Apr 27, 2015

Garden update Monday

Good morning. 

Early last week I planted new herbs I purchased at the plant sales: pineapple mint, lemon verbena, marjoram, dill, cilantro, tarragon, and curry! 


Sage and oregano from last year, newer herbs to the right. 

Herbs! I love the cinder block holes for planting herbs. 

It may be hard to see above but asparagus is starting to come up! In 2-3 years I'll have a harvest we can eat!

Some potatoes are sprouting. I need to add more dirt to this bucket. 

Tomatoes! On the right I purchased another Jet Star from a plant sale. It did great for us last year but I totally forgot to save seeds. 

Lettuce! Pretty soon I can make a salad! Fresh home grown lettuce is so tender. 

The pepper seeds I planted had shown no activity so I planted some more on Tuesday. On Saturday I saw this:  

The first seeding starting to pop out of the original pepper tray. I'm still not expecting much from this tray, but it was a nice surprise. 

I don't have too much planned for this week other than weeding and watering.  Pretty soon though it will be time to get things in the ground. 

What is happening in your garden?

Apr 23, 2015

Grizz Growl Towel Bib - Naptime Craftime

One day last week I was feeling the itch to create. Before Charlie I would occasionally get my hands busy with some sort of creative endeavor. Whether gardening, sewing, arranging, cooking, pretty much anything. But it has been a while since I've done anything extra creative and it was starting to get to me. I wanted to paint! And I have no drawing or painting skills.

If you follow basketball you know it's playoff time. We love the Memphis Grizzlies and are excited for their playoff run this year. We have a stack of Growl Towels from previous years and I thought maybe I could do something with one of them.

I broke out my sewing basket and the sewing machine and got to work. First I cut off a strip of towel at the top and bottom to make straps. I sewed up the rough edges and then sewed the straps to the top of the towel.

Here Roux models it for me.

And here's Charlie putting it to use. It's a bit long horizontally for a traditional bib. He loves to have his hands up by his face during feeding time. But for something I whipped up in under an hour and got to enjoy some creative time, I think it's okay.

Apr 22, 2015


This past weekend Bryan and I celebrated 7 years of marriage. In some ways it's hard to believe it's been that long. In other ways I can't remember a time without Bryan in my life.

To start off the celebrations we had a family lunch at Beauty Shop. Charlie got to come and was on his best behavior. 

We dropped him off at my parents house afterwards and went car shopping. Back in January I was in a wreck and insurance totaled my beloved Saturn. We've been using Bryan's car ever since. It really hasn't been an issue since Charlie was born two weeks after the wreck and Bryan hasn't been traveling much. May starts the travel season so we have been looking for a few weeks now.

We went out to Collierville and ended up purchasing a new Dodge Journey. We aren't new car people, but we got a good deal and it was only $2000 for a new car over last year's used car. Seems worth the extra money to us. 

After having it a few days I'm in love and now look for reasons to drive. Still working on a name for it, though. 

For dinner Bryan made reservations at Andrew Michael's Italian Kitchen. It's one of our favorites but it's a special occasion place. We got the five course chefs tasting and it was wonderful. I'd definitely recommend it if you go. 

We enjoyed spending some time together without Charlie. Date nights for the win! 

Apr 21, 2015

Fruit update!

This week I didn't do too much in the garden besides weed and water. So I thought I'd give an update on some of my fruit. 

The pear tree I planted last spring in the front yard is thriving. All winter it looked like a sad stick in the yard, but a few weeks ago it busted out in leaves in practically a day! Now it is covered in leaves and putting out new branches. If it puts out any fruit this year I'll be shocked. 

The existing blackberry bushes are also putting out new growth. I have high hopes for an even bigger yield this year. Maybe even enough for a whole cobbler. 

My limes did not fare very well this winter. One looked to have a disease and the other I think got too cold. I thought they might be dead, but behold! New growth! This particular one is looking better than the other. 

My lemon, I'm afraid, is dead. 

The fig tree I purchased last year wintered inside and is doing well. We will need to plant him soon. 

Strawberries! Looking healthy! 

Tomatoes are growing well. Peppers are still showing no growth. I'm going to try starting some more from seed this week. 

I went to some spring plant sales on Friday so I have a little work to do with new purchases today. I'll post on those next week. 

Apr 13, 2015

Garden Update

Happy Monday! 

This weekend I was able to work on herbs and potatoes. 

Last year I had several hearty herbs in the cinder block holes. I love how they are functional, especially since they aren't much to look at. The cinder blocks, not the herbs. Currently the strawberry, oregano, and sage are flourishing. A thyme and mint are doing well. It looks like my apple mint, cilantro and parsley are coming back! This makes me particularly happy. Last year was the first year I had success with parsley. It thrived until December. 

On Saturday I added some fresh dirt to some of the empty holes and planted parsley, mint and dill seeds. I'm looking forward to more herbs this year. 

It was also potato time. 

I had cut them the other day. They looked really shriveled. I don't remember them looking this sad last year. 

I planted Desiree and La Ratte varieties in a bed and also the buckets I used last year. 

We'll see how they turn out. I'm not putting too many eggs in the potato basket if you know what I mean. 

Here's a glimpse of my garlic sprouts. These make me happy. I love seeing something grow. Carrots are sprouting but it's hard to tell unless your face is about one foot away from them. 

So that's what's happening in the garden. 

Apr 8, 2015

Family Photos

For months I've been stressing over photographs. Having a baby means needing newborn pictures and sending birth announcements. And what about maternity photos? Did I want those? Not really, but should I still take them anyways? And don't get me started on newborn photo trends. Barf.

