Here's our family blog.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

As 2009 Comes to a Close (part one)...

I can't help but look back at the kind of year it's been.  I'd say a good one!  I'll try to briefly recap each month, maybe include a few pictures.

January:  Nothing too exciting happened, except that we decided to start looking for a house to buy.  We met with Greg our Real estate agent, and looked at a few houses.  One house we looked at we had put an offer on it, but our offer got rejected by the bank... here's why I loved the house:

Now when we drive by the house, we tell people it's our "Almost House"!

February: Ruthe turned one on February 9th!  It was an amazing first year with her, and we had her birthday party at my inlaw's house.  And in one year, she went from looking like this:

To this:

Nothing changed too much, except that her hair grew in lighter, she got bigger and got teeth.  I love her nose.. it's so cute and reminds me of a button mushroom, which looks like this:

See what I mean!?

Ruthie's first birthday marked the last party we'll ever have at my inlaws' because five days before her birthday, we found our house! We saw the house on February 4th and fell in love.  The seller had the house listed for $175k, and the next day we put in an offer of $165k and the seller pays closing, and he countered with $167k and he'll pay closing.  We got a FANTASTIC DEAL!  We had our house inspection on February 11th, and that went well.  Here's my favorite picture from the inspection:

I'm such a spider monkey sometimes.  Zoe of course was screaming on the ground thinking I was going to get hurt or something.

March: The appraisal was done on the house on March 3rd, and our house was appraised at $175k.  We signed closing papers on March 12th, changed the locks on March 13th by Jeff's dad who's a locksmith.. and good thing we did!  The locks on the back door did not work properly and the measurements were off, so the door didn't really even shut properly.  Then we moved in on March 14th!

April:  Nothing much happened in April, except Easter.  Zoe and I did color Easter eggs, and that's something that'll become a tradition I think.

Here's a digital layout I did for Easter.  Cute eh?  The Easter Bunny left behind baskets for the girls by their bedroom doors.

May:  Again, nothing too exciting happened, except for the first Mother's Day ever, Jeff cooked me Mother's Day breakfast!  It was quite nice, and we even got an extra yolk in one of our eggs!

I think it's a bit creepy knowing that the egg, if it was allowed to hatch would have had conjoined twin chicks.. or something like that.

June:  That was a month of crazy stuff... on June 8th, I suffered a corneal scratch.  I knew as soon as Ruthie's nail came up and hit me in the eye it was NOT a poke.  Jeff initially did not want to take me to the doctor, but when he came home from work that day, my one eyed squinty glare at him forced him to cave in.  We found out that in fact, there WAS something more than just a poke, and that I couldn't just 'walk it off'.  I ended up getting put on loratab for the pain, plus antibiotic drops as well as local drops for pain control.  My eye ended up swelling up badly enough that the rest of the top layer of my cornea sloughed off.  Eventually it healed, and now my eye's back to normal.

Well, that's it for now... I'll post the later half of the year later, as well as post pictures from Zoe's birthday and Christmas!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Farm Life in the 'Burbs

Okay, I do have to admit, I've done some 'farmin' in my time since buying our house.  I did have a garden that overall was successful this past year.  But I never expected to have to skin my own dinner!

We bought a bone-in pork roast last week, and Jeff said that's what he wanted for dinner tonight.  So like the good wife that I am, I went up in the kitchen to start dinner, and I noticed that it had quite a bit of fat, so I decided before putting in the roast pan to trim some of the fat off.. we try to eat healthy around here!  I noticed that there was quite a bit of what I thought was fat on the bottom of the roast, and so I picked it up to trim off the fat.. and it wasn't fat but SKIN!

Now, I do have to have to admit, I'm not ignorant enough to assume the grocery stores get the meat all cutely packaged and ready for consumers.  I know they get their meat products pretty much the same way it comes out of the slaughterhouse.. and in this case I'm sure they get the whole side of pig with the skin on it and then their butchers divide the meat up, skin it, debone it.. etc.. except this time they forgot to skin the pig.

