Friday, December 28

Last Few Pieces of the Time Capsule

Dear Noelle, Ty, and Alexis,

Where to even start?  As 2012 comes to a close, I want to hold onto every little moment with you guys.  I am acutely aware of how fast time is speeding by and want to take a minute to jot down some of the sweet, adorable, and funny things that make me so proud to be your mommy.

Alexis, my sweet 20 month old.  Your personality warms my heart.  I love to listen to you chatter to your new baby doll, which by the way, has not left your side since you opened him up on Christmas.  Always the concerned little mommy, your baby always need his blanket, his stroller, and his bottle.  When you're eating lunch, baby has to be sitting next to you in the high chair.  When you take a sip of milk, you are always sure to give baby a sip from his bottle too.  If something isn't right you call out "OH NO! Baby help!"  I try to get all the cute stuff on video, but  you get all shy and sassy telling me "NO".

You like to tell me how "dalishush" my food is.  How "awesummmm" this or that is. When we are trying to find an item we have lost (usually a boot or paci), carefully and cautiously lift up toys, blankets, etc., survey the scene and tell me "Nope."  Just quick and to the point.  You are so diligent and mindful of directions.  No matter what I ask you to do, you respond with a sweet little "oooookaay" and get the job done, whether it's getting your shoes, laying down for a diaper change, or brushing your teeth.  I love it and love you!

Ty, my child with the gentle soul.  You are growing up to be such a wonderful little boy.  You are always concerned that we do things "as a whole family", even if this means all 7 of us, yes the dogs too, are piled up on the couch or bed for story time.  You take after your Daddy in so many ways.  You have become quite the little firefighter and will play with your trucks and rescue guys for hours on end.  You love soccer and will be starting swimming soon.  You are always getting good reports from school for being such a great helper and that makes me so proud.  You love to read books and are always trying to bribe me with "just one more book" before bed.  It's so hard to say no to your cute little face, but we had to put a book limit or you'd stay up all night!

You love to laugh at all things silly, especially if anyone says poop.  You were at the firehouse the other night and one of the guys let you put the radio gear on.  I guess there was a lot of poop talk going on because you were laughing so hard I thought you were going to fall right out of the firetruck!

Noelle, my beautiful and passionate child.  You are growing up in so many ways and I am enjoying the journey.  You just finished up the Nutcracker, and I can't even describe how proud I was to see you dance in the production.  I sat on the edge of my seat, tears in my eyes, feeling so many things, but mostly wonder and awe at the spectacular job you did.  It was nothing short of incredible and I know this is only the beginning of the many great things ahead of you.

You are excelling at Kindergarten and I am so thankful that you wear a uniform! You have a love of skinny jeans, fancy shoes, and all things sparkley. You often complain that you have nothing "pretty or beautiful" to wear, but you shine so bright that you could be wearing rags and still shine like a star.  You are beautiful on the outside, but more importantly, on the inside too.  You care deeply for your family and even though you fight with your brother,  I know you love him too :-)  Doing things like sharing your last piece of candy, reading him a book, or bringing him a treat from the store, shows what a great daughter you are.

You love your Daddy to bits and it is so cute to watch you talk to him on the phone.  Your facial expressions and tone of voice are fun to watch when you tell stories.  Often times, there is head bobbing, eye rolling, and fully bellied laughs.   I love the little attitude you get when your stubbornness shows.  While it can be a tad crazy to deal with, I know that your strong will is going to be an asset to you as you go through life.  You are also fiercely have to be the first in line before school, which often creates quite the frantic morning.  Because, while you love to be first, you also love to sleep in and the 6:30 start your days just doesn't cut it.  Other things you love: reading, doing math, making lists, crafts, dressing up, chutes & ladders,  sleeping in, doing homework, writing in your journal, Taylor Swift, Justin Bieber, and creeping me out with your wiggly teeth.  Things you don't quite love: Chomper's snoring, Ty's "snuffling" and losing.

I love you guys and can't wait to see what is in store for the Hunt house!

Thursday, August 16

How My Garden Grows: the rest of the summer!

