Friday, May 29, 2009

We got one! WARNING: Gross picture

I talked to the MSU Extension office in Oakland County yesterday to see if there was any better way to get rid of voles than just using mouse traps like we did last year.  Unfortunately the woman I talked to told me that the traps were probably our best bet unless we want to use poison.  Poison in my vegetable garden???  I don't think so!  So Paul and I baited 5 traps with peanut butter and set them around all of the holes in the garden last night.  (when I say Paul and I - I mean Paul.  :)  After snapping my thumb in a trap last year, I'm scared to death of the things - so I just supervised.)  When I got up this morning and checked, ALL of the traps were sprung....

...And we'd only caught one.  GROSS!!!

I left this ugly little guy for Paul to deal with.  Husbands are so great!  We're going to keep resetting the traps and replacing the ones that succeed every day until we stop catching anything.  I think I'm also going to try spreading some of Mia's shed fur around out there so they think that there's predators around.  Hopefully this will work - I'm sick of them eating/killing my plants!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Cuteness, flowers, and more socks

Isn't this the cutest picture ever??  :)  Mia's supervising as I put away laundry.  She likes being involved in anything that's going on.  :)

The irises that I got from my mom's garden are finally blooming.  They're so pretty!  :)  There's another color - a lighter purple.  I wonder if any of them will bloom this year.

And here's the socks I'm currently working on.  My first project with cables!  I have no idea why I was afraid of cables for so long - they're actually very easy!!  One sock is done and I'm just starting the heel flap on the other.  They're a wool/silk blend that's super soft and cozy.  The color is more of a bright fuscia than this picture shows - I guess my cell phone doesn't take the BEST pictures ever.  :)  I'll get some better pictures with my real digital camera when I'm done with the second sock.  My next project will be another pair of socks out of the same yarn, but in a plum color.  Any suggestions for a nice worsted weight sock pattern for me to try?

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Some more garden pictures

yeah, so maybe posting all of these pictures is being a bit obsessive.  I don't care.  :)  I'm attempting to document all of my plants this year - and posting pictures here helps keep me motivated to keep the gardens weeded, watered, and healthy.  I'm just really excited about growing things this year!  :)


Wild phlox on the other side of the fence - in the field behind our yard.

The voles are back and are terrorizing my veggie garden already  :(  any tips on getting rid of them?  The best I've found so far is regular mouse traps with peanut butter.
my version of square foot gardening.  it's actually 2-square-foot gardening as my squares are 2x2 instead of 1x1.  :)  eh, it works.
one of my new planter boxes that my father in law built me for my birthday!  This is where I'm going to grow lettuce and other greens to keep them away from the voles & rabbits.
all of the planter boxes....
The first peony of the year!  :)
and some more about ready to come out
garden in front of the house - irises, dianthus, sedum, lilies...and some weeds.  :)
my tiger lily had babies!!  :)
front of the house
hmmm....  first year any of my irises have been YELLOW!!!  where'd this come from??
irises in front of the house
front of the house...  I just found out what the white flowers are - ornithogalum umbellatum or Star of Bethleham.  Very pretty and sweet smelling flowers.  :)
front of the house...  do you know what the pink stuff is?  It also came with the house.  it flowers most of the spring/summer.  is it creeping phlox?
side of the house.  we built this pathway.  there just used to be a garden here and nothing connecting these two we put in some cinder blocks and installed a gate.  I love it!!  :)  strawberries and roses on the right, lilies, black eyed susans, and some kind of ground cover on the left.
close up of the strawberries
closeup of the roses

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Socks, who'd have thought?

So hopefully certain members of my family aren't reading my blogs because they may recognize some of these project when we exchange Christmas presents. Wow, I can't believe I'm thinking about Christmas ALREADY! Usually I think about these things too late to make nice presents for everyone, but I'm way ahead of the game this year! :) Here's pictures of some of my finished projects. I never would have thought I'd ENJOY knitting socks, but I do. maybe it's because the project gets completed so quickly. Who knows? :) More to come as they're completed - I just pulled one unpictured sock off the needles last night and will be casting on it's mate tonight. :)

I love spring!

So spring means I've been out in the yard planting things, fighting the weeds, and just happily watching things grow. Here's some pictures that I took this morning on my way out the door to work!

The pink flowers = Dianthus. Funny story here - I bought three flats of this last year and was told it was an annual. it's back this year and doing better than ever - and it definitely isn't from reseeding - the actual plants from last year are still alive! I did some research and found that this plant is available as an annual or a perennial. They must have mismarked and I got a really good deal and a nice surprise this spring. :)

Here's my herb garden with some Dianthus mixed in. I may be moving the Dianthus as I'm running out of room! The oregano that I planted last year is threatening to take over the entire garden. There's baby dill seedlings ALL over because I let it go to seed last year (yum dill!) and I've got some baby basil, thyme, and rosemary coming up from seed too. My lavender plant is hiding behind the Dianthus, but it's greening up and getting lots of leaves too. I've also planted a supplemental herb garden in a pot in the kitchen window sill. :) this one includes another kind of basil (basil is my FAVORITE), cilantro, and parsley. Yum!

...and a close-up picture of the giant oregano!

 of my favorite flowers! This is just one of 3 or 4 different kinds in my garden. One variety already blossomed and I missed getting a picture. :( Another is ABOUT to blossom. The plants are all covered with buds - I'll be sure to take lots of pictures when the blooms finally come out because this last variety is my FAVORITE! It might have something to do with the fact that the bulbs came from my mom's garden and that they're the flowers I grew up helping care for and love. :)

...and last picture for the day - the iris bed, next to some peonies, lilies, dianthus, spider wort (such a pretty "weed"!), and there's some violets hiding (maybe I should move them since they're being overgrown) and there were some hyacinths earlier in the year.

I haven't planted any annuals yet this year (the violets are there because they re-seeded themselves), unless you count some of the herbs and veggies that have been planted. I love perennials. I sometimes feel like I waste my money with I've been trying to get such an assortment of perennials that something is always in bloom. I'm getting really close!! if only my daffodils had bloomed this year... Oh well, I guess they can have their first year off. :)