about a dream: June 2010

Tuesday, June 29, 2010


this was our sunday:
church. brunch with the parents to celebrate mom's birthday. town. rode the trolley. church picnic at barret's park. home. playground with bethany and sam. dinner at mom's house.
wow! insane. it was so fun to see bethany and sam though, he's really growing!

monday was quieter and rainier. we hiked our recently improved trail (that was saturday's job, trail maintenance), then continued onto our neighbors' trail, which goes along their waterfront and continues along the next (empty) lot. a great little hike! nina and mom even saw a deer, how cool is that? spinach-eating fiend, i haven't forgotten... something's been munching in my strawberry patch too. fortunately just a few leaves, as i've sacrificed most of this harvest in order to let the plants mature some (which seems to be working, but i won't go on and on about that. suffice it to say, i've had to expand the patch).
a trip to hannaford was the other big highlight for monday. fun stuff. maggie was hopping everywhere and telling people she was a bunny. it was pretty cute.

today we did the playground in the morning, a quick swim, and just playing around outside at our place. nina and maggie play so well together, it's so fun to watch them. nina takes such good care of her little sister. so adorable!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

the garden! the garden! part III

i know, i know, you've all been hanging on the edge of your seats, waiting for installment 3. tah-dah! i must say, the pictures make me feel better about the garden. sure, some things are dying (another tomato plant is gone, and another pepper looks like it's going to be gone soon). and sure, others seem to be sitting in the soil, not growing, just kind of hanging out (okra, i'm looking at you!), but still, other things are slowly and steadily growing (peas! potatoes! carrots!). so here it is:

this is the entire garden. beautiful in a very rustic sense, no? i really enjoy just looking at it.
here's some of that okra i was talking about. maybe i'll take a pic next week and compare to see if it's growing at all.
carrots! can't wait to eat these!! they've been in the ground since april, maybe i should harvest them soon?

this looks like a pea seedling, but i'm not sure. don't remember!

and this is the peas from the side. i built the trellis myself from some brush i cut down and some string. i'm committed to buying as little as possible.

windjammers days fun!!

boy did we have a great windjammers days! i felt better than i had the night before even though i started the day with a slight fever (tuesday night i'd gone to bed early with a fever of 100.6, feeling like i'd been hit by a truck. good old mastitis!). thanks to mom though i got a quick nap in and after that the fever was gone. maggie, too, had a late nap. this proved key in our decision to see the fireworks--if she was going to be up late anyway (and nina too, sine it rained all morning and we were stuck inside), we might was well enjoy some fireworks!

so, we went into town to see the 5 o'clock parade. the kids loved it, but truth be told it was really lacking in the floats department. there were a bunch of those little cars, and lots of firetrucks and other such vehicles, plus the community band and that 1812 fife and drum band, but i wanna say like, 5 floats. maybe 7. not much though. hopefully next year there'll be a few more!
regardless, pretty much every float threw candy, so the kids loved it. then after that, we, plus the mosses and betsy (anthony's mom, not brown) got pizza and ate it at ocean point. fun fun fun! the kids climbed all over the rocks and had a blast. the sky was perfectly clear too, you'd never believe that it had rained all morning. a perfect maine evening it was.

next we went into town ("the town" as maggie calls it) to get some ice cream and say hi to grandma. rocky coast for maggie (like rocky road) and oreo for nina. mmmm how i love the ice cream factory!

finally, we went to the DMR to watch the fireworks. i thought we'd be a bit further away from teh fireworks out there, but they've moved the fireworks barge out further from the inner harbor, so we were actually closer to it there than we would have been in town. oh well, i'd brought cotton for the girls' ears, and it turned out that nina didn't mind the noise at all. because she loved the fireworks! i was so happy. maggie was a bit afraid at first, but after a bit she got into it too (saying "ohhh" and "ahhh" and "pretty!"). what a success.

and a quick funny: while we were waiting for the fireworks to start we were admiring the moon, which was fairly low in the sky and cast a very pretty yellow path of light across the harbor. "ohh look at the moon!" said maggie. then, she noticed a family at one of the picnic tables and the food they'd brought. she ran over and yelled "let's eat!" they thought this was hysterical and gave her some goldfish. haha!

