Tuesday, June 30, 2009

33 going on 23

Today was my birthday. We had a great day. My throat is still sore and it sounds like I am getting larynxgitis, so I don't want to talk a whole lot. Here are some pics:


The kids woke up gave me a kiss, wished me a happy birthday, then made me a cake all by themselves in their pajamas. They did a great job. The only thing they forgot was to set the timer, but I noticed and set it for them.


Meanwhile, Rachel ate the peanut butter and jelly sandwich remnants from breakfast. (My kids, except Bradley, love PB&J for breakfast.)


I used my birthday to exploit my kids and asked them to clean my kitchen floor for a present.


We went to a small local water park. It's half price after 3PM.


Fun spurty water fountains.


Fun slides. Sarah liked those too.


Rachel had a great time.


She really did. She was just crying in this picture because it was late and her sippy cup was empty.


Rachel found her shadow.


She couldn't figure out why it was following her.


Even tippy-toeing wouldn't make that thing go away.


After 1/2 price Sonic burgers, I opened presents...


My parents gave me a purple shirt I maybe would've worn in 1989 with a nice big black elastic belt around the waistline. (It must have been on sale. Mom, do you still have the receipt?) Maybe it looks better on? The thing is, I want a new shirt to go with my new......


AWESOME SHOES!!!
If you can't tell, those are pink, sparkly, Converse slip-ons. My husband noticed me eyeing them at Target a few weeks ago. They are actually kids size 5 1/2 which I guess equates to women's 6 1/2 or 7? I LOVE them! It was nice to get a real gift and not a "this is what I wanted to get you" with an online image of an item with a hefty price tag. I also got the DVD Enchanted. I'm so excited to watch it.


The finished product. They baked, frosted, and decorated it all by themselves. The only thing I did was take it out of the oven when I saw that they didn't notice the timer had gone off. I loved it. They made 2 nine inch layers. We saved the other plain layer for Wendy's birthday tomorrow. Yes, we have another birthday to celebrate tomorrow! I have to say that I'm glad that mine comes first. I have to think of how I am going to decorate hers.


Emily put the candles on and miscounted. I had 23 candles instead of 33. I'll accept it.


I once more exploited them and had them clean the dirty dishes.


It was good day. Need to get some rest for another party tomorrow!

Monday, June 29, 2009

Science Monday

My day began with my kids running into my bedroom to wish me a Happy Birthday Eve. Here's the rest of the day:
If you feed Rachel too late (12:45 PM) then she will fall asleep at the table.
(Pretzels can be pretty exhausting.)





My ambidextrous son. (Not very sciencey, but cool.) He switches back and forth the whole time he is coloring.


Yeast + Sugar + Warm Water = Blown Up Balloon
Cool, eh?!


A lesson in density. We filled six cups with equal amounts of water and used food coloring to color them the colors of the rainbow. Then we added salt to each of the cups. red = 1 tsp., orange = 2 tsp., yellow = 3 tsp., etc. Then we poured some into clear vinyl tubing (found at a hardware store in plumbing section) with the bottom duck-taped, beginning with purple and the colors layered because of their density.

Word of the Day = Density


Our couch is getting quite dense. I'm ready to upgrade to a sectional.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Baby Food Storage

At a young age, Rachel is learning to always have a back up food source.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

No More Goop (for Rachel)

It was about 98 degrees today. A drippy, hot and icky 98 degrees. There were threats of severe thunderstorms so instead of going to the pool, we let the kids play with the hoses this evening.


Cute.


Cute?

Her diaper nearly bursted off of her with the weight of the water. Rachel is over the goop. But now we have a Jason and Sarah with green oozing out their eye. Lovely. All I have to say is, "I better not be sick on my Birthday!!!"


Friday, June 26, 2009

I'm 5 feet 4 inches.


The seed packet wasn't kidding when it said, "Mammoth."

My cucumbers and tomatoes might be suffering in this heat, but my sunflowers are loving it! I'm also telling you that compost is the KEY ingredient to a garden! I wish I had a measuring tape.

(actually I'm 5 feet 3.5 inches, but I round up.)

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Always say, "Never."

I always say I never want to go anywhere with my kids by myself because it's too exhausting and too much trouble. I pay enough each month for my house, I might as well enjoy it, right? Well, today my husband was attending an all day seminar and then had a class immediately following in the evening. I forgot to send him off this morning with the library books that were due today, so I decided that when Rachel woke up from her nap I would put all the kids in the van and drop off the books.

