Friday, July 29, 2011

Garden Love and Frustration!

I love my garden.  I love watching our plants grow and seeing how they can transform and produce such amazing fruits, herbs, and vegetables. 

I love that within a few months, our garden grew from this

to this.

It's so crazy to me how huge everything gets!  This year, we planted several boxes of tomatoes, several varieties of squash, peppers, cucumbers, herbs, strawberries, and corn (outside of the boxes).  All of my herbs are doing really well and the corn seems to be growing well also.

The tomatoes are growing aplenty and look gorgeous and juicy from afar, but on some of the plants the bottom side of each tomato awards you a nice surprise.

The squash plants have been attacked by stink bugs, who have decided to nest and lay eggs all over our leaves.

Soooo, while I absolutely love to watch everything grow and see the literal fruits of our labor ripen, I am getting so frustrated!  We went on a bug killing spree last weekend, and while the Sevin spray seemed to steer the hoard of earwigs away from the plants, apparently we didn't do a good enough job of killing the stink bugs individually as we found them.  We had to cut off several of our squash leaves since they were literally covered in eggs but apparently we didn't get them all because after about a week of no disturbance, we have discovered fresh eggs again.  Any suggestions?  I keep squishing, but they keep a'comin back for more!

I am happy to admit that my thumb is the farthest possible from green in color, but I do want to learn to grow a successful and yummy garden.  Please comment with any and all tips you may have!

On the bright side, my little Trav sure loves picking his cherry tomatoes, red or green.

And I love admiring the good growth.

How are your gardens doing?


Friday, July 22, 2011

Free Porch Bench

As an avid KSL buyer, I love it when I find something great under the "Free" section.  Last year I picked up a free garden bench that needed some TLC but had potential.  Yes, it took me a year to finally do something with it but the important thing is that I did  it. 

Here are some shots of the bench when I picked it up.

 As you can see, it needed some serious wood glue and one slab of wood was missing that my sweets cut to size and replaced for me.

I wanted this bench to still maintain its aged, weathered look. I used some of the leftover paint samples I had from painting my Master Bedroom and brushed on one light coat, allowing the wood to still shine through.  It was the perfect shade of light gray.

Lastly, I brushed everything over with a mixture of Annie Sloan Clear and Dark waxes.

The dark wax can be overwhelming when it's used alone, but when mixed with clear and applied to the high points, it creates the most perfect weathered look. 

I could hardly wait for the wax to dry long enough for me to set the pillows I sewed together in their new place. 
The bright and modern design on the pillows was exactly what I wanted against the aged and faded looking bench. 

The pillows were made from outdoor canvas material I picked up at Joann's.  The striped print was on clearance for around $4/ yard, and the floral print was a splurge for me at around $30/ yard, but I was willing to buy it on sale at 50% off, and purchased a very small amount by only using the expensive print on one side of each pillow.

With the addition of a new window flower box and my cute rug I told you about, my front yard is starting to look bright and summery. 

Now if only I had something like this to show for the back yard, I'd be really happy.

I'm sharing this makeover and tutorial with these inspiring beauties:

Tip Junkie handmade projects

The DIY Show Off


Domestically Speaking

Funky Junk's Saturday Nite Special


Furniture Feature Fridays
Transformation Thursday

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Darling doormat

I've been eyeing this darling little Red Poppy doormat from Bed Bath and Beyond for over a year now, but never just bought it.  When I saw it on clearance for $9.99, I knew I couldn't resist.  With a 20% off coupon the total came to about $8.50 ( UT tax included).  Pretty sweet deal, right?  If you want one too, you can buy it online HERE or run down to your closest store.

I'll be cleaning off my front porch today to welcome in our new rug.  Now if only I could get my porch bench all repaired and painted.... 

So much to do!  Have a beautiful day.


Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Lake Powell

Hello friends.  I just spent one of the most fabulous weeks in Lake Powell with my family, and am just now ready to face real life again.  My sister and her husband have a house boat there and were so generous to invite us to join their family for a week long vacation.  I spent many years as a child vacationing with my family in Lake Powell, so this was like a dream come true for me to be able to go back after missing it for so many years.  My sweets hadn't ever been before, so being there with him for his first was so exciting for me.  We were crazy enough to take Trav with us and though he was indeed challenging at times, he had so much fun and was a water animal! He couldn't get enough of jumping off the edge of the boat into the water, and swimming around by the "beach" all by himself with his life jacket on and momma very close by of course.

We parked the house boat up Rock Creek Canyon, but decided that it should be called Boy Scout Canyon (see if you can figure out why....)

*** Please excuse the fabulous hair after about 50 runs down the water slide and jumping off the house boat***

Travis was convinced that he was the captain and took it upon himself to steer the "car" every chance he could.

The men folk spent a good portion of the first day building their 100 foot water slide, which was an absolute riot to watch their guinea pig runs down the first few times.  It got much faster and less rocky of a landing as they worked on it more over the days. Please excuse my annoying voice in the background and terrible videography skills or lack thereof and enjoy the humor that we all enjoyed for the first run.  Hang in there till the end of the video for a great chuckle.

Since I'm roasting the men in this video, it's only fair that I show you my roasting video also.  Here I am surfing behind the boat showing off without the rope, and finally wiping out during my attempt to finish up the run on the back of the boat.   Smooth move.

So there you have it!  After a fabulous week long vacation I am ready to get back into my projects and preparing choreography for my August intensives.  How has your summer been?  Any fun vacations or projects?  Do tell.


Friday, July 1, 2011

Don't doubt your man!

Did I catch your attention?  Please tell me that I am not alone in doubting my husband all too often in our marriage.  I am such a worry wart and while I know my sweets is a stud and so good at everything he does, I question his plans all too often. 

Some of you may recall that we have been working over the past month or so on our back yard of dirt.  We have a huge property and I've been overwhelmed with how much work needed to be done to prepare for our sod.  My sweets never seemed to be phased by the amount of work.  I asked him daily how the progress was coming along, and gently reminded him okay maybe I pestered him ever hour of our due date and the amount of work he still had to do.  His daily hourly response, "It will be ready Jen".

Just so that you all don't think I'm a nagging crazy wife who needs to back off her husband, please check out the status of our backyard as of yesterday afternoon.

 Please note the ridiculous amount of weeds covering our truck load of top soil (and everything else in sight), huge 2 foot deep trenches open all over the yard, and completely uneven/ level ground

See why I was freaking out? 

When I saw this arrive this afternoon, my blood pressure really started racing.

Let me now remind you that the message and moral of tonight's post is "Don't doubt your man!"

Well, he pulled it off.  Don't ask me how, but he did.  Here's a sneak preview of our fabulous friends helping lay the sod a few hours ago.
We have a bit more work to do tomorrow, but all in all today was hugely successful and I owe it all to my amazing sweets.  I don't know why I ever doubted him in the first place.  Trust your man, ladies, and he will become the talented, handsome, handy, sensitive, and kind man that you tell him he is.