Anna’s Nest

Gardening Pictures

2 June 08

I was getting in bed last night and thought, “Oh no! I didn’t do a blog post today!” Then Brian reminded me that it was no longer May, so my commitment actually ended the day before. Thus the Post a Day in May challenge ends. Rather more abruptly and unceremoniously than I planned. I hope to keep up the habit of at least quasi-daily posts, but this promises to be a very crazy week, so bear with me. Next weekend is Bridget’s baptism, and we’re having a reception at our house afterwards, so we’re busy getting the place all spiffied in preparation. There’s nothing like having a bunch of people over to motivate a person to clean! And hang curtains…and frame pictures…you get the idea. This past weekend we did a bunch of yard work. And I got to plant flowers! Hurray! Gardening is one of my hobbies, and since we hadn’t bought plants yet this spring I had a great excuse to go out and purchase some pretties. Thanks to my honey, they didn’t languish in their flimsy plastic pots all weekend – they’re trying out their roots in real live soil! I planted the herbs in the backyard, and the hostas around the north side of the house. Grow, little plants, grow! I bought mostly perennials this year, so hopefully everything stays happy this summer and comes back bigger and better next year!

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Grumpy Pants

31 May 08

Bridget’s been grumpy all day. I don’t think she’s feeling that well – it could be teething, or it could be germies. Whatever it is, it’s not endearing itself to Momma Warren. Making my precious baby cry. In spite of that, and in spite of the fact that she had almost no nap at all (she just wouldn’t stay asleep!) I got all of my plantings done today. That’s right, all. Because my Superman swooped in and rescued me. Brian was a huge help with Bridget today. Times like these when he saves me from pulling my hair out I marvel at how single parents handle it. It’s got to be incredibly difficult – not only does a single parent not have the emotional support of their spouse, but they miss out on the very practical help, like I received today (thank you, honey!). I just feel incredibly blessed and fortunate to have been given the gift of such a great guy. And then on top of that I got a great little gal! All that to say our yard is looking pretty spiffy now, thanks to my hunny. I’m super excited about all my new flowers. I’m also very tired, but in a good way. I’ll post pictures tomorrow when the lighting is better.

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30 May 08

This is what treats for Anna look like Mmmm! Flowers and herbs and veggies! Oh My! Bridget was such a trooper, and napped the whole time I was shopping for them. What a gal! Unfortunately, that meant that this afternoon I didn’t have “Mommy Time”, just “Mommy and Bridget Time” (also fun, but with more restricted activities. Which apparently include the current activity of blowing raspberries on my arm. Huh.) I tried to go for it anyhow, but I guess there are only so many ways to chew a ducky before it gets old. Ha! That should totally be on a shirt! Maybe the planting can resume when daddy bear gets home and is doing Bridget cuddles.

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Sarcastic, Much?

13 May 08

I realized with a start this morning that I didn’t do a post yesterday. Not one! I can’t imagine how that got past me, with all the thumb-twiddling I’ve been doing lately (note the sarcasm). Ah, well. For my penance, I’ll do two posts today. Unless I don’t. In which case you’ll all have to be content with this one. I went to the fabric store yesterday. Yep. Dragged myself in there kicking and screaming (again with the sarcasm). I found some beautiful fabrics on sale. This one, destined for drapes: And this one, intended to enhance the cuteness of a certain baby this summer. Isn’t it nifty? With smocking already all along the top and everything! I also bought some in a more grown-up pattern for myself in a kind of pink paisley. Maybe I’ll make a dress or something for my summer enjoyment. It should be pretty easy – just sew up the sides to make a tube, add some straps made of ribbon or extra material cut off the bottom, and you have yourselves an inexpensive top or dress that cost you minimal effort and time (both critical around here). I also made some more progress last night on Brian’s bag, but not enough for impressive pictures. Soon enough though – maybe one more evening of sewing and I’ll have some nice progress to show you! Have a wonderful day! We’re going with wet and cool here. There was even a chance of snow in the forecast, but I way it’s not happenng. Yeah, those 3 days of warm spring weather were just too much for me, too. Whatever the weather, I encourage you to Rise Above It, and make your own sunshine. Or just enjoy God’s sunshine…or rain…or snow.

