Thursday, June 27, 2013
Wednesday, June 26, 2013
I have been wanting to plant a vegetable garden for a long time now, and this year, instead of just talking about it, I finally got around to it. Last summer I bought a raised bed kit (that never got taken out of the box) and this year we assembled it, located it in the back corner of the yard, filled it with soil (er... half-filled it; the soil has compacted down and absolutely needs to be topped up for next year) and then built a trellis from some copper pipe and some garden netting to support some vines. We picked out some seeds and a few seedlings, and got to work.
Right now, the garden is really flourishing, which makes me happy because the whole thing is just one huge experiment. We are square foot gardening so we have a lot crammed into a small space, and we are taking a 'one of everything' approach - partly to enjoy the variety, and partly to suss out what works and what doesn't. Next year we'll better know where to concentrate our energies.
I am pleased to report that we have more winners than losers. First up: this is a tomato that we are actually growing in a pot. It must have at least twenty green tomatoes on it. I was sort of picturing a steady supply of fresh tomatoes all summer but now I realize that we are going to have to eat tomatoes morning, noon and night for a week in August, and then they will probably all be done. See... we're learning lots.
The rest of the garden is doing well, too. I love June - everything is so lush and not yet fried by the summer sun and me forgetting to water it. These planters are on the pool deck - new this year - stuffed with an assortment of colourful stuff.
In the front yard I go with the same formula each year, more or less. Red geraniums, blue lobelia, white bacopa. I think last year I had yellow zinnias in there too and I wish I'd thought of that again this year. Instead I put in some purple sweet potato vine but it's not doing very well and it's hard to even see it.
Tuesday, June 25, 2013
Wish us luck - we will be having a lot of pep talks this summer.
(In other news, we finally have pool weather - yay!)
Sunday, June 23, 2013
Last Sunday at this time, we were just returning home from what's become an annual tradition for us: the Tomatoman triathlon in Leamington. This year, knowing he would be there anyway, Chad decided to sign up for it too, and he competed in the duathlon.
Because it's such a great race, and fairly close to home too, there was a large contingent of people I knew there, including a big turnout from TriCK - the triathlon club that started up here a few months ago.
Monday, June 17, 2013
Here they are letting it go back into the wild... with the whole family in on it. Maybe this just means we are easily amused?!
Back at home, it's time to give Chad some Father's Day love. He gets lots of crafty items from the kids. (Mostly framed photos of themselves - that is always a popular gift!)
We also give him a bouquet, but we figure flowers aren't really his thing, so we give him a candy bar bouquet instead. The kids loved this idea - you should have seen Liam with the shopping basket trolling the candy aisle for the chocolate bars. Like a kid in a candy store, I tell ya! And the fact that it's something Chad can share with them is just the icing on the cake.
Saturday, June 15, 2013
And with that... another vacation day bit the dust! I'm sure the day will soon come when the kids don't want me along on their trips, though. Until that day comes, I will try my best to be there.
Friday, June 14, 2013
It's that time of year again - kids everywhere are setting off on their year-end field trips. Our school may have cancelled the Grandparents' Tea and the kindergarten graduation photos and who knows how many other 'extras' this year, but I was glad to see the field trips did not get the axe.
For Liam and his friends, this meant a trip to Fanshawe Pioneer Village. I'd never been before and Liam wanted me to sign up to chaperone, so I made the trip with him. It turned out to be a very fun day.
I think it was fun for Liam, though I am sure he wondered what he had gotten himself into when we first arrived. The first order of the day was a trip to the local dance hall where the kids were taught how to dance like pioneers. All the bowing to the girls business earned a lot of snickering. After that the kids went outside and had to wash a load of tea towels by hand - another "You must be joking!" moment.
All in all, it was a great day. This was the grade 3 class trip, which Liam made it into because he's in the 2/3 split. However, I hear there is no 3/4 split, i.e. Liam will likely be a straight grade 3 next year. Which might mean another trip back to Pioneer Village next June. While it was a fun day, I hope for his sake that they get to go somewhere else.
Tuesday, June 11, 2013
On the weekend I met some friends at Erieau for an open water swim. I need all the practice I can get and am too chicken to swim on my own so when the suggestion was made, I jumped at the chance.
I sold this to the family as an equal-opportunity event. Chad could ride his bike to the beach, I would drive with the bike rack and meet him there, the kids would bring their swimsuits and sand toys and we'd all go for ice cream when we were done.
The first hitch came with blustery winds straight out of the south. Chad's pace for his ride was relatively dismal. It was supposed to be an enjoyable ride but I think it turned into a chore.
(Here we are passing Chad on our way out to the beach - Mallory begged me to pull up behind him and honk - then we passed and pulled over to let him catch up to us again. Photo not taken while driving!)
Then it was my turn to struggle - the lake was freezing. FREEZING. We were all wet-suited up but the water was painfully cold for the first few minutes. After that I think I just went numb. It was originally going to be closer to an hour-long swim, but we threw in the towel after half an hour. I had to take a long hot shower back at home. Of course, the kids didn't get in the water due to the temperature, either.
So... not a resounding success. We will try it again in a few weeks - at least, I hope to. I would like to swim at the beach regularly this summer and I'm hoping the rest of the family is game for another try. This might become an enjoyable way to spend a few hours every few weeks... if only the weather will cooperate.