The Organic Garden Project – Update

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We’re by the end of May, and it’s definitely time for a garden update! It’s about six weeks ago since my daughter and I built the garden beds, and planted our seeds. You can read about how we did it here.

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The love of gardening is a seed once sown that never dies. – Gertrude Jekyll

 
For us there was no other choice than doing everything Organic. That means a little more work, but it’s definitely worth it. So far our only challenges have been; a baby rabbit eating our strawberries, and some kind of leaf bug on our radishes. The signs of a bug visiting the plant, is only on the green part of the radishes, and not on the actual radish. They have to be very small, because there’s nothing I can see by just looking at them. The radishes are among the vegetables that we are harvesting every day, they are big, and taste great. To get rid of whatever bug eating the leaves we are spraying them with a mixture of equal amounts of apple cider vinegar, and water. It seem to help.

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You have to get up and plant the seed and see if it grows, but you can’t just wait around, you have to water it and take care of it. – Bootsy Collins

 
We also put dried coffee grounds around the garden beds, and sprinkled on the top soil. Our garden is shaped like an “L”, we have radishes on both ends of the “L”, they both have the same problem, not other garden bed are bothered by bugs. Since we started the apple cider vinegar, and coffee ground treatment, it’s getting much better. The radishes are flourishing, so I’m not overly worried about the bugs.

No occupation is so delightful to me as the culture of the earth, and no culture comparable to that of the garden. – Thomas Jefferson

 
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We’ve been blessed with a couple good rains since we planted our garden six weeks ago, something that have been very beneficial.

We’ve harvested a lot of cilantro, and I mean A LOT. The basil, thyme, and oregano are also doing fine. The day before I decided to take the pictures, I harvested what was left, and used it for a big stew I was making, so no photos of the herbs for the moment. I’ve harvested them on a daily basis for a couple weeks, and decided to completely cut them down, and let them grow back. Herbs taste so good when they are young, and fresh.

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I’m thinking of re-planting a couple of the garden beds. Dig them out, and plant celery, maybe some artichokes as well. I didn’t plant celery, and artichokes. In fact I’ve never had, but after visiting one of my friends gardens this weekend, I’m tempted to give it a try. The temperature is going to be in the three digits for the rest of the week, so I might wait until the worst heat wave is over, before doing that.

Everything that slows us down and forces patience, everything that sets us back into the slow circles of nature, is a help. Gardening is an instrument of grace. – May Sarton

This garden project that I am doing with my daughter, is a lot of fun. It inspire us to learn more about gardening together, and gives some continuity to our days. We have to take care of the garden every day. It actually made me start thinking about how it would be to homeschool her. We both love projects, I have the teaching background. I know we could do it. Still thinking about if it’s the right thing for us, while looking into different ways of doing it. If anyone of you have experience of homeschooling, I would love to hear about it! From the research I’ve done, I see that there’s a lot of different ways to do it.

Before it gets to hot, it’s going to be over 100 in a few hours, we’re going to our next project. Ariel have very fast become the highlight of our day.

 

Enjoy this beautiful day!

Love & Light, Always

Maria

MJP Gratitude Challenge

Every Saturday I host a gratitude challenge. I share something that I am grateful for, and encourage you to do the same!

This week I’m grateful for the journey, that our new rescue horse Ariel is taking us on. It is fascinating to get to know a new horse, especially a sensitive one. There is so much we can learn from them. I need to stay in the moment. I need to be right here, right now. For both me, and my daughter, this is a lesson in mindfulness, and the ability to focus on the present. Horses are big animals, if you’re not focused on what you are doing, things can happen, fast.

This week, my daughter and I have been talking about the importance of paying attention to what we are doing. Ariel really helped out!

I was grooming Ariel in the middle of the round-pen. She was wearing a halter, and a lead rope. Since she thoroughly enjoy being groomed, and was standing still, I did not tie her up. The rope was just laying on the ground. I asked her to stay there, while I was getting another brush from my grooming box (a few feet away.) She did, until my daughter picked up the rope. I saw that she picked up the rope, but I pretended to not see. My daughter inspected the leather flap by the end of the rope. Then she started shaking the flap, just to see what it would look like. Ariel flew backwards to the end of the round-pen, in less than a second. Not really understanding what just happened my daughter let go of the rope (a long one, it was never stretched to it’s full length.)

This little episode gave us an excellent opportunity to talk about the importance of being mindful; about our thoughts (she just wanted to see what the leather flap would look like, what noises it might make, if she shook it,) and actions. Lessons like the one Ariel just gave my daughter isn’t the kind you get by just telling your child to focus on what they are doing. I don’t think my daughter will forget her surprise, when Ariel got wings all of a sudden. To add to the story is that the second my daughter stopped, and let go of the rope, Ariel stopped, and dropped her head. The horse was indeed paying attention! I am grateful to have this new teacher in town!

