Thursday, August 7, 2014

The Veggie Garden

Last fall, we decided to move the vegetable garden to a new location. It hadn't been growing well -- particularly at the back end -- as it had been in previous years. My mom gave us the great idea of moving it to where our pool usually sits, and moving the pool to the sadly producing garden, so once the pool was down, we heaped what was to be our new garden full of fallen maple leaves.

Then this spring, the Engineer ran the rototiller through it, dumped the compost on it, and mixed it in as well. He also fenced it for us, to keep the dogs out. The stinkers just jump the fence and one large stinker will eat the beans.

Things were planted just a little too close together and some spots in the garden never grew. We still don't know whether there is too much leaf mold in the garden yet, it's too compacted, or whether the cool wet spring had an affect on it, but in the last few weeks we've been enjoying fresh vegetables. We've eaten lettuce, spinach, beans, some tomatoes, lots of zucchini, a cucumber or two, and are just now starting on potatoes.

Next year we will make a stronger fence and add a gate. I will turn the garden with the fork. I want it to be a no till garden to keep as many of the beneficial bugs as possible. We'll add compost again and plant with much anticipation.

 My handsome hubby digging taters.

 The overgrown jungle.

 Pumpkins. Pumpkins!?!? What was I thinking growing pumpkins!?

 Cucumbers. The vines look sad already. Pretty sure we won't be getting many.


 Nasturtiums because they're so pretty!


 A couple giant zukes and a baby one too.

 Pole beans.


The pool. Yup! We'd heard it was going to be a cooler than average summer, so we took them (whoever "they" are) at their word and didn't bother to set it up. Good call!! It has been a BEAUTIFUL summer, but it really hasn't been hot, so there sits the pool. Would anyone like to come for a swim? ;o)

 

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Camping

We finally got brave enough to try camping with seven children. This is our first time going camping since our three youngest joined us three years ago. It was a grand success -- of you don't count the fact that four of the seven came down with colds that had them napping daily. We weren't even staying up late or getting up early. It didn't seem to deter the hiking or swimming though.















We went north to camp because the north country is breathtaking. Sure there are bears and rattlesnakes (first time seeing a rattlesnake as it crossed the trail while we were hiking), but if you accommodate them and think wisely, it's really no big deal. We're rustic campers. We love our tent. It holds the nine of us plus luggage beautifully! This year all our meals were made over the fire pit. We only had one panic moment and it was actually on the way up when we realised that we hadn't checked what the conditions were for fire cautions. We were fine. It's been a cool decently wet summer, so food over the grill it was.

If you're trying to figure out if all seven belong to us, well, no, the uber blonde ones belong to friends of ours. The two oldest were at home working and we wanted to try the seven kid experiment, so we "borrowed" two children. Really, they fit in so beautifully, you would have thought they were ours. People were more inclined to ask about our three ebony headed children before they asked about the four multiple shades of blondes. :o)

Seeing as this was an experiment to see if we could handle camping with seven children -- three of them still have boundary issues, we only went for five days. It was a largely positive week! Next year, perhaps we'll go for longer and even further north! ;o)

How about you? Do you camp, or do you glamp? (Fancy camping.) Any tips I should know for rustic camping with a family of nine?

 

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Birthdays and Besties

Peach celebrated her champagne birthday on July 16. Sixteen on the sixteenth. How cool is that!? She and her friends all have varying degrees of love for the Harry Potter series, so she decided to have a Harry Potter themed party. (Disclaimer: I know not everyone agrees with their children reading the Harry Potter series. This post is not meant to start a debate about the good and bad of J.K. Rowling's novels.) Peach had her five closet friends over to sleep. They had a grand time chatting, watching movies, and enjoying Hogwarts style treats. Peach did all the planning a creating of the foodstuffs and decor. She was having so much fun creating, I didn't feel I should intrude.

The invite and ticket to get in. Oh she made all those wands too.

Potions.

Chocolate frogs. (Yes, the photo is a little blurry -- it's not your eyes.)

Bernie Bott's Every Flavor Beans. (Actually Jelly Bellys, because none of us could fathom eating a barf flavoured bean or any of the other strange flavours of Hogwarts
.
More of the yummies from Honey Dukes.

The Marauder's Map because they solemnly said they were up to no good. ;o)

 Decorating the birthday cake Hagrid style. :o)

 Peach and her friends. Such lovely girls! We love having them here!


As the tent was emptied of one group of chatting fun young ladies, it filled with another group. Since none of Beans's closest friend will be attending highschool with her (yet. Three of these young ladies are in grade 7), I told her she could have a get-together too.

 Leo felt he should be front and center for this shot. Such a funny little guy!

Love this group of lovely young ladies too! 

I am so thankful for the sweet girlfriends that both my teenage girls have. I hope they will have many more times of fun get-togethers, even though they won't/can't see each other as often as they would like. 

"Friendship in not something you learn in school, but if you haven't learned the meaning of frienship, you haven't learned anything." ~ Muhammed Ali

 

Friday, July 18, 2014

Vocal Few Comes to Our Living Room

What a great evening! We were blessed to open our living room to twenty some plus (mostly) strangers for a living room concert by Vocal Few. Some of the attendees came from five+ hours away!! Wow!! Before the concert we shared a meal outdoors of burgers and salads and spent a little time getting to know each other a little bit.






She is so beautiful!! Our girls thought she wasn't much older than them! :o)  They have two really sweet little girls too who were entertained in our basement by their uncle (K's brother) who tours with them and four of our daughters. We, on the other hand, enjoyed a time of fabulous music, stories, and laughter. We'd love to have them back again sometime!

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

A Country Wedding

We had the pleasure of attending the wedding of the Engineer's nephew. It was an outdoor country wedding, and it was simply lovely!


 I fell head over heels in love with M's dress! So refreshing to see something so simple, elegant and NOT strapless!!

Entrance to the reception.

Country elegance.



Yum!!


Love the mismatched, but oh-so-pretty china at the head table!

This was the bride's bouquet. It is made entirely of brooches. Once her family and friends heard what she was doing, they sent her some, and she and her mom found the other ones by scouring thrift stores, etc. 

Fun!! All the different glass containers are so pretty!


Thank you J and M for sharing your day with us! We pray God will bless you richly as you continue life's journey together.

"Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor: If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. But pity anyone who falls an has no one to help them up. Also if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone? Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken."
Ecclesiates 4: 9 -12

 

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