To be quite honest, I'm not sure how I"m supposed to react here.  I'm a bit grossed out because it looks like people skin, but at the same time, I'm quite... adventurous and I'm up for doing pretty much anything that other people would NOT do under any circumstances as long as it's not going to land me in jail.  But on the other hand, someone at the grocery store did NOT do their job properly and we PAID for this... and meat isn't exactly cheap so there's half a pound of what should have been meat thrown in the trash.  Granted though, we did waste some money on the bone.. but we knew it was bone in roast so that's not a big deal.

Of course, I'm sure that I could have cooked it up into cracklins or chicharones, but we don't have enough oil to fry that up.  And I don't have the know-how either.  And on the other hand, I'm a bit thrilled because now I can say that I've skinned a pig.

Or at least a portion of it.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Adventures at the Gas Station!

After lunch today, Jeff and I came home, switched the carseats out of the Saturn and into the Mazda so I could practice driving.  Our first stop was to the library.  Considering we're about two blocks away, it wasn't a big deal.  I had to straighten out and park again, but other than that it was smooth.  Ruthie kept pulling books off the shelf, but otherwise it was an uneventful trip.  As we were leaving, I realized that the fuel light was on, so we went and got gas.  That was interesting to say the least!

At first, I had pulled too closely to the pump station, so I had to back out and straighten out a bit.  Then, after debating with Jeff, we decided that I need to learn how to put gas in the car.  So, I got out, inserted my debit card to pay, and that went smoothly.  Then, I got out to put the nozzle in the car and squooze it, but nothing was coming out.  After trying a few times, Jeff finally got out of the car to see what was going on, right around the time the nice lady on the other side of the pump came around to help out.  Apparently, I forgot to select the fuel I wanted!  Kind of embarrassing.  Anyway, after picking the fuel and everything, I then had learned  about the awesome clip that holds it in for you!  So I was watching the fuel and the total for the gas was $20.02!  We only put in $20 at a time.. and that honestly doesn't really get us alot of gas, I felt impressed with myself that I got it just two cents over!

I'm improving with my driving too... learning how to start turning before I'm ready to turn so I'm not having to do 90 degree turns and cranking the wheel too quickly.  We didn't drive for very long today because Jeff wanted to come home and take a nap; since he went in and worked a bit of overtime so he could catch up.. when there's only 4 people on his team and there's supposed to be triple that.. there's a tendency to fall behind!  I'm proud of Jeff and his team, they seem to be doing a decent job keeping their heads above water.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Happy Halloween 2009! (Part One)

Well, here's a quick picture of the girls and Jeff at Trunk or Treat.  I'll definately take more tomorrow!  I think the girls are so cute in their costumes, and Jeff's not dressed up but.. let's just say I'm SOOO glad he's my husband and not someone elses... heheehee.

Monday, October 19, 2009

I'm Turnin' the Wheel!

The steering wheel that is.  After putting it off for who knows how long, I've finally got my learner's permit!  It's part scary, part liberating and part scary.  I mentioned that already didn't I?