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As always, I hope that your week have been filled with good things. I would love it, if you would join my Gratitude Challenge! Write about something you are grateful for, and tag your post MJP Gratitude Challenge.

Have an amazing Saturday!

Yours,

Maria

It’s Very QUIET Today

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Today is the first day since my daughter was born, that I have a completely kid-free day. My daughter is the center of my universe, as you probably now, if you visited my blog before. It’s a strange feeling that she’s not with me, but she is with her father. For the first time she’s spending two days with him. It’s HUGE. So far the most time she’s been spending with him is a couple hours here and there. I am very happy for her.

I decided to take some time to myself today, about time, right? I got a hair cut, and spend some time just enjoying the silence. I’d forgotten what it was like to read a book without interruptions!

Of course I couldn’t help myself, but had to visit my daughter’s horse, and play with her a little. A couple days ago we had her hooves trimmed. Or..at least the front ones, she wouldn’t let the farrier lift the back ones. She gives them to me, but did not let the farrier hold them. I’ll have to work with her more. We’ve only had her since last weekend, so that’s OK. He told me something interesting though. He told her that she is an 8 year old purebred Arabian Horse, named Princess. Not a 5 year old Arabian/Quarter Cross like I was told. That she’d been a riding horse previously, but put out to pasture because she doesn’t have any breaks (!) I don’t know what to think about that, if it’s true, or not. She does move completely different now, with her hooves trimmed, and she have considerably more speed. I don’t really care if she’s 5, or 8. I’m going to try to listen to her the best I can. I love her, and so does my daughter.

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I was thinking about taking her out on a long walk, outside the ranch where we board her. It would be a lot easier to do that by myself. It’s very windy today, so I decided to save our first outing to another time.

I don’t have  saddle for her yet, otherwise I would of saddled her up, to see if that’s something she is used to. I did find a headstall that fits her, so I tried that. It’s hard to tell if it was the first time she had a bit in her mouth, or not. She chewed on the bit for a couple minutes, and then she seemed OK with it. A young horse that have a bit for the first time could have that reaction, and so could a horse that haven’t been ridden in a while. Time will tell, slow is fast, when it comes to horses. They always tell us when they are ready. Ariel, (my daughter wants us to stick with that name,) is a very sweet horse. We are blessed to have her in our life.

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I hope you’re Friday is awesome! Happy Weekend!

Love & Light, Always

Maria

 

A bit of magic waiting

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I have always been delighted at the prospect of a new day, a fresh try, one more start, with perhaps a bit of magic waiting somewhere behind the morning. – J. B. Priestley

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A perfect morning starts after a good night’s sleep, cuddles, a delicious healthy breakfast, morning work-out, and a long walk in beautiful nature. At least that’s the definition of a perfect morning in my world. Today was pretty close to perfect 🙂 The pictures are snapshots from our morning walk.

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I get up every morning and it’s going to be a great day. You never know when it’s going to be over so I refuse to have a bad day. – Paul Henderson

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Somehow the odds for a great day increases dramatically with a perfect morning. Don’t you think? What does your perfect morning look like?

Love & Light, Always

Maria

 

From The Beginning

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Yesterday a dream came true for my little horse girl. She said welcome to her first horse. A five year old rescue horse, with the beautiful name Ariel.

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My daughter have always been fascinated by every aspect of life with horses. We’ve been watching both domesticated, and wild horses together, since before she could talk. She is learning Equus, to understand how the horses communicate with each other, via their body language. It’s very fascinating. As a compliment to being with horses in real life, we also read books, and watch educational videos together. We talk about what we learn, and try the things we are impressed by.

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The catch, to get a horse of her own, was that she would be involved in every need of her horse, when it comes to training, and care. I believe that despite her young age, she’s taking this seriously. Today we started from the beginning with Ariel. Touching her whole body, lifting her hooves, and leading her around. To lead a horse with a slack rope, and not drag the horse around, is an art. The most challenging thing for my daughter today was to look where she was going, and not at her horse. Looking directly at a horse can make the horse slow down, or stop. If you’re looking, and thinking, in the direction of where you want to go, the horse follows.

I call horses ‘divine mirrors’ – they reflect back the emotions you put in. If you put in love and respect and kindness and curiosity, the horse will return that. – Allan Hamilton

My daughter is blessed to learn this with Ariel, she is a sweetheart. I also think Ariel is equally blessed to have my daughter in her life. She is very dedicated to learn everything she need to learn. Even this early on it’s heart warming to see.

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I hope your week got off to a great start!

Love & Light, Always

Maria