycle sans training wheels, Sophie and I haven't been unable to keep up with her on foot (for Dean it wasn't an issue because he has a bike). And you see, Grace much prefers to be on her bicycle versus on foot during our daily evening outings. This left us in a conundrum - how could we make each family member happy? Many ideas were discussed, but we ended up purchasing a bike for myself (I haven't owned or ridden a bike since my teen years) and a trailer for Sophie.

After a few tweaks (Sophie yelped like a banshee with the trailer's top down, so we devised a way to keep her tethered to the frame, leaving the top open), it has turned out to be the perfect solution for our family. So on any given night, the four of us can be seen riding along our neighborhood's sidewalks. It's really quite a hoot, I tell you.

Here are a few pictures taken after last weekend's ride.....

Hooray for family time and little bit of exercise!

Week 18 - Blooms

This post was initially intended for last weekend, but due to unresolved computer issues, it's a week late.

This is the time of year that our yard is filled to the brim with blooms. So, I decided to share a few in honor of Mother's Day (pentas with a little visitor, a stately magnolia and lastly, a delicate morning glory)......

And while I'm sharing flower photographs, it seems perfectly fitting to show you Grace's latest project from school - a nature mandala. This project stemmed from her teacher's fondness for the artist, Andy Goldsworthy. Needless to say, Grace loved every minute of creating this piece of natural art.

We hope you enjoyed the blooms - belated Mother's Day wishes to you!