Well, after practically drowning in all the thundershowers we got last week, we did manage to have a decent holiday weekend. The fourth was a little chilly for my taste, but Mike's parents and grandma knocked us out with good food! Just look what they did to Ellie! ;-) I forgot my camera, but luckily Mike had his new iphone baby. I swear he's probably the last techie on the planet to get one! Not the schmancy newest version, if you keep up with that sort of thing, but a pampered baby nonetheless!
Sunday was a perfect sort of day and we spent our time after church outside attempting more pruning and gardening.
The new header shows my front garden that is now full of flowers and seeds courtesy of my mother-in-law and grandmother-in-law. They generously divided up some of their perennials, so I could start some flowers here. In spite of its scraggily beginnings, I know it will fill in nicely and next year I could have quite a lovely bed. We are still waiting on topsoil to fill the front beds for some bushes and plants there. It has been so soggy that apparently bulk topsoil is not being delivered! So it goes.
Tate's little garden is coming along too. I need a cage still, but we planted some yellow grape tomatoes and 2 green pepper plants. There are also some sunflowers in the back that I think, even in their barely sprung from the earth state, are being eaten by something. Grrr. Yesterday, we added a ring of carrot seed around the tomato plant. The kids are all so excited, in spite of the fact that none of them are particularly fond of carrots!
I STARTED to tear up my flower garden in the back as well, but that 18 inch strip was all I managed. I am not sure if there is an easier way than digging it up with a hand rake, but this awful crab-grass (?) that we have here is TERRIBLE to pull out. The roots are really these thick vines and I am sore today just from that little bit. (Please no comments on how completely out of shape I am.) I'll just keep plugging away, because I have some more divided plants to get in the ground and a lot of pretty seeds to try. Mike's mom also bestowed a birdbath on me. Just a simple one, but I am so happy. There are some really beautiful ones that I have been slightly coveting, but free is so good! It is surprising how perfect something free and useful becomes :-)
Mike spent his day pruning the monster maple in the back. He did an excellent job lifting the branches that were growing so low they needed to be ducked under to get to the trunk. It looks SO bare to me right now, as we prune back and cut out all the overgrowth, that sometimes I get a little depressed about it. So many of the kids secret play places have been whacked off and exposed and I do feel so much more fishbowly to all our suburban neighbors. BUT, I also see the value in this and that it needs to be done to create a space for healthy growth and something more beautiful and at least SLIGHTLY controlled.
And then I can't help but see the metaphor in that for my own growth as a person: emotionally, mentally, spiritually. If only I can keep that perspective, both inside myself and in my backyard. Ouch. I think I am going to just focus on all those (currently imaginary) blossoming apple trees that are going to flourish along the back fence and on those tiny branches of new growth yearning to stretch out under that canopy of maple. Eventually, they will stretch out to the sun and so will I.