Wednesday, June 20

:: potager garden


Welcome to my new & improved potager garden. 


The picture below is my end goal, and as you can see we have a ways to go. 


Here it is just the other day, via instagram.
 It's grown a lot in a few weeks, but as you can see I still have some bare spots to fill in.


 {  roma tomatoes }

 { squash }

{ cucumbers }

First fruits, I love this time of year.

How are your gardens coming along?

{peace, love & hugs}
Carrie
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Tuesday, June 19

:: keeping up with technology


Keeping up with technology these days can be quite a challenge. It seems that I'm always a step ahead, or is that behind? Each time I step out and get the latest gadget, a new version comes out mere months later ie: apple I pad, got it for my birthday when it first came out, now I'm the only one in my family who doesn't have a 2. Same thing with my I phone, finally decide to get a 4 and then the 4s comes out. 

I know it's impossible to ever have the latest, especially with my much loved Apple products. Fortunately, they make such great products that minus a few minor features they still function great year after year. I'm currently debating on a new MacBook pro with retina display to replace my MacBook Pro purchased in 2006. In fact I just took my current MacBook Pro in today for some refreshing to help it run the best it can, and boy am I happy I did...so much better now. Gotta love the Genius Bar. The only problem I'm facing is do I want to be the first on the bandwagon, or do I want to wait awhile to make sure something better isn't around the corner. That retina display is so amazing, blog type is amazingly clear, and photos, as long as they are already very good quality they are amazing too. It may take a little while for apps to catch up and support the resolutions this display offers, but there is no doubt that this is a giant improvement over all other displays.

Oh my, I could go on and on about this subject. I would really love to hear your thoughts. Are you a Mac user? Will you be making the upgrade?

Speaking of technology, I'm probably far behind on this one...but I'm happy to say this is my first post using my I phone. This is definitely going to be a game changer for me. I'm so excited, no more excuses about not being near my computer, except of course when major photo editing is required.

So, how are you keeping up with technology? Or do you even try?

{ peace, love & hugs }
Carrie

P.S. I'm nervous about posting this wondering how it will look....here goes....
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Thursday, June 14

:: tiered lettuce & herb garden



I'm happy to finally be able to share this project with you, it's been on my list since last year when I created my :: back door herb garden . I am a girl of symmetry, so I knew then that I wanted to create another garden for the opposite side of my back door. So, this spring/summer was the time to get to it, having a graduation party gave me just the push I needed to finish this project up last week.

I purchased my galvanized tubs again from Tractor Supply, the sizes are :: 16.75 gallon tub {bottom}, 4.25 gallon {middle}, and a 10 quart bucket for the top. I knew that I wanted to create a salad garden this time so a few weeks ago I purchased my lettuces at my local farmer's market, they are romaine & curly leaf lettuce. I planned to fill the whole garden with different lettuces, but my basil from last year wasn't doing so great so I decided to add some to this new garden....you can never have too much basil...yes. I also added a few other herbs for color & variety. In the top bucket I have a beautiful healthy lavender plant, it's going to be so pretty when it blooms, and in between the basils I added this lovely wispy silver Artemesia "Satiny" Wormwood I love the look of this herb.

 { Romaine lettuce, Sweet basil, Artemesia "Satiny" wormwood}

 {Sweet basil, Artemesia "Satiny" wormwood, Lavender}


I love how beautiful my lettuces look, it's going to be so hard the cut them for eating.

Below is my tiered herb garden from last season, in this one I have Lemon Balm, Sweet Basil, Cilantro,  Golden Thyme, Parsley, & Oregano. My basil that I overwintered are very slow growing this season, and want to go right into flowering so I'm constantly pinching them back. Hopefully as the season goes on they will perk up. My cilantro also wants to shoot right up to flower & I just purchased them this season so I'm going to have to do some research on how to best grow it. My lemon balm however is very vigorous & I've trimmed it back several times always bringing it in for use in flower arrangements, it smells so lovely. My Thyme & Oregano are doing well also.