I better back up a bit.  About 2 weeks ago, we purchased plane tickets to fly my mom and brother Tommy out for Thanksgiving.  At that point we kind of realized us + my mom + my brother + the Saturn = Clown car and Bad Idea.  We started looking for a larger vehicle.. that is to say a mini-van.  We were wanting something that could sit at least 7 people, something that has a sports rack, and a bonus would be a hitch.  And we were looking the free to $2,000 range.  Yeah.. long shot but whatever.  Anyway, last Tuesday, Jeff was presumably bored at work so he was apparently surfing the local classifieds and came across a vehicle.  If I recall correctly he said it was PERFECT for us and that he wanted me to see if it's still available.  I clicked on the link and the first thing I thought was, "It's $2,800!"  In other words, about $800 out of our price range.  So, I ended up calling the guy and asking if it was still avaliable, and it was.  Then I asked him about the history and he gave me a very detailed history, and I asked about the mechanical work, and he rattled that off.  Then I typed out to Jeff and condensed everything for him and he said "Ask if he'll go down to $2,500." which I did, and the guy said he'd take $2,600.  At that point, I told him we were very interested; however we want to make sure that it would be a good investment and that I'd call him back.  And we researched, and found out it's a FANTASTIC vehicle.  So, then Jeff had me check our financial spread sheet, and we discovered that we'll be able to afford it, which is GREAT.  We had the money to pay for it full in cash, and still get by until this Thursday when Jeff gets paid.  Thank goodness he got an extra paycheck this month.  So, I called him back and made arrangements to go and look at it.

Anyway, long story short we have a second car.  It's a Madza MPV, and while it's technically considered to be a mini-van it honestly looks more like an SUV, which for me is a plus.  In addition to a sports rack, it also has a hitch and even a sunroof.  That was Tuesday.  On Wednesday, we insured the car, and because we changed the coverage, our premium or whatever it's called only went up $12 a month.  Which is fine, our insurance will probably be about $70 a month if that.  Then on Thursday we went to the DMV to register it in our name, and earlier that day on impulse I told Jeff "Well, we're going to the DMV might as well as take the test to get my permit."  So I studied the manual and quit 2/3 the way through from boredom.  So we went and I PASSED!!!  got 40 out of 50 questions right, which was the minimum requirement.  Then afterward, we went to the library.  However, when we came out we realized someone did a Hit and Run on us!!!  When we parked at the DMV, we were parked next to this HUGE white truck, who decided our vehicle wasn't worthy enough for them to be careful.  The rear passenger side door is all dented in, and their mirror scratched the last passenger side mirror.  So, driver of big white truck, I HOPE KARMA TAKES A DUMP ON YOUR LIFE.

We went driving on Saturday and Sunday, which is a start.  I'm kind of a crappy driver; however it is something I'm going to have to get adjusted to and hopefully once it finally "clicks" it's smooth driving from there.  The Madza handles VERY well, so I'm glad I only have to be light on it rather than a lead foot.  And of course, I'm learning to drive defensively.. no crazy nut here!

Monday, September 28, 2009

Just An Update

I haven't blogged about anything significant in a while, so I figured now would be a good time to sit down and do so!

Last month, around the 12th or so, we noticed we had some leakage in our laundry room.  Not knowing what it was, we tried to figure out the source of the leaking and after a week discovered it was the water heater.  What shocked us was that the water heater was only 7 years old, and when I went poking around to find the source of the leak, I discovered that there was a patch job where it had previously leaked.  At that point we knew that it was going to get replaced.  So we called a company in and for $1,000 we got a brand new water heater, an anodized rod put in the water heater to reduce mineral buildup and we also paid to extend our warranty to 11 years instead of the usual 5 or 6.  We also had to pay for the plumber to redo the duct work because it was done very improperly and was a major code violation!  So at least we've got a brand new water heater that's up to code.

Then after months of waiting and having to refile our amended return, we received our First Time Home Buyer tax credit on the 8th of this month!  After going out to dinner to celebrate, we tackled the major expense that we knew about when we bought our house; replacing our furnace.  After calling around and researching and having estimates done, we finally picked a company to replace the furnace AND they also insulated the attic, which is great!  Unfortunately, due to unforeseen situations, we were not able to get our furnace last Monday as scheduled, but we'll be getting it installed tomorrow.. I hope!  We're very excited and happy to know that we'll finally be getting our clunker furnace replaced and taken out and having an energy efficient one put in.  And based on the gentleman that came and did the bid, he said because our current furnace is so old, and because of all the energy rebates we'll be receiving from not only the federal government, but our gas company, we'll be seeing a return in the next 5 years.. and that's something I like to hear!  Of course, with a new furnace we'll need a duct cleaning, which won't be done until after we get the furnace installed and when we get a referral from the HVAC company.  I'm very excited about the furnace because I know we won't freeze AND go broke this winter, and because the biggest expense will be out of the way and we'll most likely never have to replace the furnace as long as we own the house; and we plan on being here for a VERY long time.

