Tag Archives: kids

A day in my garden with my boys

I almost didn’t take Friday off work as I had planned, but I did… And I’m so glad! It was a great day.

I got to sleep in a decent amount, until 9:30ish, then Atticus and I went downstairs and I did some (very little, to be honest) cleaning, which included finding a 4 oz. jar in the kitchen sink drain that I could not remove on my own…

Atticus and I went out to water the garden while Trent was still asleep. I’m so happy with how it’s growing! It seems like each summer in this house I’ve had some issue that makes the garden just fail. Pregnancy slowed me down two years, drought another, using the wrong weed killer before planting another… But this is our year so far!

I was pretty ambitious this year, but it’s because I’m determined to get some harvest! I planted about 16 heirloom tomato plants, 16 varying pepper plants (sweet, green, hot), corn, celery, cabbage, zucchini, cucumber, and several herbs. I also have potatoes, onions, rhubarb (brand new, so no harvest this year), and a few other things.

I noticed one of the mystery heirloom tomato plants (my dad often has volunteers that are strayed between several different plants, so we just wait and see what they end up being… I love it!) has some baby tomatoes on it! I’m crossing my fingers that this is either rowdy red or the grape-sized orange variety.

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I also noticed the two heirloom paste tomato plants (the only tomatoes I didn’t get from my dad) have something happening!

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I like to go around every few days and pinch the tomato crotches. Well, that’s what I call it. My mom says my granddad called it suckering the tomatoes. I’ve just always done it because my family has always done it, not sure why. If I had to guess I think it probably helps focus the nutrition in the growing plant on the blossoms instead of in worthless extra growth.

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Atticus likes to watch, mostly, but sometimes help.

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As I was looking things over Friday I noticed a giant hiding under some leaves…

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I took it to the hose to rinse off but Atticus didn’t want to wait…

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I’m hoping to have a bunch more by this next weekend for a possible pickle party. But I had to try out this guy both fresh and with some yummy vinegar.

I chopped the cucumber up as well as a small onion from the garden and threw both into a Tupperware container.

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I splashed in 2 parts red wine vinegar (I was out of apple cider vinegar) and 3 parts water, then added a small palm-full (maybe a tablespoon?) of kosher salt, and a few pinches (maybe 1/2-1 teaspoon?) of sugar, plus a shake of garlic powder. I ate some of them later that night and they are amazing!! Tried more today, two days later, and they’re so tart and a little sweet. Delish!

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Late afternoon/early evening both boys had some splash-time. They love hanging in the yard!

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Suffering is Optional

I finished a book today (that hardly ever happens anymore) and I really want to review it here, but I just can’t do it right now.

I’m having a hard time lately. I’m less than happy in some aspects of my life and my anxiety is through the roof. I’ve always had depression and anxiety and they both come and go. Actually, that’s a lie; they never completely go. They are present and they’re really present. Right now both seem to be really present.

I try to remind myself that my happiness is defined by me. A wise woman (I wonder if she’ll read this?) once told me that suffering is optional. I am not suffering. I have a lot to be happy about.

  • I have amazing kids. They are funny, charming, and inspiring people.
  • My entire family is caring and supportive. Kids, husband, parents, sister, grandparents, in-laws, extended family… all wonderful.
  • I have a job I love in which I receive the respect I deserve. It allows me to practice my current skills, build new ones, and work my creativity.
  • My coworkers are fun and quirky and I love working with all of them.
  • I own my own wonderful home and it keeps us all warm and happy and we have plenty of space.
  • My dogs are hilarious. They’re currently alternating chasing each other and resting on their beanbags.
  • I have several really close friends in all areas of my life that make me feel good about myself, my decisions, and even about my mistakes.
  • I’m not sick or unhealthy, and neither is anyone close to me.

Life is good. What more could I ask for? I just need to repeat that until it feels real.

Wait Just A Minute

“Mommy, look.” “Mommy, would you play with me?” “Mommy, can I…”

“Wait just a minute.”

I find myself saying it all the time. And while I feel like it’s justified every time I say it, I still feel guilty.

