We’ve been in our house for almost two years, but I keep finding new and exciting things around our property. At the end of spring, the blackberries were everywhere. We had so much fun finding their plants (which are not bushes here in Florida) and picking the berries. They were everywhere!
This year we planted popcorn. I have always wanted to plant popcorn and because of it’s location in the garden, the chickens left it alone….one of the only things they left alone. Last week we harvested the corn. We didn’t have many ears and they didn’t get very big, but that didn’t matter to us. It was exciting enough just to successfully grow popcorn!
The cool, breezy days are leaving us, and we are at the point where the windows and doors will stay closed for the summer. I have been enjoying the cool weather so much, and I’ve been making sure to appreciate every moment while it’s been with us. The kids have too. I’ve found them outside many times, playing and dreaming away together. Ahhh…it fills me with so much joy! I remember these moments with my brother. We played outside all the time and they are my favorite memories.
There is something about turning 3 that transforms each child. Those sweet and agreeable little faces become very opinionated and frequently distempered. They are working hard to become someone. Who? They do not yet know. But they are working. Sometimes this comes at the cost of sadness and sometimes physical pain of those around the almost 3 year old. Time outs become more frequent, as do discussions about what is kind and what is not, and how in our house we only do what is kind and loving to others. It is a process. And it can be quite exhausting.
I love a project. Something I can dream about and slowly work on here and there.
Even as a mother of four there are little moments throughout the day when my creative side gets an opportunity to break free…in the car, when the kids have finally snuggled in for the night, in those sweet moments of play (the ones with no fighting, of course).
Here is something special to add to your pantry. I’m sure you have some great extracts–vanilla, lemon, peppermint, or your other favorites. But the very best extracts are those you make yourself! And how easy they are to make!
Grape season is coming to a close here in Florida. And we made the most of it this year. With all the U Picks around here, we made out like bandits. We got 35 pounds (at $1 per pound)! Needless to say, our house is filled with the sweet aroma of grapes. Some were for eating, but most were for making into jelly.
We are still in the first year in our new house and are still encountering new things as we go. As the saying goes, there is a season for everything. And that includes Saw Palmetto Berries! Where we live, about 7 of our 10 acres are covered in Palmettos. They are super invasive and take a lot of work to get rid of (I’m told). But right now, the benefits of having Palmettos are significant. Did you know that the berries are in high demand for pharmaceutical companies? I just learned this recently. Saw Palmetto Berries are beneficial for prostate health and as a hair loss treatment. Local places will buy berries at a couple dollars per pound!
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!).
We may have lost a pool in the move, but we’ve gained a pond. I was quite sad at the thought of not having a pool in Florida, but we haven’t missed it in the least. (Check back with me in July though, just to be sure. I may have a different response for you.) Pond life has added a new adventure for us. On occasion the girls will put on their swim suits and go for a swim. We’ve gone fishing a couple times. Reed enjoys throwing things into it. Anything really, but we try to keep him occupied with the hundreds of pinecones and sticks available for chucking in the water. Sometimes we even get visitors. No alligators yet, but we’ve had some egrets, cranes, storks, and even otters. Continue reading