Well, the garden production is in full swing!  The last month or so, we've had tons of corn, beans, cucumbers, and tomatoes.  I forgot to take a picture of our first tomato, but I did remember to snap a shot of it half eaten! Nothing better than a fresh tomato!!  The kids are about sick of them at this point, but boy, when they were first ripening they would fight for them like cats n' dogs.

Noelle loves to water the garden.  The only problem is that she thinks it's funny to spray Ty, which always ends in a fight.

Alexis loves to be at the garden.  She is quite the little helper! We usually go on bath nights since she gets pretty dirty.  Here she is helping pick tomatoes and corn.

The plants are out of control! Note to self: don't be so cheap with the trellises.  When you have big plants, they bend and break from the weight, thus rendering them worthless.  What I'd really like to do is build big cages...made of that wire you use for concrete.  Now those would be perfect.

For the most of July,  I would also get a sink full of corn and a ton of tomatoes.  I also pulled up all the onions and am hoping they will keep through the fall.

Another batch of tomatoes.  And some cayenne peppers starting to turn!

One of my favorite things to make: fresh onions, fresh tomatoes, and avocados.  Chunk it up and enjoy with tortilla chips.  So delicious.

We have had the fortune to have excess tomatoes so we spent one morning blanching and freezing them.  Here Noelle is posing with some of the tomatoes she peeled. 

Alexis is a better looker than helper with the blanching process.  She was content to play with a bowl of water.  Ty gave up on peeling tomatoes after about 5.  

Three bag fulls ready to go for chili! Now if the fall could hurry up and get here, that would be perfect! 

Got a batch of peppers drying out.  Jeremy loves to put these in eggs, sauce, and chili.  They are WAY to hot for me!

I actually have sunflowers! This is the second bouquet we've picked.  There is something so great about fresh flowers....really brightens my day.

And that is how my garden has been growing!!

Sunday, July 1

How My Garden Grows: Weeks 7-9

Front view of the garden at home.  The peas are on the left, cherry tomato in the middle, and the cucumber on the right.  I haven't had any cucumbers yet; we were on vacation so I couldn't prune this last week.  So, the leaves have been growing, but the cucumbers have stayed small or whithered.  Hopefully we'll see some by the end of the week!


Cherries are starting to turn red!

Well, turns out what I thought were bell peppers were actually these pictured below.  Obviously some sort of pepper, but not a bell! I'm hoping they are sweet and not hot. I'll let Jeremy figure that one out!

Pea pods! The kids gobbled them up within minutes.

Now to the bad.  The freakin rabbits ate all the beans AGAIN while were on vaca.  And they also had a feast on some of the onions. I feel defeated. Thankfully, the beans are flourishing at the other garden, so I'm not too mad.  At least the roots will help get some nitrogen to the soil.  I think I'll probably till that part and get my winter carrots started.  

The sunflower heads are just starting to open!

Tomatoes at the rented plot.  TONS of green tomatoes on the 3 plants.  Now it's just waiting patiently until they ripen.  My neighbors have had trouble with something eating theirs, but so far they've steered clear of my plants.  

Front view.  3 tomato plants in front, corn in back, the beastly fennel plant in the middle, beans to the right.

Beautiful, delicious beans.  Tons of them.  We picked two rows and filled up an entire Meijer bag.  I've got two more rows growing and then I'll put in another two this week.  My neighbors said they were jealous of the size and look of the plants.  Ya, I love compliments on my garden!! 

Hot pepper plant has started to flower.

Corn silk...which I assume will turn into a husk? Time will tell...I do know that I've got the tallest corn out there, so that has to count for something, right?!

Side view.  The kids are picking beans, corn in the back.  Fennel plant is right behind Noelle, tomatoes to the left.  To the right is the patch of weeds I'll need to clear before I get the next set of beans down.  

Best 'lil picker!

And that, my friends, is how my garden grows weeks 7-9.

Sunday, June 10

How My Garden Grows: Weeks 5 & 6

Each time I go out to the garden, I feel like it's Christmas morning! The anticipation of what I am going to find, especially after a good, hard rain, is so thrilling! In our home garden, we have the following:

Cherry Tomatoes!!!

