Gardenzilla Rawr!

I spent time this spring meticulously planning, plotting, and designing my garden. My goal was an attractive garden that produced food to eat and also created a bit of a privacy fence for my patio. I researched what plants grow well together. Did you know that tomatoes are sweeter if planted near carrots? I found out how much space each plant needs because in the past I have been guilty of planting things too closely together making it difficult to find ripe fruits and vegetables. I thought I had it all worked out. With the help of smartgardener.com I even set up reminders to do things like soil prep, planting, watering, and harvesting. Nature is laughing at me right now.

Average rainfall in my area for May 1 – August 27 (today) is 14.65″. So far we have received 18.52″, and thunderstorms are in our forecast for today. That doesn’t seem horribly out of proportion until you actually look at when the rain fell. May was 2.43″ below average for rainfall. June and August are both above average, but not remarkably so. But July, oh July.. This is when Nature decided to play a practical joke on me. We got 9.16″ of rain in the month of July! More than twice the average amount of rainfall. Many of you have probably zoned out, or gone cross-eyed at all of these numbers, so here is my garden’s progress through the summer. I only watered for the first two weeks, after that it only ever received rainwater (no fertilizer either).

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The tomato plants got to be about 6 feet tall before they finally collapsed and started creeping across the yard. The carrots are still there buried under the tomato plants, and doing quite well. I have gotten a lot of delicious fresh fruits and veggies out of my garden. I just failed at the controlled, attractive garden I was going for. It looks more like a miniature jungle in my backyard.

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Building Block Magnets

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My youngest son, now 14 months old has been having a blast lately with his building blocks. So I got the idea to incorporate the block theme into other activities. My older son’s school sends their lunch calendar home as a magnet so that you can put it on the fridge. So my big idea… Turn last year’s lunch calendar into block magnets! My son and I can stick them on the fridge and he gets more exposure to the all important letters and numbers.Blocks

I went searching for a printable sheet of block images that I could color and cut to glue onto my magnet pieces. I came up with absolutely nothing, so I spent some time during his nap to make my own. Some other possibilities for this handy little file are customized door signs, scrap-booking accents, and tracing pages. If you would like to use the file for your own project the image on the right will link you to my dropbox account where you can download it.

I had a lot of fun coloring and gluing. The cutting was a bit tedious, but I have to say I am quite pleased with the finished product. If I did this again I would probably try to find a way to laminate the surface of the finished magnet because mine are already showing some dirty fingerprints.