I'm always amazed when I go to write a new post in what I think is a "reasonable timeframe" only to find that whoosh another month somehow went by. How does that happen exactly? July has been chock full of trips to the zoo and outdoors things in spite of record-breaking heat. We tried to become morning/evening people when it got really bad but we also made sure Maegwin got some outdoors time as much as possible. Our neighbor whose house burnt down gifted us their trampoline and Maegwin is completely obsessed with it. She will just run in circles around it and makes up little games to play. It's great to see and lets us get a bit of gardening done.
This year saw the return of the groundhog and his destructive maw. He even ate our potatoes this year which he has not done in previous ones. I chalk it up to the crazy drought and the fact that our garden is super inviting. We also had attempted broccoli and brussels sprouts every other year which happen to be a groundhog's favorite foods if you were not aware. We managed to get a few harvests of peas and some spinach before the hot weather and otherwise have only had an occasional tomato and cucumber here and there. We lost a whole batch of tomatoes to blossom end rot during the worst heat but I think we're on the right track now. We have a few bell peppers that are nearly ripe and several butternut squash ripening nicely. Our black and green beans were eaten nearly to nubs by the hog so we're calling them a loss. Luckily we had really scaled back this year anyway. Our new plan is to clear out the bracken around the fence as fall comes and figure out where the fence is failing and then hopefully we can sneak in some celery, onions, cabbage, and maybe some lettuce before winter. I had an idea to use our old doors & windows that are downstairs (the ones that were originally in the house) to build some cold frames. Josh said he'll start working on those once the weather is a bit cooler for being outside. We've also been noodling over getting a few chickens. Some of our neighbors have them and today I saw this coop that I think might work really nicely. I don't think we would need more than two for our egg consumption and it would be a great way for Maegwin to learn about where some of our food comes from. Plus we get free fertilizer and while we are in the garden they could scratch and peck around. Obviously a big investment of time and money so still in the planning stages there but maybe next year.
Alright, I know what you are all thinking. Blah blah blah show us the kid already! I've done a few home crafty projects for her recently. We made some more play dough. Not sure what I did wrong with this batch but it was a little more dry. Maybe too much salt.
She used the little silicone cupcake forms I have to make some dough cupcakes and cookie cutters to make different shapes. We made a whole stack of stars one day. Fun and nearly free-sign me up!
We also took all of her broken crayons and made some new ones. Josh broke them up and Maegwin arranged them in pleasing color combinations in a silicone bunny pan I had got from Target last Easter. My intention was to at some point try to make my own bunny Peeps but I have not attempted this yet. I love making marshmallows though so they can't be hard. Anyway, they turned out pretty well I think.
She plays with them all the time. We have to pretend to eat them as she says they are cupcakes or candies. She also colors with them but I'm not complaining. Way better than the bunch of nubs that she couldn't do anything with. If you should want to make some new crayons yourselves, just break them into small pieces, put them in a 225 degree oven until they are melted then take them out and let them cool. We popped ours in the freezer because two-year-olds aren't known for their patience.
On a recent trip to the zoo my mom tagged along and Maegwin had a great day hanging out with Grammy. She showed her the turtles in the reptile house.
And had a close encounter with one of the orangutans who decided to set up her bed right next to us.
We also got to feed the lorikeets. They are only open a short time each day so that was fun.
This particular one came and drank the entire cup of nectar. One of the other guys in there had three on him at once!
Maegwin loved this monster outside the orangutans area. She was pretending it was biting her. She still giggles everytime she sees this photo.
Of course we had to visit the stinkflower which is one of Maegwin's favorite things.
On the knitting front I'm working on a hoodie for me, a sun dress for Maegwin, and then I'd like to finish up a couple more pair of socks for me. I know fall is coming soon so I need to stock up! I'm also in the beginning stages of Christmas knitting planning so if you have requests, now is the time...