Everyone's been doing great too!  Jeff's been working and doing his thing at work, and has recently made a ton of breakthroughs with work, and has recently made strides that have resulted in making his job much easier.  I just had my 24th birthday on Friday, and we celebrated by going to Lonestar Steakhouse for dinner.. nothing says grownup date like eating at a place that you don't get a toy with your meal!  And then today -well yesterday seeing how it's after midnight now- marked mine and Jeff's 6 year anniversary as a couple.. and what a crazy, but fantastic 6 years it's been!  I am constantly amazed and have felt blessed many times over because of him.  If I have to name his one redeeming quality, it would have to be his capacity of forgiveness and understanding.. I guess I just named two!  He's helped me through so much, and I KNOW I would not be the person that I am today without him.

Speaking of Jeff and I, I can't go without mentioning our two daughters!  Without US, THEY wouldn't be here!  Zoe's going through a stage right now that testing our patience and and nerves!  Last month, she decided that everytime she made a trip to the toilet, she would bomb the toilet with tons of TP, sometimes using the entire roll.  It was driving us up the wall, and we finally came up with a solution; we got a cheap wooden spoon, and triple bagged some grocery bags, and had her scoop the TP out of the toilet using the spoon.  She did NOT like that at all, and has not done it since then, which is a great thing.  And just for the record, we were tolerating it, but the final straw was when she did it in our downstairs bathroom and it resulted in a main sewer line clog and we had flooding all over the bathroom floor and all over the hallway carpet.  I think it was an unorthodox method, but at the same time, she needs to realize that in life there's consequences for every action, and that there will be repercussions for those actions and sometimes it's gross and not very fun.  However, she stepped out of this habit and has now started regressing with her potty training, something she's done so well for the last 6 months.  However, I know this is normal, and eventually she'll get through it, we just have to be patient and work through it!  One of her recent hobbies.. well it's been a hoby of hers for a while, but has recently started taking off is photography!  She loves to set up these little scenarios and take pictures; her favorite place is her closet.

These are some of the pictures she's taken.

Zoe's also been growing VERY well, she's about 40-41 inches tall, and weighs in around the same in pounds, and she's actually about to hit another growth spurt we think, since she's starting to chub up a little, which usually happens before she starts growing again.  It's a bit unnerving to realize my almost 4 year old is only EIGHTEEN inches shorter than me!  She's also been slowly learning how to write her letters, but it's something that we need to work on more.  She knows how to write A, C, D, E, M, O, R, T, Y and Z, so we need to work on the other 17 letters of the alphabet.  And of course, here are some recent pictures of her.

These are some of her self portraits she's done!  I think they showcase her personality perfectly.