Friday, June 25, 2010

pics of the girls

of course, there are more garden pictures coming. but for now, some cutie pics of the girls!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

a photo tour of the garden, continued...

there is just SO much going on in this garden that i'm going to have to make this a 3 part series. already it's changed since part 1--the potatoes are in full bloom and actually look very pretty! i promise to get a photo of those today. i've been awful about taking pictures of things lately, the memory card is full so i only got 1 picture of maggie swimming yesterday, but i promise to get back to pictures soon! i have some cutie ones of the girls to put up on the blog too. but, i digress. another post devoted to the garden!

first up is a picture of the pepper patch:

here's a pepper plant up close:

here's one sorry pepper plant suffering from some unknown affliction:

and here's a pumpkin plant!

and some swiss chard seedlings!

more busy busy

and this time, i was a bit sick too. but one night to bed super early, and one night of excellent sleep (thank you maggie!) and i feel much much better.

and we have some exciting news in the world of swimming to report--nina has been swimming in grandma and gandpa's pool with no bubbles or life jacket!!! and maggie has been swimming with bubbles by herself!! no more kids hanging on me in the pool! independence! it's so cute the way maggie's little legs bicycle under the water, she really gets around! she can't use her arms so well because her floaty restricts their movement, but that doesn't stop her! we spent hours in the pool on tuesday while the girls enjoyed their independence (nina didn't swim by herself for that long, mostly she was in a life jacket. she still sticks close to the wall or ladder when she's out of it).

tuesday morning we had gone into town to do the windjammers for wee matey's stuff on the library lawn. great fun! lots of little kids and activities like water balloon toss, a sprinkler, crafts, and a kiddie pool that started as a place to race their craft boats but became a kiddie pool. they had a great time!

Monday, June 21, 2010

a tour of the garden!!

here is my best looking watermelon seedling. actually, it's the only one left. not so sure i'm going to get any watermelon out of it, but i'm not going to give up yet!!

my potatos! a raging success (knock on wood!). if they do as well as it seems like they're doing, i'm going to plant a bunch more next year.

do you know what this is? a potato flower! i've learned so much about vegetables. apparently tuber formation happens when the potatoes blossom, so this is a critical time for them. guess i should review my bible for the watering requirements of this critical phase...

a close-up of the peas. i was feeling artistic. beautiful, no?

zucchini! seems like they're not doing so much lately, but maybe i'm just impatient. who doesn't get zucchini, right?

a fantastic summer weekend!

you know when i haven't been posting much that either we're sick or having lots and lots of fun. fortunately this time it's the latter. on friday evening erik, isabelle, and chester arrived. the girls and chester were thrilled to see each other again. nina and maggie showered him with love and affection, even hand feeding him his twingles (that's his doggie food). hopefully he'll be able to transition back to eating it from a bowl like an ordinary dog. hee hee!

on saturday we hung out at the pool and then hit a birthday party quickly. got some ice cream, then back to the parents house for some BBQ and more swim time with everyone plus isabelle's friends and their 2 kids. fun fun fun! we even did a fire pit after that! the girls conked out that night!

on sunday we had another big day--the st. john's bizarre, where maggie rode her first rides! the first was like a take on the teacups ride, only instead of teacups they were bears. then she did a big slide, a merry go round, and a bounce house. nina did all of those plus a car rides in a circle kind of ride.
then, it was off to aunt maria and uncle lee's for a birthday dinner for mom!

such a fun weekend. today, nina said to me "did we really move to maine, or is this just a dream?"

Friday, June 18, 2010

finally some hot weather!

what a perfect day! right now maggie's napping and nina's resting, but after this we're all going in the pool. woo hoo!!

i took a bunch of pictures of my garden this morning but i can't upload them onto this laptop. stay tuned though (or not, i know not everyone finds my garden posts riveting. mom!). but i think it's fascinating. the potatoes are blossoming! i didn't even know potato plants flowered. so there you go, learning all kinds of new things. that's all i'm going to give away though, you'll just have to wait and see for the rest.

maggie didn't go to sleep until just before 10 last night, yeesh. erik, isabelle, and chester are coming today, so hopefully she'll stay up late again. we can't wait to see them!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

beach day!!

today was just soooooo beautiful! we went to hendrick's head in the morning and had so much fun playing in the sand and water. maggie was in an extra-friendly mood, she kept going up to adults on the beach (there were a lot of grandparents there) and asking "what's your name?" it was too cute, they all got a big kick out of it.

then it was home for a super-quick nap and back out to the parents' pool! the girls got to take their new floaty toys out (they loved them. the alligator is named louis and the seal, which we thought at first was a dolphin so we're sticking with that, is named zuma. so if you hear the girls talking about louis or zuma, now you'll know what they mean). james even came by to join the fun. busy!

i think the high was 75. low low humidity, slight breeze. a perfect maine summer day!

