Friday, March 30, 2012

Seeds and Spouts

Tuesday I finally got to starting my seeds. I’m always so excited when I do this. Almost every spring I try to grow flowers and/or veggies from seed; sometimes inside, sometimes outside and most years both. Although I don’t always have as much success inside as I’d like to I rarely miss a year of trying.

Almost ready to get started.

Waiting for the seeds to sprout reminds me of being a little person and how thrilling it was back in kindergarten when we all grew seeds as a science experiment. I can remember racing to school each morning full of excitement to see what my seed had done through the night. still feel this way; only now I dash downstairs to see what’s grown through the night.

I wasn’t disappointed this morning – my first seed has sprouted. WOO HOO!!

My first sprout - come on little guy!

I have another tray to start this weekend (after I buy another few packets of seeds), but so far so good!

    This tray contains:

  • Pink pampas grass
  • White pampas grass
  • Purple cone flowers
  • Delphiniums
  • Columbine
  • Violas
  • Foxgloves
  • Holly hocks (that’s what has already sprouted!!) J
  • Red peppers
  • Yellow peppers
  • Watermelon

    I still want to start:

  • Morning glories
  • Sweet peas
  • White cone flowers
  • Daisies
  • Tea

I love spring!!! 

P.S. I also bought my first few pansies of the year. I’ll get them potted this weekend.

I love the soft colours of these pansies.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Staycation Follow Up

If you’ve been reading you’ll know that I’m supposed to be on a staycation this week; well, it has been a total bust. I didn’t get anything done that I’d hoped to get done, I’m no more relaxed now than I was last week and in fact this week was pretty much like every other week.

My biggest goal for the week was to be on my own schedule. Ya right – what was I thinking?! I still got up every day and made breakfast and lunches for Jon and Bradley, I still did dishes and laundry and I still looked after the dogs. We had dinner out last night but other than that our regular dinner routine played out like it always does.

I spent the week listening to Jon talk about work and receiving about a million texts from Bradley (and I’m only exaggerating slightly). All in all what I set out to do didn’t happen. Am I blaming my family? Only slightly. Clearly I need to be able to set better boundaries.

If nothing else I guess I learned something about myself....I’m a sucker for putting everyone else’s needs ahead of my own. I know there are a lot of women out there who can relate but at the moment that’s not making me feel any better about how my week has gone.

I’m going to finish doing what needs to be done this morning and then I’m going to take my cranky ass back to bed with my current book and see about relaxing for the rest of the day.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

It's Quote Day!

It’s been a while since I had a quote day; so here are a few to honour spring and my favourite time of know – gardening time!! J

“Never yet was a springtime, when the buds forgot to bloom.”
~Margaret Elizabeth Sangster
“Spring has returned. The Earth is like a child that knows poems."
~Rainer Maria Rilke

“The best place to seek God is a garden. You can dig for him there.”
 ~ George Bernard Shaw

“Spring is when you feel like whistling even with a shoe full of slush.”
~ Doug Larson

“Spring makes its own statement, so loud and clear that the gardener seems to be only one of the instruments, not the composer.”
 ~ Geoffrey B. Charlesworth

“I love spring anywhere, but if I could choose I would always greet it in a garden.”
 ~ Ruth Stout

“One of the most delightful things about a garden is the anticipation it provides.”
 ~ W.E. Johns

“One is nearer God's heart in a garden 
than anywhere else on earth.
~Dorothy Frances Gurney

“The day the Lord created hope was probably the same day he created Spring.”
 ~ Bern Williams

“Gardens are a form of autobiography.”
 ~ Sydney Eddison

While I love them all, I think the last two are my favourites.

Have a great day! See you tomorrow.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Welcome Spring!

Spring Song 

The air was full of sun and birds, 
The fresh air sparkled clearly.
Remembrance wakened in my heart
And I knew I loved her dearly.

The fallows and the leafless trees
And all my spirit tingled.
My earliest thought of love, and Spring's
First puff of perfume mingled.

In my still heart the thoughts awoke, 
Came lone by lone together -
Say, birds and Sun and Spring, is Love
A mere affair of weather?

~Robert Louis Stevenson 

Monday, March 19, 2012

My Staycation

I haven’t had a vacation in years...not so much as a weekend away. Lately I’ve found myself in desperate need of a holiday. Unfortunately a vacation isn’t in the cards right now and that got me thinking about why I need a vacation and what I can do about it.

What’s a vacation anyway? According to it’s a period of time devoted to pleasure, rest and relaxation. By that definition a vacation doesn’t need to be away from home; so with that in mind I’ve decided to go on a week’s staycation (for an official definition see here).

Compared to most people I spend my days with relative ease – I write, take pictures and look after the house. But what I really do all the time is look after the other members of my household. I spend my days looking after Jon, Bradley and the dogs. This means I spend all my time thinking, worrying and caring for other people. Now don’t get me wrong – I love my family and I enjoy looking after them, but even the most dedicated mom and wife needs some time to focus on herself.  