And of course, we can't forget little Ruthie!  Don't get me wrong when I say this, but I feel exceptionally blessed with her as our daughter.  She's always been behind in terms of her milestones being met, and her size, but she just has such a wonderful demeanor and she's got a zest for live that Zoe never really had.  She doesn't talk much, but she still is able to communicate her point across and is able to tell us her wants and needs.  And of course she's just so patient and rolls with whatever is tossed her way, because let's face it; Zoe kind of bosses her around like the bigger sister she is!  And for the most part, Ruthie just takes it as it comes; however she's got a streak in her where she will get spunky right back.  She's also got an amazing sense of humor and finds simple joys in doing silly things like running around us in circles and saying hi every time she gets to our left or right side, or she likes to pull up our shirts and stick her finger in our belly buttons and runs off laughing.  One of the first words she started saying coherently after the monosyllabic stuff was 'tickle'!  She'll come up to us and start saying 'tickle-tickle' with a big grin on her face and start tickling herself, so you'll know she's ready for some tickles!  She's learning fast now though, and is in the early stages of her vocabulary explosion that kids tend to get when they are around 18-20 months.  She does know some sentences, like "I all done!", "I a good." and "I don't know." and "I want ..." which usually ends in a mumble because she's still learning how to talk.  She did learn milk which is good!  She's kind of a picky eater, but we've discovered she LOVES anything with rice and a sauce; which is usually coconut milk and curry since we love Eastern Indian curry in this family!  She also likes noodles of any kind, and her favorite fruits to eat are bananas and tomatoes.  You read that right, she LOVES tomatoes!  We've been getting tomatoes finally in our garden, and she loves to polish off the smaller ones we've been getting.  We're still trying to introduce her to other things, and her palate has been expanding to eat other things; however she's NOWHERE near where Zoe is with her palate.  And of course, I need to add some pictures of Ruthie as well!

These I think show how she's so inquisitive and yet she's got a certain sassy spunk about her.  Zoe took the first one, and I took the second one.

Anyway, I hope you enjoyed the update.. and thanks for reading through all of it, it's a LONG one!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Marriage Tag

I got this from my cousin Linda's blog, and thought it was cute so I decided to copy and post and participate.  I guess this is a tag of sorts for those who are married or engaged.  However, I'm changing the order a bit because it's kind of out of order and bugs me a bit.

1.  Where did you meet your spouse for the first time?
   We met in person for the first time on September 27th, 2003.

2. How long have you known your spouse?
   We met online around November 8th, 2002 on  LDS chat and that night we were chatting for a VERY long time; I believe I started chatting with him around 7 or 8 pm, EST and by the time we got offline, the sun was coming up the next morning, and since it was in early winter/late fall, it had to be around 6:30 in the morning when the sun was coming up

3. How long did you date/court before you were engaged?
  We started officially dating on September 27th, 2003, so we were dating for 11 months, & 8 days.  But we knew we were going to end up married about 2 weeks into our relationship.

4. When was your engagement anniversary?
   Jeff proposed to me on September 4th, 2004.  I went with him to pick up the ring, but I wasn't allowed to see it until he proposed to me.  Since I picked it out, I had an idea of what it was going to look like, but since it was custom made to fit a round cut diamond -the original setting was for a princess cut- it was still a bit of a happy surprise to see what the final product looked like!  He proposed to me at Tres Hombres Restaurant in Salt Lake City.

5. When is your marriage anniversary?    We were married on July 16th, 2005, in Virginia Beach, Va.  The day started out sunny and hot, but it was a dark and stormy night during our wedding ceremony... some of our guests arrived a bit rained on!

6. What is your spouse's full name?
  Jeffrey Scott Hayford.

7.  Do you have any children?

8. How many?
  Two.  Zoe was born on November 24th, 2005 and Ruthie was born on February 9th, 2008.

9. Do you have any housepets?
  Not at the moment we don't.  But Zoe keeps telling us she wants a dog, and Ruthie walks around meowing all day.

10. Do you own a house or rent?
  We own a home.

11. Do you live in the country or town/city?
  We live in the suburbs!

12. What is one of your favorite activities to do together?
  We enjoy playing World of Warcraft.

13. Do you have a favorite vacation spot?
  We have yet to take a "real" vacation anywhere.  The two we have taken were in Virginia Beach, VA!

14. How many siblings?
 He has five siblings, and I have two; and we've got a combination of three siblings in law.

15.  What church do you attend?
  We don't go to church anymore, but we're members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.  And I use that term loosely at the moment.

16.  Is this the church you were married in?
  We were married in one of the many wardhouses of the LDS church so yes.

17.  What town is your current address in?
  Sandy, Utah.

18.  Do you work or stay at home?
  I am a stay at home mom, but twice a week I watch our friends' baby.  But it's not really because we need the money, but it's more to help them out.  I really don't count it as a 'job'.

