Tag Archives: garden

Raised Pallet Garden

I’m excited to finally be able to start blogging again. The past few months have been hard… really hard… as I’ve been recuperating (I’m still not quite 100%) but I am feeling so much better the past couple of weeks.

We’ve had quite a few exciting things happen over the time that I’ve been resting.

Last month Mr. Awesome and I went to Orlando and did a square dance event at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge. It was such an amazing experience and I wish I could post pics and the cute video but do to privacy policies I can’t do either of those.

I also started a new health program through Xyngular which has been amazing. You can contact me on Facebook if you want more information and I can put you in touch with my wonderful health coaches.

Fast forward to this past weekend and we made a couple of raised beds. I didn’t have a garden of any kind last year and we all missed it. The kids had even been asking for a garden because they like to play in the dirt. There is just something about playing with warm fresh dirt that has a calming effect… not to mention that the fresh air and sunlight are really nice too.

It was really simple to make these beds as Mr. Awesome had some old pallets laying around. I stacked some of the smaller ones two high to make a platform for the larger ones.

Then the larger ones we turned upside down and staples some weed fabric to the bottom and up the sides. We then flipped them over and placed them on the platform.

We filled them with dirt, each bed got about 6 cubic Ft of dirt but we need approximately 2 more cubic Ft as I misjudged the sizes. The kids loved dumping the dirt in and spreading it out.

Then we planted some tomatoes, peppers, eggplants, herbs, and a couple of marigolds that the kiddos bought. After planting everything we watered them well and admired our work.

We still have some room for lettuce, cucumbers, and maybe some squash. We may end up doing a couple more beds later this week too.

So far they are working out well and we are excited to see how well the plants are doing. We have several small peppers and green tomatoes already as well as lots of blooms on the other plants.

We will be figuring out a trellis system soon as some of the plants are needing some support. I’ll try to update the post when we get it up.

I can’t wait for some fried green tomatoes or a fresh tomato sandwich… making my mouth water.

Have you put out a garden yet? If so, what’s your favorite things to grow?

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Yearly Routines

This page is a work in progress. Here are some links you can check out until I get this page completed.

The Ultimate Household Chore List

ANNUAL CLEANING CHECKLIST {FREE PRINTABLE}

Monthly Routines

This is a quick run down of our monthly routines or tasks that I try to complete once a month. I have divided them up by weeks so that it helps me keep them on track. I only have five tasks per week so I only need to concentrate on one each day.

1st week:

  1. Check/Pay bills
  2. Change calendars
  3. Clean/Sanitize the dishwasher
  4. Make appointments
  5. Yard work

Ok so number one is a must! If you don’t do that one you will be sitting in the dark.

Number two is a little more detailed for us as this not only involves me flipping the page on my desk calendar but changing out the school calendar. I have different themes for different months/seasons. All the cards are printed out and laminated. I keep them separated by months in a small index card holder. (I will try to do a post on this another time.)

I have included a link for the third task. It is important to make sure you take care of your appliances so they will last.

I sit down and see who needs appointments for physicals and such. I also check through my mail to see if I have gotten any appointment cards for anyone.

We try to take care of any big yard work like weed eating, trimming bushes, etc.

2nd week:

  1. Run vinegar and water through the coffee pot
  2. Clean burner pans on the stove
  3. Spot clean couches
  4. Spot clean the carpets
  5. Garden

I have included a link to this first one. It is important to clean out your coffee maker to keep the germies away!

I usually need to clean the burner pans on the stove at least once a month. This reduces the chance of something catching on fire.

The next two are pretty self explanatory. With kids messes are inevitable. I try to clean up messes when they happen but sometimes I don’t see them right away. I take a few minutes, once a month, to check the furniture and give it a quick cleaning.

I do the same with the carpets. I have the Shark Sonic Duo and I love it! It cleans really well and dries really quickly. This machine comes in really handy for big messes too.

When we have a garden I will use this week to give it a little extra attention and let the kids get some hands on learning at the same time.

3rd week:

  1. Change water filters, if needed
  2. Clean vacuum filters
  3. Clean AC filters
  4. Clean out fridge
  5. Clean out freezer

I use a water filter on the kitchen sink for drinking water and our fridge has a filter also. We try to keep a check on them and replace them as needed.

A lot of the vacuums have filters that can be washed. I try to wash mine once a month. I also give the vacuum a good cleaning and check the roller as well.

We have window AC units and they stay in all year round. The ACs run much better and are  more efficient when the filters are cleaned on a regular basis. So this not only saves me money but helps keep us more comfortable as well.

Once a month our fridge gets a deep clean. We take everything out shelf by shelf and wash it. Then we dry it and put it right back.

Same with our large freezer. I try to take everything out shelf by shelf. I use laundry baskets and coolers to hold the items. Things can get a little disorganized when others help put away groceries so I try to organize it by shelf. I separate the fruits and produce, the meats by types, breads, and try to keep the small items or items that need to be used in the door.

