In the Garden

It’s planting time!  I have been looking forward to this for such a long time.  Every time I worked in my old tiny raised gardens.  Every time I went to the grocery store to buy expensive, organic produce.  Every time I drove 40 minutes to pick up produce from the coop…I thought about it.  And dreamed about it.  I can’t wait to have my garden abundantly producing what my family eats.  Last week we began our planting.  Our garden is about 15 feet x 100 feet.  It took a while to get it ready to plant (and it would’ve been longer if not for the help of a friend with a tiller!).

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Grass mat weaving for little hands

The hot weather is here, so we have been looking for things to do that won’t be too crazy hot.  Of course we swim.  And swim.  And swim.  And when the sun has kissed our skin enough and our fingers and toes are extra pruney, we try to find other ways to occupy ourselves while still staying cool.  Inside, self-directed play takes up most of their non-swimming time, but every now and then they venture away from the world of magic and princesses and weddings and measuring cups and look for something else to do.  That is when they come searching for this Mama to help them come up with something crafty to occupy their hands and minds.  And since I aim to please, I have many ideas just waiting for the opportunity to come alive for these sweet ladies.

Last week, we began weaving mats out of grasses.  Fortunately, long meadow grasses seam to be everywhere.  They got their scissors and cut what they needed to make their mats.DSC_3563

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“Jack Frost”

“Jack Frost came, Mama!” Laelia called excitedly, jumping up and down and waving her arms as she called to me.  He did visit.  He left his beautiful etchings outside on the grass and plants and car windows.  Inside we felt the cool air, so I of course, snuggled into bed even more, trying to get away from the cold. When I finally threw the covers back, I found my three sweet girls enjoying the “frost” on the windows. There was no actual frost on the windows, but they were quite steamy.  Later we went out to see Mr. Frost’s artwork on our lawn.  It was a perfect match for what they love so much–art.  Anything artistic.  At all.  From the moment they wake up in the morning until the moment they go to sleep they are thinking about drawing and coloring and artistic wonderment, with a side of make believe and imagination.  DSC_6248 Continue reading

Tree Farm

In Florida, we don’t have Christmas tree farms (that I know of).  You can get some pre-cut trees, but you can’t chop them down yourself.  When I was a kid we only cut them down ourselves.  And it was such a fun tradition.  We’d drive out to a tree farm about 40 minutes away, trudge up and down hills in the cold and sometimes snowy weather, looking for the perfect tree.  We’d look and look and find some great trees, and when we finally found the tree, my dad would get down on the ground and saw that perfect tree at the base while we held it up top so it didn’t fall on him.  Then we’d carry the tree back to our car and strap it to the top (although there were a few years in there when my dad had a truck and he’d toss it in the bed).  After that we’d go into the barn at the tree farm.  They had hot chocolate there.  Usually we got to get a cup of hot chocolate and we’d be so cold that we’d drink it too fast, and would of course, scald our mouths with it.  But it seemed worth it.  DSC_4514

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Canadian Geese

As I am from Maryland, I have seen many Canadian Geese in my day–usually flying in their V or, still with their gaggle, eating, drinking, and splashing somewhere fun.  However, on our recent trip to the north, we drove by a farm where I saw a hillside covered in geese, who were probably stopping off to fill their bellies to tide them over while on their journey farther South.  I had to share this moment with you. DSC_4531

{Recipe} Orange Cranberry Sauce

I will tell you that my most favorite meal is Thanksgiving dinner.  Yummy yum yum!  I love it and all the leftovers that come along with it.  I love mixing it all together and creating fun things like hot open-faced turkey sandwiches smothered with gravy.  Which brings me right where I love to be frequently…gravy.  You can never have too much gravy.  Ever.  Absolutely delish!DSC_3960 Continue reading

Growing

The cooler months are upon us here in Florida.  While much of the rest of the country is snowy and freezing, we are enjoying having the windows open and running outside without having to come in to avoid the heat or jump in the pool to cool off a bit.  The girls have been enjoying their time outside.  Before we begin  our daily activities, we spend a good portion of the morning playing and gardening.DSC_0191 Continue reading

Home

It’s always nice to come home.  The normalcy of our world is so nice to return to.  We spent the last week visiting our Maryland family and we had a fantastic time!  It was a week of firsts for the girls–at least a week of doing things they can really only do in colder areas that they will most likely remember doing this time.  We visited grandparents, great grandparents, cousins, aunts and uncles, and friends. We dressed for the cold.  We raked leaves and jumped in the piles (and kicked them).  We hoped for snow as it grew colder.  We went to the tree farm to cut down Christmas trees.  We saw hills–lots of hills.  We saw frost.  We made a fire and warmed ourselves and ate roasted marshmallows until we were just too cold to stay outside any longer. Continue reading