Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Big Fun at the Little Gym!

Today was our first class at The Little Gym. After having a fantastic time at the Introductory Class last week, I decided to sign the kids up for the rest of the Summer term.

The class began with the kids on the mat. They chose which everyday hero (police officer, firefighter, paramedic, etc.) they would like to be today. Duncan chose firefighter. He participated in all of the movements and songs, and was clearly having fun.

Miranda? She did her own thing. They told me when she did this last week that it's perfectly fine and expected that some kids will want to explore. There's structure, but not rigidity. Cool.

She checked out the bar, and did some swinging. But she kept a careful eye on what the other children were doing, so she could be sure to participate when she felt the urge (which she did this week! Huzzah!) Unfortunately, going in to snap a few clearer pics resulted in a distracted little girl. So, most of the pictures are from behind the glass.

Duncan at the bar, but watching his little sister on the beam. She's a total beam star.

Duncan gives the bar the "old college try." He ended up with a frowny face and started to cry. We all thought he'd bumped his nose or lip, but he told me when class was over that he wasn't able to flip. The poor little fella was disappointed that he couldn't flip. I told him that he'd done really well, and that next time if he needs a little extra help to be sure to ask the teacher, and that there was no reason to be disappointed.

Last week Miranda climbed up on the beam and did little hops, and then a crawl off sort of dismount. She loved it. The manager told me that she couldn't even get some of her 5 year old students to hop like that! All the parents were turning to me and asking if Miranda had been there before. Nope. She's just a Beam Star!

Work it, girl!

This week Miranda did a hop off sort of dismount. Her confidence is a little scary.

Duncan on the beam. He participated in every station today. So proud!

Duncan pulling up on the Uneven Parallel bars. Working those triceps!

She's a star and she knows it!

Monday, June 27, 2011

June's Bustin' Out All Over!

We've had some severe weather in the area lately. Wind and rain (thankfully, no tornadoes!) We seem to lose some small limbs every time we have a storm. This large branch is the biggest so far this summer. And unfortunately, it fell right on top of my...

Lovely Hydrangea aborescens "Annabelle." This is the one that I had pictured with Duncan a month or so ago. It looks like it will be fine. I'm glad I got to enjoy it before the damage!

I purchased two white Hydrangeas for the Easter service at church last year. One in honor of Duncan and Miranda, and one in memory of Evan. One plant has a creamy white bloom...just one! And this one pictured is tinged with blue. Since taking this photo, it's turned even more blue!

The Crape Myrtles are starting to bloom. My parents purchased this small tree in honor of Evan's birth in 2004. It was itty bitty then. Perhaps only two feet tall. Now it's easily eight feet! With quite a spread! I think it's Lagerstroemia indica x faueri 'Acoma'

I purchased these groundcover roses from a local big box store. There have got to be 30 blooms in that cluster, and as many buds!

Rudbeckia fulgida "Early Bird Gold"

Got loads of this to spare if anyone's interested!

Echinacea "Kim's Mophead" is outstanding this year! The honeybees have been frequent visitors, as are butterflies. Definitely need to make the effort to get some more.

This is what one expects to see when looking at a Daylily from the side.

So, what's going on here? This is a Daylily that thinks it's a Tulip.

Stunning from the top, too!

Vegetable Garden Update

Here's my little haul from the vegetable garden! I'm actually posting this (finally) in July, and we've eaten most of the potatoes and a goodly portion of the onions. I need to get to work on the garlic, because there's a ton! I don't think the potatoes did as well this year as last year. I planted more than twice the number of plants. I suppose it's to do with the early onset of summer temperatures. Hot, hot, hot. And dry. Hopefully, I'll have better luck next year. The tomato crop has been so-so. As well as the onions. Kind of a disappointing year for veg so far. I've planted some late season black beans and corn (not many seeds came up for the corn, sadly), so we'll see how they do.

Sunday, June 26, 2011


Kids are expensive. They have to be fed, clothed, taken to the doctor, schooled. These are normal every day expenses, of course. But normal every day expenses do add up over time.

If you're A Planner you may have things all worked out for how much to spend to stay on budget. And how much is going into that college fund. If you're not A Planner, but still curious, there are calculators now that will tell you how much money you will have spent on Junior by the time he goes to college. I guess it's supposed to be somewhat amusing. Or maybe it really is out there to help people prepare themselves financially. I haven't looked up one of these online calculators, yet. But I have to wonder what all is left off the list. You know...all the stuff that the kid breaks in his endless experiments on Mommy's fragile nerves. Do you think it includes broken DVD and VHS players? Scratched DVDs? Dishwashers and computer keyboards? Monitors? The car stereo? Or how about all those times the kids dumped out every last drop of the gallon of milk or the whole package of flour?

I find myself thinking of a Ron Weasley quote from the Harry Potter series, "Why is everything I own rubbish?" Sure, the kids break their own stuff all the time, but it's always kind of a shock when something of mine is broken. I'm on my third flute cleaning rod within the last year. I hide them so that Duncan will not use them for drumsticks. I even have a back up rod. So, naturally, when I found Miranda examining my precious flute, which she had dumped out on the floor, I was a nervous wreck. I cautiously approached, gave the "you don't play with this" disclaimer, snatched it, and walked away stroking it. Probably saying, "My Precious."

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Garden Blogger's Bloom Day

I'm going to pretend that I actually got this posted in time for Garden Blogger's Bloom Day on June 15th. The photos were taken then, but not downloaded for a few days. What to expect? Daylilies! And some other stuff. :)

Plant Trade Daylily

Echinacea purpurea "Kim's Mop Head" is a favorite with bees and butterflies!

Daylilies line the pathway across from Evan's Garden

Daylily, "Big Bird" in Evan's Garden!

Aesculus parviflora "Bottlebrush Buckeye" also in Evan's Garden

Daylily with Dryopteris ludoviciana "Southern woodfern"

Daylily "Justin Brent" amongst the Crocosmia

Hydrangea aborescens "Annabelle"

Dahlia "Alpen Diamond"

Calla lily

New Daylily (I have to check the label for its Cultivar)

Daylily "Wineberry Candy"

Mystery Daylily that was supposed to be "Wineberry Candy!"