So for 7 days starting yesterday I’m saying yes to me. Instead of being on everyone else’s schedule I’m on my own. Instead of my life revolving around my family’s needs it’s going to revolve around my own. Wow! While this sounds wonderful in theory, I think it might turn out to be harder than I’m anticipating...we’ll see!

    I’m saying yes to:
  • Slow walks around the yard
  • Afternoon naps
  • Writing/journaling
  • Creativity
  • Relaxing
  • Reading
  • Lounging in the bathtub
  • ME

    I’m saying no to:
  • Sugar
  • Computer games
  • Schedules, other than my own
  • Dishes
  • Doing haircuts
  • Doing anything I just don’t feel like doing
  • Guilt

This might be an experiment as much as a staycation but that’s ok; it means I’ll learn a lot and who knows maybe one week of looking after myself will turn into a regular event....although maybe next year I’ll plan to do it somewhere besides at home. J

During my staycation this is my pretend view out ALL
of my windows - lol!   

Friday, March 9, 2012

Looking for Small Moments

Since I lost my brother I’ve felt so different that I hardly feel like myself; and when Jon asked me this morning if I’d like to take a walk around the yard to talk about our plans and dreams for the property I gladly accepted. I need to know that I can still find joy in the small moments and in the beauty around me.

We walked and talked about filling here and there, adding gravel to the laneway and where I want to put more gardens. We talked about plans for the barn and other buildings and where we’re going to plant more trees.

I found it reassuring to find comfort in his voice and in the plans we keep talking about. It’s good to enjoy the dogs playing; the sun shining and the fresh almost end of winter air.

With my camera in hand I found little bits of beauty in the way the shadows play against the wood in the barn and in the way the dogs run around the snow and mud without a care in the world.

While I struggle with the loss of my brother it’s good to know that there’s still beauty for me to see and share. Here are a few of the photos I took on our walk this morning....they're nothing special - just little reminders that life goes on and that there is beauty and joy in my life still.

Apparently Astro didn't like the mouthful she ate!
Hunter and Astro playing.
My best baby girl!
The sky from inside the barn.
I love the light and shadows in this photo!
I know Jon wishes our barn has less daylight,
but I find it fascinating just the way it is.
Meg - all healthy again..yay! 

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Spring is in the Air!

"Where flowers bloom so does hope."
– Lady Bird Johnson

You can feel it can’t you? It’s that time of year when we all get a little restless and unsettled. Spring is coming and it makes us all feel a little peppier, a little friendlier and a lot more energetic.

Around my house we can see the grass in parts of the front yard and it makes me dream of flowers and getting my hands in the soil.

If you’re a gardener it’s time to start thinking about starting seeds. It’s already time for peppers and it will soon be time for other vegetables and flowers.

Last year I had great success with a messy wildflower mix and I loved being surprised each day by what was new in the garden. I’m going to try it again this year as well as a few others.

    I’m going to start:

  • Peppers – red and yellow
  • Sweet onions
  • English cucumbers 
  • Sweet peas
  • Morning glories
  • Echinacea (a couple of varieties)

I have my heart set on having ranunculus this year and I’m going to order them along with some hydrangeas and lavender. I’d like to have some climbing roses although I haven’t figured out where to put them yet. I also got a bug in my ear from one of my seed catalogues and I’m going to try to grow tea. I’m particularly excited about that!

And of course I can’t forget about my beloved’s almost pansy time! I know spring is truly here when I see all the pansy flats and planters at the grocery stores. I can’t wait! J

Friday, March 2, 2012

Introducing Awen Farm

Thank you for joining me here at my new address. It’s not only the address that’s changing; there will be a few other changes as well. You might notice that I’ve added a few new pages – ‘My House’ and ‘BWI’, I hope you’ll take a few minutes to check out the new additions, I’ve also expanded the ‘about me’ page if you’d like to check that out too.

I’m going to continue with my usual posts and I’m going to be adding posts directly related to the changes Jon and I are making on our home, buildings and yard. Jon will likely put in the odd appearance too, as my one and only guest blogger – I’m so excited to see his contributions!

Many years ago I had a small craft business where I made dolls and floor cloths (primarily) and for whatever reason I stopped creating almost entirely. I miss it desperately, and with that in mind it is my intention to get going again....slowly but surely. My first step in that direction is getting my studio good to go and I will be working on that over the next week or so. As soon as I get it presentable I’ll share - I’m very excited about that too!

I’ve said it before and it bears repeating – I’m very grateful to those of you who take a few moments out of your days to check in here. I very much hope you’ll continue to do so. Remember....I’d love to hear from you.

Welcome to Awen Farm – my blog and my home.

P.S. For those of you who might be curious - Awen is an old Welsh word meaning divine inspiration (often written) and it’s pronounced Ah-when. I came across it many years ago and immediately felt a deep resonance with it and it’s been very meaningful ever since.