A few things about my garden

I am learning a lot about gardening this summer.

Not all of my plants are big and green.  For example, I think I could win an award for puniest most pitiful dill.  It’s supposed to be a weed I think?

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It’s so spindly it can barely be captured in a photograph.  I attempted a close up.

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It’s trying to go to seed already.   A friend told me that hers sometimes does better when it grows from having reseeded itself.  So maybe it will be better next year.  I also think that my soil may not be great.  I’ve noticed that the tomatoes in this part of the garden are not nearly as big and thriving as my tomatoes in containers.  I need to figure this out.  I’ve heard I can take a soil sample to a master gardener.  I will probably do that in the fall.

Our cucumbers somewhat freak us out.  They are so ALIVE!

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They send out these little feelers and wrap around the wire.  It’s craziness.

My basil is looking nice.  I am just waiting for my tomatoes to ripen so that I can make caprese salad.  I hope my tomatoes are good and that there are lots.

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It looks like rabbits or something have gotten into my kale, but it’s just David.  He goes out in the morning and gets some for his omelet.  He’s about wiped it out, although it keeps making new leaves.  I planted some more a few weeks ago so that we will hopefully have it through the fall.

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Davey’s kindergarten teacher sent them home with seeds for the moms for Mother’s Day.  I planted mine in the garden, and they are beginning to bloom.  Zinnias?  I am not sure, but I love the little yellow stars in the center!

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I write like I am the only one who has ever gardened ever, but it’s my first garden so it kinda feels that way to me.  I am amazed how all these things that I started from seed are these big green sometimes strange and slightly creepy plants.

I’m already planning my garden for next year!

 

 

Slip ‘n’ Slide aka “The Joys of Summer”

Davey had such a fun time at our neighbors’ house today.  He and two other little boys played in the kiddie pool, shot their Dollar Tree water tube pistol things (awesome dollar spent!), and slipped down the slip and slide.

I had great fun taking pictures of Davey slipping and sliding.

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He ran and slid and ran and slid.

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Such fun.

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He’s very expressive when water is hitting him in the face.

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I guess we all are though.

slipslide-3Happy kid. Even the big Davids slid (our neighbor is David and then our own big David).

I didn’t get any pictures of them though – should have!  Just more of Davey, and at the end, he was coming for me!

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Flappy and Friends (kinda)

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This past quarter I had the pleasure of working with a 4th grade reading buddy. I worked with her for about 40 minutes twice a week as part of a literacy class I was taking.  She was great.  She was so curious, and we had fun learning together.

So on the last week of the quarter, she came up to me one morning and the first thing she said was, “Can you have pets at your home?”  I told her that I could (I was not sure at all where this was going).  She then said, “Would you rather have a turtle or a fish?”  I told her that I’d never had a turtle so probably a fish.

I didn’t think that she’d really get me a fish.  I told Davey about it, and he really hoped that she would get me a fish!

So sure enough Thursday morning she came to our lesson carrying a small fishbowl.  She had gotten me a betta.  She had me all fixed up.  Food, water conditioner, and some greenery for the betta.  It was so thoughtful of her.

Davey was fascinated by the betta who he immediately named Flappy.

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It wasn’t too long though until we started feeling sorry for Flappy.  We just thought that this was no life for a fish.  Flappy should not be destined to spend his life all alone in a tiny fish bowl.

We decided to buy a small tank.  David took over at that point.  Turns out that he really really really enjoys fish.  He has researched carefully to see what fish are compatible with bettas.  Then he made daily trips for almost a week to get our water tested.  It wasn’t easy to get our aquarium water habitable for fish.  Turns out our water has an amount of nitrates in it that are not good for fish.  Then the ph was too high.  David was diligent though and kept working on the water.

Finally we determined that the aquarium was ready for fish.  Davey picked out some colorful rocks and plants.  We bought a glow in the dark alien egg.  The tank was ready.

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It’s hard to take a good picture of this little tank.  I can hardly find the fish in the picture.

We began with the betta, some tetras and rasboras.

The tetras did not fare well.  We are pretty sure the betta chased them down and fatally injured them.  Our research had indicated that tetras could live in harmony with the betta, but either we didn’t pick the right ones or he just didn’t like these poor little guys.  So the three tetras died in the first 18 hours with Flappy.

The rasboras have done great.  They are a little larger and maybe a little faster.  We bought some more of them, and now the betta and the rasboras are living in peace and harmony (at least it appears that way).  They are a lively bunch and lots of fun to watch.

