Lilypie Kids Birthday tickers

Lilypie Kids Birthday tickers

Friday, August 28, 2009

More fruit

Blu, standing beneath the pear tree, waiting...
The crows tend to target the pear tree. Seems like they eat way more than we do.
On the other hand, we get quite a nice amount of Asian pears from this tree (and that's Bart grazing below):

Include a quince in an apple pie and it just adds...something...Yum!
Shannon makes a wicked quince jam too!

I think this is another variety of quince (Shannon can correct me if I'm wrong):
I think I've been through most of the garden pictures. There'll be just one more garden post in a few days.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

A good year for plums

We have 4 or 5 varieties of plums growing on our little farm. Every now and then, we seem to have an off year with a paucity of plums. This is not one of those years, as you can see from these pictures.
We still have to slice out the pit before giving plums to Silas, but he will happily eat one after the other, right from the tree.
A dragonfly landed right in front of me as I was taking pictures and begged me to use the macro setting. So I did.

There are several trees yielding small round purple plums growing behind our house and in the sheep pasture. Every now and then, there is a thunk as one of these plum falls onto the tin roof of the sheep cote and then rolls off. One day, Silas heard it and asked "What's that?" I explained and said the sheep would be very happy because they love plums. Indeed, some of the red plums on the lower branches of this tree fell victim to the sheep's' sweet tooth:
Plum trees aren't the only fruit trees with a nice harvest this year. I've got more to share in the coming days...

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

In the greenhouse

The south side of the greenhouse...

We use the greenhouse primarily for growing tiny, juicy, tomatoes.

But it turns out figs are fans of the greenhouse climate as well. This fig is planted in the ground inside the greenhouse and has had to be trimmed back because it just wants to keep growing and growing.
In the very first picture showing the south side of the greenhouse, you can see it's leaves pushing out of the roof. It's baring quite a bit of fruit this year, and there is also fruit on the fig tree on the east side of out house. Drew will have to make his yummy fig pizza in a few weeks, as they are almost ripe :)

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Blackberry Season

When we moved to Western Washington 6 years ago (already!), it was mid August, and one of my first impressions was that it smelled like blackberries. Indeed, at this time of year, the air is sweetly scented thanks to the invasive but delicious blackberries. They are EVERYWHERE. You could pick and pick and pick and still, there would be more waiting for you just down the road. Our entire yard is surrounded by brambles. The sheep keep them at bay in the pastures and a regularly applied weed whacker keeps them from taking over the rest of the yard.

While blackberries are actually quite problematic from an ecological standpoint, we undeniably benefit from their presence from mid August to mid September. Silas and I pick them almost every day. Aside from eating them strait from the vine, I enjoy making blackberry crisps, smoothies, and Drew likes to make blackberry compote to top the waffles he's been making us for breakfast lately (thanks for the new waffle iron, Grandma G!).

There is so much going on in the garden right now. I'll be sharing more with you throughout the week, so stay tuned.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009


Dandelions are a simple pleasure for a toddler. Silas hasn't really gotten down how to blow the seeds off (though he does try). What he does have down, clearly, is the ability to ham it up for the camera. A note on the t-shirt. Silas would like you to know that he is wearing it somewhat ironically. He's not really an American Dude-type, but he does love motorcycles :)

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Future Fest

We went to the Great Peninsula Future Fest a few weekends ago. Lots of fun, especially the circus acts. Silas made a fantastic trash art fish, which he gifted to Patrick. We'll look forward to going back next year.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Silas finds his (loud) voice

August 09 Book of the Month

Introducing Planet Silas’ August 09 Book of the Month:

Richard Scarry's Cars and trucks from A to Z by Richard Scarry.

Silly, imaginative, and fun, this book includes fanciful vehicles from Apple car to Zippermobile, as imagined by the children’s book author popular during my own childhood, Richard Scarry. I adored Scarry’s books as a kid, but when I first read this book to Silas (largely out of sentiment), I never imagined that my love would be passed down to the next generation with such gusto.

This book launched so many interests for Silas. It was his first book focusing on vehicles, for instance. To this day, he still refers to bulldozers and diggers as “bugdozers,” because of this book. It also marked the start of his love of Busytown, which is the name of the fictional town depicted in many of Scarry’s books. He is studious in his approach to Busytown books, staring at a single page for long long minutes and talking over its many details. He refers to his play rug featuring a road and town scene as “Busytown” and even this featured book, which only mentioned Busytown in passing, is called “the Busytown book.”

We have read this book so many times that, similarly to last months, BOTM, Boats, Silas has this one pretty much memorized. “Watch out for the lemon car!” he’ll proclaim when we get to the “L” page. “Toothpaste car…teeny tiny tractor!” …and so on. Fun, fun fun!

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Hiking Hurricane Ridge

Last Sunday, we ventured up to Hurricane Ridge in the Olympic National Park.
"I'm going on a hike!" he said proudly from his comfy backpack carrier as Drew and I sweated up an in incline in the sun and heat.
While we will probably choose a few more level hikes to take him on so that Silas can walk without fear that he will pull away from us and fall off a cliff, we couldn't resist taking him up to the mountains. I love it up there. We hiked in the Olympic Mountains almost every weekend in the summer back before Silas was born, and we want to get back into a hiking routine. While one is more limited with a toddler, clearly, it's not impossible!

I took a picture of the three of us in this same location two years ago, and it can be found as a picture in this post. I have to say, we look way more hot and tired in this current shot, but I think, just as happy :)
The young buck, who was unaffected by the constant crowd of people gathering around him near the visitor center did not fail to disappoint.
But what Silas undoubtedly was most interested in that day can be heard in the video below. "I don't know what that noise is," he proclaims. On the way home when we asked him what he liked about the hike, he said "the animals." But it wasn't the deer he talked about, it was the crickets. Go figure!