Monday, March 26, 2012

Growing!

I can't wait to eat fresh off-the-vine tomatoes, make sachets picked from abundant lavender bushes, braid heads of garlic for gifts, and dive into a rhubarb pie! To make all of these dreams happen, I've been working my buns off getting this garden in shape. We went from 1 5'x5' space to 4! We tilled, weeded, added compost and soil, planted, sowed, and finally, everything is in place and ready to grow! The good news is that for the first time, I've actually heeded the advice of seed and plant packets in terms of depth and spacing, so I think everything has a good chance at success. The bad news is, because everything has more breathing room, I wasn't able to fit as many herbs and veggies that I wanted. I have 2 trays of seeds sprouting that have no where to go! Maybe some more pots will fit on the porch?!?

I decided to do straight in the ground planting, as opposed to raised beds, to minimize costs mostly. Depending on how everything turns out, I may stick with this, or make raised beds for next year. We also have about 8 big pots on and around the front porch.

So, here's some pictures of what it looks like today. Sorry they're not that awesome.

Abraham Lincoln tomato plant. Had to go with a presidential tomato!

2 black plum tomato plants, 1 Rainbow tomato, and 1 thyme plant

Rose bush!

2 rows of asparagus, lots of volunteers (not sure what they are, but I can't wait to find out!), and marigolds around the edge

new leaves on our Crepe Myrtle!

Rosemary survived the move!

Rhubarb red peeking through!

Owls living in my thyme!

3 new beds! From front to back:
1: lavender bushes, leeks, onions, broccoli
2: spinach, mixed lettuces
3: nantes carrots, red potatoes, white potatoes

Row of garlic!

Volunteers!

Lavender!


Sunday, March 11, 2012

Go Cats!

I forgot to post this picture in my last post, which features JJ and his buddy Rufus. Rufus is the mascot for the Charlotte Bobcats, our local NBA team. Here is a picture that was taken last week.



And here is one taken when JJ was 5 months old. 


Saturday, March 10, 2012

A Welcome Change!

I apologize for our absence around the internet lately. February was a pretty rotten month for us. Between several rounds of sickness floating through the family, some technical issues at work for Jim, and just a feeling of ugh in general, I wasn't feeling in the mood to share with the world. We did have some good times during the month, which I'll tell you about in a minute, but otherwise, we were glad to see February go! March has proven to be awesome so far, though, and what a welcome change that is!

During February, we celebrated Jim's birthday by having dinner with our friends Tim, Faye, and Henry and going to a Bobcats game. We celebrated Valentine's day at home, which we usually do. And of course we watched our little man grow and pick up new quirks and skills. I totally missed blogging about his 10 month "birthday", so here are a few new things that JJ has been doing.

JJ has 4 teeth now (his front top and bottom teeth), and he barely fussed about them coming in. He is a bit more sensitive when he bonks his face on something. B.T. (before teeth) he would just brush it off with no problem. A.T., he fusses a little, since I guess his gums are more sensitive.  He has started to say a few little words here and there, like baba (bottle), Bubba (the cat), mama, dada, ok, yeah. He is a crazy good clapper, and he can high five. He is the fastest stair-climber this side of the Mississippi. He's an accomplished drummer, tambourinist, and xylophonist. He is standing up for longer intervals (around 30 seconds). He loves a good game of peekaboo, where he squats behind something and then POPS up to here you say peekaboo or I see you! He's learning his boundaries for sure. When he's on our bed or the couch, he doesn't just face-dive off anymore. He knows that's not going to work. Sometimes his body does fail him, and he'll accidentally roll off (another "skill" JJ has is his fat, ball-like belly), but one of us is there to prevent a major incident.

Speaking of his fat belly, JJ is a great eater. He basically eats what we eat now, with a few exceptions. I try to avoid super spicy foods still, and foods that are hard for him to chew with his teeth and back gums. But I can't name a food that JJ doesn't like (he and I have that in common for sure!). He can pick up his food with his fingers and get it in his mouth about 80% of the time, which is slightly better than Jim!

As for the family, we've been doing well. We tilled our garden last weekend to prepare for this years garden--it's grown to 3 times its original size! Can't wait to start planting once we've killed all of the weeds (it's covered in plastic now). I bought a few more plants for the back yard too--raspberries, blackberries, hosta. Also a few flowers for the front yard (roses!, cone flowers, and a few others) to brighten things up! So excited for what our yard will look like in 1-2 months--you can bet there will be a few posts about it!

Here are some pictures of JJ and what we've been up to.

Jim and I went to a BYOB painting class this weekend, and both created masterpieces. 


This is my portrait of JJ.

The face that was my inspiration for the portrait. He does this "one-eyed" smile quite a bit lately!

Jim's painting is off to the right. It's a cubist version of an exploding robot/droid.

Jim and JJ at a Bobcats game. We renewed our season tickets for next year too. Hopefully, we'll win more games!



Freshly tilled garden plot in the front yard.

Same garden plot covered in plastic to kill all the weeds.



Bob and JJ dressed for the basketball game in their coordinating jerseys!



Daddy and JJ's Fun Girl faces!

JJ climbing the stairs


From our visit to Kate's house. with Azmo.

Munching on some new toys from GG and PopPop

I know this is blurry, but I love the expression!

Sleeping in Greg's awesome orange chair

Peeking over his gate to say hello (and "Let me out!")!