Monday, July 30, 2012

A Garden Tea Party

It was my birthday back on the 12th and what did I do? I threw a garden tea party of course. :)
It turned out to be a beautiful summer day, a bit muggier than I would've liked, but we were lucky to escape the rain. I had four of my good friends over, the fifth not able to make it due to being on vacation at the time.
On the menu:
-Tea (English tea and a really good brand of peach tea I've found)
-Cucumber sandwiches (provided by one of my good friends)
-Mini ham and cheese sandwiches
-White cake cupcakes decorated with roses.

I had a really good time decorating with flowers from the garden. The pinks and yellows really looked nice with the tea cups and lace tablecloth.

Since my mom has a pretty cool collection of tea cups, I got to pick out a few mis-matched, but still pretty, cups to use.

This one is actually mine though...

The cupcakes were really fun to decorate. I made my own frosting and set a little aside that I dyed pink and green with food coloring. Once I'd frosted them all with white, I swirled a little pink in the middle with a little green leaf or two to make the rose.

I also went a bit daisy-crazy and stuck daisies in the vines that my dad has trained to wrap around our side porch.

The party went off without a hitch and we all ate way too many little sandwiches and drank way too much tea. But it was a really fun way to celebrate my birthday. :)

Garden Update (because I haven't for a bit): The beans are growing splendidly, I have so many green tomatoes (with a few starting to turn red) that once they all ripen I'm going to need a good salsa recipe to have use for them all and the peppers are doing very well. 

Monday, July 23, 2012

Sorry About the Lack of Posts...

Hello everyone!
First I must apologize profusely for not posting in a while. Our internet connection has been running suuuuuper slow for the last two weeks and I've not been able to get my laptop to connect to the internet sufficiently in order to post.
Second, this post is a notice to say a new post is coming very soon. We've finally acquired a new router and the internet is back up to working speed. :)
Hope you've all been well!

Monday, July 9, 2012

Coming Home to Summer Flowers, Vegetables and Weeds...

Minnesota and Wisconsin, despite being incredibly hot and humid, made for a really awesome 4th of July trip. It was really great to see my friends and family again. First I went down to the Twin Cities and got to see all my college friends and march in a 4th of July parade (in the 100 degree weather). Then my family went to Wisconsin and stayed at our family's cabin for a few days, where we went tubing down the river near the cabin and floated around on the lake soaking up the sun.

My favorite skyline in the whole world.

The sunsets on the lake our cabin is on are awesome..., really REALLY awesome. :)

So coming home after 9 days away I should've expected to find lots and lots of weeds. :P

I spent the early afternoon weeding out the bean patch that FINALLY has bean plants in it. Thankfully the weeds hadn't really taken a very good hold and were easy to pull out quickly.

The tomatoes have straw under them and didn't need as much weeding. They've gotten so much bigger than they used to be and most have little, green tomatoes.

The peppers are also off to a great start and two of them have peppers on them. They're not quite big enough to pick yet, but they're getting there, especially the green pepper.

Speaking of peppers, the grocery store peppers are doing really well. When I left, they were just seedlings, but I returned to healthy young plants. Hopefully I'll find room in the garden for all of them. It looks like my pea plants failed (which I'm rather sad about) but I'll probably use their bed for the little peppers.

 The peppers really took off while I was gone and now I just have to put them somewhere...

I had a few that got really big so I planted them in a bare spot in the garden right away. 

 On top of all this, I now have more basil than I know what to do with. Once it gets bigger, I'll probably start giving it away to friends who like to cook with it and try to find some recipes myself.

A clump of basil.

The flower garden is looking really nice as well. With all the heat we got over the past week, some of the flowers really popped.

I think these pink lilies are one of my favorite blooms right now.

The cleome and cosmos came out while I was away and looks really nice under the front window and behind the house.

The morning glory has climbed all the way up the fence and will probably have to spread out horizontally now since there's no where else to go. 

 I really love this shade of peachy-pink.

The houseplants are still doing as well as ever. I was really excited when I got a text from my dad while in Minnesota with a picture of my hibiscus blooming. It has lots of buds on it and the heat of last week finally gave it the push it needed to start blooming. It'll probably get 3 or 4 more blooms judging by how many buds are still unopened.

The rest of the houseplants are still loving the three-seasons room.

My dad has come up with some pretty cool metal hooks for holding plants and sculptures for  the vines on the side of our house. The three seasons room has a few of his new creations like the one now holding my very first spider plant.

Most of his metalwork uses rings like these. Even the trellis in the front yard made of giant rings.

He's also made the trellises in our yard, one out in the front garden that holds the climbing honeysuckle and the other that frames the walkway to our side porch.

The trellis on our side porch that leads to the front yard. It's hard to see from this angle, but he created this one with two long rods of metal, connected by small rings.

 It was great to come home and see how much the garden had grown. Now that the weeding is over, I'll be trying my hand at some new recipes for the garden party I'm planning for my birthday this coming Thursday. :) I haven't done a food post yet and, despite the fact that this is a gardening blog, I feel like cooking and gardening go hand in hand.That, tea parties are always adorable to photograph. ...Yes, my friends and I still have tea parties. We've decided we're going to make awesome old ladies. Hopefully I won't be too busy and can take a few pictures.