Monday, June 29, 2009

Around the Garden

Just a few pictures to get the week started.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Garden Sanctuary


I love this spot of the garden. It's lies just behind the squash and pumpkins. To me, it's a small sanctuary. Hidden behind green, growing things... with small bursts of color and texture on the inside... looking out onto the world of our own backyard. I could stay here for awhile.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009


A few years ago, when we moved into this house I would watch decorating shows on HGTV. FREQUENTLY. I think it partly comes from a secret dream to be a Home Decorator. That, or boredom. Gene still gives me hard time about it because I still have some of them saved on the DVR. One of the shows was Room Service. The designer's name: Sarah Richardson. She's the one that taught me to make these cute bags. AND BOY! have I made some bags.

They're so SO handy. I've made them to carry library books, knitting/crochet supplies, laundry, ballet shoes, etc. A few years ago, I even made them into scripture bags for Aryn's friends. I'm telling you this bag is VER.SA.TILE.

Anyway, I needed a new bag and figured this would be a great GIVEAWAY. I went to the DVR and guess what? Gene had erased THE episode with the instructions! Since I've made so many bags, I can make them on my own, but I wanted to share the instructions with all of you...Would any of you be interested in a HOW TO?

So. Without further ado... I present the MARKET BAG. I wish I could say it in French. I think it would sound fancier. But alas, No, and Gene's not here to translate... Speaking of french, I did construct it using french seams. Does that count?

This is one side of the bag. The fabric is Country Life from Waverly.

And this is the other side of the bag. The fabric is Ballad Bouquet from Waverly.

I had to just sneak in a picture of one of the squashes. (Can you see it below the bags?) I came home and found a few of them, and pumpkins too. It was almost like they just appeared. Crazy, I tell you.

So, here's how it works:

  • Leave a comment on this post and you'll be entered to win.

  • Like last month, here's the twist...Since June is Father's Day month, if your last name or your maiden name matches my dad's or gene's dad's, you get an extra vote. The names are GUBLER and BLAIR.

  • The giveaway closes on Saturday @ 2:30 pm MST. Good Luck!

p.s. On Sunday while, perusing the internet, I found this blog. It's near Chateau Beynac, along the Dordogne River, a place Gene and I visited 11 years ago. It brought back some great memories. It also reminded me about another secret dream I have... I guess I'll just get to live this one vicariously.


the giveaway is now closed. i will be posting the winner in just a second. i have to draw the name:)

and the winner is...(drum roll)... THE GUBLER FAM. Congratulations! I'll bring it over soon.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Another Reason We Love Cousins

The children are home. I picked them up from their Grammy on Thursday. They'd had a fun filled week with their paternal aunts, uncles, and cousins. After I picked them up, we went to my sister Kasey's house, where we spent time with maternal aunts, uncles, and cousins.

The above pictures were all taken by my wonderful sister. She just got her backyard fenced in, and we were enjoying it. As you can see, all our children are easily amused with small, plastic pools, play structures, and popsicles. AHHH, childhood...

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Just A Couple of Things...

The three older kids have been away for the week. They've been visiting their Grammy. I get to go pick them up tomorrow. I am really excited to see them. They each have had their moments, but Isaac has definitely had the hardest time... Other than the homesick phone calls, I have to say, the quiet around the house has been nice. It's been peaceful.

There were two things I wanted to get done while the kids were away: mopping the floor, and cleaning out the van. I got them done right at the first, so I could enjoy them for the whole week. Those two things probably sound a little silly because I DO mop and I DO clean out the van while the kids are at home, but the thing is I wanted to enjoy them for a whole week, not just one day. There you have it.

So everything else I got accomplished this wonderful week was just icing on the cake. Yippee! A few things I've been meaning to do are pictured below.

The trellises and netting with fence posts. These trellises should have been put up weeks, MONTHS ago! Squash to the left. Pumpkins to the right. (I like these two pictures a lot for some reason. The orange with the green, maybe?)

Bunk bed painting. Glorious day. I started painting these things in March over Spring Break. First with my sister, then with my mom. Now they're finally, FINALLY getting finished. You know, we only got them for Christmas. It's now June. I'm telling you, we move at a slow pace sometimes around here.
More pictures of the netting and trellises Gene and I installed. This is part of the Square Foot Gardening method. Plants and vines are supposed to grow UP, rather than OUT. I sure I hope it works. Our soil in the North garden is really sandy, so I'm not quite sure whether the rebar and posts are going to stand up to the weight once the plants start getting heavy with fruit. (Okay, I like the top picture because it shows Isaac's fort. And the beautiful lavender. Those babies are humming with bees. I'm loving it.)
I just want to say one more thing. No, two things. hehe
1. I am enjoying talking with so many of you about gardening. I love running into you and talking about how things are going in your garden. I am LEARNING so much.
2. I'm hoping for a GIVEAWAY next week sometime. So stayed tuned...

