Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Dog Days of Summer. .

My goodness. .
Time has flown!
I intended to be posting more regularly. .
but the summer just flew by. .And I guess I spent more time living it than writing about it.
Let me run down where we are in our lives. .
These two have flown the coop. .Tristan won't be back to live again. .Only to visit. Wow! He finished his carpentry classes in May. .worked all summer for our local contractor. .even getting to do some projects on his own. .
He has moved now to Topeka where he is focusing on learning cabinetry and millwork. I did get some use out of him replacing some yucky doors and trim in my laundry room. .and I am loving that. .a nice reminder of him since he is gone. He called yesterday and told me he got a part time job at Lowes. That will help him out a lot--both giving him something to keep him out of trouble. .and helping him pay for his apartment expenses.
This guy will also not likely be coming back to live either. He intended to study diesel mechanics for 2 years in Topeka. .but over the summer, they revamped their courses and program, and so he will learn most of what he needs to know in a year. At which point. .he too, will be ready to get a job and be his own person!
He and Tristan are living in the same apartment with another buddy, and that will make the whole transition from high school to college easier. He is loving the classes, even after a week. .and is also putting out applications for a part time job. Seems, as they have talked, that there is no shortage of part time opportunities available. .so that is great!!
This past weekend. .we cleaned out the rest of Grant's basement abode. .repaired and repainted the walls and shampooed the carpet before we let Devin move down there. It is much cooler than their upstairs bedroom. .so he was excited. It also made the loss of the oldest two a little more acute though for this mama! 18 years goes incredibly fast!!
You can see that we made it to the lake again.
We weren't going to go at all this summer. .
But WHO can pass up amazing opportunities like this one??
Skiing at sunset? Unbeatable!
We did have a wonderful long weekend away to relax and play before everyone had to get back to reality and to our schedules!
This guy is trying to adjust to being the big man on campus now!
Not only is he the biggest kid at our house. .
He has officially started 8th grade!
He had a super busy summer working for his dad. .mowing granddad's lawn. .a week of church camp. .and a week of a community oriented  mission trip service work right here in our county. Oh. .and some pool time in between! He has started football. .and is committed to working his hiney off to earn a position on his team.
He got 2nd place in his cooking division at the fair and earned the opportunity to sell his amazing German Chocolate layer cake at the premium auction! He and Cami will continue with 4-H this year. .and I will admit great fulfillment in graduating from helping with 4 record books--to only 2 record books!! And the little girl already seems much more patient to write and take care of business than any of her brothers ever were!!
Speaking of little girls. .This one is growing up fast!! She is in 3rd grade. .She is quite social-and on a brother/sister status with nearly every lifeguard at the pool. She is becoming really helpful around the house. .and has had to step up her game since her older brothers left.
These two are attempting to learn new skills to help our church with worship music. Cami is still trying to learn the guitar--we have been lazy about it. .but she has new motivation now to try some more! Devin is learning how to play a Cahon--a wooden box with snare drum stuff on the inside. We saw it used during the mission week here. .and fell in love with the sound and potential!!
So then, that just leaves us!
What an adjustment!
Granny took the kids to a rodeo last weekend. .
And we enjoyed supper out and a trip to the movie to watch Jason Bourne. .
We can still have a good time with just the two of us. .so that is in our favor :-)
He's been helping me with a lot of honey-do's lately. .but we are about to get them all caught up.
His boat driver left. .but Devin is learning to drive it--however, since the kids have been in school, it just leaves him hot and bothered. After 18 years in that hot metal shop--he finally consigned to getting a huge water cooler which drops the temperature about 20 degrees. .so it is really helping on those 100 degree days!!
And his temperament improves too!
Still work for me. .plus youth group, Sunday School and our online women's bible study. I was hopeful that moving another kid out this year would be easier than last year. .but it wasn't. I just knew what to expect. .and so did Jeremy!! (Last year he thought I was going C-R-A-Z-Y!)
BUT. .one of the perks of growing up. .
Is that I graduated to this AWESOME and sporty little mustang to drive to work.
The first time that Cami rode in it with me, she looked in the back seat and said "Mom, I don't think I can fit back there." I just smiled and said "Exactly!"
Mid life crisis??
Maybe!
Thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, July 9, 2016

Garden Tour. .

