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My garden is planted!  Finally!  I can’t believe it has taken this long, but hopefully it will be bountiful.  We planted our strawberry plants yesterday.  The kids are so excited about those starting to bear fruit.  The tomatoes didn’t freeze with the frost warning the other night and our corn and carrots have little leaves poking out of the ground.  I was most excited to plant a pumpkin patch, but unfortunately that was the last thing to get in the ground.  I really hope they sprout!

“Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.”  Hebrews 11:1  HAVE FAITH AND IT WILL GROW!

Last night when I tilled up the two rows for the strawberries the smell of fresh dirt was heavenly.  There is something very magical about tilling the earth.  It’s grass, you till it’s dirt filled with grass, you till a little more it’s gray dirt and finally after a little water and tender care, you till yet again and it’s black earth filled with natural nutrients capable of producing natural food for your family to eat.  Granted it takes awhile, but when I don’t have to buy those vegetables from the store it will be so worth the wait.

Now it’s to keep those kiddos out of the dirt so our little super natural creations can grow.  My kids love dirt!  Whether it’s the box full of sand or a pile of dirt our neighbor left from fixing our driveway.  It really doesn’t matter.  And if there is water anywhere near that dirt well that’s just like hitting the kid lottery, let me tell you!  Especially my two-year old daughter, even in her black sparkly shoes splashing through the mud puddles is her very favorite pass time.

I actually don’t think I made the garden big enough.  With the late spring we had I was running out of time this year.  Next year I think I will make it larger, so we can have more room for herbs and maybe a couple of rows of blueberries.  A little better plan would probably work too.  I just love having the option and the room to grow as much as I can handle.  And I guess that is what it’s all about.  Not overwhelming myself with the possibilities, just being happy with what I have done.

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What to plant for the new growing season?

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That is the big question on my mind.  I have my seed order all ready, but I haven’t pressed the buy button yet.  I want to make sure I can maintain what I plant and yet have enough to help out with our grocery bill through next fall and winter.  What is too much?  It’s our second attempt at a garden.  I planted one the first year we were here, but I did not maintain it the the it needed.  It was a really dry year and I was quickly frustrated by bugs and hot weather.  I am really hoping I have grown and matured and now realize the value that a garden will bring to our family.  And I have some weed pickers now, so that may help too!  I am hoping that this will be fun for the kids and I to do this summer.  Any tips?  Feel free to tip away!

Pop a top!

Ok this might mean something different to some of you.  But to me it means my canning jars sealed – yeah!  I know it seems like a stupid thing to be excited about, but I don’t enjoy canning that much, so when I hear those jar tops start popping I get excited! 

Canning is a lot of work with little payback.  The biggest benifit is saving what we can’t get up here in the winter time.  If you can preserve a fruit or vegetable and it tastes as fresh as when it’s picked from the garden that’s wonderful, but with inovation in frozen food and even the canned food at the store I don’t know if it’s worth the work! 

All of you canning maniacs will probably disagree with me, but that’s life and mine is busy enough.  I don’t need to add more work to the mix.  Call me lazy.

If life gives you Tomatoes make salsa!

I have acquired the greatest Salsa recipe that I have ever tasted and it’s home-made!  So if someone is giving tomatoes away from their garden this fall take them and try my easy and fresh tasting salsa recipe. 

When I made this salsa I was very proud of the result, so I wanted Mitch to try it.  I stuck the spoon in his mouth and he made a face.  Not a completely unwelcoming face, but not an excited appreciative face either.  He told me it was good and then said he wasn’t really a salsa person.  What?!  Salsa is tomatoes all smooshed up and made into a sauce of sorts.  He loves tomato sauce.  I believe he and Ben would have tomato sauce intravenously transported into their bodies if it was humanly possible.  spaghetti, tomato hotdish, pizza, maranara sauce with cheese sticks – it’s endless.  But apparently salsa is a different taste.  And that is fine, because there will be more for me!