Category : Outdoors

78 posts

I think the title says it all… this whole working outside the home is really cutting into my artsy time. Of course I knew it would but eventually I’ll find time for creativity again. I have so many ideas float through my head when I have a moment to pause my brain. Now I just need to execute said ideas.

My first week of school was good…exhausting…but good. This week we are starting to get into some routines which can only mean that things are about to change! The kids have had a busy week as well. Mini-me had a game 1.25 hours away on the first day of school and tonight is playing in our capital city of St. Paul. Crazy how far they travel to play teams not even in our conference.

This little guy is so confused as to why mom’s not home…he’s a little mopey about it.

Also since I’m not out in the yard all the time, the deer have decided it would be fun to jump over the garden gate and eat all the leaves from basically every living plant in our yard. Makes me wonder if we will have a really harsh winter or if they are just opportunity eaters,

I did manage to finish the mixed media piece I was working on last week. Anyone remember those I AM LOVED buttons? I want to say they were from the early 80s?? I happened to still have one floating around. Yep it’s a sickness…never get rid of fun stuff like that.

Over the weekend we roasted hotdogs for supper again in the chimenea. Some neighbors showed up and we had a impromptu party on the deck, capping off the night with a couple games of cribbage.  Thank goodness we got a light under the umbrella!

What did you do today?

These last few weeks of summer have us trying to squeeze every bit of summer fun and activities that we can. We’ve already started the school ramp up. Orientation yesterday…during the second half of the eclipse…nice timing people. At least it was raining like crazy at that time so no one cared.

Speaking of the eclipse…did anyone see it? I built a couple boxes in case the clouds cleared. We got peeks at it as it was eclipsing.

The clouds rolled in thick enough to obscure our view minutes before the greatest point of totality in our region. It was very strange though….the temperature suddenly dropped and the crickets started chirping. So awesome…just wish we could have seen as well as felt it.

The eclipse reminds me that I should show you my still work in progress of the acrylic pour project.

Somehow I seem to have lost the chipboard 3 overnight….I’m guessing Marvin had something to do with that.  I think I’m going to paint the numbers either white or black…leaning towards white. Then seal the whole works before attaching the clock parts.

I’ve also been playing around with my button collection again…

I have some ideas for projects. More button stacks. I just love how they look.

Over the weekend we had an evening that was just perfect for a fire. Hot dogs for dinner anyone?

As I waited for the fire to get going I checked out the garden. Late summer has done a number on some of the plants.

Such as the pumpkin  plant..totally dead and gone.

The green beans have totally taken over. I’m surprised since they were really poor early in the season….which is completely opposite of the last few years. I’ll definitely have some spicy beans to can.

And diced tomatoes as well.

Since the thick humidity, as seen here over the weekend, has finally cleared out. I’ll likely tackle the canning today in between playing taxi driver of course.

What are you doing today?

We are ready to safely view the eclipse here.

Have my homemade viewing box.

Now if the cloud cover would just roll out of here we might actually get to see some of it. Where we live about 83% will be covered. I hope we at least get a glimpse of it.

I missed T stands for Tuesday last week while Mini-me and I were up north enjoying time with family at a resort. There were 16 of us which is a lot smaller group than it has been over the last few years.

resortIt’s been a long standing tradition for the maternal side of Mr. G’s family to gather at a resort for a week each summer. The first few years we were married the yearly gathering was at a small resort in Wisconsin. We went for a few days when we could but after the resort changed ownership the tradition faded. That is until about 4 years ago when the group gathered in Alexandria, MN.

We tried out a new resort this year and don’t regret it at all. It’s in a beautiful yet fairly remote area…as in there are no decent sized towns within an hours drive.  We were a very short distance from the southern edge of the Chippewa National Forest.

resort

The resort sat on a small bay of a much larger lake. It was very quiet with little boat traffic.

resort

Just the occasional Loon.

resort

There was a great beach volleyball court for Mini-me to practice her skills. She gave me and my BIL quiet the workout playing with her. Neither of us are sporty in the least.

Each year we have a themed potluck gathering. This years theme was kind of vague…Greece/Olympus. Honestly, I didn’t really “get it” other than the food.  I brought a Mediterranean salad.

resort

Typically everyone goes all out dressing up, menu planning and decorating according to the theme. There was Gyros, hummus, kabobs, salads, crockpots of goodies, homemade wine and cider plus so much more.

resort

So much food!!!!

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The kids enjoyed games.

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And of course S’mores around the fire.

We aren’t sure what the plan is for next year yet but I’m sure at least Mini-me and I will go if time allows.

Tuesday has an appt. and back to school shopping for sure…who knows what else we’ll end up doing. The summer is quickly fading away.

What are you doing today?

Last week we had a beautifully cool, breezy, low humidity day. Outside projects were definitely on the docket. The biggest of these was replacing landscaping. This has needed to be done for quite some time.

Here’s a photo from 2 years ago…T Tuesday: harvest edition| Halle's Hobbies

The log border was already starting to get a little wonky. Fast forward two years and it was rotting away.

Now it looks like this! Mini-me and I did this one ourselves. The edging is recycled rubber. Nice and flexible to bend  and form to what your little heart desires. We had a couple of surface tree roots to contend with so we just made sure to line things up so that I wouldn’t have to pound a stake through the root. 

I did end up going through what I can only assume was root a couple inches underground on the back side of this flower bed.

