Thursday, June 12, 2014

The Garden

Our garden isn't very large or productive. We don't have much yard to dig in so we make do and plant in pots on the back deck. I have big dreams of raised beds, fruit trees, garlic patches and blueberry bushes but for now this is what we have to work with. This year our adventures into gardening taught us some lovely lessons.

Lesson 1: Morning Glory seeds are poisonous and produce an LSD like effect when eaten. Lenora ate some (we really think she only ate 1) but poison control sent us straight to the emergency room for a preventative drink of liquid charcoal. Poor kid did a bang up job of drinking it down, then promptly throwing it all back up over me. Thankfully she didn't start seeing things and we were on our way home a few hours later.

Lesson 2: It's almost impossible to purchase or make potting soil for container gardening with no plastic trash. After reading this book I have been trying to reduce the amount of waste we generate. I thought I hit the jackpot when I found a garden center that would let me purchase dirt and leaf grow compost in my own buckets. I ended up paying more because they couldn't figure out an easy way to charge me since they normally sell by the yard. Also, when I got home to mix up my own potting soil I found it was still too heavy and ended up having to purchase peat moss and vermiculite that I could only find in plastic bags. Can't say I didn't try. 

Our plants have already started to take off and look so much different from these beginning shots. I cannot wait to share with you how they grow this summer.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Dalton Ray Hill 3/4/2014

I almost didn't share this story.

I know now that every pregnancy, birth, and child are different. Completely different.

I shared so much of baby Robert I wanted to hide this child away from the world until I was certain no harm would come to him. But we still have a lifetime to go and I can only protect him from so much so here goes, the story of his journey earth side.

Dalton was born a week and 6 days late by the standard 40 week birth clock, but he came on his own time when he was good and ready.

I delivered him at Special Beginnings Birth Center. We barely made it because at 42 weeks you are no longer a candidate for the birth center, you have to deliver in a hospital. The last time I was in a hospital with a a baby I had to hand him over to a funeral director. There was no way I was going back there. No flipping way. So we staged an eviction to get him out before that dreaded cut off. I had 3 rounds of acupuncture, walked every day, took labor tincture, pumped and did some other extra curriculars. It finally came down to my lovely midwife, who met me in a snow storm the day prior, stripping my membranes that gave him just enough of a push to get things going. I met her at 4:30 on the 3rd and by 11:30pm that night we were back at the birth center ready to go. I had an amazing team by my side, including my midwife Myra, doula Lorrie Leigh, a nurse who just happened to be the infamous Ann Sober (owner/director of Special Beginnings, Robert, and all the friends and family who held our hands along the way. 

In their capable hands Dalton was born in the water at 5:30am on the 4th. It got a little hairy there at the end. My babies don't like those last few pushes to get them out. His heart rate dropped a little too low and everyone was urging me (rather loudly) to push him out already. I obliged and they placed him into my arms.

It has been one hell of a journey...physically and emotionally. While I will always feel a part of my family is missing his birth brought a much welcomed dose of healing to our home.   

Hug your babies for me today and tell them you love them. 

Saturday, February 15, 2014

How Ella Got Her Groove Back

This used to be my doll when I was a little girl. Lenora has adopted her and named her Ella. 

The other day she had a neck blow out of epic proportions and Lenora came to me and asked if I could fix her. Since my nesting is in high gear these days I obliged and was then hellbent on fixing this doll as fast as humanly possible. 

It was a simple process really. I took her apart, ironed her flat and cut out a new body from a fresh piece of muslin I had in my stash. I embroidered a new face and alakazam, Ella was back in business in less than 12 hours. 

I love projects like these, that involve simple sewing skills but are able to save a little piece of history and put a smile on my daughters face. 

Get your groove on Ella, get it girl. 

Friday, January 3, 2014

2013 Year End

Awww snap. I had perfectly good intentions of writing about the amazing herbal medicine class I took at Centro Ashe

the bleh mustard I made and canned, the delish Thanksgiving dinner that was shared, a very special Tiny Baby birthday celebration and blessing,

 our sunny Arizona Christmas 

and the few goodies I managed to stitch up for gifts. 

I just didn't get around to it. Perhaps I will go back and rehash, for it was all pretty good stuff to share here. 

In reality I spent much of 2013 just trying not to go bat shit crazy. We are still mourning the loss of our 1st son and are now planning for the arrival of our 2nd son due in February,

all the while raising our super high energy, soon to be 3 year old. 

Some days my head could just fly off from the enormity of it all. 

So for 2014 I am not making any resolutions, goals or setting grand ambitions. I am just going to live it, fully, deeply and gently, whatever may come. Sounds like a plan or lack thereof, to me. 

Happy 2014 folks.  

Friday, November 15, 2013

Getting Saucy

Every year I try to get better at putting food by for the winter. 

We preserve what is in season for when it’s not, and let me tell you, pulling a jar of peaches out in the middle of winter is heavenly. This process is trail an error and each year I learn more. 

We are not big tomato sauce eaters, so that I buy sparingly by the jar from the store. Applesauce on the other hand is a hot ticket item. We all love it and Robert can punish a quart in one sitting.  This year I canned 11 pints and froze 4 quarts. Not nearly enough, but it will do and now I know next year that I should put up more. 

I have a love, hate relationship with canning. I love those gleaming jars on the shelf but hate my glass top stove. So this year the canning was done on the side burner of the propane grill we parked in the front yard for the day. 

I am sure that got my neighbors to speculating. And now that I have the heat source worked out for future endeavors I need to invest in a taller pot, hence the canned pints and frozen quarts. Give me a shout out if you come across one in your thrifting adventures. I know here in Maryland, home of the crab and accompanying giant crap pot there must be one out there for a steal. 

See, every year really is a learning experience.  I hope you are all getting saucy this fall too. 

Friday, November 1, 2013

Full Fall

This fall has been filled to the brim with wonderful family fun time. 

Robert came home from an extended work trip and we have packed together time into every minute since he has been home. 

First he had to shave off that nasty beard. 

Then we spent and entire free day at Kings Dominion courtesy of my moms work. Thanks mom and Mary Pat for riding the rides 389762 times with Lenora. 

Then we went to the Maryland Renaissance festival on my birthday. This is a yearly tradition that we love. I bought the best hair combs ever from these lovely folks as a birthday present to myself. 

Then it was off to the pumpkin patch. 

And brunch with the family on the water, then Nebraska game watching with matching outfits. 

I am tired just thinking about all that fun. Now we are in slowdown mode, spending more time indoors, cleaning corners and getting ready for winter. I hope your fall was as fun filled as ours was. 

Friday, October 18, 2013

Because I Can

I saw this pattern on the Pink Chalk blog and knew I had to make it. 

Its not like I have copious amounts of time on my hands for projects like this. 

Its just that they were so darn cute, and small, and I figured I could knock them out in no time.


So I did. 

Now I want some for myself.