Wednesday, May 27, 2009

A busy weekend in the garden ... with a few twists

We spent our Memorial Day weekend at home, for the most part.  We did go yard sale and thrift store shopping on Saturday, along with getting 9 yo C's birthday portraits taken. 

But Friday, Sunday, and Monday were spent at home in the garden.  We weeded, we tilled, we planted beans.  Steve pushed the tiller for hours trying to get it ready for planting.  It's a much larger garden than we've ever had before.  It's almost too much for just a tiller.  He's sporting quite a sunburn this week.   Finally we planted a long row of Derby bush beans, a long row of Green and Gold wax beans, a short row of lima beans, and a long row of white and red onions Monday night ... finishing in the dark with mosquitoes everywhere.  While we worked, 3 yo L played ... basically taking a dirt bath.  The kids love playing in the freshly tilled soil.

Steve also spent time with the kids shoveling sand/gravel into our driveway from two pickup beds.    That will be a big improvement on rainy days like today.   He worked on that while the older girls and I pulled field bindweed from one corner of the garden so he could till there.  We didn't want to plant seeds by tilling it up while it was blooming.  After 15 years of marriage, I've finally given up on trying to convince him it was a pretty wildflower, and I know we'll never have morning glories growing in our yard.  He was born a farmer's son, raised a farmer's son (even after his father no longer actively farmed), and he's still a farmboy at heart.  So no morning glories allowed, and no forget-me-nots apparently.  He just vetoed that this weekend. 

While we were pulling field bindweed, we had to stop and use the rake and hoe to find a library book that 5 yo M had decided to bury in the garden.  Argh!  Of course, he couldn't remember exactly where ... only that it was on the right side of 4-wheeler,  and not too far way.  How far is "too far" to a 5 year old?  I finally found it, but we lost the rest of our evening that night trying to find it.  We had to finish pulling the weeds in the morning.  Of course, when asked why he did it ... he just said he wanted to.  When reprimanded that we do not bury books or toys or anything in the garden, he said again ... "but I wanted to."  It took awhile to convince him that he will NOT do this again.  But from his giggles, I'm not completely sure he's repentant.  13 yo A has been instructed NOT to take books to the garden again.

Steve and 13 yo A did some mowing on Sunday afternoon, as well.  He even let her drive the riding mower.  Yikes!  He has her drive the 4-wheeler with the cart attached at times, and he walks alongside, picking up branches and tossing them into the cart.  But this weekend was the first time he let her drive the riding mower while he worked elsewhere.  My Mama's heart wanted to make all the younger kids come inside while she mowed.   Instead, we just warned them to stay far away and not to approach.  We didn't want a little one to try to run up to her (Daddy lets them ride in his lap when he drives) and get in her way when she wasn't looking.

It was a busy, hard-working weekend, but a good one.  We still have lots of seeds to plant, and some we've had to set aside for fall planting since we missed the cool weather of spring.  We'll probably do some evening plantings this week.  I don't know what we'll do with the larger harvest.  I guess it will be a learning experience on cooking from the garden, and canning this year.  (Yes, I'm nervous about canning, and trying not to think about it too much.)  I've ordered Ball's Blue Book and am just waiting for it to arrive. 

We have neighbors next door now.   A young newlywed couple is moving in.  We're rural, but there are two houses side by side ... with about one city lot empty between them ... one was Grandma's house and one was the house Steve grew up in.  We live in Grandma's house and they live in his parent's old house.  They're renting it, but it feels funny to have neighbors again.  The kids are feeling less free to play and be themselves.  They keep shushing each other, because the neighbors might hear them.  The older girls feel like they can't sing or pretend with their younger siblings now.  I pray they become more comfortable and natural again.  I've enjoyed the freedom the kids have had to explore, to play, to be themselves.  I don't want them to lose that.

Oh ...and in other news ...  I hadn't posted that I was asked to remain on the TOS Crew as an alternate since I have high school age children.  I was waiting for the new Crew to be announced first.  Since that happened, I actually have moved up to First Mate for the new TOS Crew, since one of the First Mates had to step down.  So I'm back on the TOS Crew as a First Mate.  Which means I'll be doing reviews, but also mentoring some of the new Crew members.   The kids and I are excited to be on the Crew again.

I also will be drawing some coloring pages to go along with some fun e-book unit studies that TOS is putting together.  Last week I drew a dung beetle for the first e-book.  I'm looking forward to this monthly exercise ... and so are my kids.  They were hanging over me the whole time I worked on my dung beetle drawing, and its revisions.  "DON'T shake the table when Mom's going over her sketch in INK!"  It's not everyday a person can say they were drawing dung beetles.

School and chores are calling, but I wanted to get an update posted on our weekend. 

Trusting in Him,


  1. Hi April! how cool to see your comment on my blog! I am ALMOST a mom of 7! The twins came as a huge surprise as i'm sure they always do :-)

    I just recently went back to AW and found a new site called which is similar. I'm planning on using cloth with the twins, for cost reasons, and hoping i don't crash and burn with that one! we'd given up on cloth after our 3rd or 4th, i think we TRIED a little with Annabeth, my 4th but we have SO much laundry that it became cumbersome...

    Anyway, so nice to hear from you :-)


  2. I'm so tired now from reading your post. And you wondered why you had trouble getting the laundry done!


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