We were so happy with how nice this one looked and how easy it was to install that I went back for more material to fix up another eyesore area in need of upgrade.

I’m not sure if you can tell but along the right side of the photo is some black edging that was basically laying down…definitely not how we installed it so many years ago. Frost heave has done a number on it.

Now it looks like this….

Complete with a couple new perennials.

I love how this looks so much!

Since at least half of the black edging pieces were still salvageable, I put them around my water barrels.

That is kind of our haphazard area. Mismatched pieces of this and that have all found their way over here. It all works though. Now if we’d only get some rain to refill my barrels.

So after a hard days work a little refreshment is always in order.

Just a couple more days of taxi driving for volleyball this week…then two weeks off before it starts up again…everyday. Mini-me and I are also getting ready for a little trip north. The boys are too busy working to come with us. I’ll be sure to share that adventure in a couple weeks.

What are you doing today?

Oh and just for you Chris

This week I thought I’d give you a look at how my gardens are doing followed up with some art.

FYI-photo heavy post

The deck box garden holds my yellow pear tomato plants each year to keep them from cross pollinating with the red regular sized varieties, This year I think I got a few seeds mixed up. I have some non-pear shaped tomatoes on a couple vines. Hmmm. Time will tell. I also have my Egyptian walking onions, radishes and jalapenos in there. Resting on the edge is a new to me shepherds hook. Mr. G is going to move one hook about 10 inches down for me when he digs out the welder.

The shed garden is going gangbusters after what seemed like a very slow start. I have tons of tomatoes on the vines. Even the bedraggled plants that came home from Biology class with J are doing fantastic.

The pumpkin and this tomato included. I really had no hope for either of these plants so I didn’t work very hard making a good home for them. Obviously they don’t care a bit.

The yellow summer squash and zucchini are getting large although the zucchini hasn’t produced anything yet.

The yellow ones are tasty though.

The first bit of bounty from the garden has arrived.

I am dealing with this pest though. Anyone know what it is and how to get rid of it without chemicals? I’ve been knocking them off and squishing them but the little munchers keep coming back for more.

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We changed things up a little this year and didn’t attend the local parade for the 4th of July. Instead we went to a party close to our old neighborhood. We figured out that we hadn’t been to their annual bash in 10yrs. I forgot my phone at home so no pictures from there.

We came back for the standard evening shenanigans on our block. J had 6-7 friends hanging out by the end of the evening. You wouldn’t believe how quickly 3 large pizzas can disappear.

We joined a neighbor in their front yard for the awesome view of the fireworks, What a fun night.

Of course, there was lots of overindulging of all sorts so my drink of choice the next morning was….

alka-seltzer.

I did take a bit of time for creating. I’m not sure how I feel about this page now that its dry.  The colors of the stains were so fun and vibrant before they dried. Now the page is a little dull.

I went back and added these paper beads I made years ago to try and dress things up a bit. I love that they’ll hang outside the book begging someone to open it up to take a peek.

I’m planning to work on the landscape edging around a flower bed before it gets too hot. The humidity is what is so bad right now. UGH! I get very cranky in the heat.  And don’t even talk to me about my hair.

What are you doing today?

This week has been filled with a roller coaster ride of emotions and events…frankly, I’m exhausted. I wasn’t even sure I was going to play along with T stands for Tuesday but I’m here and will share the highs and lows with you.

Let’s just get the low over with so we can move on to brighter things. My mom has Stage 4 Melanoma so her time left with us is limited. Exactly how limited, we don’t know. Now my absences from blogland both in posting and visiting make a bit more sense. Anyway…mom is determined to live what life she has left on her own terms which I highly praise her for.

She has a good friend in her building that has taken a big sister role in her life. She is such a sweet lady and I am so grateful for their friendship. I wanted to show some appreciation to her and put my nervous energy to a creative use.

(Note the wine glass as my beverage for T stands for Tuesday)

 I think it turned out pretty well and when I delivered it to her apartment I learned that yellow is her favorite color! I love it when things work out that way.

I also got my plants started…well some of them. I still want to start a few more.

I used old kid cups that were just going to hit the recycle bin as my planters. I literally had them in hand over the bin when I realized they could be used for my seedlings. I just drilled a couple holes in the bottom for drainage and ta-da…mini pots.

You may also notice the markers in each pot. I cut down container lids and wrote on them with sharpie marker. Since it’s April (Earth month) I thought I’d point out those little recycling tips.

Now just about a week later I have this! 

Do not adjust your screens….that is the full spectrum UV light you see in action. The different color LED’s all combine to cast a pinkish purple light and obviously the plants love it!

On Thursday last week the kids and I drove to Fargo, ND. We spent the night in a hotel before taking a tour of NDSU in the next morning. J said he thought it was a little too big for his taste but is still planning to apply since they have really good guaranteed scholarships for students with high GPA and ACT scores. Fingers crossed that he does well on the ACT this month. Mini-me said she didn’t like NDSU at all. Ok…check that one off the list for potential schools for her.  I, myself, spent a brief time at NDSU as a freshman. The campus has certainly changed since then.

I also did some work on this painting.

I am letting it sit for a few days to decide if its done or not. I’m thinking it is…what do you think?

Today has a repairman coming out for my stove. Luckily I called in just days before the warranty was to expire. Also lots of phone calls and emails to take care of since I pretty much took yesterday off. I really needed a breather day after last week.

What are you doing today?

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