My First Cucumbers, YUMMY!

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I have never grown cucumbers before and I have to scratch my head and wonder why? Oh my goodness, home-grown cucumbers are so amazing I have no idea why I have never planted them before. For some reason I always chose zucchini or yellow squash to grow and I’m not bashing them but my hubby has never liked zucchini or squash so I end up making zucchini bread and I bake the squash despite his lack of enthusiasm. When I cut into this cucumber the sweet, juicy flavor was unlike any I’ve had before! It’s like home-grown tomatoes, they just taste so much better than buying from the store, so strange but it’s so TRUE!!

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I LOVE these babies so much that I cut up the whole cucumber and put it in my salad. Haha, I had more cucumber than salad but it was so delicious I had to have a salad the next day and of course consume another cucumber. The skin is not very thick on my cucumbers which is fine by me, as it makes it that much tastier. I’ve been seeing and reading a lot about other gardens and all the produce they are producing its just amazing as my garden is so tiny but it’s a start. I am such a busy Mom, Grandma, supervisor, horse owner, dog owner, kitty owner and small garden maintainer, not to mention the house work I need to do (it’s pretty easy to neglect the kitchen floor) also working on crochet projects, did I tell you I’m really busy? Yup, now I’m repeating myself! And I love sharing and writing and that takes time too! 😀

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Here is one pumpkin that has taken off and I had planted white and orange seed pumpkins. I think this is going to be a white pumpkin. I also discovered that in my zealous trying to be a good pumpkin/cucumber mom I’ve been over watering! Oh dear, I’ve had a few pumpkins get all mushy and fall off the vine and upon reading this is caused by too much watering or flooding. Oops, so I’ve backed off and am trying to just water every day by wetting the soil and like counting to 10 and making myself stop. Haha, it’s been so darn hot that I’ve been standing there flooding my garden! 😀

I’m getting some weeds and a bit of grass growing around my pumpkins that I’m leaving for groundcover to help keep moisture in since I waited to long to mulch. At this point I just want to get one or two pumpkins full-grown if possible. And I’ve gotten six cucumbers, yes only six, remember I’ve got a teeny tiny garden and I can see more cucumbers growing on the vine so I may get more before the vines all shrivel up and die. We scared away the gopher for now, hopefully he’ll stay away to complete this growing cycle. It’s all good experience. I’d rather learn by trial and error on a tiny garden than invest a whole bunch of money and time on a huge endeavor only to screw it up and have most of my crops drop dead! Haha, I’m not doing too bad considering!

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AND I’VE GOT TOMATOES GROWING! I feel like a little kid, look what I did Ma! I grew a tomato!! You have to realise or if you haven’t noticed yet I get REALLY EXCITED over little triumphs. I want to thank all the blogs I have read on gardening and thank you all for sharing your stories, photos, tips and encouragements. You all as I sit and stare and read about these beautiful gardens are why I try to do some container gardening. I have to think small as my land where I live is not conducive to a large garden area. And I live in the stinkin desert, so it makes growing much of anything a bit of a challenge! But I try!  ❤ ❤ ❤

I thought I’d close with my honeysuckle bush which is absolutely LOVING all my watering! It has so many blooms ready to bloom I just love it and the smell is AMAZING! There are a million buds and I took a close up of the tiny flower but boy does it smell good. I wish I could share the honeysuckle smell, but suffice it to say that I am doing a bit better with my plants but then they are a bit more forgiving. I have plans on two containers that I will plant probably this weekend some fall veggies. Since I’m planting from seed it’s not costing much but my time, so I squeeze in time in my garden which is soothing and relaxing. I love being outside!

Crazy teeny tiny gardener,

-Diana

Up close Garden Stills

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I don’t have a fancy camera but I absolutely LOVE photography.  Growing up my father was an avid photography and had some really nice cameras with many different lenses including the top of the line zoom lens. It was so fun using his fancy camera back in the day. Then you had to get the film developed. I actually took a photography class in high school and learned how to develop film. We just used black and white as I am sure that was easy to teach us young high school students. It amazes me what we can do at a snap of a finger today! I just point and click and even though my Samsung Galaxy S9+ may not be a super duper fancy camera it fills my needs and is super easy to use. I actually need to look into this camera more and see all that it can do as I may not be using it to its full capabilities, I just haven’t had the time to read and learn about all its camera features. Suffice it to say, I just got as close as I could for this fun Sunday Stills photo challenge!

Above is a close up photo of my honeysuckle bush. It is loving all my watering and is getting a million blooms and is smelling AMAZING!  ❤

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I keep mentioning my beautiful tea rose in my garden writings and right now it is the only rose-bush blooming. It’s just loving life right now and so I can’t help myself but to photograph all its beautiful foliage.  I got as close as I could to this pink rose without it getting too blurry! ❤

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I have to include a very up close photo of a healthy pumpkin that the gopher has not eaten (yet) and am hoping he keeps on growing, grow baby pumpkin grow!! Mr. gopher has hopefully fled and is living elsewhere.  For those of you following my blog I had written about the demise of a bunch of my pumpkin and cucumber plants which Mr. gopher found and was getting fat enjoying their roots. I have about half my ground garden still growing and even harvested a few cucumbers which is my next photo!  😀

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These are my very fat cucumbers. I’m not sure why they are so short and fat as they are supposed to be thin and about 6 inches in length.  I actually wasn’t sure how long to leave on the vine but it just felt right to harvest them today and I know my plants will hopefully grow some more. If that doesn’t happen that’s okay, this is all for fun and of course I would love to be able to eat and enjoy my grown veggies. I think this will do fine.  This Sunday Stills photo challenge was a lot of FUN!  I hope you all enjoyed my stills and I hope you think about sharing too!

