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.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Around the Urban Homestead

***  Warning, this post will be overflowing with garden pictures.  ***

Ok, now that you've had your chance to go read somewhere else, let the pictures begin!  Come have a tour of our front yard.  It brings me MUCH joy, as I'm sure you can tell by this onslaught of pics.

Welcome to my garden!

 This is the upper favorite part of the yard.

 At the base of the upper garden is the sweet pea bed.  I went a bit crazy with sweet pea planting this year.  I thought I'd end up regretting the wasted veggie space, but now that there's HUNDREDS of the most beautiful smelling flowers all over it, I don't regret it one bit.  The smell takes me back to my childhood and reminds me of my Nana, though I don't know why.  I always planted sweet peas with my mom in her garden when I was a teenager too, so these little amazing flowers hold a special place in my heart.
In the corners of this bed are tomatoes, eggplant, and zucchini.

 In the picture above, you can see our van parked behind the sweet pea bed.  This is the backside of the bed, and my view when I drive up to our house.  And see those TINY little green sprouts just behind the ugly telephone posts?  Those are some calendula and giant gourd sprouts planted in about a two inch wide strip of soil.  Zac was watering with Kian tonight and I heard him say, "Mama has every inch of this yard planted"!  Yep, I do.  I'm putting seeds anywhere I can find the space.  I may not be able to walk through my garden once its all fully grown.  :)
 Here's what my garden table looked like before I took pics of the garden today.  All these sweet peas were fabulously covering the vines like fireworks.  I should have taken a pic before cutting.  These now fill our house and our house smells wonderful!  Felicity was adamant about taking a bouquet into her room and I found her daintily arranging the tiny flowers with a HUGE smile on her face.  Hopefully, when she's my age, the smell of sweat peas will take her back to her childhood, and gardening with me.

 Next to the sweet pea bed is the carrot bed.  In here are carrots (of course) onions, garlic, asparagus, and more sweet peas and baby sunflower sprouts along the back edge.  That's calendula popping up there in the dirt at the base of the box.

 Where the sweet pea bed and carrot bed meet, is our active compost pile.  And right there in front of my right foot are volunteer tomato plants from last year's crop, once composted.  I often take volunteers out of the compost and transplant them, but I'm going to let those tomatoes grow right where they've popped up.
 Near the front steps we have lettuce growing in pots.  Some more sweet peas are at the back of the big pot, and climb the stair railing.  At the base of the big pot are more calendula sprouts.

 The A frame is in the center of this upper garden area.  Peas are on the left, green beans on the right, lettuce down the middle, a row of baby sunflowers popping up at the back to hopefully shade the lettuce, and TINY tomato sprouts coming up in the four corners.  In this whole upper garden area we have volunteer tomatoes popping up all over.  We try to not step on those tiny babies.

 Here is our lonely lemon in a pot on the porch.  Calendula babies keep it company.  I'd LOVE to have more citrus, but our area is technically not zoned for citrus.   But with some TLC, they can thrive.  My mom grows the best oranges and lemons I've ever had.  So I'm hoping this little one grows well for us, and I'd like to get more soon.

 Here's the lower part of the front yard.  The area with the soaker hose is the melon patch.  We have pumpkins and watermelon coming up.

 At the edge of the melon patch is Kian and Felicity's gourd and flower bed.

 The "long bed" is just coming to life.  There's more calendula there at the base of the bed.

 In this bed are zucchini, squash, cucumber, lemon cucumber, tomatoes.........
 .........and rows of green beans.

 Below the "long bed" is the "lower bed" which is yet to be finished.  Volunteer sunflowers from last year's crop are popping up all around it.

 Here is the front of our humble abode.

 Under the right window is our pond.  This was one of Zac's and my first projects after moving in 7 1/2 years ago, and I still love it.

 I love it because the birds love it!  They are ALWAYS fluttering around it, especially the water feature.

To the left of the pond is this little bed.  This is the first year it will be fully planted.  Felicity and I sowed herbs last week.  We can't wait for them all to come up.  Bulbs and nasturtium are at the base of this bed, and a granny smith apple tree can barely be seen in these pics, near the house.

Well, there you have it.  The official tour of our garden as it is magically coming to life now in early May.  I so greatly love this space that I just had to share nearly every inch with you.  It brings me so much joy, and I can't wait to see it explode over the next few months.
Thanks for taking a minute (ok, more like quite a few minutes) to share my joy with me.

Happy gardening/homesteading/farming/urban homesteading or whatever plant tending you may do.  :)


  1. so beautiful and so inspiring!

  2. Jenny, I want to be you. I dream of having this garden. Literally, this is THE garden I want. So great. Good work friend.

    1. Thanks mama! Wish we lived closer and could garden together. And don't wish to be ROCK!

  3. Oh Jenny! It is so gorgeous! I would so love to come for a visit, and get the grand tour!!! What a great place for your littles to love and nurture as they are getting nurtured!

    I am so sorry I haven't sent my little package out to you yet. I was less then satisfied with my last batch and they still went like hot cakes. But I did make a fresh one hopefully it'll be on it's way soon!

    1. Wouldn't that be fun? Two blog friends meeting together in real life!!! :) No worries about the package at all, though I'm glad you mentioned it b/c we've had some mail problems and lost a package and I was afraid maybe yours had been lost too and you were thinking I was not thankful for it since I didn't mention having received it. Glad to know you won't think of me that way. HA!

  4. If you end up having any lemon cucumber to share think of me. I love lemon cucumber and it is hard to find. I am so NOT a gardener though. Thanks for sharing your lovely pictures.

    1. You got it Sandy. We really like them too and my mom and I grew them so well every year at her house but Zac and I have not been successful with them yet. ??? I hope this is our year, though I only bought four starts as I'm still nervous they won't take. But so far all four are doing great and if that continues, we'll have plenty to share!

  5. Oh I have to get out into the garden now! Thank you for the inspiration! I was actually thinking about Farmmama's around the farm posts last night and wishing to have some farm/garden tours so this couldn't be more perfect! I love your little urban farm, similar to what we have, though we are a bit behind you here in Maine...but that's it, I'm heading out there now:)

    1. I LOVED Farmama's "around the farm" posts too!!!! Oh, I wish she was still blogging! But that's why I've kept these posts up b/c I too love getting tours of blog friends' gardens, farms, urban homesteads, etc. Can't wait to see yours come to life!