{Cilantro, Lemon Balm}


{ Oregano, Cilantro, Parsley, Thyme}


I'm finding that I'm not minding too much that my Cilantro is going straight to flower since it is so lovely with it's delicate little white flowers...so pretty.



Here's how the two gardens look at my back door right outside of my kitchen. I love them, they bring so much life to this area of deck {which coincidentally needs some re-staining soon}

I also thought I would share with you my go to book on herbs, I'm constantly using this reference to learn more about what I'm planting & how to use it.



Hope you have a wonderful weekend.

p l a n t    s o m e t h i n g

{peace, love & hugs}
Carrie



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Wednesday, June 13

:: memory tree


I'm baaaaack...
two days in a row, wow I'm doing good.

As I said yesterday I have lots to share with you, and this is just one thing of many. This past week has been a whirlwind of activity in our nest. First, we celebrated my 39th birthday on the 4th of June, yes, I am officially on my victory lap as Papa put it. Second, we celebrated our youngest daughter's 5th grade graduation, so Elementary school is now a thing of the past for our family. Last but not least, is the greatest of our celebrations....High School Graduation...our oldest daughter graduated from High School this past Saturday.

As part of the decorations for her graduation party, I created this memory tree. I wish I could take credit for this idea, but I recently attended a birthday party for a friend & she had done something similar to this for a decoration so I thought I would create my own version.

All I needed to do was raid my yard waste pile from this springs tree pruning. I stripped what remained of any leaves and brought it inside & popped it into my trusty mason jar vase.  Saturday morning on my way home from the farmer's market I pulled off the road and plucked my lovely wildflower's from a ditch. I just love queen anne's lace, it is just so lovely and delicate.


The most difficult part of this project was going through lots of photo albums choosing photos and scanning them all {most of her photos are pre digital camera}. Once I had all of my photos scanned I made a layout on an 8 1/2 x 11 sheet in adobe illustrator. I probably placed about 10 photos per sheet and tried to pair them up by size so I could cut them out and hang them back to back so it could be viewed all around...this sat on the center of our island for her party.


Once I had the photos laid out I printed them from my ink jet printer & took them to the kitchen to age them. I put the whole 8 1/2 x 11 sheet on a small baking sheet and poured our morning's coffee over the sheet to cover it. I popped it in a 250 degree oven for a few minutes then pulled it out & drained the excess coffee back into the pot to be re-used for the project. Then you put the sheet back in the oven to continue the drying process, once it's dry it will pull away from the baking sheet, it's a good idea to check it often. Once it was dry & ready to go I cut out the photos placed them back to back punched a hole in the top and tied them onto the branches using thin yarn. It's a little time consuming waiting for the paper to dry out, but over all this is a really simple project, and my daughter loved it. In fact, I think this may be a keepsake she can take with her to college and display in a vase or hang upside down as a photo mobile.

This is a great idea that could be used for so many occasions. 
So, why not make someone you love feel very special and share all of those wonderful memories....make a Memory Tree. This could also be used to display family photos on an every day basis, in fact I think I'll be trying something very similar soon, hmmm so many possibilities.

I hope to check in again with you next week, for now we are off to Nationals with our oldest wren. This will be her last club soccer tourney before she goes off to college to begin her soccer career there. We are so so proud of her and all of her accomplishments....
We Love You Squeezy!
{peace, love & hugs}
Carrie
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Tuesday, June 12

:: life & peonies


Hello sweet friends, how are you? 

I'm so sad that I haven't been able to make it here more often, but let me just tell you....life really has me going these days. I have so much to share with you, but I just can't seem to find the time to get to my computer to post anything. I was actually just taking some photos for a project that I can't wait to share with you when Papa called & needs my assistance. Soooo, off I go....a Mama Wren's work is never done. I plan to get back here very soon to share all that's been going on in our n.e.s.t.

Until then I hope you enjoy this photo of my lovely peonies....
why oh why do they have to fade so fast?

{peace, love & hugs}
Carrie

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