Inspiring Gardening Quote



I bought this because it is one of my favorite gardening/life analogy quotes. I also love the one that says, “You can’t tell the quality of the soil until you plant the seed.” So profound. I think of my kids and friends with that one, as well as sharing the gospel. Hope you like it as much as I do!

Nantucket Gray Semi-Transparent Fence Stain


We are in love with our new fence stain! It is from Lowe’s and the Cabot brand. Before we moved, we stained our own deck and it lasted so much longer than those that were spray-stained. Anyway, it’s taken a ton of stain just to do the outside (about $650 worth for the whole fence) but we’ve been rolling and painting it on — and it looks great.


As we drove around the neighborhood, everyone seemed to have dark stains and we just didn’t want that look. This matches our guttering perfectly and I can’t wait to get some pretty vines over the fence in the spring. Fingers crossed it lasts for quite awhile — we’re not done staining the inside yet and we don’t want to have to redo it anytime soon. We have to hurry and get the inside done before the really cold weather sets in (yay snow!).

Addicted to Pinterest

It’s almost better than reading books and much more instantly gratifying:  Pinterest.  I love this site.  It’s the new method of flipping through magazines for ideas and putting them all in one place:  quotes, decor, motivation, design ideas, garden ideas, etc.  Now if I could only get OFF pinterest and start working on my own abode…I’m still planning, okay?! This is everything I love all mixed in one.

Fall is Here!



I planted some mums in this cute planter and Don put them up near the front door for me – so cute! His honey-do list is shrinking.


I found the sign above on our trip to Omaha over Labor Day weekend and had to bring it home. Love it and it hangs in our living room now.

Spring Ideas – Growing Wheatgrass with NO SOIL!

This little bit of green on my counter keeps me cheery for a good couple of weeks each spring. Isn’t he cute??? Easy to grow and the kids love to cut his hair. It’s almost as good as your own Chia Pet…remember those? We grow it by crumpling up wet paper towels and sprinkling a thick layer of wheat berries on top. Cover and place in the dark (I was too lazy even for this – just put it on my counter!) and about 5 days later, sprouts had begun. No soil. No mess. Easy!

Buddha Hand Citron Fruit Tree

Picture from White On Rice.

We have inherited at least two Buddha Hand Citron fruit trees. The fruit is amazingly ugly but it SMELLS so good! It smells like a not-tart-lemon. Or a lime. Or a sweet lime. Obviously very difficult to describe but it’s wonderful! I’ve heard of a few uses:

1. Soak the rind in sugar and make a citrus flavored sugar. There are some interesting ideas on Chowhound.
2. Remove the pith and candy the peel.
3. Cut off the fingers and dice and use as you would lemon zest (same taste, less bitter). There are some good looking recipes over at flavorandfortune.
4. Make lemon vodka liqueur…okay, not for us since we don’t drink but maybe you can cook with it? It sure is pretty in the bottle, anyway.

You can buy the tree from Bay Flora for $67 or you can buy the fruit online at Local Harvest for $20 apiece! Geesh! Wish I knew where I could sell them for that in Houston!

Farm Girl Barter Website

I do love this magazine out of Idaho…Mary Jane’s Farm. She has a new addition to her extensive website where people can barter for really great things! Check out Farm Girl Barter and you’re sure to find something you would like to have or use it to simplify and clear your own {precious} clutter!

Garden Ideas

Look at these pictures from Hen & Hammock – a UK gardening site I just found tonight. What cute swings! I love the phrase on the edge – so cute and fun. Plus, be sure to check out the ideas at the UK gardening magazine called Country Homes & Interiors – great ideas, all!

Contract Signed – Prayers for Closing!

clematis nice

We have a signed contract and signed counter offer. Now, pray that all goes smoothly (don’t you think we deserve some of that smoothness?) through closing. It has been a rough year. We have learned much about our limitations, of which there are many. Showing a large house with 4 boys for 10 months has been no easy task, and the last month without hubby has been lonely. Those who love me best outright lie and say that I’ve handled it very well. I highly doubt that, but my only real benchmarks are: nobody’s dead, the house did get clean enough to sell and we all made it to church on time most of the time. Even if one week Ben was in his camoflauge rain boots (it was National Rain Boots Week, didn’t you hear?). I am now in MESS mode – living proof that we do have lives and we don’t have to clean all the time!!! I will NEVER apologize for a messy house again – I will be proud to LIVE there with my complicated, busy life. Socks and shoes strung out all over the mudroom means that my kids are here, alive, healthy and playing and remembered to take their shoes off – good kids that they are. Books and magazines strewn about means we have a little time to sit. And think. And ponder. And perhaps even learn something. It’s only day one but I have high hopes for days 2, 3 and beyond…here comes SUMMER!!! I say, bring it on!!!

p.s. The clematis pic is from our backyard deck – we will miss some of the plants we have babied for six years. Don found a replacement “vine” in Texas but it was a little too Little-Shop-Of-Horrors looking for me!

Square Foot Gardening

We have two raised garden beds that we build for square foot gardening. Having thought we’d be moved to Texas by now, I have ignored gardening up until now. I have the itch. Even if it’s just a few plants. When we moved to Nebraska from Utah, we had planted a beautiful garden full of tomatoes and zucchini and other wonders and the people who moved into our home there didn’t even like tomatoes. C’est la vie! Since we’re not so sure we won’t be here sans husband (he might have to travel back and forth), I might as well get my garden on!

These gardening books by Mel Bartholomew are fantastic (we have the original but I hear the revised version if great, too!).

Here’s a link to a blogger – My Square Foot Garden – with some other great resources and insights into gardening. Thanks, Diana, for the link!

Speaking of getting my garden on – did you see that $5 Dinners has a giveaway right now for a $50 Home Depot gift card? Be sure to tell your friends & good luck!