Saturday, May 29, 2010

It's the most wonderful time of the year!

Old-Time Religion

Memorial Day Weekend marks the start of my favorite time of year. My garden becomes my religion and I become a "Garden Evangelist". I love to proselytize to friends and neighbors by sharing the wealth of my harvest.

Starting with early Spring when I dug up dozens of Strawberry plants to make room for this year's veggies. It gave me great joy to dole out my extra plants to fellow gardeners. When my garden greens started to fill in, I invited a vegetarian friend to pick a bucketful of lettuce (3 varieties), onions & chives.

This year has been the best year ever for Strawberries and we have harvested enough to enjoy in salads, smoothies, on cereal and au natural. For the first time, we also have been able to share our berries with friends.

I look forward to more Random Acts of Sharing as the rest of our crops come in...
Can I get a Hallelujah?

I Scream, You Scream, We All Scream for....

Another reason I give thanks for this time of year are our frequent bike-rides to DQ. The round trip to our local Dairy Queen is just over 4 miles. While this doesn't fully offset the calories consumed, I hope that we are creating some great childhood memories.

I also get to re-live mine!

Strike up the Band!

The Middle School Jazz band performing before the Awards Ceremony.
Alex is on piano and Devon on trumpet in the end of the back row, far right.

The last few weeks of school are a flurry of activity. My two middle schoolers have been busy with band concerts. Alex, my 6th grader middle-son, participated in the middle school talent show with his favorite Bach piano piece (Solfeggietto). And the highlight of this past week was the Awards Night ceremony for Honor Roll students. Both boys were not only recognized for their GPAs but also their achievements in Math.

My proudest moment was when my 6th grader who is in 7th grade Honors Math ( same class as his older brother) was recognized for having the highest score on a math test given to all students in the 7th grade. He had a 6th grade cheering section who was excited to claim him as their own. While his older brother may have been overshadowed for a moment, both boys were recognized as being part of a 6 person "Math Counts" Team that represented their school in an area contest. It would appear we have a Math Geek Dynasty in our family.

After the ceremony we treated the boys to Stone Cold Creamery for a wallet-emptying treat. The next day we took them out to lunch at a fancy restaurant. We may be a bit lighter in the wallet but the memories are priceless!

We were given two shiny new bumper-stickers boasting about our Honor Students. They have been put into storage. I prefer to do my bragging here and keep our cars humbly sticker-free!

The Higher You Climb

Yesterday I took Colin and Alex to their piano lesson. I was a bit concerned about their lack of practicing.

Which proved to be justified.

While my expectations were low, it was another story with their teacher. She had heard from some of her other students that go to school with Alex about his stellar performance in the talent show. It became quickly apparent that in preparing for his moment in the limelight, Alex neglected his lessons. Colin followed suit.

This has been the only sour note in an otherwise fantastic week. I now have to suck it up and pay better attention to their practice sessions.

Looking forward to a nice long and relaxing weekend filled with sunshine, good food and music!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Garden Update

First Strawberry of the Season

This weekend I planted the rest of my seedlings now that the threat of frost should be over. The lettuce has come in nicely, strawberries are starting to ripen, onions are in full force and peas are sprouting up.

I am hoping to have a good season this year. I even added two planters for extra crop space.


I am beginning to hate that VW Commercial that promotes punching every time someone spies a Volkswagen. It has turned my boys into slap-happy idiots.

It is hard to focus on the road when my eldest who is riding shotgun pokes me and shouts out a color. "Red one!" "Blue one!"......

I started to grow suspicious after failing to see all the "Bugs" he was claiming and I discovered he was including BMWs as well!

Speaking of Slugs

Something has been munching on my cucumber seedlings, spinach, and numerous other tiny plants. I suspect either slugs, grubs or beetles. (Another reason to hate Beetles & Slug-Bug).
I HAD to buy beer at the store. Michelob so I can share with the hubs as well as the garden pests.

So far it seems to be helping a little. I have snagged a few slugs. I also find that after having a beer (or two) myself, I don't seem to be as bothered.

Time to sign off, have a beer & help save the world!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Happy May Day ..... Better Make that Mayday!

Rainy Day View from kitchen window

Mayday, Mayday... I've fallen behind again in my blogging.
Today is a nice rainy day. Great for the garden and great for catching up on indoor activities like laundry, cleaning AND Blogging. Of course I am starting here with my blog.
Housework be damned, the blog must go on!

Another Milestone...

I turned 51 a week ago and the persistent buggers at AARP still won't leave me alone. I am now getting monthly "Membership" offers but I refuse to take the bait. My pride is more important than a shiny card that enables special age-based discounts.

We celebrated my birthday with a dinner at a fancy restaurant that my hubby and I reserve for special occasions. This is the first time we took the whole family. Fortunately there was a children's menu for my younger two.

The oldest boy, age 13, gave us a preview of his growing teenage appetite when he ordered Salmon AND gourmet Pizza. There was a miscommunication with the server who brought Full-Size Portions when he thought he had ordered the Bar-Size Portions. The scary part was that Devon ate like a champ. He finished the Salmon entree and made a dent in the Pizza. We better start up a special Food Fund so we can afford to keep the kid fed.

Next birthday I'm thinking Wendy's!

Spring Recital

Alex and Colin had their Spring Piano Recital this week. I had hoped to have a new video camera for this occasion. I wasn't sure if I wanted a new camera with a high-def video function or simply a single-function video camera. I had decided on going with a simple video camera too late for my birthday but not for Mothers Day (hint, hint).

Colin performed first. He played The Russian Dance from The Nutcracker and a Medley of Disney Songs as a duet with his piano teacher. Unfortunately I put the camera on the wrong setting and I didn't get this on disk. I did however get Alex's performance. It is posted on YouTube.

Hopefully I will have a chance to get a do-over on the duet! With my new (yet to be bought) video camera!

Garden Report
My poor plants that I have started indoors are more than ready to be put into the garden. My Yellow Squash and Cucumber plants have already started to flower. This week we had two frosty mornings. Yesterday the daytime high was in the 80's with a nighttime low in the 60's. I am hoping that I can start getting these babies into the ground.

I am planting a few "overgrown seedlings" each day in hopes of minimizing any catastrophe. I am already getting salads with fresh onions and chives.

Love this time of year.

Porch plants ready for a garden burial

French Mesclan Garden Mix

Perennial Favorites - Chives

Well, I think I'm about caught up here and I have a few loads of laundry with my name on it.
Hope everyone is having a happy and productive weekend and great week ahead!