Sunday Fun!

-Diana

Keeping Up, One Day at a Time!

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Have you ever felt so busy that you wonder how can I keep up? I feel this way often and just when I feel like I’ve caught up, I’m actually behind! My sweet hubby bought me these beautiful flowers, so colorful with this wonderful card which has such great advice. One day at a time, one step at a time….. Let’s take a deep breath and say it again. One day at a time, one step at a time. We can do this, we should not let our crazy busy lives spiral out of control. It may be you do not have this problem, but there are many of us that our plate is so full its overflowing. So full we do not know how we do all that we do, and this is what I’ll be writing about today. MY BUSY LIFE! CRAZY, FULL, FUN, SATISFYING most days, and I will say I feel blessed, even though I also want to say Whoa, let’s slow down just a little bit please! 😀

I work full-time at a Veterinary laboratory on the night shift. I have been working night shift for some 35 years, and even though I had a couple of breaks from night shift work I actually prefer the shift and being the supervisor of my department at the lab this shift works best. As many who have read my blogs know, I own 2 horses and working night shift has enabled me to be able to see and take care of my horses on a daily basis. I sleep in the late afternoons into the evenings and so I feel like I do get some of my sleep at night, its just early evening and not all night. But it does make for a crazy schedule and the pressure of being the supervisor rears its ugly head when things go awry and so I need to remember to take one day at a time. I have been working on some projects at work that has pulled my crew together as we join forces in keeping the department running smoothly and more accurately we are all working hard to do better at our jobs. I don’t want to get into the details as I’m sure this can all get a bit boring, suffice it to say that I feel personally that the affects of my broken arm from last September bled into my work or lack of it and so I had to take the bull by the horns and get serious and get things in line. I feel very confident at work now, things are all going in the right direction!

But for all my hard work I then get to enjoy these incredible animals!!

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Zack is so fun to ride and I wish I had more time to ride him! Something that I find hard to fit into my busy schedule. I did have time the other day and he is so FUN to ride English in the arena. He has such a great trot, a nice gate that when riding English its a great workout for me as I post along doing figure eights with him and moving on and off the rail. I canter sometimes, but I rather trot and he moves out well and I know it is a nice work out for him as well. I tell myself on any given week, I am going to ride him twice or three times this week…. sigh…. I am lucky to ride him once a week. One day at a time… Oh well, he is retired and I do get him out every day for a turn out but riding is not as regular. We are doing okay with that I think and his weight looks good and I think his muscle tone is okay too. He makes me smile! ❤

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I also fit into my schedule babysitting my grand daughter Alice! Oh my how she melts my heart and she just loves grandma’s horses and with the help of my girlfriend Sally, we went riding the other day and my girlfriend took this photo of Alice and I on my horse Chloe! I have had Chloe since she was 2 years old and she is turning 14 years old this year. Chloe and I can read each others thoughts, maybe not word for word but darn near close to it as we have such a close bond, for any horse lover out there it is incredible. Chloe absolutely loves people and especially children. She is so patient and kind and we had so much fun just walking around the arena on this day. These are my favorite days, a true blessing to be able to enjoy my horses with my friends and family. I have to work hard for what I have but it is worth all my efforts and I take full advantage of my morning hours with my ponies. ❤ ❤ ❤

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And I have managed to fit in gardening. I love being outside and it thrills me to see it grow, but this heat can be daunting. I have to tell myself one day at a time…. I probably didn’t feed my garden as well as I should have so we will see what grows, but I also have some containers and am planning on planting more and I will manage to squeeze in watering and enjoying watching my garden grow! I also spend time crocheting and I have made many crochet animals, Star Wars characters (my favorite!) and many more items. Scarfs, small purses and I’m working on a shawl. I’ve made baby blankets and baby dresses, the list goes on and on…. I also have done a ton of cross-stitch but have not done that in some years prefering crochet as the projects are completed much faster!!

Lastly, I am trying to find time to blog!! I so enjoy writing, AND I would love to write more but I do find it hard to find the time! Oh my, I can’t imagine writing every day. I would want it to be readable and enjoyable and so here I am hoping you are enjoying my busy day. I am getting really tired as it is my day off and I’ve been up all night last night. I use to take naps during the day, but as I’ve grown older I seem to be able to stay up but it’s getting late in the evening so I will turn in soon. I know some of you may not be that busy and I’m rather envious of you, but those of you that have an overflowing plate will relate and so I hope you all can take – One Day At A Time – and enjoy that day fully!! 😀

Love, Di-

First day of Summer!