I remember getting frustrated when Nick was younger, about four years old, because he constantly wanted me to watch him do things. Sometimes all he did was jump in place. Other times it was something else: singing, dancing, riding his bike. I find myself remembering those days (Six years ago… Has it been that long?) now when Trent does the same thing. He asks me to watch him pour water on himself in the tub, or chase Atticus around, or this or that. I feel like I give my kids plenty of attention. So why do I feel guilty when I just want to finish a round of Candy Crush in peace? Or when I just want to update my Facebook status?

Kids don’t ask much. They just want out time, attention, love, guidance, and discipline. They need attention so they know whether they’re doing right or wrong. They need our attention to help build their self-esteem. And it had taken me an embarrassingly long amount of time to realize that, while on the surface it may not seem like everything they want me to watch is amazing, it actually is amazing that they want me to watch. They love me and depend on me and that includes ending my attention and verification for…well, everything.

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I’m trying to give my kids quality interactions and I’m trying not to minimize what they think is important. I firmly believe in respecting others’ perspective; my kids’ perspective is very limited because their time here on earth has been limited. I have a few years on them.

Trent thinks Disney Infinity is the greatest thing ever. He thinks his big brother Nicholas is the smartest and coolest guy in the world. He thinks I look like a princess. Atticus thinks waking up alone at night is so scary, and when I disappear for a moment alone in the bathroom he only just starting to realize I’m not gone forever. Nick, at ten, is starting to see how he and his interests and me and mine and his brothers and theirs fit into a big picture. What a vast difference these three have in their perspectives.

Every interaction I have with my kids is meaningful to them and it should be to me, too. Today when Trent asked me to watch him pour water out of a cup it was initially just that to me: water spilling out of a little plastic cup. But to him it was something important, something worth showing me. Who knows what his imagination transformed it into? I have two choices: I can validate his amazement at the little things and let him know that, regardless of how important or insignificant something seems, if it is important to him it is important to me. Or, I can blow him off and give him the impression that what he has to say isn’t important.

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My kids are important and special. I will focus on making sure they always know that.

I had this fantastic idea…

…to start a blog. Actually, several of my friends had the fantastic idea and after tons of encouragement as well as the death of a website I’ve decided to take the plunge.

But dang, no one told me how hard it would be to choose a blog name.

First of all I am a Libra and thus am not equipped to make decisions. I couldn’t figure out what topic to focus on. After all, everything that I’m interested in is so thrilling that readers will want to hear everything I have to say about it. If I started out with a house and home blog (which I wouldn’t, because I don’t house and home) and then decided to start talking about the awesome book I’m reading or how difficult being a working mom can be or what I’m tackling today in Photoshop then I’d be straying from the topic too much, right? And hey, all-encompassing blogs aren’t a dime a dozen, right? I love writing. I love other things, too, and all equally. And I have a lot to say about everything and nothing, so this is my space to say a ton of that.

  • I’m a mother. I didn’t want to be one at one time, but I obtained an awesome child through marriage and decided to have two more awesome kids. My three boys are hilarious and beautiful and I love them.Me, Nicholas, Trent, and Atticus
  • I’m a wife to a dude that totally isn’t my typical type. I love him.

    Nate & Me

  • I’m a full-time working woman; a librarian and an IT manager. I recently finished a master’s degree just two months after delivering my youngest. What a doozy.
  • I love granola/hippy parenty mushy-gushy stuff, like babywearing, breastfeeding (yeah, ’til they’re 2 years old, too, isn’t that weird?), co-sleeping, not crying-it-out, giving birth and knowing what happens during labor, etc.IMG_2012
  • I love gardening and canning and preserving. I’m not good at any of it, but I love it.IMG_2016
  • I love reading (but do it slowly) and listening to bluegrass and Nine Inch Nails. IMG_2708
  • I love giving my opinion and telling it like it is but not if I can’t hide behind a keyboard.

So I guess you could say I’m a suburbanite. And you might also say this is my soapbox. Now step aside so I can get up on it.