Sunday, June 30, 2013

Duck, Duck... Goose

Look at all those ducks and just one white goose in the whole bunch.
We think it was a goose?

We've got our summer bucket list that we're trying to get thru within the next 6-7 weeks left of summer.

We checked off "go feed the ducks" last weekend. 

Brother... and his daughter, Sister... and her 4 boys. Cute!

I had no idea there would be about 70 ducks at this place. I'm certain every duck from this giant pond swam over to us and was begging to be fed. Note taken for next time: bring more bread! Lots more!

I don't think I tell this handsome guy enough... but he's an amazing father to our children!!!

Heart melt.


I can barely keep up. No exaggeration here, I pull this child off of the dinner table, end tables and counter tops about 100x a day. It's ridiculous. 

Preston is such a kind, gentle and patient big cousin.

And then we went home and I painted toe nails with Vivian. My boys are the absolute best, but they won't let me paint their toenails for some reason?!?! 

Mason was very curious about the whole process and watched every brush stroke.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Sprinkler Silhouettes

Soaking up the rays and the water in the backyard. 

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

The graduates...

Well it's official... 

Adrian is now a 1st grader, Preston is a Kindergartener and Kellen will enter his last year of Pre-K in August. And little Mason is cutting himself down from two naps to just one nap. We are all progressing and moving right along on this journey.

A bittersweet day (a couple weeks ago :)... especially for our oldest, young-little man Adrian. There's just something about him graduating Kindergarten that chokes me up. And to think I only get to go through Kindergarten graduation just 3 more times in the next 3 years :) I'm sure I'll cry at all of them.

The teachers put together a wonderful film of the children saying what they wanted to be when they grow up. It was so sweet, Adrian said he wanted to be a farmer. I'm sure that had something to do with us gardening this year. Then when we got home from his graduation he said "mom, I forgot to say that I wanted to also be an adult someday too". Sweet boy!!

I don't ever want to forget these precious and special moments.

Saying goodbye! Teacher's are just special people. I think it would take a lot to be a good one and the emotions that they have to put into it would exhaust me. I respect them and appreciate what they do for our children.

Adrian's teacher Mrs. McKellar is so patient, kind and pretty amazing. We're lucky that Preston will be in her class next year.

Mason was thrilled :) 
Unfortunately, John had a meeting that morning that he just couldn't miss. So it was just the three of us for grad day. I had my Iphone, my camera, diaper bag, a hand full of goldfish, and was holding squirmy Mason while "attempting" to snap 100 pics of Adrian's big day. As soon as I let Mason down he went darting for the stage. And he's fast!!!

And these two sweet (sometimes ornery?!) boys.

The "little boys" aka "the twins" this is now what we call them since everyone thinks they are. Here at their preschool graduation picnic. 

Now we're enjoying a much needed summer break. Relaxing, crafting, swimming, making bucket lists and keeping the boys entertained while trying to get some house projects done in the little spare time we have. Oh, and watching our garden grow! It's getting huge.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

An Edible Yard: Our Garden Project

It's one of those little projects that quickly turned into a big project (they always do!!! right!?). But it's one that we have grown to love!

I think that my many years of watching my grandma Angie tend to her giant garden, grow seedlings in her basement and then can her own food has helped me during this process. She left a huge impact in regards to my gardening desire. Even in college I loved to come home and pick cherry tomatoes from my mom's porch garden and eat them. A fantastic midnight snack when coming home from a long night out with girlfriends.

The beginning, the idea: Our neighbor Nate got this tutorial from here Raised Self-Watering Garden. We doubled the size of the garden and built two of them. What can I say we have a BIG family and I hope if we're successful this year then maybe we could can and preserve fruits and veggies next year. 

Before anything was even built we bought seeds from here SEEDSNOW (non-gmo's)
And then started growing them in our basement.

John and his big helper Kellen. 

He really whipped these out pretty fast one night after dinner.
Props to John on his FIRST real carpentry project. I'd give him an A++
And all I did to help the build was hold some pieces of wood and staple some pond liner in.

We watched our seeds grow...

then we transplanted and they grew more...

and more and they overtook my bedroom while we waited for Mother's Day to pass. This is the day everyone in CO waits for to plant because here it can be 80 one day and then snow the next. But not likely after Mother's Day.

These are the pipes at the bottom that fill up with water. 

And then we shoveled (a ton of dirt!) 6 cubic yards of a compost dirt mixture into wheel barrels and then into the gardens while a giant storm rolled in. We hustled our hinney's off!! I mean uber fast!! We watched the dark clouds flood in the last hour or so of shoveling. I kept envisioning all of our dirt being washed away when the rain came. Lot's of dollars spent rolling down the street was enough to motivate me to bust my hump. And we made it just in time.

After filling the bottom tubes with water this is the drip tube that let's us know it's full below. 

First round of planting complete.

On the long "to do" list is to stain that washed out fence behind the gardens. 

I put 90% of our tomato plants in pots so they wouldn't take up garden space.

A sunflower from the little boys preschool class.

An unused lattice that we had on the patio that used to provide privacy for a hot tub that the previous owners had. We took it apart and put it up against the fence in hopes of letting some of our potted peas, green beans and squash crawl up it and use it for support. I have no clue if it will work. We'll know in a couple weeks tho.

In the front portion of the lattice we added a small mulched area with a couple blueberry, raspberry and blackberry bushes. And on the other side of the yard we have the two plum trees and two apple trees now (we planted one of each without knowing you need two of the same in order to get fruit) We're learning all kinds of stuff as we go. 

Our tiny plants in the beginning.

In the Garden and Pots we have:

Green Beans
Banana Peppers
Jalopeno Peppers
Red and Orange Bell Peppers
Tomatoes (all kinds)

It's getting there. We can't wait to harvest and eat some of our hard efforts.

Our backyard is utilized so much. We don't have many bugs in CO, so it's really easy to just hang out in the back and be comfortable. 

Awkward mid-air position?!? I did land on my feet actually.

Since we do spend so much time back there it's worth the time, effort and money to make it look nice and feel like an extension of our home. 

And if we can make it an edible back yard that's an even better bonus!