19. Where did you go on your honeymoon?
  We didn't have an official honeymoon.

20.  Leave a piece of advice for other couples.
  Talk things out, leave the lines of communication open, be HONEST with each other, and when all else fails, go have some 'couple' time in the bedroom!  Don't think 'deprivation' is going to solve anything because you're only punishing yourself.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Lagoon Day!

This past Saturday was eBay's company family party at Lagoon, and of course we went, and we also went with our friends Cooper, Ngaire and Azrael L.  Cooper is one of Jeff's best friends, and of course Ngaire and I have become very close friends as well.  Azrael is their (almost) 10 month old daughter, and I watch her twice a week.  Most of the pictures are of Zoe mostly because it was her first time ever going to Lagoon and I wanted to capture her expression and experience there.

This ride is called Bulgy the Whale, and it was the first ride she went on.  And as you can tell by the picture, she HAD NO CLUE how to react.  After getting off we asked her "Did you have fun?" to which she promptly responded with "I want to slide."

This ride is called Red Baron.. I think.  Anyway, she was starting to loosen up on this ride, however she spazzed out when the attendant unbuckled her and she lost sight of where I was at.  We explained to her that it's their jobs to help kids in and out of the rides, and she was okay after that.

This ride is called the Dragonfly.  Zoe REALLY liked this one.   This was taken right before the ride started, and I guess she was looking down to figure out what was going on.

This next ride is called Helicopters.  Zoe really started getting into the whole ride thing at this point, especially when Jeff told her about how the bar works to make it go up and down.

Here's Zoe in the little boat ride called... Baby Boats.  Every time Zoe went past us, we'd all say "Hi Zoe!" but of course she only said hi to Ngaire.  Go figure!

We decided to take a soothing -and shaded- ride on the train.  Here's the four of us together.  It's a shame Jeff's head got cut off, but that's what happens when you're tall!

And here's Cooper, Ngaire and Azrael.  What a fun bunch of people.

And here's Jeff and Zoe on the Space Scrambler.  She LOVED it!  At first she was a bit nervous, but eventually she let her inhibitions fly and she was putting her arms up and going "Wheee!!".  Jeff made the comment that he must be getting old because he was actually nauseous from it.  Well with a name like "Scrambler", what else do you expect?

You'll notice that Ruthie's not in many pictures, since we thought she was too young to enjoy the experience... but definitely next year!  We'll also be hitting Lagoona Beach too, it was SO HOT.

Monday, August 10, 2009

It Could Have Ended Badly....

So, tonight for dinner we had a beans and rice with tomatoes and sausage dish.. it's great because you can cook it in one pot.. although I use my rice cooker to make sure the rice cooks without scorching the beans.  Anyway, the best way to cook the sausage we decided was to grill it; we've done the dish a few times before and we do it with the grill everytime.. works GREAT!  It really brings out the smoky flavor in the sausage.

Anyways, Jeff doesn't like cleaning the grill, and I guess there was a bit of grease on it.  So after he finished cooking the sausage, he decided to 'burn the grease off' and just left the grill on while he came inside to cut up the sausage.  BTW, our grill is propane fueled, but we buy the little canisters since they are cheaper than the huge ones.  Our friend Cooper shows up -his wife Ngaire and daughter Azzie were already here since I watch Azzie on Mondays and Fridays and Jeff brings Ngaire home with him from work since they both work at eBay- and walks in and says in a converstational tone "You know your grill is on fire right?"

Jeff responded with, "Yeah, I know, I left it on."  And Cooper said "It's actually on fire."  So we go outside to see what he's talking about.. and lo and behold.. the whole right side was engulfed in flames.  Jeff thought turning it off would solve the problem.. but it didn't. 