Big David loves them.  He feeds the betta these rather gross looking blood worms.  I’m pretty sure that the betta recognizes David when he comes over to the tank.

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We weren’t expecting fish to join our family, but Flappy and friends have been a great addition.  Here’s hoping for long fish lives.

Farewell to Kindergarten

Today was the last day of school.  What a first year.  It is amazing to think about how much Davey learned and experienced.  I look back through the year, and I can hardly organize it all in my head.

Davey learned to read.  He found that he loves math, and he is pretty darn good at it.   He loves science too.  He has his career path lined up and ready to go.  He will be an ice cream maker first, then an oceanographer, and then he will be a veterinarian.

Here he was back on the first day of school throwing his jitter glitter in the air.

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Here he was today with an end of kindergarten gap-toothed smile.

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He made lots of friends this year.  He had an awesome teacher who introduced them to so many fun topics.  They raised butterflies.  They learned tons about the rain forest ecosystem. They learned more about the ocean than I have ever known.  He no longer describes a whale as jumping out of the water.  No, they are breaching.

So much imagination and creativity in his class too. They created leprechaun traps and worked their hardest to capture leprechauns.

They created aliens.  I confess to getting a little too involved in that project.  I had a lot of fun knitting his alien body.

They even had a giant actually stomp across the roof of their classroom one day!

My favorite creative moment was when I saw him perform in the school talent show.  He was a fearless kindergartener performing YMCA in front of a pretty large audience.

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Oh the dancing from this little guy.  He has more moves than David and me combined  – times 20.   He loves music!

Someday Davey might ask me what he was like as a kindergartener.  I would describe him like this:

“He has a big sense of humor.  It is just hilarious when he identifies all the Hearthstone cards by their voices. He is quite the mimic.

He loves to learn.  Math and Science are his favorites.

He loves his friends and his pup. He is protective of everyone around him and never wants to see anyone upset.  He always tries to help them.  He has a huge kind heart.”

Wee Tot!

 

Garden Love

This year I have planted a garden for the first time.  In the past, I tried container tomatoes a few times but without much luck.  One year I planted them in Texas, and I had the containers on the concrete slab patio in the backyard.  I am pretty sure that I cooked the plants.

I think I tried them in Texas again the next year, but then Timber, our Siberian Husky, discovered the green tomatoes.  He walked around the plants and ate every single one of them.  That dog would eat anything.

This year though we are renting a house that has two small raised beds.  I was determined to grow a garden with Davey.  David very much enjoys the benefits, but he’s not fond of dirt.  That’s ok, because I love it enough for both of us.

I started all my plants inside from seed.  They all did great, even the tomatoes.

I planted everything a few weeks ago.  I was anxious to get it all into the garden because my starts were outgrowing their little pots.  Turns out I think I was lucky there was not one more freeze!  Typically, many people around here don’t plant until Memorial Day from what I understand (or at least Mother’s Day).

 


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I have been reading up on how to take care of my plants.  Of course, Pinterest is my great source to gather information.  

I learned that you can harvest the larger leaves on kale and keep it going all summer.  I have learned that there are little sprouts that grow on tomato plants called “suckers”, and from what I have read so far, I need to pluck those off so the tomatoes will do better.  I learned that lettuce starts to get bitter once the temperature is over 75 degrees.  I am learning lots because I knew zero!

Yesterday, I harvested our first lettuce and kale.

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We made kale/lettuce salads for lunch.  (The salad looks dirty, but that’s the dressing!  I just noticed that when I looked at the picture!)

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I acknowledge that I sound like I am the only person who has ever planted a garden in the history of the world, but it’s just so fun!  I even like weeding it.  As a matter of fact, it’s time to go water right now!

 

 

 

Time to blog

I haven’t written a blog entry in over a month.  I have missed it!  My quarter is pretty much over, and so we are having a great not do too much weekend.  David is having an especially not do so much weekend as he has had a 101 fever for the last three days.  No fun!  But we are all getting in some nice relaxing.

Davey and I decided to try to make ice cream in a baggie last night.  I’d help prepare these in the kindergarten class I work in, but I wasn’t there to watch them shake the bags and to see the final result.

So Davey and I tried it.  We mixed the ingredients, double bagged them, and then put them in a gallon sized bag of ice and rock salt.

It took some shakin’!  In hindsight, I think I could have used a little more ice.

Davey was very enthusiastic at first.

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But then his enthusiasm began to wane.  It does require a lot of shaking; however, if you are patient, it happens!  The mixture turns to ice cream.  We finally got there and it was so neat!

