Friday, April 24, 2009


AKA: Strawberries. Mason helped plant these tasty treats in the garden to create our first strawberry patch. He loves to show guests his little berries and lets them know that the tiny green ones aren't ready yet. "Don't pick it yet." We have had a few ripe ones, however, I don't think I will actually get to try any this season. A certain someone watches them closely and gobbles them up at the first sign of ripeness. I hear they are quite tasty though.

Time to admire his hard work.

First came soil...

"Mommy, the nice tractor gave us some dirt in our truck. I was scared, but daddy saved me. Now we are going to dig some dirt out with our shovels."

Then came bark...

Boxes and pathways were underway...what's next you ask?  Bring on the plants guys!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Spring is finally here...

...and so is a well-deserved THANK YOU to all that were able to help out for my birthday. This year when Josh asked me what I wanted for my birthday I couldn't think of anything at first. Our "Little Plastic Castle" is already filled with lots of love and "stuff", which I am constantly trying to condense into less "stuff" (currently less dog hair as shedding season is upon us, but that's a whole other posting in itself).  Being pregnant, the lovely clothes I admire at the newly opened Anthropologie just don't fit, so as I thought about it more - all I really wanted was help. Help with our garden.  Pregnancy also brings about less ability to help create the garden we were hoping to have again this summer, so I decided to get creative.  

We decided to plan a work day birthday party, which became a work weekend.  We recruited all that were willing and able to help out with pulling weeds, building garden boxes, hauling giant steel racks with their bare hands, and other odd jobs around the yard. 

Here is a BEFORE shot of the garden:

YIKES, weed city!

By the time the weekend rolled around, Mason was trying to recover from two days of being puking sick, yuck, and the weather was mild enough to get things rolling.  I felt so incredibly loved to have so many friends and family members over to help transform the winter weeds into a space where we could begin to envision our garden.  I know everyone has a million things going on, so it meant a lot that everyone could make time to help us out.  

As the day moved along, I worked on feeding the troops and trying to find time to visit a bit while Mason napped.  It wasn't until Sunday that he was feeling more like the little gardener/hard worker he likes to be.  Josh found time to bond with his brothers while building many HEAVY duty redwood garden boxes.

A mighty team conquered an unbelievable patch of weeds that had taken up residence in our garden.

 The HUGE metal racks behind our garage were finally on the move as our team pitched-in to haul them up onto the hill.

Luckily, I had gone inside for a minute to miss the daring stunt Josh had as he rolled with one of the racks as it flipped.  Escaping injury, he was a bit stunned that he managed to remain inside the thing and not under it.  Whew, I am glad I didn't see it, although I am sure it would have been a great installment for the next "safety video".  

By Saturday evening the crowd was tired, hungry, and ready for rest and BBQ. 
Sunday morning brought cooler temperatures and a sprinkle of rain here and there.  Our new team arrived to help shovel gravel and dig 40+ post holes to sink the garden beds securely in their spots.  (Sorry Val and Bob, somehow I never got your photo, but even without evidence I will remember all your hard work and loved having it).  

Like I said, Mason was more like himself and was ready to play with his cousins and then "dig some dirt out with his shovel."

Hey, is that the same weed patch you saw earlier? Hardly recognizable. 

All your hard work has since inspired our neighbor to take those HEAVY racks, put them to good use, and free us from the eye sore they have been behind our garage. It inspired Josh and Mason to gather truckloads of soil, compost, and bark to fill boxes and create pathways, as well as plant strawberries, peas, chard, carrots, lettuce, potatoes, tomatoes, peppers, flowers, and herbs.  They have nurtured our artichoke, fruit trees, and pumpkins that have returned to the garden, and installed a drip system to help conserve water and time spent watering.  All this and it is only April!  We couldn't have done it without you. 

A final HUGE Thank You to all that gave their time and/or donations to help create a memorable weekend.  It will be a birthday I cherish.  I look forward to inviting you all back for a relaxing garden party, and I promise you won't have to pull any weeds this time.  
I love you all!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Spring Break, Woo Hoo!

So, we had an interesting turn of events this year for spring break.  Many of you have heard about it, but I thought I would bring everyone up to date as I get inspired to catch up on blogging.  Off the topic, I think that word is so funny.  It reminds me of clogging, which reminds me of... okay nevermind you don't care.  

So to kick off our Spring Break our plan was to go to our regularly scheduled doctor's appointment Friday afternoon to check on the baby sister and then go get Mason and have dinner.  The little mover and shaker decided to change the plan and have an irregular heartbeat.  Then we found out I would be staying overnight to have the Pediatric Cardiologist check on her little heart.  

By 7pm or so, we were worried, hungry, and in the new hospital, which by the way is really nice. The staff was great and that helped a bunch.  Josh ran to pick up Mason and some dinner and came back to visit me.  Mason was excited to show me his security badge and ask me, "Mommy are you getting the baby sister out today?"  

I told him not yet, and to tell her to stay in to get healthy and strong first.  He leaned over to her and said, "Don't come out yet baby sister, you have to get big and strong like me."  He then proceeded to tell us how when she comes out he is going to teach her how to dig dirt out with his shovel.  Ah, my little garden boy.  

So the night dragged on and I had some contractions and finally morning arrived and Josh came back to visit me.  The Pediatric Cardiologist arrived with his brand new equipment and did an ultrasound to check on her heart.  He was so great.  He talked us through the whole exam and showed us all that he was looking for.  No wondering what he was looking at.  He reassured us that her heart looked healthy and strong and that sometimes the little ones have these irregularities in the womb and work themselves out later on.  We ended up staying until late that evening for a few more tests and such.

The whole thing was kind of like when I had Mason.  Go home from work on Friday and suddenly life changed.  So I was asked to stop working and rest a bunch to keep the baby happy and growing where she is.  So far so good.  Our family has been great and so helpful with everything.  Josh and Mason are maximizing their father-son time in the garden (be on the lookout for new postings. I will try to keep you updated while resting.)  

I am taking full advantage of my new duties as "resting baby grower", napping a bunch and from time to time I even make it out to supervise the gardening in my fancy new chair from Larry and Lynn.