Instead, the flames got larger.  So then I started getting a bit worried and said, "Jeff go get the fire extiguisher."   He responded with "No, it'll go down on it's own eventually."  And I said,  "No, Jeff go get the fire extinguisher, it's not going down."  So then he says "Fine!" in this.. tone of his so we go inside to get the fire extinguisher and while I cleaned up the mess I made in pulling the tab off -it went flying and hit the food and almost knocked all of our sausage on the floor- Jeff was able to quickly put it out.

Alas, we had a casualty.  The part where you cook the food on MELTED.  I guess it's made out of aluminum or something because under normal circumstances, it should not have done that.

Jeff's famous last words?  "Well, we know now that trying to burn off grease doesn't work."

I swear, Jeff's got more redneck in him than I do!

Friday, July 24, 2009

Squash Update

Well, three weeks later, and there's been definite change in how the garden looks!  I went out this morning to check how it's growing, and WOW my squash plants not only have squash, they are cute and chubby, and more are on the way!  So, on with the pictures.

So, I know the picture isn't the greatest; I'll get out there later and take a better picture; as well as update on the tomatoes and bell peppers.  But there's a definite change since I took pictures three weeks ago!  If you have to refresh your memory; click here.

Here are the cute and chubby squash.  As far as I can tell, these are the only three that are this size, so I'm geeked!  I've decided I need to name them, but I can't think of any names right now.  And if you're wondering what 'this size is', here's a comparision with my hand.

Well, roughly anyway.  I don't have very large hands, so this ought to give you some idea.  They are all roughly the same size; however I think this one is the largest of the three.  I do plan on being a nerd and going out there and measuring them to see how long they are and find out their girths.  And there's a few more starting that are roughly the size of my thumb; but a little skinnier.

And I can HONESTLY say that's how big these squash were last time I checked on Tuesday!  And yes, squash are flowering plants.  I hear squash flowers are actually quite delicious with cheese; however I believe you're actually supposed to do this with zucchini blossoms.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

126144000 + 86400

That's how many seconds Jeff and I have been married, or in normal terms, 4 years!  It's gone by super fast, and come this September 27th, we'll be a couple for 6 years.  Time sure flies fast, and it's amazing to think I've been with him my whole adult life -minus two days- and I can't imagine life without him at this point.

Anyway, I know he won't read this but I love you Jebbies!

Friday, July 3, 2009

How Does YOUR Garden Grow?

Well, it's been a while since I've blogged about my garden.. or blogged period.  So I figured I would write up a quick blog about the garden.  You've probably seen my last post about the garden on May 30th.  Well, we had nothing but rainstorms last month, and unfortunately got hit by hail on June 11th.  Here's some pictures from that.

Firstly, let me show you what the hail around my downspout off of my gutters looked like.
 As you can see, that's A TON OF HAIL.  And it's no surprise that it's not very gentle on gardens.

As you can tell (or you may not) the leaves on my plants got ripped to shreds.  BTW, it's Tomatoes, Squash, Bell Peppers and the Strawberry plant in that order.  I had to prune the heck out of them, and in some cases, I had to leave the shredded leaves otherwise they wouldn't be able to photosynthesize and grow.

And then, on top of everything else, my tomatoes ended up getting sunburned. 

But at least one of my lemon boys grew a tomato!

Ain't he cute!  These two pictures were taken on June 23.
And I went outside today to inspect the garden, and WOW it's definitely exploding!  The tomatoes are bouncing back from the sunburn... I had to prune one of them almost completely bare, but the branches are growing back nicely.

As you can see, the tomatoes are doing very well, as well as the squash.  However, I'm not too sure about the bell peppers, I was told they take a bit longer to grow than most other plants.  And sadly, my Strawberry plant died.  I'm not sure what killed it, but it never quite recovered after the hailstorm.  Oh well, maybe next year in a different way.

Anyway, that's the update on my garden!  On other news, I finally updated my website after aproximately 13 months of not doing anything with it.  Check it out!

