Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Snow Peas!

I was pleasantly surprised when a friend pointed out to me on the weekend I had snow peas nearly ready to pick. They seemed so hard to see against the leaves and vines that I had completely missed them. So in a few days I had a small harvest ready for the dinner table!

The warm weather we have had over the last few days is giving everything a real growing boost, especially the seeds I planted under the poly tunnel. I think I have nearly halved their germination time, so fingers crossed I get carrots, beetroots and radishes sooner than expected!

The strawberries are coming along beautifully, they are big and plump and are bright red. I am having a hard time keeping my strawberry thief away from them. I decided to buy some more strawberries and plant them in planter boxes on a ledge over the garage, this way they are out of sight and out of mind. Fingers crossed we get lost of sweet strawberries in the next few months.

The boys have had a great time this week. It started with a visit from my Mum and Dad (Marsie & Parsie). Dan and Parsie took the boys to the Aquarium and Leo loved all the sharks!!! We all then went to the Museum during the week and explored all the dinosaurs and Australian animals. I must admit even I love the Museum, there is something quite soothing about wandering around and looking and learning about our animals and prehistoric dinosaurs.

This weekend we watched the boys participate in their first Halloween dress up and trick or treat. We all went over to a friends place and gathered the boys up for a walk around the streets dressed up in their costumes. As much as Halloween is very American and can be frowned upon in this country, it was wonderful to see families out and enjoying themselves, the children had a great time socialising and this makes for good all round community and social relations. So no matter how you look at it, it was a win win situation for all (especially Leo and Jack with all their lollies they collected along the way)! I still think the highlight was the Jack O' Lantern pumpkin cake I made, I haven't lost my knack after all!

Halloween normally is the last day of the season and brings the change in weather (as well as "All Saints Day") So the 1st of November is here, lets hope we have some lovely warm veggie growing weather!

Monday, October 12, 2009

The Strawberry Thief......

Another drizzly cold Saturday and I have come to expect bad weather everyday of the week, I feel that the "Gods of Summer" are punishing us for something we have done. Just what that is I don't know! We have had so much rain lately and everything is waterlogged. I haven't needed to water my veggies at all last week. My poor tomatoes were growing beautifully in their grow bag, until all the rain. I noticed on Friday one plant in particular was looking very sad and sorry (after a close inspection I think there was not enough drainage in the grow bag). So Dan decided to build a small raised bed for them, after a quick trip to Bunnings he knocked up a very swish raised bed. I was very impressed with his skills. Now that all the tomato plants are in the new bed hopefully they will all be happier with better drainage.

The veggie patch is looking fantastic everything is growing just beautifully. I decided to add a cloche over the lettuces as they had been damaged from all the rain and wind, after 48 hours they have really picked up and seem to like the protection with a little added warmth. I have also placed a poly tunnel over the beetroot seedlings I am hoping it will speed up their growth as well as spur on the carrot & radish seeds freshly planted over the weekend.

And finally to our strawberry thief! First clue: He is 85 cm high. Second clue: Has strawberry blond hair (and not much of it). And third clue: Has fat little fingers! Yes you guessed right; Jack McGrath is the strawberry thief!!!! I was so excited to see 2 strawberries turning a beautiful shade of red, but alas their colour was too enticing for my little Jack, who by the way had no intention of eating them, but just to feed them to Mariah (the dog). Oh well lets hope the remaining 11 get the chance to turn into beautiful fat red delicious strawberries and not fall victim to the "fat fingered strawberry thief"!

Monday, October 5, 2009

Another year goes by.........

Everything seems to have calmed down in our household. So far the boys have managed to keep themselves in one piece for a whole weekend (a three day weekend too)!

It was my birthday on Sunday and I notched up another year closer to the big 40, where do the years go? Leo loves anything to do with a birthday, especially birthday cake and candles, it so sweet to hear him sing happy birthday, even if it is only the first few lines. The boys gave me a beautiful book for my birthday called "Harvest" by Meridith Kirkton, it has all the information I need for growing all my veggies. All I need now is a few quiet days to read it (in my dreams)! Dan gave me a beautiful pink climbing rose called Nahema, to grow over the gabled gate at the front of our house.

I have planted quite a few trays of seeds and they are all starting to shoot. I have come to realise that I need to continually have seedlings growing all the time, I am amazed at how fast everything grows, and also how fast we eat everything (mainly lettuces)! My herbs are growing at an alarming rate and I love being able to pick whatever I want and when I want. The mint especially has grown fast, maybe a little too fast as it is starting to take over.

This week has been an especially good week for Leo and his talking. I am always amazed how out of the blue we have huge spurts of new words. Leo's phrasing is also sounding more and more fluent. I feel we are jumping some big hurdles!!!!
And last but not least the $5.00 rocking horse that I picked up has been a hit! As you can see it is quite old but still has a lot of life left in it....I hope :)

A quick note: Tomorrow night Dan and I are attending a fund raising trivia night for a very brave woman called Judy. Judy has been diagnosed with grade 4 or terminal melanoma cancer. I had the time to read her blog today and for a mother of 3 boys (a 5 year old, 3 year old and a 5 month old baby) she would have to be one of the bravest and most determined people I have ever heard about. If you have the time take a look at her blog and be inspired! Judy's Melanoma Journey