4th week:

  1. Wash your car
  2. Menu planning
  3. Wash shower curtain
  4. Clean out tubs/showers
  5. Chicken pen

Our cars get really dirty here. If it rains they get covered in mud. If it doesn’t rain they get covered in dust. When I am in town running errands I try to run my truck through the car wash once a month.

I also take a day to review my upcoming month’s menus and rearrange meals to fit our schedules and budget for the month. If I have multiple meals that pop up for a day I will choose one and delete the rest of them. I will also try to keep in mind what foods are more readily available for whatever season we are in.

Once a month I try to remember to throw the shower curtain in the wash with a load of whites. I hang it up as soon as it is washed so it can dry. When the curtain is down it makes it easier to clean out the tub in the back bathroom. I normally have DD17 take care of that and I take care of the big tub and separate shower in my bathroom.

The bathrooms just smell so much better when you keep everything washed up on a regular basis and don’t give them a chance to gather any kind of funk.

This last week is when we give our chicken pens a little extra attention too. We try to give everything a good cleaning with the water house and replace shavings and whatnot. This keeps the chickens and the geese fairly happy.

I hope this has helped you with some ideas for setting up your own monthly routines.

 

Living the country life?

Original Blog Post April 6, 2016
What does living the country life really mean?
I know I think of farms with cows and chickens.
I think of lazy mornings sitting on the back porch sipping my hot coffee while wondering what to do to pass the endless amount of free time I have.
I think of working in a garden with lots of beautiful plants springing forth.
I think of my kids playing barefoot in the yard.
Then after a nice dinner, made from things we have grown on our farm, we sip some sweet tea and watch the sunset go down from our back porch swing.
In reality things are not quite so simple and not so peaceful.
I wake up before the alarm goes off and hear the roosters crowing. I try to carefully roll out of bed because any movement will wake up one or both of the little ones in my bed.
I tiptoe to the bathroom with my clothes in hand and softly close the door. No sooner do I turn on the water then I hear the pitter-patter of little feet, see a hand under the door and hear ‘Mommy, is you in der?’. Sigh, that’s how most mornings start around here.
I try my best to get up early and have a little quiet time, a little sliver of time for me and time to talk to God but it rarely happens the way I have it planned in my head.
After a quick shower we make our way to the kitchen for a chocolate milk sippy for him and one for my his big brother (yes, they do look out for each other) and he heads to the couch for his daily dose of Animal Planet.
Meanwhile I go back to the kitchen and start with pouring a cup of coffee and trying to remember what I need to do next.
Breakfast… Yes, I should probably do that. I grab my phone and check my calendar for the recipe (I’ll probably write about that another day) which is blueberry muffins. I don’t feel like making muffins. Actually I don’t feel like doing anything but going back to bed.
I mix up the muffins (using frozen blueberries from our farm) and pop them in the oven. I remember to set the timer too! (Last night I forgot and I almost burned the cookies.) I have about 15 minutes so I hurry back to the bathroom to fix my hair.
I sneak back to my room and read my daily devotional and say a quick prayer to ask God to watch over us and guide us through the day. It bothers me that I didn’t have my ‘quiet time’ as I do need it to help get me through the day.
I pick up a few stray items on the way back into the kitchen and grab my laptop off my desk. I thought I would sit down really quick and figure out a few more things on this blog thingy I’m trying to do. I grab a sheet of paper and jot down a few ideas as well as some other things I think of that need to be taken care of.
The minute my butt hits the stool the other kids start waking up. I start to get bombarded with questions and problems.
‘Mom, she has my shirt!’
‘Mom, I’m hungry!’
‘Mommy, mommy, mommy!’
I close the laptop because it is only stressing me out trying to figure out technical details with life happening. I wonder how anyone really has the time to do this and is it really worth it? This has been a similar scenario for the past few months when starting a blog was first brought up to me.
Right now I’m typing this on my phone and praying it will post correctly. The cats are at the door begging to be fed. The roosters are still crowing and so is one of kids. I can hear Oscar, my gander, scolding me for being late to feed.
Mornings are crazy here. Actually most days are crazy here. After breakfast I will head out to feed the animals and then come back in to oversee our morning chorea and start our school lessons for the day.
I have somehow lost the simple country life I dreamed of and it has been replaced with a chaotic, noisy life. I wouldn’t trade it though. I know this is just a season we are going through.
I know I will find moments through the day to speak to God and there will be quiet times when he will speak to me. There will be moments with the kids that I will always cherish. I may get stressed from time to time but I can use these times to push to my goal of the simple country life.
For now I’ll drink my cold coffee and then put some water on to boil so I can make some tea. I might not have a back porch swing yet but I can watch the sunset from my back steps and dream.