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Sun, Dirt, and Wormies

9 May 08

Bridget made up for her bad day yesterday by taking a nice long nap this morning. I celebrated by using my free time by indulging in one of my favorite pastimes – I put on my trusty green Crocs, and went outside and played in the dirt! There’s something so pleasant to me about the combination of a sunny (but not hot) day, and digging up weeds from the moist dirt. It’s very therapeutic and restful. I’m not sure what the garden will look like this year. My hope is to have corn, tomatoes, and summer squash planted, with some other things added to the mix if I am able (maybe some beans or peppers? I’d like to plant some things that Bridget can enjoy once she starts eating solids, so maybe I’ll go for carrots too). I’ll see though – I’m not going to stress out about it. I’ve already made my first little harvest of the year – some delicious cilantro from a plant last year that went to seed. I used it on top of our fish tacos that we had for dinner – yum! So, if nothing else, at least I’ve gotten cilantro from the garden this year – what more can a gal ask for?

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Growing Green!

11 August 07

It’s surprising how huge of a difference just one month can make when things are growing. Not only has my waist expanded significantly over the past month (I guess I had to start wearing maternity pants sometime), but the garden has come into a growth spurt of its own. Compare:

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Weekend Garden Progress

2 April 07

Photographs I promised, and photographs you shall have! Before I dive in, though, a little indulgence There. Now don’t we all feel better? I thought so. I spent a quite lot of time this past weekend working very hard in the back yard, and made quite a bit of progress. I spent most of my time digging out gravel and rocks that had been put down in the back yard (yes, I have been quite achey, thanks). The way I see it, gravel is good for saving water and an important aspect of a xeriscape landscape. But not a great idea if you want to grow plants. And kind of ugly if a huge block of the yard is nothing but blue-gray gravel (rather than being used in harmony with plant beds, which can be quite beautiful). I dug out about a 10×10 foot area and planted two lilac bushes in the newly uncovered dirt. These cinderblocks edge the area that used to be covered with gravel. I was resigning myself to dig them out, too, but Brian had the brilliant idea to dig the rocks out of the holes and use them as planters – yay! I found some unexpected treasures in the dirt This is the already cultivated part of the yard. It’s full of weeds right now, but I have seedlings growing indoors, and the weeds shouldn’t be too hard to dig out.

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The New Place

25 March 07

We are entering our fourth week of living in our new house. I’ve definitely been enjoying it – all the extra space is very nice, especially for Brian, who works full-time from home now. I haven’t made as much progress unpacking as I thought I would have made by this time, partly because of extra projects that have cropped up, and partly because when I get home at the end of a day of working at the office, I am simply not motivated to be all industrious. So boxes continue to abound in our house. However, this weekend I made a lot of progress – I finished unpacking and re-organized the kitchen, and I also made some great progress on our yard. Very exciting. I’m very excited about doing our garden this year – with lots of space already cleared for a garden, and pretty good soil as well, we should have some fine veggies this summer. I’m also planning planting some flowers and possibly some ornamental grasses in the front yard, and I bought some lilac bushes (which I hoped didn’t get killed during the move), which I am going to put out too. This is all going to take a lot of work though, and what with trying to unpack everything inside (yes, I’ve accepted that this is going to be a slow progress), and all of the exciting things happening outside, I think that my posts here might be a little more brief for a bit. I’ll try to post pictures of the progress I make in the garden, just to keep you all updated (you can check my Flickr account for photos as well). Have a beautiful week, and happy spring!

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Winter Gardening

13 January 07

I guess I’m not really a gardening nut. I just have a few small flower beds and I haven’t even planted a veggie garden yet (although I hope to do that someday soon). But I sure do enjoy my time in the garden. It’s a form of relaxation/exercise that combines many of the things that I enjoy into one hobby. During the winter months, that hobby is dramatically reduced. Dramatically. Toward January/February, I begin to feel quite forlorn. Especially when a couple of feet of snow cover the ground, and I have to put on my hubbies’ big boots just to take veggie scraps out to the compost heap (which I built with my own two hands last fall – thank you very much!). At this time of year, indoor gardening, although not quite as fulfilling as the sink-your-hands-into-the-earth, dirt-under-the-fingernails, get-an-aching-back involvement of the outdoor variety, is definitely a lifesaver, and can do a good job of tiding me over until the next growing season (or at least until I’m growing some seedlings to plant in the spring). Enter (tum ta da tum!) – windowsill herbs! Ali and Brett, my sister-in-law and her hubby, gave me a little windowsill herb kit for my birthday (thanks, guys! I’ll send you a real thank-you note soon!). They bought the cutest windowsill pot set – 3 pots with a shared tray – and sent them along with three garden in a bag herb kits. These things make great gifts! I should know :) You can give them on their own (the bag can act as the “pot”), or with a pretty pot. The bags contain the soil and a packet of seeds, as well as what they call “drainage discs”, which confused me until I realized they were talking about the packing peanuts that were in the bag (since the bags don’t have holes in the bottom, I guess this helps keep the soil from getting soggy if you overwater a bit). In addition to my windowsill garden, my little bonsai tree (Buddie), has helped with the appeasement of my green(ish) thumb. Buddie was also a gift – from my brother and sister-in-law. He likes to be pampered. And since that’s what I like to do, well, I think we have a match! I give Buddie a little spray bath once a week to help him humidify (sometimes more since our house gets so dry in the winter). I also check him once a day or so to make sure that his soil is moist. There isn’t a lot of it so it gets dried out easily. How about you? Do you get antsy for green things during the winter months? How do you cope?

