Squish, squish, squish…
Summer is almost over for most, but not our family. It has been a cooler and wetter summer than usual, but that has allowed me to get some gardening done and actually move plants in July and not have them scorched. Our property was never landscaped, but we have loads of wildflowers – of course they’d rather grow down the lane – ugh! but a shovel and some nice manure compost and they arrive in their new home in my new front tiered beds. With a huge sloping front yard I had to tier the beds and made paths in between so that I can get in to weed, otherwise I feel like Humpty Dumpty perched on a wall! I did manage to buy a few perennials from a local grower, which means they are native, raised without chemicals and therefore bee friendly – bees rock!
We have already started our second year of homeschooling and with the kids only having a few hours in the morning to work on school work means more time to run off some energy. Stef (my partner) actually got several projects completed outside over the summer so far, including a 2 story play fort, swing set and zip line for the kids. His motto is “if the kids have something to do, more time to get things done!” yes, but he’s also a great dad and therefore the play fort is probably way too expensive and overbuilt! 🙂
Our last project is fixing the grade of our front yard which was never completed and therefore is one large mud pit! We have constructed a retaining wall out of fallen cedars from the front of our property – we hate cutting trees, but our place is very overgrown with swamp cedars! Seriously, Stef and I once tried to walk from the road up to the house (about 500 ft. and we got about half way and with all the fallen cedars and muck from the lack of sunlight, it felt like we were in Yoda’s lair or the place where the R.O.U.S.’s lived (in The Princess Bride). I don’t like rodents of usual size let alone “unusual size” so this year we cut out about 100 trees for the retaining walls and it still hasn’t made a noticeable difference!!! Our intention is that once we get all of it set, we can add some dirt from a hillside out back and then plant some more meadow grass for the kids to play and have a (hopefully) 20ft x 20ft kitchen garden. I have enjoyed growing some food in our 3 water troughs (meant for cattle or horses) the past couple of years, but really they can’t feed a family of 7 very well.
So for a muddy summer (that will probably end in September for us), it has meant green grass, thriving plants and a lot of muck to move, but enjoyable to work in and then take the shoes off and lie in the grass while the kids run, play and probably annoy our poor neighbors!