And hope everyone has a happy and safe 4th.  Don't blow yourselves up okay?

Monday, June 8, 2009

Being in Pain Just Sucks

So, today started just like any other Monday, until 11:30 when Ruthie scratched my eye.  That's right, she didn't poke or jab my eye but scratched it.  And let me tell you the pain was horrible!  I thought she scratched my cornea, but I wasn't sure.  Until I was able to stand light long enough to look at my eye, and over my iris and pupil there seemed to be a ripple in the reflection.. my eye essentially looked like there was a 'chip' in it so to speak, like a chipped round glass marble.  I was able to convince Jeff to take me to the doctor, which was an adventure in itself.

At first I tried to get ahold of an MD eye doctor, but unfortunately they were booked until the end of the month.  That wasn't going to cut it, so I was able to get ahold of an OD at an eyeglasses place, but they flat out said they were unable to do anything for me.  The receptionist was nice enough to call an MD, and they said they'd be able to squeeze me in.  It's kind of lame that they couldn't see me when I called myself, but they were able to see me after the receptionist called.

So we get to the Doctor's office, and Dr. R literally took a look at my eye and confirmed that in fact, I did have a corneal scratch, and that Ruthie got me; his exact words were "Wow, she got you really good."  He gave me two different eyedrops; one is an antibiotic, and the other one was eyedrops for pain.  And to protect my cornea from even more damage, they put in a contact.  And I have to say, it's not as bad as I thought it would be!  It feels a bit strange, but that's probably being contributed from the fact that my eye's got an injury.. I'm gonna have to think about doing the switch over to contacts, or at the very least part time.

I know I'm going to be alright now, but I can't help but admit there was a feeling of panic.  Being hearing impaired for the most part does not bother me.  I've dealt with it my entire life, and I've adapted and I've accepted it as me being me.  I don't resent the fact that my hearing is not whole; in fact I think it's shaped and molded me into the person that I am now.  However, I can't say it doesn't leave me feeling vulerable, and in the time my eye was scratched and had to use a cold compress to help with the pain, and not being able to see as well as I normally do; well as well as I can see being nearsighted like I am, I have to admit to the underlying panic I felt not being able to see normally.  I rely so much on my eyes and sense of smell, touch -not so much taste-  and also my intuition to get around and about in life, and to have my eye temporarily out of commission, it really scared me.

I know I'm going to be fine now.. hopefully eye rest also known as sleeping will help out, and I just have to keep at it with my eye drops.

On other news, I'm happy to report my garden is really blooming and coming along nicely!  We've been getting a lot of rain thanks to el niƱo, which is really helping out the growth.  I can't wait to partake the fruits of my labor.  And of course, I'm going to share :)

Saturday, May 30, 2009

The Great Outside

We've got a bit of a garden growing outside now.  I've always had some interest in gardening, however it wasn't something I was able to pursue until we got our house this year.  We've got Tomatoes growing, some Spaghetti Squash and some Bell Peppers, and in a pot, I've got a Strawberry plant growing.

I know, my yard isn't in the greatest shape, and that I need to prune the grass down on the edge of the garden, but my goal is to get this garden through the summer, and then next year I plan on doing a raised bed garden, that way it'll be easier to manage, and hopefully I won't have issues with weeds and such.  I just hope my garden makes it because I've been having a difficult time watering them.  It's so hot here, that the water evaporates in a matter of minutes, and I didn't have the foresight to enrich the soil before putting my plants in, so hopefully I can help them thrive with watering them and getting some food for them.  Anyways, next to my garden I've also got a very large rosebush.  I didn't think it was going to bloom, but last weekend we had rain, and it looks like that did the trick; since it bloomed and still has buds forming and getting ready to bloom themselves.
 It's kind of large and wild; and I knew it was pruned before, but they didn't prune it back enough!  I kind of like it though all wild looking the way it is.  And yes, I know the lawn needs to be mowed, something Jeff will be doing tomorrow.