"The most wasted of all days is one without laughter." ~e e cummings

Sunday, May 8, 2011

bagels and veggies

As I FINALLY started down the stairs this morning, after sleeping in and then finishing off a book, Sam stuck his head around the corner and motioned me back upstairs. Evan and Max weren't far behind him...Evan calling, "Mom! Wait! Don't you want to watch a nice show in bed before you come downstairs?" 

Hmmmmm....I wonder what they could be up to?

So the kiddos and I climbed back into bed ("Here, Mom, let me get you all tucked in.") and flipped on Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. After a few sweet, snuggly minutes, Evan hopped up and announced that he was going to go back downstairs to help Daddy. "Oh?" I wondered, "Help Daddy with what?" (Aren't I terrible? Trying to trick my kid into blowing a super secret Mother's Day surprise?)

"Oh, you know," he answered, with a wrinkled brow and a sparkle in his eye, "we're just....messin' around."

A few minutes later, I heard some commotion on the stairs and a command to close my eyes--Tight! Imagine my surprise when I opened my eyes to breakfast in bed! What a great little secret-keeper I have. So the four of us snuggled in our new-ish king-sized bed, watching Mickey and the Gang, while I enjoyed a delicious breakfast of blueberry bagels and coffee. (Max enjoyed about as much of the bagel as I did. Can't have food around that kid without sharing.)

But Mother's Day was just beginning. After my Very First Breakfast in Bed, it was time for Veggies!


Hmm...It looks rather puny in the picture. 

But that doesn't matter....because we have a vegetable (and fruit and herb) garden!

I decided to spare you the photo journey of our process of creating our garden, but here's how it went. First, we picked the sunniest spot in our very sunny yard. We assembled our garden box from a kit. I decided on a raised-bed garden because we use chemical fertilizers (I know, I know....) on the yard and I was kind of leery about planting our to-be-eaten vegetables in that soil. 

Then we filled up the box with dirt. A LOT of dirt: 32 cubic feet of dirt. (Each bag is 1 cu. foot.) We used mostly topsoil, but the top eight inches or so also contains a mixture of mushroom compost and organic potting soil for container vegetable gardens. I didn't really do any research on what I should use, just read the labels on the bags and figured we could wing it. So you may not want to follow this "recipe." Although you may! We'll let you know in 50-75 days.

Then, it was planting time! We used a combination of seed packets and sprouts. I had originally planned on using only seeds, but after purchasing some tomato seeds, I read the packet. I didn't realize that we should have started our tomato plants several months ago indoors if we had wanted a yield this summer. Lesson learned. So we bought sprouted plants for our tomatoes:

...and strawberries (because I couldn't find strawberry seed packets at Kroger)...

...and basil. (Not because we needed to, but because it smelled So Good and I was feeling impatient.)

And the boys helped plant the seeds for the cukes...

...and zucchini squash.

Lesson Learned:
I am SO EXCITED! And the boys are, too. I can't wait to watch our little patch grow and overflow the confines of the box. I can't wait to harvest our crop (I feel like such a farmer) and use our very own home-grown veggies in our summer meals. I can't wait to watch my kiddos pull fat, red strawberries off the vine for a little mid-backyard-playtime snack.

I'm also excited to learn more about gardening and composting. We started our compost bin several weeks ago. We chose a tumbler on a stand because, let's face it, I'm probably not going to be very good about using a pitchfork to turn a compost heap to keep it at a certain temperature...but to spin a tumbler each time I add some brown or green matter? I can do that.

All in all: Best. Mother's. Day. Ever.

1 comment :