Pea patch that has been able to escape the bunnies!

The beginnings of our first cucumber

Here is an overview of the garden at home.  The newly planted beans have sprouted and so far so good with keeping the rabbits out.  It's hard to see, but I planted some onions bulbs to the right of the beans and once those sprouted I haven't had much trouble with the rabbits (hope that stays the case!)  The cucumber plant is on the move so I put up the trellis and I'm sure it'll be covering it in no time.

Children of the corn, ha! 

Beans at the rented plot are doing wonderfully.  No flowering yet, but it's only a matter of time!  I also put in another two rows, which have since come up.

There is a tomato on each plant, too.  I simply cannot wait for our first dinner of BLTs...on tomato basil bread from Panera...YUM!!

The onions are doing well too.  

I had a breakthrough in weeding since the last post. I used a flat shovel and and loosened up the soil before weeding.  Holy cow, what a difference! Pulling the weeds was effortless and they have stayed away.  I imagine that is what hoes are used for, but I had to improvise since I am hoeless.  Ha!

And that, my friends, is how my garden grows!

Saturday, June 2

Silly Sally

Dear Noelle,

Here are just a few funny quotes as of late.  You are hilarious and the facial expressions that go along with them are just amazing.

"Who barked the horn?"


"Your breath is tickling my arm."


Me: "Do you want to go to the Planetarium tonight?"

You: (sounding super excited...) "Oh, is that the place where you lay back in the chairs and look at all the stars and stuff?"

Me: "Yep! That's the one!"



Thanks for being so great, kid!  I love you!


Tuesday, May 29

How My Garden Grows: Weeks 3 & 4

We have corn! The corn is on its way to knee high by the 4th of July...and the weeds are growing at the same rate, if not faster.  I spent a good 3 hours the other night weeding and it barely made a dent.  So, I've decided to just maintain the areas around the plants and worry about the other spots when I can.  I'm pretty excited for the corn, but Jeremy likes to remind me that we need to see actual ears first.  

The beans have taken a bit of a hit the last 2 weeks.  Here is a shot of the rented plot's beans.  Something is obviously snacking on them so I made sure to get the Seven out and have been able to control the damage.  Where are pictures from my home garden? Oh, there are NONE.  Because something (rabbit, vole, bird?) ate the seeds/leaves.  So I had to replant those and they have yet to sprout.  Very frustrating!

 Onions are looking great! You can see my neighbors cabbage in the background.  You can also see the weeds that separate our gardens.  Maybe one day I'll have time to pull those.  If not, oh well!

 The onions I planted from seeds have started to come up....

The tomato plants are looking healthy.  One even has a little tomato starting! Can't wait to enjoy BLTs, salsa, and sauce!

The cayenne pepper plant growth is minimal.  Going to get some fertilizer out to give it a hand.

On the home front, the cherry tomato plant has started to flower.  The difference is soil quality and the affect it has on plants is simply amazing.  Every time I go out back, it seems like the plants have grown 1-2 inches.

The sunflowers are getting tall but don't look too healthy.  It's probably due to our crappy soil in the backyard.  I have miracle grow on the list for the grocery this week, so hopefully that will help.  I would love it if I could get one or two sunflower heads to dry and make seeds!

The green peppers were being eaten as well, so I put a barrier around the bottom to ward off hungry little pains in the ass.

The peas are coming along nicely.  Still haven't made a trellis, but maybe now I'll get it done since school is out??  I filled in some of the open spots with more seeds, so we should have a nice crop of peas- yum!

 The cukes- this is kind of a bad picture.  The plant is doing well and with a good rain or two, I imagine I'll start to see some flowers.

Still no sign of the lettuce.  The chives were coming up, but I think a certain boy and girl picked all the sprouts to eat...because the pot is now mysteriously empty after a brief taste test.  The green onions continue to grow well, and I put in some bulb onions in the home garden too, in hope of keeping out the pesky rabbits.

And that's how the garden has been growing!!