Monday, June 14, 2010

pirate day at the DMR yesterday

that was fun. there was a treasure hunt, the girls really liked it. the kids all did it together as a group, and it i could really see how much she's going to enjoy being at school with a bunch of kids. aww!! she's so excited too, she talks about it all the time. the other day she told me she was bored and wanted to go to school. i felt bad, i'm giving it the best i can already, i'm sorry it's not good enough for her!

there was also face painting there but neither of them wanted their faces painted. i think i have the only kids in the world that don't ever want their faces painted.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

last night was awful!

but before i tell you about that, i'll tell you about the action-packed day of fun we had on friday. first, we went to story hour at the library. then, it was the first day that the trolly was running again, so we took a trolly ride (we even dressed up for it, it was a special occasion!). then candy from ornes, then home for a quick nap for maggie, then over to play with charlie and hattie. we walked with them to the horse barn to see a little girl take her riding lesson (vanessa, the little girl turned out to be meegan mclaughlin's daughter, and penny was there too! how fun! i introduced her to beth as my old tennis coach, and she said "former! your former tennis coach, not your old tennis coach!" hahaha!).
THEN, the kids played in a huge mud puddle for nearly an hour, then back to the moss house for "clean up" in a sprinkler, then some sandbox, then dinner, a bath, and they conked out.
so, quite the busy day! i guess the girls were overtired, because here's what happened at night:
7:30--bedtime. kids asleep almost instantly. yay, nick and i think!
10:30--nina wakes up from nightmare, very confused/not totally awake. her crying wakes maggie. i put maggie into nina's bed to try to settle them both at the same time. maggie falls back asleep, but not nina. so i move her into my bed, and she finally falls back asleep there.
11:30--nina up again, crying. still confused. she doesn't like my bed, so nick and i go to sleep with her on the futon (she's still scared from her nightmare).
there's no clock near the futon, so i don't know about times any more. i'll guess though:
midnight-ish--maggie wakes up (she's in nina's bed remember). i bring her to the futon, she re-settles there.
close to 1:00 am--nina wakes up with leg pain. she's prone to getting growing pains on days she's been really active. this time we decide to try tylenol. she and nick go back to her bed since all 4 of us in the futon is kind of ridiculous (kind of! ha!). i re-settle maggie (= nurse), who is disturbed by all the goings-on
20 minutes later--still not back to sleep (it takes her a while to fall back asleep when she wakes up at night. she certainly doesn't get this from me!), nina tells nick that we "made a good decision to give her the tylenol" because her leg feels much better.
definitely past 1:00--maggie stirs, cries a bit in her sleep. i decide to take her to the bathroom since she refuses to wear diapers to bed. sometimes night-waking is because she has to pee. and she does, a nice big pee. i made a good choice. :-)
4:00--i wake to maggie saying "i need dry pants." yes, she does. and a dry shirt. and dry pants for me (because her pee pooled over to me, not because i peed.) how can a kid who peed a few hours ago wet the bed? oh, i know. if the kid nursed a million times to resettle from waking up over and over again, that would do it. maggie and i move to my bed, because the futon is uninhabitable.
4:10--i tell maggie no more nursing unless she's willing to wear diapers. miraculously, she falls asleep without nursing.
4:15--never mind, she wants to nurse. a battle of wills ensues. maggie screams. then she pleads. "please mama, please can i naney? please!" she cries. how do you say no to that?!
4:20--maggie blissfully sound asleep.
6:00--maggie's pants have bunched up some. she HATES when her pj pants bunch. "fix them?" she asks. settles again quickly with a little more nursing.
7:15--up for the day!!