We went to the library, returned the books, then we went to the children's section to do a little browsing. We collected a reusuable grocery shopping bag full of books and 5 DVD's and checked out. Thankfully they accepted my driver's license because I couldn't find my library card. When we were checking out I noticed it was raining. When we were finished checking out I noticed it was pouring. I slung the heavy book bag over the handle of the stroller, told Jason to put his cowboy boots back on his feet and stood there a moment to try to make a decision. My options were: 1) wait outside under the overhang and hope the rain would let up enough to make a run for the van, 2) go back to the children's section and wait for the rain to stop, 3) make a run for it in the pouring rain.

When I heard the loud thunder clap, I decided to wait it out in the children's section. The children played with the wooden puzzles. After each child did each puzzle, I checked with the librarian at the front desk to see if they had a back door that we might be able to use. Our van was parked in the back of the building where nobody usually ever parks because it was busy when we got there, which meant if we left the building from the front door we would have to basically walk around 3 sides of the large building to get to our van, meaning that we would be entirely soaked as well as the library books. You would think it would be in their interest to help me avoid the rain to save their precious books, but she told me there was an emergency door and a staff door then gave me an indication that there was a fat chance that we would be able to use either of those. However, she said that I could ask the staff back there and maybe they would help me. She didn't seem to want to be involved in breaking the rules.

So I walked back to the children's area where my not so quiet children were still playing and I chose to ignore the sign that read "Please assist us in the keeping the noise level down." Maybe that would get them to help me out the back door. While I stood there Emily said to me, "All the people here have umbrellas. Why don't we have an umbrella?"

"Because we're not that smart," I replied. But in my defense, when I checked weather.com this morning for the zip code in which I live there was NO rain in the forecast AND it was dry as a bone in our neighborhood when we finally got home. I didn't think to check the zip code only 10 miles from my house. But it's not like an umbrella would've been very useful anyway with the load I was toting with me.

I could see a patch of clear sky between the evergreen trees, but the rain continued to downpour . I got anxious to leave and wanted to see how helpful the staff in the back would be. So I gathered the kids and said, "Let's go for a walk." I approached the info desk and politely asked them if I could use the back door to get my six children to the van in this pouring rain because I did not have an umbrella. They grimaced and said, "We really aren't supposed to let you do that." I determined the key word was 'supposed' and repeated myself, "I have six small children, no umbrella, and I'm parked in the back of the building." Then I flashed them a look that said, "Please!" The young girl said with a sigh, "Ok. I suppose since it's raining."

So she took us back to the sacred back room of the library which happened to be a couple of offices and crates of books. Then she apologized to her boss for having to bring me back there but explained that I had lots of small children. Her boss seemed sympathetic and nice which surprised me because from the way the staff was so unwilling to help me, I imagined they were being managed by some ogre master libarian.

Meanwhile I couldn't find my keys. I knew I just had them. I searched my purse. I searched the diaper bag. I searched the book bag. I sent Emily to go look for them in the children's section. I searched for them in the children's section. Just when I got back to the staff room, Rachel leaned forward in the stroller and I saw my measuruing tape keychain sticking out from under her bum. I sat her on my keys when I put her in the stroller. Whoops. I thanked the girl several times for letting us use the back door and told the kids, "Make a run for it!" We sloshed through the puddles and got drenched anyway.

Then we went to Lowes. (The rain had stopped by the time we got there.) I have a couple of stories that irritated me there too. But I'll just say, "How in the world can you not know if you carry copper wire?!!" This is a home improvement store and you work in the electrical department!! Seriously there were 4 male employees all searching for copper wire. Is copper wire not a common thing? Because they sure make it seem like it is in all of these science books I'm reading. We finally found some suitable copper wire and some galvanized nails so we hopefully can get some electricity from a lemon.

So I'm back to thinking home is where the heart is. To think I did all this today to save $0.75.

My camera kept me occupied for a few moments at the library.



What a face! I think Jason looks a bit Muppetish in this picture, but he was so proud of his stack.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Pink Eye Has Struck

My baby is disgusting. I didn't want to look at her or touch her today. The poor thing spent most of the day in her high chair and crib because I didn't want her walking around spreading goop. I wonder when I'll get it.

On a cuter note:

On Sunday Rachel showed us that she likes cucumbers and she figured out how to eat cucumber and suck her fingers too.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Happy 17 months!

I forgot to blog that Rachel turned 17 months yesterday. It seems so strange that she is still our youngest child. This is her new trick:

Now she qualifies for being big enough to clear the table before meals.

Monday, June 22, 2009

The Weekend

This weekend was an unusually busy weekend. My girls were flower girls in a good friend of mine daughter's wedding:


They thought their corsage's were beautiful.


Now if only they looked and acted so angelic all the time.


It was a fabulous wedding. Beautiful bride, good Southern food, a juke box, good sweltering Southern heat (like 100 degrees), and good cake. Nobody even noticed that before the wedding the cake topper toppled and the groom's head fell off. Somebody had to go buy a new cake topper. It was still a beautiful and delicous cake!

