Our 2016 garden

 Each year we try our hand at gardening.  For us it's about more than just growing our own food.  It's about gathering together around an activity, a rhythm if you will, that has meaning and purpose.  There's almost no place I'd rather be than in the garden with dirt on my hands.  In the art room with paint on my fingers is a close second. 

 We've lived in our home for five years.  We started a garden in the backyard about 4 years ago I believe.  But don't take my word for it, I really don't remember! We started with a garden half the size we have now.  

 Some years certain things grow beautifully and you are left with baskets and baskets of produce all needing your attention before it's too late.  Other years the bugs or just bad luck has left us somewhat empty-handed when it comes to some vegetable types.  Yet you can always count on at least a few things growing well, and tasting beautifully. 

 The girls are tremendous helpers in the garden and they wouldn't have it any other way.  We don't "make" them help, they simply beg to all on their own! We try to give very good directions and do more showing than just talking.  It's harder for a kid (or me!) to hear "Don't step on the vegetables" if you don't know what the vegetables look like.  So for now it's lots and lots of showing.  I can tell you one thing though, our girls are very schooled in all things "garden". 
 They also really like the taste of all these growing greens too.  We currently have: radish, green onion, mustard greens, kale, and lettuce ready to eat.  We've also planted eggplant, squash and zucchini, and tomatoes.  We'll finish up with some peppers and see how this gardening season will go.

 Putting my trusty black boots on is like stepping into an old friend. My best adventures have happened with these boots on my feet.
 Seeing as I'm quite terrible at remembering what's what, this year I painted some garden markers and wrote the names of things on them with Sharpie.

 It's also very handy for us that the girls' playhouse happens to be right behind the garden.  That way if the girls get tired of helping they can scamper off to play and I can still hear them. I like that.

Of course after all that hard garden work we are often ready to sit, have a salad, and relax.  Our back deck is our favorite spot to do that! We have thrifted finds, picked flowers from the farm, and string lights from Target.  At night, this is such a happy little spot! 

If you want a taste of what life is really like in the garden with the four of us, take a look below:

How about you? Do you garden or have any tips for us?

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