Where would the world be without imagination? Actually, I can’t even imagine it! Would people have accomplished anything without it? My mother gave me perhaps one of the best gifts of all by sharing a love of reading with me. Books are really the perfect tool for fostering imagination, “The books transported her into new worlds and introduced her to amazing people who lived exciting lives. She went on olden-day sailing ships with Joseph Conrad. She went to Africa with Ernest Hemingway and to India with Rudyard Kipling. She travelled all over the world while sitting in her little room in an English village.” – Matilda by Roald Dahl.
Some of my favorite places to travel via the turn of a page are whimsical and magical lands like that in which a fairy might reside. And so, when I saw a picture of a fairy garden a couple of years back, my heart soared. I had to have one but for some reason or another it has taken me until now to make it happen. Though my ten and a half year old science boy son did not take to the idea as much as I had hoped my Bella girl is in it with me. Nina is more like the giant that all of the fairies fear as she attempts to walk the tiny gravel path and lift the tiny houses for inspection. We have only just begun but now is when we can really call upon our imaginations. That acorn cap? How about making it a little bucket for a wishing well? Used popsicle sticks from summer time treats? The perfect fence! This project makes me feel like a kid again and one that I hope keeps my children kids just a little bit longer.
Strawberry Cupcakes via Cooking Classy
Time for a little reflection…
Back in March we started with a pile of seed packets from High Mowing Organic Seeds, a few bags of organic seed starting mix, and a bunch of containers. I should mention the folding table and light leftover from a restaurant remodel as well. I had my doubts about the set up but with the aid of aluminum foil for reflective purposes (the husband’s idea) the seeds became plants under their artificial sun. Without fail a seed becoming a plant amazes me every time!
Fast forward to the present and we have a forecast full of warm weather mixed with some rain throughout the week. To prep them for their big move into the garden, the plant babies went through a transitioning process from inside to outside over the past couple of weeks. Cold turkey isn’t recommended so gradual sun and wind exposure it was for my little green friends. And on Sunday, a gorgeous sunny day, they made the big move. In anticipation of this grand event, I had plotted out my garden on graph paper old school style. Following that plan I set out each plant in their designated spots and then gathered some beautiful wormy compost from the bin. I added a bit of compost into the bottom of each hole before placing the plants and packed a little more around them after planting. Congratulations my lovely plant children! Now please don’t die.
Scenes from The Green Brick Road
Back to reflection…
Once all of the plants were tucked into place the kids and I headed over to my Dad’s house. Essentially this is where the Green Brick Road starts because his land is where I grew up and where I had my first little garden bed. For the sake of full disclosure I was a terrible gardener as a child and soon lost interest in tending my plants. Thank you Mom for saving their lives! Watching my children run around in my old stomping grounds always brings back great memories of a happy childhood. I couldn’t have asked for a better place to grow up.
I leave you with an inspiring video. I am in awe of what she has created!
Have you ever read the book “If You Give a Mouse a Cookie?” If you have not, the next part of the book goes, “he’ll probably ask for a glass of milk.” Well, the Grandmom version goes like this, “If Grandmom saw a patch of empty land, she’d probably want to plant it.” She was never afraid to ask the owner if she could put a “few” plants in. I remember her planting a garden next to the apartment complex my cousin once lived in and another at a local senior center. The local paper even wrote about her a few times. Following in her footsteps I jumped at the chance to take over when I discovered that my neighbor wasn’t planning on doing much with a raised bed along the side of her house. When you have a yard as tiny as mine and you enjoy gardening, any extra space is a huge blessing. Should I plant more tomatoes? More peppers? Both? Decisions, decisions!
Grandmom the Local Celebrity
As for the garden that I actually own, this week Nina and I worked hard to finish prepping the beds for planting. Since the possibility of frost still exists however, my not so little anymore seedlings remain in their container homes. They visit the outdoors on bright sunny days and look longingly at the garden awaiting the day of their big move. I’ve mapped out where each will live when that happy day arrives and have found homes with friends and family for those that will not fit. My dad went home yesterday with two trays of plants for his house. They will be planted in the very same garden that I laid in as a child while eating fresh peas from their pods. Hmm, guess that makes me like my Grandma in yet another way as she was quick to share her plants with anyone that showed an interest in them. Being able to share my plant babies feels nice so maybe I’ll just have to “accidentally” sow a few extra seeds next year as well!
The Egloff Farm
We capped off an already great weekend with a visit to a friend’s farm. The first time I visited their beautiful home was for a Christmas party, and it was love at first sight. It’s that kind of beautiful. The kind of place that feels like home right away and the kind of place where there is always something new to discover. Jokingly I mentioned at the first party that I was going to move in. After today’s visit I’m not so sure that I should have been joking. Maybe the chickens will loan me a nest? It might just happen especially since hearing about my older kids’ adventures finding crayfish in the creek and hearing Nina’s laughter at the dogs and chickens was pure music to my ears. A great, great day!
On this bright sunny day I used my trusty cart to transport beautiful composted horse manure from a pile in the yard to the raised beds desperately in need of a soil refill. By chance the other day my husband opened the free paper that usually goes directly into the recycling bin and saw a freebie post for composted horse manure from a local farm. What luck! I had just mentioned to him earlier in the week that we really needed to find something to fill the beds. Was it divine intervention that led us to Higher Ground Stables? I think absolutely yes. Even better, these horses feast on organic feed. Who knew that I could get so excited about horse poopie!
Welcome to The Green Brick Road. My name is Valerie, and I invite you to join me and my family on our gardening adventure. We hope that you will learn with us and grow with us. Pun intended!