Monday, May 31, 2010

Our trip to the Alabama Gulf Coast

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Last week, we made our annual pilgrimage to the beach. We decided to make the trip a little early this year, knowing that oil will soon make landfall. We always go to Orange Beach, Alabama so that our tourism dollars stay in our own state, and because it’s very beautiful and family friendly.

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It’s so sad to realize just how much oil is spilling into the Gulf each day. Very likely, the Gulf Coast will never be the same. I can’t imagine how much time and effort will be required to clean up the mess.


So, we purposed to enjoy the beach. In a trip that may be our last for quite a long time. And it was absolutely wonderful.

This trip, my husband stayed home to work on several remodeling projects (can’t wait to share them with you!), so my cousin and I went together, both taking our 2 children. We had an absolutely amazing time together.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

A chapter closed

We’re closing a chapter of our lives today. It was a very good chapter. We’ve finally sold our other house and we’re closing with the new owners this morning. We feel truly blessed that God has sent us a precious family who will love and care for this home the way we did. It’s what we prayed for after all. I pray that they too will be blessed and have peace and joy each day they live in this house.


I didn’t realize it would feel this bittersweet. Letting go. I imagined we would feel relieved when we no longer had 2 mortgages to make, and we do. But this house is special. It’s where we planted our first garden. And 10th wedding anniversary roses. It’s where we pressed our little one’s hands and feet into fresh concrete to preserve a special moment. So, yes. It’s a bittersweet day today.

I will count my blessings today and praise God for leading us to this new place. Our sweet homestead.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

A garden update

Well, I realize I’ve been away a while. But, I want you to know that I’ve been busy! The acupuncture and physical therapy are helping me get on with my life. The pain isn’t gone, but it’s lessened. So, I’m keeping at it! And I’m so happy to be in my garden again…

Cajun bell pepper Anaheimred hot chili peppers

The peppers are thriving in this heat. Above is a Cajun bell pepper (spicy sweet!), Anaheim pepper, and red hot chili pepper.

I also have red bell peppers, mammoth jalapeƱo peppers, and sweet banana peppers. They’re just not producing yet.

Amish Muskmelonno germinationsugar baby watermelon

The Amish muskmelon in doing well, but I do have a mound that didn’t germinate. Rats! Also above is sugar baby watermelon.

black beauty zucchini squashyellow squash blossomsyellow crookneck squash

I love summer squash. In my garden are black beauty zucchini (left) and yellow crookneck (right). 

I saw the first blossoms forming yesterday! (middle) Look closely at the base of the stems.

Black beaty eggplantLemon cucumberHomestead Tomatoes 

All six of my black beauty eggplants (left) germinated this year. Yay! And the lemon cucumbers (middle) are coming up nicely. But, I must say, the Homestead tomatoes (right) are enjoying a glorious year. I’ve never seen them do so well. I’ll always have some of these in my garden.

brandywinerosecherokee purplegold medal green zebra

Also in my garden are Brandywine, Rose, Green Zebra, Cherokee Purple, and Gold Medal (left to right). I have Jubilee Yellow as well, but the photo didn’t make it. There are two of each variety above, and 9 Homestead tomato plants. I’m gonna be up to my ears in tomatoes very soon!

green homestead tomatoestomato bloomshappiness is tomatoes 

Just look… above are clusters of Homestead tomatoes. The plants are absolutely covered in blossoms. Yay!

Jubilee Yellowclemson spineless okracontender bush bean

Oh, my! Here’s my Jubilee Yellow (left). I knew I snapped it! Along with Clemson spineless okra (middle) and Contender bush beans (right).

Ennis twiningtwineclimbing beans

We planted 10 (TEN!) rows of pole beans. The only economical way to stake these babies was with large wooden stakes and twine. The stakes are about 6 ft. apart, and the twine is ran between each stake, one foot off the ground, and up the stake at one foot intervals. Very inexpensive and easy to do. Be sure to use strong nylon twine and thick sturdy stakes for this – those beans will be heavy.

DanielTrucker's favorite cornrow hopping       

I don’t know if you’ve noticed how dry the ground is, but it’s D-R-Y. We’ve been irrigating a couple times a week, but it just doesn’t do the job like a good rain does. We’re praying for rain. It’s been 2 weeks since we’ve had a good rain, and we’re having 90+ degree days already. You can see our Trucker’s Favorite corn in the middle photo above.

the garden

I’m amazed at the difference one month makes in a garden. Just look!

Monday, May 3, 2010

A time to relax


We’ve been taking full advantage of this gorgeous spring weather we’re having.


Every chance we get, the picnic basket is loaded up with goodies and we head outside.


A simple meal is turned into a treasured memory just by changing things up a bit.


I love this man. I love my wonderful family. I am so very thankful for special times like these.


For picnics on old quilts (of which this one is my favorite) and enamel fish mugs.


For sweet children who make sure that the pups get their fair share of food and drink.


Yes, we’re taking it easy these days.

Resting when we can, knowing that the harvest season will soon be upon us.


For now, we’re content with our easy Sunday afternoons.


Which are spent enjoying God’s creation.


And it still makes me smile when my littlest love brings me flowers.

For those of you who are wondering about my recovery process, things are going well. Slow, but well.

The acupuncture is helping, along with the physical therapy. I am hopeful that with time, I will make a full recovery.

If you are among those who deal with daily pain, I recommend you give acupuncture a try.

It’s brought me some relief, when surgery and modern medicine have failed me.