A Simple Idea: family photos

"Simplicity is the essence of Happiness"
~Cedric Bledsoe

I have had a few things happen lately that have been a bit humbling.  
It has made me really think about simplifying my life  more and enjoying my family.
While I really enjoy this little blog project...most of the time...: )
sometimes I feel a pang of guilt when I post about a new lampshade or a trophy bath tub.
It seems pretty silly, really.

So I thought I would share a few simple, funny, family photos.  
No faucet ideas or furniture, no fabric, flowers or fruit.  
Just some things that make me smile.

My son David and his gorgeous girlfriend Gina.  Do these kids have the best teeth?
Millie/ball/Millie/ball....etc etc
I am finally here....almost naked no less, why am I doing this? AAARRGHHH!
Greg, Mr P Pebble at the helm of the 6 foot rubber yacht
Did I tell you that I golf...well yes, sort of.  I like hanging with the boys!
I Fish and fish and only catch a cold
 Mexico and margarita silly
Dad being Dad with a Grad
Brothers and Sisters
 golf carts and giggling

Did I tell you that when I get nervous I talk too much and laugh alot.


I'm much better and like this simple stuff

next post...probably another bathtub



Garden Details: Willow Edging & English Roses

Our rear garden in Ojai is somewhat English inspired, so I thought willow edging would be a nice idea around the rose hedges.   The English call this type of garden element a hurdle.

The center of the rose garden path will have a stone plinth topped with some sort of a vintage planter, which I've yet to get to...maybe next month. ?! 
The willow edging is about 12" inches high and comes in lengths of 48" inches. It is fairly easy to install and is also somewhat flexible so it worked out well around the curves of the center path.  
I purchased this from a company called Master Gardening Products. 
 They sell some really great things from sustainable Eco friendly materials, including oak barrels and birdhouses as well as bamboo trellis's and fencing.
If you're looking for an exact straight edge, this isn't the product.  But I think when the roses fill in this will be very interesting and it sets off the design of the decomposed granite pathway.
The biggest obstacle with this edging is cutting it to fit to your design.  It falls completely apart!  I ended up doing some overlapping and then secured each section with stakes and plastic electrical wire ties, on the inside of the edging
 so they are not visible.  
I would definitely recommend getting a few extra lengths just for piecing the edging together.  This took me an entire day to finish! 

  Each bed has 10 roses of the same variety.  Above is Evelyn.  I also chose Graham Thomas, The Generous Gardener and Queen of Sweden for the rest of the beds.  
Because these roses were developed for the English garden, they don't require as much sun as an American Hybrid.  I think these will thrive in this location under the filtered sunlight of the large Oaks.

 There are a variety of edging styles, some a bit more fancy than this one.  I think simple works better here.
 The little hoops at the top can be pulled out if you don't like them. 
Here are a few more shots of some things that just popped up this last week....wonderful old fashioned Bearded Iris

This beautiful plant is Kniphofia "Red Hot Poker"  It gets about 5 feet tall and is honey bee  and hummingbird heaven.  These are drought tolerant and will bloom through out the summer.

Lime green is another color element that works well and adds bright spots to the perennial beds.  This is Smoketree "golden spirit". 

 The color palette for the garden is mainly orange and purple.  I spotted this new petunia at the local nursery.  It's called "Pretty Much Picasso" and has a bright purple center with lime green edges!  It is so bright and fun.  I really love it. Great name too.

I think I wore out a pair of garden gloves last weekend and used up an entire can of mosquito repellent but seeing at the results. It was worth it!

Happy Gardening

Organic Vegetable Garden: Ojai

Well, it was a busy weekend but with some really nice rewards. 

 The vegetable gardens are now really producing and we are never without some greens for a salad and then some! 

 Grab a fork and some bleu cheese dressing 
I pulled up some of the radish a bit too soon, but they were still great and we threw the tiny ones in with the greens attached.  

These are called "cherry belle".
I have planted a wide variety of lettuce; freckles romaine, oak leaf, endive and asian greens and many heirloom varieties which are more available these days. 

The garden did pretty well, in spite of some hard rain and very little sun for about a month.
Above is green garlic.  

It can be planted and harvested like a spring onion.  
You can saute it or chop it up in a salad and it has a similar flavor to a shallot.

The beets are called Choggia and are as delicious as they are beautiful!  

I picked these young too, but they are much sweeter that way and you can saute or quick cook them off in just a few minutes. 

The  spinach and oak leaf lettuce just keeps on coming

Say good bye to the sweet pea's. 

 I know...... I am pulling them out too soon, but I did a terrible job with the supports and the soil really wasn't amended correctly.

So.... in go the green beans on both tuteurs. 

 I planted a total of 20 of this interesting yellow and green mix.

Intermixed are squash; 4 or 5 varieties and new potatoes; yellow, red and purple.
The swiss chard has really taken off and is so sweet and
 I actually prefer it to spinach.

Some other interesting items we started are:   tomatillos, white eggplant and green zebra tomatoes,  honey sweet  mini watermelons and last but not least banana peppers.

All of the starter plants were grown locally and all are organic.

The salad mix above is one that I started by seed. 

It's a great mesculun mix that you can  sprinkle directly on to the soil and let it grow en-mass.  
Simply clip off what you need and it keeps producing! 

 Hence the name" cut and come again"  from Shepards Seeds
All of our beds are organic with no pesticide use or synthetic fertilizers.  

We are working hard on our own  compost  but since it isn't ready to add to the garden just yet, I really like Kellogg products.  

A couple of these bags will really make the veggies take off, in about a months time. 

 I added a similar product to the flower gardens too, but soon we won't be needing these at all.  

I know you can't wait for the compost post! 

 Stay tuned...yawn... 

Your comment 's have been so wonderful lately
I will catch up this week I promise!


Sweet Pea's and Spring


Ojai Sweet Pea's