Beautiful cake.



I didn't do it! But I was the tacky guest who took a picture of the cake injury.


Every wedding needs a small mishap. My wedding mishap was that I was a half hour late arriving because I couldn't find the temple. I forgot to think to get directions. Apparently my brain was long gone before I even had kids.



My husband didn't catch the bouquet, but Emily did. I nudged her up to the small crowd of single women. I didn't actually expect her to catch it, she did a good catch. I better get ready to plan a wedding

After the wedding I procrastinated a bit before I prepared my church talk.

Sunday morning we made Daddy breakfast in bed - grits, toasted waffles, sliced banana and strawberries, and orange juice. I would post a picture, but I don't have one. I was afraid it would get me in trouble if I took a picture of my husband in bed a 7:15 in the morning.

Sunday afternoon we celebrated David's 9th Father's Day! He played Risk with the kids while I napped on the couch after an exhausting weekend.

Now it's Monday night. We had our Family Home Evening. I blogged. Now I need to go to bed.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Father's Day and Talk

Happy Father's Day!
(A couple of them dozed before we took the picture. I had to prop Wendy up for the pic.)



Today I gave a talk in church. I should be good for at least a year now. Phew! I was given the topic "Strengthening Home and Family." I thought it was a good topic. When I began preparing I was going to pick three things to talk about. I was pondering Family Home Evening, forgiveness, and education. But after continuing to ponder and prepare I felt led to focus on Family Home Evening. So here is version of my talk without all the comments in between the quotes. If you are in another ward, you're welcome to use it anytime. Just send me a check for $19.95. Ha! JK! You can totally use it for free. It's basically a talk laden with quotes about FHE.

First I read exerpts from the original letter from the First Presidency (Joseph F. Smith) in 1915.

"Dear Brethren and Sisters:

"We counsel the Latter-day Saints to observe more closely the commandment of the Lord given in the 68th section of the Doctrine and Covenants: ... (which talks about teaching our children the Gospel.)

"...And they shall also teach their children to pray, and to walk uprightly before the Lord” [D&C 68:28]. ...

"...To this end we advise and urge the inauguration of a “home evening” throughout the Church, at which time fathers and mothers may gather their boys and girls about them in the home and teach them the word of the Lord. They may thus learn more fully the needs and requirements of their families, at the same time familiarizing themselves and their children more thoroughly with the principles of the gospel of Jesus Christ. This home evening should be devoted to prayer, singing hymns, songs, instrumental music, scripture reading, family topics, and specific instruction on the principles of the gospel and on the ethical problems of life, as well as the duties and obligations of children to parents, the home, the Church, society, and the nation. For the smaller children, appropriate recitations, songs, stories, and games may be introduced. Light refreshments of such a nature as may be largely prepared in the home might be served.

"Formality and stiffness should be studiously avoided, and all the family should participate in the exercises....

This last paragraph is good stuff:
"...If the Saints obey this counsel, we promise that great blessings will result. Love at home and obedience to parents will increase. Faith will be developed in the hearts of the youth of Israel, and they will gain power to combat the evil influences and temptations which beset them." (that part made me choke up a bit, because how awesome is it that we can have power to combat evil by having fun with our family?) (“Family Home Evening: Counsel and a Promise,” Ensign, Jun 2003, 12)

Then I talked about the Who, What, Where, When, and Why of Family Home Evening:

WHO?

The First Presidency (Kimball) in 1976 said:
“Family home evening is for everyone. It is for families with parents and children, for families with just one parent, and for parents who have no children at home. It is for home evening groups of single adults and for those who live alone or with roommates. …"
(Family Home Evening: Happiness through Faith in Jesus Christ (1976))


Nobody is exempt or graduates from Family Home Evening.

WHAT?

What should we do at Family Home Evening?

Family Home Evening can include:

  • Opening song
  • Opening prayer
  • Gospel-centered lesson by parent or older child. This is the most important part of FHE and should be age appropriate and engaging. You can use the church magazines and other church manuals for teaching.
  • Activity - can include games, service, or work (i.e. working in the garden or beautifying the home), or completing Duty to God and Personal Progress goals.
  • Closing prayer
  • Refreshments

Our family also includes:

  • family business such as father's blessings the week after a birthday and handing out of allowances to children 8 and over.
  • sharing of musical talents
  • self-timed family photo

Most importantly, Family Home Evening should be FUN. Our family has been guilty of dragging our lessons a bit too long to the point where we end up swatting children with the Gospel Principles book for climbing all over the furniture. That is bad. Make it fun.

WHERE?

Family Home Evening. Duh. ( I didn't really say, "duh.")

