Sunday, May 23, 2010

Favorite Pic of the Week

I'm starting a new tradition here called "favorite pic of the week." I tried to start it on Fridays, but every Friday I would forget, so I will post them on random days. Here is this week's fav:

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

More Yard and Garden Pictures

Yesterday I set out to get pictures of the rest of our yard and garden. We have a fence separating our front yard from what I call the "middle yard", below. This area of the yard is wide and open so the kids can roam and play. Then we have the back yard, (more of the garden area), where the raised beds, compost, kids play set, and bunny are. The green house and chicken coop will be built in this area of the yard soon, so it will be a mini farm. Hope you don't mind all of these yard and garden pics! I just can't help it... I love my garden!

The middle yard. I love the deep green color of the grass in this one.

Justin throwing Monkey in the air. He likes to play kick ball here too.

The cute bird bath the kids gave me for Mother's Day. I love it!

A shot of the over flowing raised beds from the back fence.

Broccoli, onions, and a California poppy. Flowers are good for the soil.

Onions, carrots and potatoes in the back ground. I can't wait until these are ready to be harvested!

Excellence Awards

Some of you may remember the news letter I posted this past Christmas about all of the changes that happened in our lives the past few years. It's been a journey that started out extremely difficult and now here we are in a totally different space in our lives. At the time we went through the myriad of changes; the job situation, church situation, move, etc. all we could see was what was going on around us. We had only a tiny bit of hope to hold onto - Jesus. He was the only thing keeping us afloat amidst the rejection, hurt, job loss, and trials. We lost everything, and then we were kicked while we were down. Looking back now I can't believe we survived in tact honestly! But we did, and ever since then we have been amazed to see God's faithful love and blessings.

So, fast forward to life now. The other week Ron was nominated for four excellence awards at his work. He got two awards in one category, service, one in excellence, and one in justice. He was the only one in both hospitals, (of hundreds of employees), to get 4 awards! He was also the only one to get awards in three categories! I'm SO proud of him!! It was a truly healing moment for him I believe, mainly because of all of the hurtful things that were spoken over him and the way he was treated in the past. Now the people at his current job love him. They respect him and look to him for answers knowing he is an honest man full of integrity. They don't doubt him or judge him harshly. All of this is a huge confirmation to us that we did the right thing in the decisions we made in the past.

God has provided financially for us as well. Ron has already been given one promotion after he had only worked on the job for a year. Not only that, but we've been showered with amazing gifts we couldn't have afforded - mainly from Ron's co-workers. God gave us a beautiful house, (for a great price), and garden that we've been able restore. I never would have imagined in a million years that we would own a gorgeous historical home like this! If you know me you know I love all things antique, so it's my dream house in every way.

We've also been blessed with new friends. Friends who love us no matter what, who we can trust. They are supportive and loving and have brought much healing into our lives. They're true friends and I'm so grateful for them!

It's been a few years since our lives imploded, and it isn't until recently that I feel the liberty to speak freely about it all. I think part of it is that I was working through everything, sorting through my feelings and pain, my issues. Only now I can see how God has blessed us for the difficult decisions we made when everyone opposed us, and it is extremely healing. All along He spoke to us, guiding us and showing us that we were following Him. I have to say it's all been worth it when I see how much better our lives are now. When I see my husband loving his job and being treated with respect I feel such happiness.

I know all of these blessings in our lives are because of God's grace. I don't say these things to gloat, or to boast, but to show that God is faithful and true to His word. He doesn't leave us hanging, but He restores our lives in amazing ways. Instead of our lives being cursed we've been blessed. Beauty has come from ashes.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

New Deluxe Bunny House

We were given this awesome bunny house last weekend from one of Ron's co-workers. It seems he's given something great for the garden just about every week, what a place to work! The house has "Rabbit Resort" painted on one side of it and our bunny sure seems to be in rabbit heaven. He has loads of space to run around and he hops up on the little boxes in the back. He hasn't slept in his box even once during the day. We're wondering if he was depressed in his small cage since he didn't have a lot of room to run, jump, etc.

The "Rabbit Resort"

He sleeps on the grass we gave him now instead of his bed box. This is one happy bunny!

Raised Beds

This past weekend Ron built four more amazing raised beds bringing the total to eight! We're just about to run out of room in the back! A green house is in the works as well, so stay tuned for pics. Ron was joking about doing an American Gothic picture with the two of us...I think it needs to happen.

View of the raised beds from the back porch.

The raised bed on the right has sweet peas in it, (thus the little ladders which hold the string for them to climb.) Dill, broccoli, zucchini and lettuce are on the left.

The three raised beds against the fence are full of tomatoes! The branches will be used for them to climb. Compost boxes are in the far right corner against the fence.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Brick Walk Way Made From Recycled Bricks

The finished product!

View from the side walk.

I love the way recycled bricks look.

Dad's big helper.

A few weeks back Ron installed an amazing brick walk way in the front yard. The hospital had removed a fire place after the earthquake and were throwing away a ton of high quality bricks. Ron asked if he could have them and they said yes! Now we have a lovely brick walk way made from recycled bricks from the side walk to our front steps.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Herb Garden Mosaic

I've been wanting to make some mosaics for the garden for a long time now. It's spring finally and Ron is slowly turning the garden into a paradise, so it was time for me to get going with the mosaics. My supplies are a bit low, but I was able to find enough to whip up this mosaic for our newly planted herb garden. It's the first time I've done letters with broken shards, not an easy task, but it worked. I want to do a few stepping stones and the mail box next!

Our new wine barrel herb garden. We've planted basil, sage, oregano, cilantro, chives, tarragon and chives. A rosemary bush is right next to the wine barrel on the right. Cooking with fresh herbs is so amazingly yummy!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

My Mother's Day Present

Ron finished the amazing pond and waterfall in the front yard today as part of my Mother's Day present - lucky me! Most of the supplies for the pond, pond border, waterfall, deck and gate were free! He was given the pond liner, pump, etc. from a friend from work. He found the boulders on the side of the road where free green waste is dumped. The reclaimed redwood was from a foundation remodel a few blocks away. Ron made a cute little deck for sitting and feeding the fish and a safety gate out of the reclaimed redwood as well as a border around the pond. He plans to make a bench on the back of the deck for sitting. This all could have cost upwards to $600 or more new, but we were blessed with it for free!! We plan to get coy and gold fish for the pond, put water plants and lilies in it and will need to install an electric fence on the interior of the pond so the raccoons won't eat them.

Thank you to my wonderful husband for this amazing Mother's Day present! I love the fact that it will be here to enjoy for years to come!

View from the top of the porch. We'll plant flowers on the sides of the waterfall rocks. You can't see the waterfall, but the water runs behind the rocks and makes a lovely sound.

Another shot from the porch.

The pond deck where the kids will be able to feed the fish when we get them. Ron is going to make a bench for the back of the deck also so we can sit and enjoy the view.

Hydrangeas in bloom

The new brick walk way and fence/gate.

View of the left side of the front from the pond.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Corners of My House

I haven't done this for a while, so this morning I got out my camera and starting snapping shots of some of my favorite corners/views of the house. I love how beautiful the early morning light is. Some of the pics turned out a bit dark, but I like how the subtle light shows up in them. I would love to see some of your favorite corners!

Bulb farm lilies on the dining table.

Another view of the dining table.

Upstairs hallway and railing.

Kitchen window sil. Tracy, this is the Christmas cactus you gave us!

The art corner, my favorite view in the play room.

Happy clown cushion and block

Justin's dresser friends.

Justin's plant

Sarah's Russian stacking dolls.