wow, what an awful night, worse than having a newborn! nick is asking me why i'm putting this on the blog, because he'd rather forget it. nope i say, it all goes in the blog, good and bad!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

who's on first

sometimes, nina draws pictures upside down. she's been doing this for a long time, but only occasionally. i was thinking about it though because she's done it more lately. she especially likes to draw ming-ming upside down (you can click on ming-ming).

so, intrigued by this window into her little mind, i asked her why she'd drawn ming-ming upside down, after having drawn tuck right side up (tuck is another link. i wish i could figure out how to change the formatting so that embedded links show up in a different color). she turned the page around and said ming-ming wasn't upside down, tuck was. so i said, "no but WHILE you were drawing ming-ming, tuck was upside down." "no," she said. "tuck's standing on the wall."" but not while you were drawing ming-ming," i said. "when you were drawing ming-ming, the page was like this" (as i flipped the page). "actually," she said, drawing a line under tuck's feet, "ming-ming is on the wall."

then i gave up. i don't know why she draws ming-ming upside down, but hopefully it's on purpose.

the garden drama continutes to unfold

today, i looked out of the window in the living room, towards art's house, and guess what i saw?


ok i'll tell you--a deer! a graceful, sleek, spinach-fed deer. i have no proof mind you, but i have a serious gut instinct that this deer ate my spinach yesterday. it's certainly the deer that ate the blossoms off the lady slippers (are there any man's slippers? nina asks). we lost sight of the animal because the woods between the house and the water slopes down quite a lot, so we went upstairs to my balcony and we could see her again (no antlers, so i'm assuming a she). once she heard us she took of running down the path. fiend!

well, no additional damage to the garden today, and happily, a bunch of my okra seedlings are coming up! i decided to direct-seed some okra in the garden since i only had two to transplant, and i'd like a bunch of okra. i also think i have two cilantro plants coming up, which is disappointing since i've planted like, 15 seeds, but hopefully more are coming.

other than that, basil and peppers are all in, oh and the watermelon, and i've planted more beans. there's still some empty space, so i'm going to plant some chard seeds that beth gave me, and some more basil too. then maybe more carrots until i run out of space.

i harvested a few leaves of basil today for my pizza. it was good!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

garden woes!!

i can't believe how emotionally invested in this garden i am. i love it though! i love my garden! it's so fun to watch everything grow, to care for it from tiny little seeds, to lovingly transport it outdoors into my carefully groomed little patch of dirt, and then watch as mother nature DESTROYS IT ALL! oh yeah, having lots of fun.

it was the spinach today. i only had like, 5 plants left after the rest bolted and were harvested. but they were beautiful plants, truly beautiful. and they were still growing, so i thought i'd wait just a bit longer to harvest.
fatal mistake.
everything was honky-dory today at noon. then we went to play at charlie and hattie's, and i checked on my precious after dinner, and i saw that the spinach was all gone. eaten!

i think it was the woodchuck. who else would be so bold as to eat from my garden in the light of day? there were no hoofprints either, so i'm ruling out deer.

damn it! i think i am going to put up a fence. yes, because i need to spend even more time and money to get nothing.

ha, i can't help it, i still love it!!

Monday, June 7, 2010

cow chips!

i'm experimenting with going dairy-free (yeah, with my ice cream addiction, we'll see how long that lasts), so i got some almond milk the other day (plus i had a coupon!). nina usually likes soy milk, so i poured her some to taste. here's how it went:

me: "do you like it?"
nina (as it sounded to me and nick): "it tastes like sh*t."
me: (thinking, there's no way she just said 'it tastes like sh*t') "what did you say it tastes like?"
nina: "i said it tastes like... (long pause) ...chips."

nick thinks it was the curse (and he blames me! i don't swear, but he always blames me. erik i think you can attest to the fact that nick is the foul-mouth in this house). i think she said chips. say it out loud. it really does sound like a swear when you say the whole sentence.

and here's another cute exchange from today.
grandma and the girls were getting some dirt to plant the peppers, and i guess a bug or worm was unearthed (i was in the garage, so this is a second-hand account). nina asked grandma if she wanted to pick up the creepy-crawly.
"no," said grandma. "i don't want to touch it, i'm a coward."
"you're not a cow grandma," said maggie. "you're a people!"


