Where to begin...where to begin.
I wish there were a more interesting tale to explain my absence from this space over the last week, but the answer is far more full of life and being in the moment with my family. We had friends visiting over the New Year's weekend and so many moments were just full of the routine care that 7 children require. (Cooking, cleaning the kitchen...break for 30 minutes, repeat.)
But the menfolk, well, they were far more ambitious.
They took advantage of the milder weather we've had this winter and decided to work on our sorely neglected garden space. We had all the best intentions when we first built a garden space in our backyard, but one thing we could figure out how to handle was the Bermuda grass that has overrun our backyard.
We would till, prepare the soil, plant and within weeks, even with constant care, the Bermuda grass would be overtaking the place and choking out the plants. By summers end, I would be frustrated with fighting it every day and then our growing season would be cut short by the Bermuda grass...he won again.
So for the last 2 years, we've just let the garden space grow up into a pile of debris and random plants. (And shelter for a family of rabbits.)
But this year we have a better plan! We're going to make raised bed gardens in that space this year so that we can hopefully beat the Bermuda grass and keep our plants intact throughout the whole growing season. We won't start too large, but maybe we can expand next year if the raised beds go well.
For now they're tilling and adding compost to the gardening area.
And when spring is almost here, we plan to till again then add landscape paper before making our raised beds in the area.
We shall see how it goes, but I'm hopeful again that we'll have better luck gardening in this space rather than trying to do everything in pots on the deck. Now I have to decide what to put in the pots!
Side note to the story: In the above photo, Paul is actually discovering that a mama mouse and her little mouse babies had taken up residence in our compost barrel. Shortly after they dumped the barrel, she scurried away with her babies attached. We only hope they made it safely to a new home and not into the bellies of one of the many hawks that constantly circle the field behind our house.