Friday, June 12, 2009

Rich in Blessings

The other day I was going to the metropolis south of our town. I was waiting for a minivan as I was getting ready to pull out onto the highway. As the minivan passed, I noticed something was written on the back window. What I read brought a smile to my said, "$Rich in Family$."

Part of the reason I smiled was because of the message. But mostly I smiled because it brought back a memory from my childhood that still manifests itself today.
I remember being a little girl and asking my mom if we were rich. Her response was always the same... "We are rich in blessings."

I think it kind of comforted my little girl self even though I probably didn't get the entirety of what she was saying. When we are little we don't fully grasp the concept of money. I think little kids need to know that they're going to be taken care of. They need to know that their needs are going to be met.

At the same time, my mom didn't want to lie to me... because in the monetary sense we weren't rich.

It's after we get a little older and have more experience with the world that we start to understand money and what it entails. We have more experience with "having" and "not having," and comparing it to others.

As I got older, during the teenage and early adult years, I remember laughing and joking about my mom's answer with my brothers and sister. We knew darn well we weren't rich.

I focused on the financial aspect. I think I was young, and had grand visions of making a better and different life for myself and my family. A life where there were lots of "things." Because "things" would make it different and better. Maybe "things" would make me different and better.
Now that I'm in my thirties, and have had a little bit more experience, I see things a little more clearly. I'm not naive, and I know I have a lot more to learn, but I try to put the priority on people more than money or things. I'm beginning to understand the real meaning behind being "rich in blessings."
Our life is extremely rich. We have all of our needs met, and a lot of our wants. We have many wonderful relationships with people that enrich our lives every day. Specifically the relationships we have with family. They truly are treasures. Real treasure.
It's funny, because now I have my own kids, they ask me that same question, "Are we rich, mom?" I answer them the same way my mom did: "Yes, we are. We are rich in blessings."
Here's how my grandma told me to bottle cherries:
Put 1/2 cup sugar in the bottom of a quart jar :: Fill the jar about a quarter way full with warm water :: Mix with the sugar to make a syrup :: Add washed and stemmed cherries whole, to the jar :: Pack them in as good as you can, leaving an inch of head space (This is usually to the bottom of the neck of the jar.) :: Wash around the neck of the bottle to remove any syrup :: Put a new lid on and tighten :: Place in a cold pack canner :: Bring to a boil :: Process for 25 to 30 minutes :: Remove the jars from the canner and let cool.
Note: the pits are left in the cherries and taken out when you use them after bottling. The top few pictures are of plum jelly. Rich indeed.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Thank You

Thank you, bees...

For so many things. Especially these...

...for the wonderful experience my children have of being able to go outside and eat them. They've been picking them for a few weeks now, even though they've only just started to taste good....most importanly thank you to our Heavenly Father, for the bees and the cherries and the wonderful memories I get to make and the pictures I hope to always keep in my head when my children are grown.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Paper Peonies

The birthday decorations have finally, FINALLY come down. They've been up since the end of March. MARCH. First for Aryn and then for Zoe. I have to admit though, I liked having them up. They're so pretty and added fun color to the kitchen.

I got the idea from Keri, who made some for her daughter's birthday. Heather made some cute polka dot ones for her sister-in-laws baby shower, and I saw some over on Autumn's blog for a bridal shower. So they're pretty versatile decorations, easy to make, and look beautiful hanging from the ceiling!!

My mom has made them a lot for different things, so she came over and showed me how to make them. Let me show YOU how it's done...

You will need: tissue paper, scissors, garbage ties or wire, yarn.

You can use 6 or 8 sheets of tissue paper.
Decide on the size of flower you want. Small-cut the tissue paper in half. Medium-cut some of the top off. Large-use the full size.
Fold the paper back and forth into an accordion fan.
Cut the ends on both sides into either a rounded shape or a point (like the white).

Twist the garbage tie or wire around the middle of the accordion fan.

Very carefully, pull the sheets of tissue paper apart individually toward the wired center. Go slowly because the paper rips VERY easily. Make sure to do this to both sides.

Voila! A beautiful paper peony.
Make a bunch of different colors and sizes, tie on some yarn, and hang them from your ceiling. (I'm thinking of hanging ours back up in the girls' room.)