I reached out to an acquaintance who is a professional photographer. I really love her style and asked if she could take some newborn shots or could she recommend a photographer who would take them and had a similar style. I was so excited when she said that they could do a lifestyle photo session at our house. I might have squealed with delight. Okay, I did. I squealed.

Savannah and her husband, Philip, came over for a few hours one Monday morning while Charlie was six weeks old. They captured our sweet morning routine, complete with a pie breakfast.

I'm so pleased with these photos. I will forever treasure them and this sweet, but tiring, time of life.

Apr 7, 2015

Easter 2015

This was our first holiday with baby! Having Charlie around didn't really effect our Easter plans, but next year will be very different. We'll have a toddler on our hands and I have a feeling he'll love eggs and assorted egg games and treats. For now, it was nice to keep it mellow and spend time with family.

Saturday night we met my parents at the Levitt Shell for an Easter Eve concert put on by our church.  It was pretty cold out. Poor Charlie.

Sunday morning Charlie went to the nursery for the first time. To commemorate the experience he had a blowout and had to be changed out of his cute Easter outfit. I was displeased but we washed it at my grandparents house so we could take some pictures of him.

We had lunch at Gram and Gramp's house. There was way too much food and I decided to focus on just the vegetables, although Bryan said the roast was delicious.

Charlie with his great-grandmother, grandmother, and me.

Family picture

We went over to Bryan's parents house for dinner with his family. First event on the patio this year!

It was a nice holiday celebrating our risen Savior. And probably our last calm Easter for a long, long time.

Apr 6, 2015

Garden Update Monday

Good morning! I hope you had a wonderful Easter and holiday weekend. 

Early last week I snuck in some time in the garden. I planted garlic, this years experiment, asparagus, carrots, and lettuce. 

The garlic I spaced along the fence line of this bed. It's hard to reach so I thought this might be the best place for it. They shouldn't need much tending to other than water. 

On Saturday I got Bryan to work on the new fruit bush bed up front. We pulled out the over grown bushes last fall, but it still required a little prep work. 

Once it was cleared we planted four blueberry bushes and three more blackberry bushes near our existing blackberries. 

Not the prettiest bed ever, but it's on the side of our house and only our neighbor will really see it. 

While I was out on Saturday I noticed many of the garlic was already sprouting. We also must have missed a potato last year because it looks like we have a start on our hands. 

This week I intend to start our potatoes purchased for this year. I'm also hoping to see some pepper sprouts. 

What's happening in your garden?

Apr 2, 2015

New Orleans March 2015 Trip... Traveling with a Newborn

We did it. We took our first trip as a family of three! I wasn't sure if we were going to be able to do it until the last minute... mainly because I was being a Nervous Nelly and wasn't sure how it would go. But in the end I thought traveling with the newborn would be better than being home alone with the newborn for three days.  I was also anxious to get back to New Orleans. The last time I was able to go was last summer when I had just found out I was pregnant. And I was ready to get out of the house and see something new. A change in scenery was much needed.

We borrowed my mom's mini-van and packed it to the gills. Bryan was working a few events and needed his try-on shoes. Charlie and I wouldn't have been able to fit in our car with all our gear and with Bryan's work stuff.

Charlie did okay during our six hour drive. We had to stop a few more times than we normally would have if it was just us. But that's okay. We had the time this trip to do so. I did end up having to sit in the back with him about half the trip since the little mister was refusing to nap in his car seat.

Highlights of this trip include:

- Drive through Daiquiri's! This has been on my life list for a while now. Incidentally it is perfect for parents of young kids who are forced into going back to hotel rooms instead of enjoying the nightlife New Orleans has to offer. Daiquiri's and HGTV are not a bad way to spend an evening, my friends.

- Beignets and Au Lait at Morning Call in City Park. Cafe Du Monde is the traditional place to go in the Quarter, but I had heard good things about Morning Call. One thing I loved about their beignets is that you top them with powdered sugar yourself. I typically have to dump a pound of powdered sugar off my beignets at Du Monde, so this was a plus for me.

- Lunch at Cochon. Do yourself a favor and eat there. It is our favorite restaurant in the world. Ever. Also, make sure you order the oysters.

- Walks through the Garden District and French Quarter. While Bryan saw an account Charlie and I went for a walk through the Garden District. On Saturday Bryan accompanied us on a walk through the French Quarter. New Orleans sidewalks and streets are notoriously bad, but this is great for leisurely strolls with baby. He loves a bouncy ride and snoozed through our walks.

A few more pictures:

Bryan was weirdly excited about changing Charlie in public on a park bench.

Traveling with a newborn was not terrible. High praise, I know. In the end I'm really glad we got out and ripped the bandaid off our first trip as a family of three. It got us out of the house and back into the world. With a newborn it's super easy to hibernate and forget that there is life outside of what is happening in your own little world.

Charlie slept just as good in the hotel room as he does at home. This is thanks to our hotel which provided us with a crib. Although he does nap really well in the Rock-N-Play, so he might have done just fine with that.

We moved a bit slower than when it is just the two of us, but that was alright. We enjoyed the leisurely pace of slow walks, taking in the scenery, and enjoying long meals while he snoozed. I spent more time in the hotel room while Charlie napped, but I loved the excuse to binge watch HGTV and lounge around in bed.

We won't be planning any big vacations to exotic locales anytime soon - or at least not with Charlie accompanying us - but it is nice to know that we can still travel and have a good time.