Sunday, June 6, 2010

oh and we had a date!

nick and i went out for a lovely dinner last night (saturday) at fisherman's while mom and dad watched the girls (thanks mom and dad!). the girls of course were delighted to get rid of us for a few hours and have grandma and grandpa to themselves (and watch a movie). maggie did just fine, though she was happy to come home with me and nick, unlike her sister, who stayed the night.

it's so relaxing to eat without little margarete running all over the place while not eating and/or pretending to be chester!

still raining!

wow did it pour today! i'm guessing we got a good 2 inches of rain this weekend, based on the way it was coming down and the depth of water in the numerous buckets, pie tins, yogurt containers, and other such sundry out by my garden. how will the plants survive this deluge? i don't know!!! the strawberries seem to be loving it (that is, strawberry plants. i've sacrificed most of this year's strawberries so that the plants can put their energy into developing a strong root system and lots of foliage. the internet assures me that i'll be repaid 10-fold for this sacrifice with next year's harvest. or something like that...)

everything else in the garden proper looks good too actually. except the spinach, i'll have to harvest the rest of that tomorrow because it's all bolted. oh well, i'll try again later in the season, maybe fall will prove to be a better time to grow it.

the girls are fabulous. nina dressed up like a bride this evening and married nick a few times while i officiated and maggie served as flower girl. she really gets into it. she's kind of a bridezilla though, everything has to go her way OR ELSE!! haha, hopefully that's just the 4-year-old in her and not an indication of things to come.

in other news, we went to church today and the girls did very well (nina better than maggie, but she's older). at one quiet point towards the middle of mass, after a round of singing ended, maggie shouted (with genuine glee) "HOORAY, IT'S DONE!!!" and once again, the kind church ladies assured me after mass that everyone appreciates the chuckle, and everyone has their own fond (in retrospect) memories of when it was their kids who were the little ones. i think they're just saying this because they think i'm their best chance for a new baby in the church. haha!

Thursday, June 3, 2010

rainy days here

so we've been inside a lot. what good timing that maggie got all those presents this weekend, the girls have had a lot of fun playing with the new toys. there were a lot of art supplies, so we've been doing a lot of drawing, painting, coloring, cutting, and gluing lately. wow has nina gotten good at drawing! all of a sudden you can really tel what everything is. she drew the dinner table with a dinner plate (with peas, chicken, and something else one it) and chair, and it's so good! and her eagle, wow. and the wonder pets, complete with fly boat. fantastic! i'll have to snap a photo of some of her work so you can see.
oh and her coloring is SO neat too. she really enjoys coloring all of a sudden. maybe something just clicked in that developing little brain of hers, and staying in the lines is much easier.

maggie is still working on her lines and circles. she likes it when i draw wonder pets and she adds the hats and feet. they go in the right place anyway!

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

knock on wood, but no more tomato damage last night

whew... hopefully this is it, no more cutworm. fingers crossed!!

now we just need the warm and sun back! we've had cold and rain for the last 2 days. it's the maine june curse!!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

my tomatoes are under siege

what a roller-coaster the last few days have been. before i left for KC, i had 5 tomato plants in the garden. they were doing quite well, and as the danger of frost had really passed, i decided i'd put in another. so the day before we left, i popped in #6.

2 days later, it was dead. bent over right at the soil line. peculiar.

so i put in another one. 2 days later, same problem! a cursed spot? i decided to put a plant in a different spot.

then the established ones started to go. first was the runt of my group, so i wasn't too too upset. i didn't have high hopes for its production anyway. but i emailed my friend stephanie (she works at the greenhouse), and she said: cutworms. they're moth larvae that feed on seedlings, and fell the entire thing like mini loggers in a tomato forest.

i wrapped tin foil around the base of the remaining plants and stuck 2 more in the other garden bed. this morning, one more from the infested site was gone. that leaves me 2 of my original plants and the 2 i just put in to the second site remaining.

i'm devastated! i dug up the first site looking for the offending critter, but i couldn't find it. hopefully a bird ate it already... i'm so mad!! i told mom that if i don't get a good harvest this year, that's it! i'm throwing in the trowel. HA! get it? trowel?

i think i've been a bit melodramatic about the garden lately, because today maggie laid down on the ground and moaned "i'm soooo upset!" (i asked her why though and it had nothing to do with cutworms. she said she wanted her momma!)

hopefully i'll be able to sleep tonight without nightmares about cutworms. grr!!