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Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Early Harvest

Here is a picture of our upper garden. Yes, we are still building more raised beds! You can see how Michael set up a way to tie up our tomatoes. It's survived some storms so far! We are heavily mulching everything so keep the moisture to the plants and protect them from the heat, which we need since it was 97 today!

We started some tomato seeds in January so we had some nice plants ready to plant outside the first of May. They really have set fruit.

We have some almost ready. Many of these are over a pound and I wanted to pick one for dinner but Michael prevailed on me to wait another day or two! We have never had tomatoes by the first of June before!

We wintered over our onions and they have done really well. Here is the last of them (not as big as the first ones we pulled up). It's probably about half of the onions we harvested.

Our grape vines are just full and look so healthy. We have added three more vines to our grape arbor so we are hoping in future years to have a good harvest.

Our Marion Berries and Blackberries are just beginning to turn. They too look full of berries and so healthy. This is the first year of our Marion Berries.

In fact, here is the first picking of them today.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Ward Memorial Day Picnic

Saturday the wrad had a picnic at Lake Moss, at Eddie Poole's family. We had perfect weather, great food, lots of water for the kids to play in, boating and fun visits! Here are some pictures from the day:

Monday, May 16, 2011

May Garden update

We are big time into strawberries right now. I've picked about 35 gallons so far but they are winding down. I'm excited that we have more berries coming. These black berry plants have canes that are over six feet tall!

Our blackberries are loaded and will really perform in a few weeks.

Here are our Marionberries, my most favorite berries ever! They are Oregon's best kept secret but they will live here just fine!

Our potato boxes and potato raised bed (with another bed frame one on top)is going gangbusters. I hope they are setting a ton of potatoes!

Here are our early tomatoes and they have a lot of tomatoes that are really big already.

Our green beans are up and doing well. Since green beans nitrogen fix the soil, I've planted them on the sides of our berries to help their soil and also give us more green beans. Those plants are also doing well so we may have a lot of green beans.

Cats trying to please me!

These are our cats, Big Boy and Little Girl. We have had them 10 and 13 years but they really are Michael's cats and they just tolerate me. This past weekend Michael went to Alabama to help with the tornado clean up. Saturday night I was working on our strawberries sitting in my chair when Little Girl brought inside a big mouse in her mouth, still alive. Now, I have a terrible phobia of all things rodent! I thought I was being calm when I put down the strawberry bowl and jumped up and opened the French doors trying to persuade her to take it outside. Of course she dropped it and it ran to under my chair. I had to run to the bedroom to shut the door and call Ryan for help. He graciously came over and started looking for the mouse. He moved furniture but could not find it! I opened my door and there by my door was Little Girl and the now dead mouse. Thank Heavens! Ryan was there and took the Mouse out of the house. While we were sitting talking in the living room, Ryan looked down on the carpet and saw a dead bird. He also removed it for me.

Two years ago, Michael had a conference in San Francisco and they brought in a mouse and put it in front of the stove. Why do these furry pets think they need to earn my love whenever Michael happens to go out of town without me?

Friday, May 13, 2011

Run for the roses - Harper style!

For about a month each year, our Rose hedge looks beautiful!

Learn to sew!

We had a beginning sewing class last night. Tracy's mom Diane is a wonderful seamstress and she offered to teach sisters in our ward basic sewing.

So, our living room and kitchen was turned into a sewing classroom!

We first cut out jumpers.

Sewing machines sounded like racing cars as everyone got busy.

Even our old ironing board got a workout.

Theresa got immediately busy to make a jumper for her granddaughter.

Our biggest success of the night was Jeanne! She absolutely tenses up and gets very stressed at the thought of sewing. However, at the end of the night, she went home with a cute, well made jumper for Natalie!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

A wheelbarrow full of strawberries!

It's an understatement that we love berries! We have always tried to have a strawberry patch. Last year we had a banner year of 75 gallons of berries out of our patch. But after the season, we replanted four of our beds so I knew this year, we would not have as many berries. So far though, it's doing well. On Saturday I picked 5 gallons of berries.

Today, Michael helped me and we picked 8 gallons. We had to use the wheel barrow to get them up to the house! They are beautiful and taste wonderful. There is nothing like a fresh berry picked on site!

Our princess is 6!

Last week our little Sydney turned six. At school they gave her a crown to wear all day and to wear home.

Of course, her grandma Fuller makes her all sorts of princess dresses and this birthday was no exception! She immediately had to put on her new princess play dress.

Haily had to get in the act and put on one of her princess dresses too!