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SUMMER – is for horseback riding. It is the time of year that you plan on enjoying the outdoors, whether you are planning a vacation or doing that something you love to do outside! It could be visiting the beach or hiking in the mountains. I bet you can take one guess what I do in the summer, I horse back ride all over my home town with my good friends! And this girl is the best trail horse and I am so grateful and thankful for Chloe and my other trail horse Zack.  I am lucky my sister came to visit for a short time and so we got to enjoy some trail rides….  we could ride forever, visiting, chatting, reconnecting. So much FUN!  😀

SUMMER – is for gardening as I’ve shared my tiny garden in previous posts. I’m loving all the outdoor activities which include not only gardening but going to the park with my granddaughter. I just remembered we have summer night concerts at the park on Friday nights! SO nice to enjoy some music and some BBQ or we can bring food and picnic. I have to remind my hubby that the Concert in the Parks have started, we missed the first one but will catch some and enjoy Friday nights out for sure this summer.  😀

SUMMER – is for Graduations!! At least this year is all about graduations! Starting with my daughter who is graduating with her Masters Degree in Humanities. Then my middle son graduated with a BS degree in Physics and my youngest son graduated with his BS degree in Computer Science. Oh my, this momma can’t express how proud I am of my adult children. They will always be my children but the accomplishments they have achieved are humbling to me as I admire their tenacity, their dedication and their strength to stay on course and finish what they started. I find that life can get in the way of goals, and I am grateful and I’m very impressed they achieved their goals. Love you all so very much!  ❤ ❤ ❤

SUMMER – Brings sunshine and smiles. It brings hot days, summer storms and I am hoping that everyone has the best summer this year. I am looking forward to so many things, watching my garden grow, enjoying my horses and having fun with family. What does your summer bring for you this year? I’d love to hear from you! Thank you for visiting!  😀

-Diana

Crazy Busy This Month of May

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I am trying to take in everything in this month of May.  I am enjoying babysitting my granddaughter as my son is finishing his last semester of college. It’s been a bit of long road for him but the end is in sight! So exciting, he graduates in a month. And we just celebrated my other son’s graduation from college this last weekend! We are a very busy family, that is for sure and how I keep up is a wonder to me sometimes, and then I try to squeeze more things in each day.  I’m also proud of my daughter who will be graduating this summer with her Master’s degree, busy as bees this family…..

As I have been babysitting each day, I’ve been brought outside as little Alice LOVES the outdoors. She also loves animals so we get to spend more time with not only my horses but our dogs and we have a kitty cat too. My front yard has suffered greatly by drought conditions where we live and once the weeds took hold we stopped watering our lawn. Some day we will address where the lawn once was, so it’s just a big dirt area. I had probably close to 20 rose bushes but many have died, and so I’m down to about 8 with 3 not looking too good and the other 5 are doing great. I’m able to water them so much more now that the little one and I go outside every day, funny how I was not doing this when I wasn’t babysitting. I need to continue when the babysitting schedule changes.

So the rose bushes I am watering are really blooming and looking great! I just love the smell of roses, and eventually we will replant and redo our front yard, but at least I am able to salvage some of the plants before they all died. The very front of the house has a nice bunch of plants that get shade and enough water that even neglected have stayed nice. I also have a bunch of palm trees that of course do great with little water.

What I have been wanting to do for years is plant a vegetable garden and so I thought it would be fun to try growing some in a container, partly because we do have gophers that I’m sure once they figured out something new is growing will help themselves. But I really wanted to grow some pumpkins and either squash or cucumbers, I settled with cucumbers and these two are in the ground as their vines get so long I didn’t want to even try to grow them in a container. I’ve grown pumpkins once before at this house over 10 years ago, and they did fine with little bother by gophers so I think I’ll be okay.

This is only one side of my container garden with the one plant being a blueberry that I bought already started. I’ve planted the rest with seeds and they are just starting to sprout! In the container is snap peas, bell peppers, tomatoes and the blueberries. The two photos on the right are not very pretty but are sprouts of cucumber and pumpkins in less than a week!! So exciting to see these sprout, the cucumbers are going crazy!! I’m going to have to pull out some of them once they get bigger because there are so many sprouting there will be too much competition with the soil and I’ll have too many plants, ha ha! I’m having so much FUN watching these seedlings grow!

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My daughter bought me this little container for herbs and I have sprouts!! The dill is the tallest with basil and oregano right behind. I’m not sure about parsley, but hopefully it will peek through the soil soon. I forgot how fun it is to grow veggies and herbs! Now I need to get cooking once I get something on the vines or plants!  😀

I’m going to share a few more rose photos, as they are just so beautiful! I hope you all are enjoying May, I can’t believe there is only one week left of this month. It’s been what we call June gloom here in California with a lot of overcast cloudy days this month. But we here all love it since once summer arrives it will be hot, but we all say, it’s a dry heat! LOL – Let me know what you are growing, do you have a veggie garden? I’ve read some blogs about some pretty big gardens, so fun to see them grow. I’m keeping it small this year so as not to get to overwhelmed. I’m so surprised I got something in the ground, I surprise myself sometimes! Ha! Life is full, busy but good.  ❤

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