Friday, April 30, 2010

Arts AFlutter May Lisitings

Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed, Something Blue!   How quickly this month has gone...

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Sunday, April 18, 2010

Vegetable Garden vs the Trees

Well, we did it finally.  I'm a bit sad, but also excited... When we built our house 19 years ago, we kept as many trees as we possibly could.  I  love! all my trees, as well as the birds and squirrels that make their homes high up in their branches.   
However after 19 years of working doubly hard to have a great vegetable garden while lacking the proper sun, we finally took down two mammoth oak trees at the top of the hill.  We are both not getting any younger, and I want a working garden more than ever, while we are still young enough and able to get the structure in place.   I enjoy growing our own food, and it's great exercise too.   Most years we have been able to grow some tomatoes, summer squash, broccoli, cucumbers, and leafy vegetables, but not in the great quantities we should have with the raised beds.  I cannot grow eggplant or peppers, two of my favorites. 
This shot was taken quite a few years ago.  We have about 24 raised beds, about 4 x 4 1/2 each and a long bed across the back. They're about 10" high, with nice rich soil.    The paths between them are lined with heavy black plastic covered by several inches of gravel.  We have room on the wooded side to add another long bed, but put it off because some of the boxes are getting crumbly after several years.  While we replace them we are going to re-do a bit, and make narrower longer beds.  It'll take longer because hubby has irrigation lines running into each bed to conserve water. 
This past time we used 2 inch thick pine (not pressure treated, it's poison) for the boxes and that held up for a long time.  This time we are using thicker rough cut pine from the sawmill, and blocks from Home Depot.  I really like the cobblestones and might buy a few at a time so I don't realize how much I'm spending on them!  They might be expensive, but will never have to be replaced again. 
The raised beds are pretty and make it so much easier to garden. Usually in the fall we dig in some of our shredded leaves and some compost, and the beds are nice and fertile.  We don't have to till anymore, and can just work the soil a bit and put the plants in.    After planting we add some composted chicken manure and then line each bed with newspaper and a ton of shredded leaves so there is very little weeding to do. 

Anyway, I have convinced hubby to add a whole new garden to the top of the hill where the trees were.... That is what we will concentrate on for this year, and I will plant the existing garden for one more year.  We've finally learned we can't do it all at the same time anymore, especially with my growning list of craft shows...

...will take some photos along the way!  
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Thursday, April 15, 2010

an ahh-haa! moment this morning!

oh my!

now usually when I'm this close to a crawly beast, I am shrieking! ...but only because it's caught me by surprise, I'm not afraid of snakes!

This morning I was working on some bears at the kitchen table and noticed the kitty high on his perch at the back door, straining his head and stretching his neck a lot more than usual....

I got up to see what had caught his attention, expecting to see one of my squirrel friends. Surprisingly, right away I noticed Mr. Snake, and after watching for a few moments, grabbed the camera. I snuck outside, kneeled on the porch, and watched this little guy enjoying the sun. It is a beautiful day here.... the best time of year!

Then this little chipmunk poked his head out from under the porch and these two watched each other for quite awhile. It was an amazing moment....

Kitty was looking at me like well do something mom!

lol.... well I should get back to my bears now.

Have a lovely day, wherever you are!

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Wednesday, April 7, 2010

The Family Snow

pitterpatter, pitterpatter .... that's my heartbeat!  

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Susan, your snowman was very busy after he arrived for his visit!     He will be returning back home to you with a sweet little family...

These little snowpeople were a very special request, and I am so happy I agreed to take on this challenge.  My heart is singing and I will be a bit sad to see them go!   However I am certain they will be loved dearly! 

Friday, April 2, 2010

Have a Blessed Easter!

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Sunflower Summer

A few of my favorite things!