After 5 years of being a stay-at-home mom, I found the wonder of mothering slowly starting to get crowded out by the mundane feeling. I realized our world seems to surround people with the negative, and complaining about blessings seems totally acceptable. So I decided to fight against that "normalcy" and focus only on the positive. I look back to my first year as a mom when everything was new and keeping house was fun and I aim to have that attitude again. This blog is my outlet to showcase the daily miracles that surround me in my blessed life as a stay-at-home mom so that I will never forget the wonder of it all.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Birthday Weekends

Hello!  Anyone still there?  :)  Oh, my blogging has slowed down lately.   We've been settling in to our new curriculum, AND, the kids have had the cough/snots for TWO WEEKS!  Ugh.......this Mama is ready to join the land of the living again and be done with these cough/snots.  I think they are finally subsiding.

Anyhow, if anyone is still reading, here's what the last two weekends have held for us.


I turned 32 the first weekend in March, and Zac turns 35 this weekend.  I've wanted new garden beds since we put last year's garden to sleep, but I wasn't going to ask Zac for that because he just had shoulder surgery in February.  But, he remembered, and built it with one arm in a sling.  :)  Here's my new HUGE garden bed.

18 feet long by 6 feet wide, to be exact.

It looks bigger from the road because Zac had to account for the slope.  When it was empty, it looked deep enough towards that back edge to house a pig.  :)  I don't think our neighbors would go for that.  In fact, I'm not so sure they're going to dig the box even without a pig in it.  We'll see if anyone complains.  It wouldn't be the first time.  People like to "landscape" with rocks around here.  When we first moved in, one of the first things we did was dig out PILES of rocks from our yard.  Our neighbors thought we were crazy, especially since I was digging rocks out while pregnant.  They also think its weird that I hand pull up all our weeds instead of using Roundup.  They've offered me some of their supply many times, but for the 7 1/2 years we've lived here, I've weeded only by hand....chemical free.  Yep, we're the neighborhood weirdos.  :)

This weekend, our dirt got delivered!
The kids ALWAYS love when we buy mass amounts of dirt.
Hey Kian, you have a bit of dirt on your face.

Kian must have watched Zac shovel because here he is trying to step on the shovel just like Daddy.

Hmmmmm.....I wonder what Zac's surgeon would think of this picture.

Today, while Zac was filling the huge bed with our new dirt (with one arm in a sling, of course), I remembered my compost that had been brewing.  I thought I'd take a peek and what I found was black gold. was black.  BEAUTIFUL! 

 So off came the top layer of leaves, which went in Logan's compost box we're currently adding to, and then we dug out two wheel barrow loads of our first ever harvested compost. Since living here, we've always composted. But this was the first time we harvested and used it.
  Very exciting!

Look how dark and lovely it looks against the bought dirt.

Tonight the kids and I gave Zac his present.....a GPS to use for geocaching!  We've talked about doing it for years so finally I got him the stuff we need and we hope to go on our first treasure hunt tomorrow.
Wish us luck!


  1. Glad you're back:). Wow, it must be warm where you are, makes me want to put my shorts on and jump into the pics. My hubby and I have long talked about the geocaching but never tried it either. Be curious to know if you enjoy it and how to get started.. Enjoy your first adventure.

    1. Yes, its very warm here! We've had a few days here this week where it was 80 degrees!

  2. so awesome! im trying to plan our "garden" but money issues are getting in the way. so far weve only done container gardens. i wanted something like what you have (probably not as big :-)) but my problem is the money needed foe all of the dirt/compost. we dont have a compost pile (another thing on my to do list) and so would have to buy everything. doesn't seem worth it to me. i dont know...maybe well just do containers again and invest in a compost bin. there are lots of mice and other creatures around here and we need a good one. maybe well invest in a rain barrel too. then next year go bigger with the garden. what do you think?

    1. My husband builds the beds using redwood fence boards. He says redwood is the best wood to use, but is expensive. However, the fence boards are cheaper than normal redwood lumber, so that's what we do. Dirt.....we just spent $85 on five and a half yards (I think) of dirt WITH delivery. Now, that's for that HUGE bed. And yes, dirt costs, but its a one time cost. And if you do a few beds each year, you can spread out the cost. We only did two smaller beds last year and didn't spend near that much on dirt. This dirt filled this bed and will fill most of another he plans to build and never again will we have to buy dirt for these beds as we will keep the dirt rich by adding compost and rabbit droppings each year. Plus we do permaculture, which is basically planting many things in one box so that they all add and take different things from the soil, therefor keeping it more rich. Planting, say, all tomatoes in a box over and over will depleat the soil of what tomatoes need. But you can plant tomatoes with other plants that add to the soil what tomatoes take out of it, and it balances out your soil, and keeps it good. So its kind of like lengthening you investment in soil, if that makes sense. Its too bad you have to buy something fancy for compost. We just simple make a pile somewhere and it goes to town.

  3. Wow! Happy birthday to you! We have been sick around here for about 2 weeks as well... I am so over this extreme cold we have that keeps mutating into new things. Yuck. Hope you guys are feeling better. Your new garden bed is amazing!! Way to go hubby!!

  4. So fun to see what your weekend looks like!

  5. First, glad you're back and happy belated birthday! Okay, your compost pile, we have a compost dome that we have been filling for the past year and half and it is still not ready to be used. Granted we put our food scraps, plant waste, newspaper etc. in it a couple times a week. How long did it take for your compost to be usable? What do you recommend? And where's the best place to get dirt for a garden? I have a space in my yard that we are hoping to utilize this year but we need some topsoil.

    And as far as the neighbors go, anyone who complains will change their mind when you bring them a basket of your garden fresh goods!
    love you friend.

    1. We buy dirt from a big landscape gardening place. This time we paid extra for it to be delivered. Compost....what we do is have 2 composts going at one time. One is "baking" and one is active. So right now, Logan has a big box that I got for free at a shipping yard. Its probably 4' by 4' and 3' deep. Right now, that one is our "active" compost bin. So all the kitchen and yard waste goes in there. It gets watered by our neighbors sprinklers overspray, so I don't have to worry about that. And honestly, I never turn my compost. When the kids find worms in the yard, they like to add them in. Worms break stuff down faster. The compost we just harvested has been baking untouched since early fall/ late Summer I'd suspect b/c all our Fall leaves went into Logan's current box and that's when that box started and the other pile started baking. Does that make sense? Now that we harvested this pile, I guess I'll start adding to it again, and let Logan's compost bake until next Fall again. Anyways, I think you get the idea that we rotate between the two and the reason for that is to just let one sit for a while and break all the last bits down, without adding new stuff to it. As long as you're adding new stuff to it, it will need to work to break the new stuff down and won't be ready. Hope that all makes sense.

  6. Dear Jenny...Happy Birthday!!! What better kind of gift than a gardening bed to feed your family! I love it!!! Your husband did a great job, too. And as far as neighbours goes, well, I agree, take them some garden bounty soon and maybe they'll see the light. I'm envious of all your warm weather clothing...and hoeing in a beautiful skirt ~ love that!
    xo Jules

    1. Thanks. :) I've been reading about how your seeds in your greenhouse didn't come up and here I had pea seedlings coming up just this week! And I planted them straight into the ground. I figured its been so warm I didn't need to start them inside. I'm not bragging. Trust me. When its 115 degrees in the Summer, I'll wish I was up where you are! :) Its just so interesting to blog and watch all these gardeners working in all these different terrains and climates! Love it.