summer recap, part 2

Fourth of July was celebrated by shooting guns….

Mama and her cane while shooting = hilarious

Playing badminton….

Eating watermelon….

And spending time with family and friends.

During this month, I was asked to make a cake for my Uncle Anthony’s surprise birthday party. It turned out so pretty, I just have to share it with you.

Cute, huh? He plays the ukelele, so his daughter requested a ukelele cake. I had no idea how to do it. I used 2 sheet cakes and cut out the shapes. I used candy and thread for the top, Hawaiian looking flowers for the edge.

I canned lots and lots of pickles and tomatoes.

Kate had her first taco. And LOVED it. Now, every time I mention having tacos, she gets very excited. She likes to dip them into a salsa and sour cream mixture. We always have root beer with tacos. It makes it even yummier.

We went camping on the hottest weekend of the year. It was fun, but so hot!

Putting up our massive tent took some patience and some time.

The girls danced around the fire.

We learned to make cowboy coffee. Delicious! I suggest if anyone tent camps to try it. It is worth the wait.

~walks along the lake shore~
~grilling burgers lake side~
 ~eating more watermelon~
 ~enjoying sunsets~
~enjoying full moons over our campsite~
~having strange things happen~

Kate learned how to do a flip on the swing set. She loves to show off.

 Isabel still hasn’t quite learned how to pedal her tricycle, much to her frustration.

We ate lots of blueberry pancakes. LOTS.

~popcorn and movie nights~
The back vegetable garden

The front flowers on the other side of the driveway. Next year, hopefully, I will remember that the sunflowers face AWAY from the house. They don’t look quite like I want them to, because they face that way. Oh, well.

front flower bed

another view of the front
Stay tuned for August!

summer recap, part 1


Fall is here, officially by the calendar anyway. The first day of fall was last Friday. I had every intention of posting something about it, but for some reason, life keeps getting in the way of this blog.

I love this time of year. I really like the cooler sweater weather. I told Kate the other day that I was ready for sweaters, because I was tired of sweating. I had to laugh at myself. She didn’t get it, but she laughed with me. Because she is 3 and doesn’t “get” corny, yet.

In celebration of fall, I thought I would recap our summer for you. I was going to do it all at once, but I was going into picture overload. So, I will just do one month at a time…

The beginning of June involved getting ready for Daddy’s homecoming. We painted signs, cleaned and cleaned. Did lots of yardwork. And just generally wore ourselves out. 
Daddy’s homecoming was a very special day. We got the the airport extra early.
And we waited, and waited. Surprisingly enough, Kate ran to her Daddy. Isabel was too busy eating her french fries to be bothered. But, Kate was beyond excited.

She kept giving him these precious, little hugs. Quite adorable, really.

This is Brian and me on his first Sunday back. There are several of these pictures and in several of them a head or something is cut off. This is one of the better ones. We look cute together, I think.
After Daddy came home, life took on a different pace. There was lots more laughing and lots more horsing around.
I goof off with them and play with them, but NOT like Daddy does.
We went on a plane ride to Grandma and Grandpa Armonat’s house for Father’s Day and Grandpa Armonat’s birthday. Brian celebrated his Father’s day by buying himself a present. Which was  a good thing, because in the planning and packing for the trip, I completely forgot about Father’s day.
Here Brian is posing with his present. He is probably going to shoot me for putting this picture out there. But it is hilarious. Every time it scrolls through the screensaver, I laugh.
We got new baby chicks. Mama hen sat on 14 eggs. I think 6 hatched out. Baby chicks are so much fun to watch.
I accidentally grew a cantaloupe. I used my homemade compost around my blueberry plants. A vine began to grow; I left it alone. I watered it when I remembered. Brian and the girls enjoyed it. I thought it tasted green. Still neat, anyway.
We went on several boat rides. I love this picture of the girls holding hands. Just look at the way Isabel is gazing adoringly at her sister.
We also had several breakdowns and other issues that took a little bit of fun away from lake-going.
But, we still managed to have lots of fun, anyway.


And capture some nice pictures.

No caption needed….sister love.
The vegetable garden in June.
The front flowers in June.

I wish I could tell you I learned lots of lessons during the month of June, but I don’t think I did. I wasn’t feeling my best a lot of those days. I had a bladder infection one week, then a stomach virus the next. So, not really the best of months to look back on in that regard. But, one thing I am learning daily is to make the best of whatever life hands you.

I hope you enjoyed this look back on our month of June.

I did.

outdoor wednesday: veggie and flower gardens


I know, I know, it isn’t Wednesday. But, Wednesday and Thursday were CRAZY around here. I ran around like a chicken with my head cut off both days trying to get the yard and house looking nice for a certain someone who arrived home Thursday night. I really wanted to share with you the yard stuff I have been doing, but I didn’t want Brian to see some of the stuff I have done. I wanted him to be surprised, you know?

First, the vegetable garden:

Here it is when I first planted it, the week of April 17.

Here it is this past week, just 6 weeks later. You can’t really tell in this picture, but there is lots of grass between the rows.

yellow squash
banana peppers
Remember the front flower beds? Here is is before:

My perennials  have begun to grow back here. This is also before I put down the new soil, but after I had raked up all the leaves, mulch and black plastic.

Here it is with organic garden soil and some new perennials. I have also planted lots of zinnias and sunflowers in this bed. They are coming along nicely.

This is along the front. I have added some begonias, coleus, and impatiens for color.

This is Kate and Isabel’s garden. It is doing so well. Every day we see a new sprout of green that gets everyone excited.

Here is a close up of the climbing spinach we planted. We also planted some mammoth sunflowers with it, hoping the spinach will climb the sunflowers. We will see.

Here is their strawberry patch. It is supposed to fruit in June, but I was late in getting them in, so who knows when it will. But, they are looking good, don’t you think?

I planted zinnia and sweet william seeds amongst these peonies so that we would have some color in this bed throughout summer and fall. Zinnia never cease to amaze me. They just GROW with no help at all. I can’t wait until they are in full bloom. It is going to be fun.

Here is the rock wall that is on the other side of of the driveway. I added these sedum, petunias, and other perennials. It looks nice, too. It will look even nicer when they are all in bloom. I even added lots of zinnia to either side of these rocks.

Here is a shot of our morning entertainment. We have really been enjoying my birthday present. Aren’t they cute?

I still have a few other things to finish before I share them with you. But in the meantime….

Have a happy weekend!