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27 July 06

So, I have two more pictures to tour you through, but since I’ve been so terribly neglectful of the garden shots lately, I decided to show off some of my crazy sunflowers.

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More Flowers!

15 May 06

Well, I got all excited-like and posted a ton of pics at the beginning of last month. The only problem is, I have a limited amount of picture-space on my free Flickr account, and I happened to use it all up. Yup. It’s true that I can post pics on my blog through methods other than Flickr. After all, it’s only recently that I even got a Flickr account. But posting through my Flickr account is a ton easier than posting pics through other methods and I’m afraid I’ve gotten a bit spoiled. So when I realized “Wow! We’re in a new month now!” the first thing that popped into my head was “…and I am now free to post pictures to Flickr again!” I think I might need to get a “Pro” Flickr account. It’s not free, but it’s not too bad a price. Unless I can learn to restrain myself, I just may have to resort to paying money. Here are the rest of the Tulips I wanted to share with you. “Tulipa Appeldoorn” “Tulipa Prinses Irene” I planted 3 kinds of tulips last fall – the one in that first post were called “Tulipa Shakespeare”. I also got some yellow-colored tulips for “Aministrative Assistant’s Day” (the kind that come in a little pot). I thought that was very thoughtful of my boss, don’t you? I planted them once they stopped flowering, and I’m hoping they’ll come up next year. Then I’ll have 4 kinds! Soon I’ll have pictures of more flowers to show you – I planted some outside recently, and they are doing quite well these days. I also planted some seeds. Some sunflower plants (just scattered seeds from last year’s flowers) are already starting to grow!

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I'm sure there's an analogy here somewhere...

17 April 06

About a week ago some beautiful tulips that I planted last fall were looking very promising: Only a couple of days later: Wow! Isn’t that just the most amazing thing?!! I did absolutely nothing except dig a hole, give it a bit of fertilizer, and water it (a very little bit). And even what I did do probably didn’t make that big of a difference. The potential for beauty was all stored in that brown bulb I saw last fall. The bad news is that I got so excited about it that I enthusiastically downloaded too many pictures to my Flickr account – I think maybe I maxed it out until next month – so you’ll have to wait on the other two kinds of bulbs that have come up in the past couple of days.

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What Cunning Little Things!

10 April 06

I’ve always wanted to use that word, “Cunning”. I think I first heard it when I was read C.S. Lewis’ Chronicles of Narnia by my parents as a child (and of course later when I began to read them myself). They make a great bedtime story, by the way – even if the reader does happen to fall into an exhausted sleep AT THE MOST EXCITING PARTS! …So maybe I have some issues I need to deal with. However, it remains that my memories of The Chronicles of Narnia and the word “cunning” are tied together. I don’t exactly recall where or even which book, but the word seems to fit so well into those stories, I think I shall continue to believe that, indeed, that is where I first heard it. My impression of the word (no wikipedia was used here, so beware!) is that its meaning is a little bit like “cute” and “little” combined. With a little “darling” thrown in. As in, “Look at my cunning hyacinths!” Cunning, no? Now, I happen to know there is another meaning, which one can use to mean “sly”, and “sneaky”, but that’s NOT the one I mean. And, even if it turns out that my pet use of the word is completely and totally and in all other ways wrong and false, I shall not care. Because it’s so obvious that there is no other complete description for certain things, early spring hyacinths being one of them.

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Big Post

5 March 06

Just so you know, I haven’t fallen off the face of the earth. I know, I know, you were holding your collective breath until the day I would post again, and now you are all blue from waiting. My apologies for the blueness, but you should regain some color soon. At least temporarily.

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