Davey was a little hesitant to taste the ice cream (he is not a food adventurer).  He said, “this is good”, and then he said, “but it’s not the best ice cream I have ever had”.  I think there was a “no offense” quickly added at the end.

I thought it was really good though.  Big David was staying clear as he likes to eat ice cream in 30 seconds flat before there is any sign of melting.  This ice cream was melty for sure.

It was a fun Friday night end of the quarter activity though.

Today Davey and I went to the farmer’s market.  It’s early in the season, so our trips to the farmer’s market have mostly consisted of getting homemade dog treats for Buster.  Davey’d buy out the vendor if he could.

We sat down for a bit, and Davey enjoyed a hot dog.

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Ketchup only!

I also sat on the porch and did some knitting today.  ahhhh.  It’s nice to be knitting again.  I went to the library and checked out a couple of books.  It was nice to read again.  And now, I am able to blog again.  I missed that too!

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Today is Davey’s half birthday so we had a little celebration.  He also went to a friend’s birthday party today, so he had a big fun day.

I made him a cake and he requested red icing.  I did my best to not have it turn out pink.bday-half-cake-2014

 

I didn’t get the typical big Davey grin pictures, but I like these a lot too.  This is tired Davey who had a big afternoon at the park. Saturdays are also typically a recovery day from a busy week at school!

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He did a great job blowing out those candles.

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We sang and ate cake.  Happy half birthday to our sweet boy.

Davey’s Teeball Debut in pictures (lots) and stories (some)

Davey had his first teeball game today.  The notorious Ellensburg winds gave us a proper welcome. Windy!  We thought it was fitting as well that Davey’s team is called the Colorado Rockies!

Davey is a great hustler and he is always enthusiastic.

He was focused at the tee and had several nice hits.

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Off he ran as fast as he could.  After the kids hit, there is often a slight hesitation for many of the players as they locate first base, and then realize they are supposed to run there. Once the realization hits them though, they run just as fast as their little legs will carry them.

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Waiting on second.

 

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He made it home.  Looks like such a big kid to me in this picture.

 

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He was no less enthusiastic in the field.  Not much came his way but he was ready and even willing to run all the way across the field at times to try to retrieve the ball.

 

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Finally a ball came his way.   It slipped by, but he was on it.

 

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He gave his best effort on his throw.

 

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A lot of the Davey teeball experience involves the social interaction aspect.  He very much enjoyed chatting with each coach as he waited on base.

 

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Running again.

 

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At one point late in the game, David and I noticed Davey out in the field adjusting his stance or playing around with balancing on the edges of his cleats?  Not sure, but all of a sudden he toppled over like a little tree.  He fell pretty hard, but he bounced right back up.  We watched him flop his wrist around, and then he started trying to get our attention.  He didn’t know that we’d seen him so he pantomimed his fall.  I wish I would have gotten that on video!  I was trying to zoom in to see if he was upset.  He wasn’t.

Blurry picture, but I could see that he was ok – just a hat that was askew.

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Good first day.

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“Town Fishin'”

Oh, I am happy that Spring is coming.

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David took Davey fishing in the small creek that runs along the edge of campus.   It is such a pretty little creek.

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I was just having a lot of fun taking pictures today.  I am also a sucker for a picture of the back of sweet Davey’s head.

 

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He fished a little, and then he pretended a little. He’d set up a camp here.

 

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He and David worked together to catch a fish.

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They did catch one small trout.  Very small.  I provided a little assistance in locating the fish in the following picture:

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It took me about 15 minutes to figure out how to do that in photoshop.

I also had fun taking some pictures of my sweet Buster.  He’s such a good boy.

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I think he is quite photogenic.

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Such a nice afternoon!  Here’s my final picture.  I liked this a lot too of Davey standing next to David.

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Map, Ostrich Eggs, Zoo

Thursday we went over to the Woodland Park Zoo.  We were really happy to have a sunny afternoon for our visit.  We’d been expecting rain for most of the day.

It’s a nice zoo with lots of beautiful trails in between the walks to the animal exhibits.

Davey enjoyed the animals, but I think his favorite part was the map.

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That little guy loves a map.

We took quite a few pictures of animals  so I’ve got to include at least one here!

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David took a picture which depicts three things I am not sure I’d ever expected to see in one picture.

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A boy with a map, ostrich eggs and a zebra.

And finally a nice close up of Davey playing in the “bamboo”.

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