Monday, May 26, 2008

Setbacks

It was another beautiful day, blue skies, puffy white clouds, 71 degrees. It was the perfect day to plant a garden. Despite the weather forecast, it seemed unlikely that a thunderstorm was going to materialize. I guess that's why you could call us rookies, we have not yet developed an accurate weather eye. We planted about 1/3 of the garden, both seeds and some of the seedlings we have been babying since March including tomatoes, cucumbers, luffa (or loofah), and artichokes. As we were finishing up we began to see some threatening clouds over by the mountains but still didn't think that it would come our way. For days the same thing had happened. The clouds built up in the distance and then skirted around us, why should today be any different? We were oh so wrong.


The marble and pea sized hail and the torrential downpour resulted in the loss of approximately 70% of what we planted today.

Then we discovered this. As the cliche goes, when it rains it pours. Well, in our case, literally. As Joel and I placed buckets under the coal chute to catch the downpour and hauled boxes upstairs away from the 1/4 inch to 2 inch floodwaters, we kept looking at each other with this dazed expression on our faces. We had to agree that it was so bad it was almost funny. The great thing is that God is so faithful even in the middle, no, especially in the middle of setbacks. While Joel was busy sucking water out of the basement with the shop vac, our friends Rob and Erin called to tell us that they wanted give us 17 varieties of heirloom tomato plants from Rob's dad. One of the plants already has tomatoes growing on it! This will actually put us way ahead of where we were when we planted our tomatoes today.

Just as a side note, have you ever been in a house with a metal roof during a rainstorm? It is incredibly loud. Check this out:


video

Jen

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Preparing the Soil

Joel installed the drip irrigation for the garden today. Tomorrow is planting day!
Before:
After:

Z-man loves to help his daddy and today was no exception. Here he is honing his supervisory skills.
Hey Dad, are you sure that hole is deep enough?
Full moon photo op, ha ha!
Time for a siesta.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Neighbors

In nearly every neighborhood we have lived in God has given us good neighbors. There was Eric & Evonne, Ted & Natalie and now we have Liz & Earl. It is so comforting to know that just next door or across the street or down the lane there are people who will watch your back, feed your dog when you go on vacation, and loan you tools (Joel has borrowed LOTS of tools, but he always returns them...eventually). Our new neighbors are no exception. They are good, solid people who have given us a warm welcome, helped us cut down dead trees, and given advice on remodeling the house and irrigating our fields. They also have a daughter who loves to babysit (if only we had time to go on dates). Now don't get me wrong, there have always been the not-so-good neighbors (the music thumping, snowmobile revving at 11 p.m., speed racing, chain smoking in front of our house type neighbors) but so far so good here.



Wednesday, May 21, 2008

I Like Psychobabble...

...and I really like to take personality tests. I took this one after I saw it on Daiquiri's blog and I think it's quite accurate:

Click to view my Personality Profile page

I'm always game for learning more about why I am the way I am and why I do or do not feel comfortable with other people. If you like this stuff too I highly recommend this book:


I first read The Color Code after borrowing it from a coworker and then I bought it for myself because I liked it so much. The best thing about it was torturing my poor husband by making him take the test too. It not only explains your own personality type but also what types of people get along well together (and those who don't). I was pleased to find out that Joel and I are a perfect match (I kind of had a hunch that we were ;0)). On the off chance that you are curious I'll reveal my color code...drum roll... Blue (introverted, intensely loyal, needs to be needed, reliable) and Joel is Yellow (fun loving, creative, disorganized, social). We are a good match because he needs my stability and I need to be needed; he makes me laugh and I keep his feet on the ground. He pushes me out of my shell, encourages me to be myself and won't let me quit when I really, really want to. I will love him and be loyal to him till my dying day. We're definitely not perfect and sometimes we drive each other CRAZY but I believe very strongly that God knew what he was doing when he led us to each other. We are "old building and loan pals" (think Jimmy Stewart in It's a Wonderful Life-one of the best movies ever), we're a team.

Leave a comment and tell me about yourself. Pretty please?

Monday, May 19, 2008

Farmin'

Have you ever experienced the satisfaction you feel when you watch someone you love do what makes them happy? That is how I felt when Joel hopped up on the tractor and started plowing our own land for the first time. When he was done for the night he came into the house grinning from ear to ear. He is happiest when he is outside digging in the dirt or tending to green and growing things.
As you can see this is a "budget" operation to say the least. Joel is using an old Farmall tractor that he borrowed from a nice man at our church. The moldboard plow attachment is borrowed from a local pig farmer in exchange for any leftover vegetables that she can feed to her pigs. We are also borrowing a disc plow attachment from our neighbor Earl to prepare the soil for planting. Do you see a pattern here?
In case you have an inquiring mind and want to know what in the world a "moldboard" plow is (I had no idea either) I found the following description to satisfy your curiosity:
There you go. I'll bet you feel better now.
I love this picture of our kids. It just speaks "freedom" to me. Freedom to be kids, to run and dig and be as noisy as they want to be. The only downside to such freedom is all the extra baths they have to take. There is always a price to pay. ;0)
Like father, like son.
We are only going to garden about one acre this summer (which is waaay more than we have ever tackled before) but Joel is plowing under the rest of the land too just to keep the weeds down.

Here are the starts that we planted back in February and March. When I took this picture it was still freezing at night making it necessary to cover them with plastic so they wouldn't become little green Popsicles. We are getting a late start with planting but I suppose it's better late than never.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Where Do I Start?

Well, we moved exactly 2 weeks ago and frankly it's all a bit blurry. There has been a whirlwind of activity between moving to the new house, cleaning the old one, being sick, having stress at work, and dealing with nightly tantrums from both of my children who are trying to adjust to this whole mess. I can only account for my continued sanity by quoting the bible,

"I lift up my eyes to the hills--
where does my help come from?
My help comes from the Lord,
the maker of heaven and earth."
Psalm 121:1-2

This was the view from my hammock on Mother's Day. I took a brief time out to relax and enjoy the beauty of our new home.

I really do like it here.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

We're Baaaack!

Oh Internet, Oh Internet, How dearly do we love thee!
Oh Internet, Oh Internet, we hail thy connectivity.
It's been so long, since we logged on,
Though we were blue, we made it through,
Oh Internet, Oh Internet, How dearly do we love thee!

(To the tune of "O Christmas Tree")

We are back online as of tonight!
I promise new pictures of the chaos, ASAP.

Jen
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