Hello!!
I've stayed away longer than I expected!
I took a few pictures a couple weeks back. .but never had time to post them. .
So here ya go. .
Beware--heavy on photos this time!!
We have had so much rain and cooler temperatures than we have for quite a while. .that the vegetation is looking great!! And I wanted to document it. .oh and share it with you all too!!
Here is the cucumber jungle! I have picked a few small picklers and one large cucumber today! The dill is at the lower center of the photo. At the back of this garden is the pepper plants and beets! 
Here is my blackberry bush! WOW!! We have picked handfuls and handfuls!! Because the garage we just tore down was mounted on a concrete base wall. .I can now walk behind this bush and the soil level is at my waist. .SO. .after Jeremy builds me a wooden support. .We will train the bush over it and it is already a blessing to be able to pick from the back side of the bush as well as the front!! My $7 plant that I have moved 3 times is finally paying for itself! 
The trumpet vine has also really sported the blooms! We even saw a lone hummer on it last week! 
I dont' know what little succulent this is. but it loves the horse trough it is living in! 
Because of the construction of the new garage, my compost pile got relocated! Jeremy built me a sturdy iron structure to replace my rotting, falling down pallets. .and we put it on the north side of the green house. The watermelon rinds are sure attracting the butterflies!! 
Chocolate flower. .new little plant I bought from High Country Gardens to go on this super hot west bed that nothing else will grow in. .He likes it there! 
I LOVE frogs!! 
I don't know how they find us in this desert land. .but there are about 100 that hear jumping into the pond every time I walk by! 
Speaking of the pond. .
I LOVE this!! Jeremy has really helped out with maintaining it. .
And the plants are finally looking good!
Here it is again, peeking up toward the house. You can't see the pond when you drive into our driveway. .and it often surprises people when they walk up the sidewalk to the house. 
Look at this gorgeous water lily!!
4th of July found Tristan and I digging holes for these salvaged rail ties. We put in solar lights to light up the sidewalks. Both up the front walk (see the pond up yonder) as well as outline the memory garden walks. LOVE THEM!! 
My favorite daylily. I need to see if I can find a plant label. .but I love the colors! 
My little asparagus plants are doing well. 
Pampas grass that will grow up tall so it will block the unsightly views of the dead car lot! 
Other thing Tristan, Jeremy and I did on the 4th was trench in a water line UNDER the existing sidewalk so I will no longer have hoses left over the sidewalks! It was an all-about-me day. .and I made over 14000 steps that day. .plus some SUPER sore arm and chest muscles from all those post holes and digging!! I'm not 20 anymore. .I'm not 20 anymore. .I wish I could remember that!! 

Here is the memory garden about 2 1/2 weeks ago. .It's filled in more since then! 
Shasta's, yellow coneflowers, and a salvia in the memory garden. 
You see how quickly those cucumber vines took over the place?? 
I finally had Black Eyed Susans that look like the kind that bloom in Michigan. .right Sue?? 
You can see how loaded those black berry bushes were! 
East deck with some gorgeous ferns!! Those self watering planters made 100% of the difference! 
North garden is finally filling in. It doesn't take a great photo yet. .but it is coming right along! 
love!! 
Lavender and a different variety of susan.  
A couple photos of some of my daylilies. 
This one has a little Monarda in the front. 
This hosta gets dripped on by the condensation from the roof. .It loves that!  
Here is the blooms from my Russian garden. .They looked nice this summer!! It is one of my neglected beds. .and there are plenty of weeds to pull. .ug! 
Love this little penstemon!
It's planted next to this Videx tree. Cami spotted a hummer here last week. We haven't seen him since. .but it spent quite a while on this bush! 
Memory garden. .It's before the next light fixtures. 
We also enjoyed several handfuls of raspberries this summer too!! I can't WAIT till those babies produce again next summer. .they were delicious! 
Here are the cucumbers again. .looking toward the new garage. .and by the white picket way in the back and upper left is where the black berry bush is. .you can see the concrete wall there. 
Cynthia. .here is that monarda that you shared with me a few summers ago! I have transplanted some to two other places in my flower gardens. .I LOVE it!! 
Had to end with a spectacular Kansas sunset!! I LOVE our sunsets. .
Thanks for stopping by!!