President Hinckley said:
"It was not to be a time to attend athletic events or anything of the kind. Of course, if there is family activity of such a kind occasionally, that may be all right. But in the increasingly frantic rush of our lives it is so important that fathers and mothers sit down with their children, pray together, instruct them in the ways of the Lord, consider their family problems, and let the children express their talents. I am satisfied that this program came under the revelations of the Lord in response to a need among the families of the Church."
(Gordon B. Hinckley, “Family Home Evening,” Ensign, Mar 2003, 2–5)

It is not Family Movie Theatre Evening or Family Soccer Field Evening. It's Family Home Evening.

WHEN?

It was in 1970 President Joseph Fielding Smith and his counselors designated Monday as Family Home Evening.

President Hinckley said:
“Keep Monday night sacred for family home evening.”
(Worldwide Leadership Training Meeting, June 21, 2003, 23)


Elder Costa of the Seventy said this past General Conference:
"Our children, just like their parents, have time demands on them in every aspect of their lives. They have activities involving church and school and friends. Many of our children are attending schools where they are the minority. Frequently the schools schedule events on Monday evenings—activities like sports, rehearsals or practices, choirs, and other events. We need to keep Monday nights free of other commitments so that we can have our family home evenings. No other activity is more important for our family."
(Claudio R. M. Costa, “Priesthood Responsibilities,” Ensign, May 2009, 56–58)

They don't say Tuesday, Friday, or even Sunday because Elder Perry of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles said:
"The Church has established two special times for families to be together. The first is centered around the proper observance of the Sabbath day. This is the time we are to attend our regular meetings together, study the life and teachings of the Savior and of the prophets.

"The second time is Monday night. We are to teach our children in a well-organized, regular family home evening. No other activities should involve our family members on Monday night. This designated time is to be with our families."
(L. Tom Perry, “The Importance of the Family,” Ensign, May 2003, 40)

Gordon B. Hinckley said:
“[The Lord] expects us to have family home evening—one night a week to gather our children together and teach them the gospel.”
(Gordon B. Hinckley, “Family Home Evening,” Ensign, Mar 2003, 2–5)

He also urged, in the strongest terms possible, that fathers and mothers regard most seriously this opportunity and challenge to make of Monday evening a time sacred to the family.

Let us learn from President Hinckley’s example:
“I have received not a few invitations to participate in community Monday gatherings of one kind or another. I have uniformly turned down these invitations with appreciation, but with the explanation that I have reserved Monday as family home evening time. I earnestly hope that each of you will do the same
(“To Men of the Priesthood,” Ensign, Nov. 2002, 58).

Ok. Monday it is.

WHY?

For the blessings, of course. What are the blessings?

Elder Neil L. Andersen pointed out in 1999:
"We all know the struggle necessary to retain family home evening. There are thieves among us who would steal our Monday nights. But the promises of the Lord made to families who hold family home evening, that were spoken by the First Presidency 84 years ago and reiterated by our Prophets today, have never been revoked and are there for us:" He pointed out the following blessings from the last paragraph of the 1915 letter quoted above:

  1. Love at home,
  2. Obedience to parents will increase, (I like that one!)
  3. Faith developed in youth,
  4. Power to combat evil influence and temptation,

He then said, "Who within the sound of my voice would be willing to sell these promises to those who would confiscate our Monday nights? Not one of us."
(Neil L. Andersen, “Prophets and Spiritual Mole Crickets,” Ensign, Nov 1999, 16)

Amen, Brother! (I didn't really say that either, but I was thinking it.)

But there's more.... The First Presidency in 1976 also promised:

Regular participation in family home evening will develop:

  1. increased personal worth,
  2. family unity,
  3. love for our fellowmen,
  4. and trust in our Father in heaven.

"It is our promise that great blessings will come to all who conscientiously plan and hold weekly family home evenings.”
(Family Home Evening: Happiness through Faith in Jesus Christ (1976))

But wait, there's more. President Faust has also said:

"If we go forward with our family home evenings:

  1. our homes will be enriched,
  2. our wards and branches will grow and prosper,
  3. our lives will be purified,
  4. and the gates of hell will not prevail against us."

(James E. Faust, “Enriching Our Lives through Family Home Evening,” Ensign, Jun 2003, 2–6)

Awesome!!

Then I added a few more quotes to make FHE enticing:

President Monson said:
“I begin with family home evening. We cannot afford to neglect this heaven-inspired program. It can bring spiritual growth to each member of the family, helping him or her to withstand the temptations which are everywhere. The lessons learned in the home are those that last the longest.
(Thomas S. Monson, “Constant Truths for Changing Times,” Ensign, May 2005, 19)

Elder Costa said:
"It is our responsibility as fathers to lead our families in daily family prayer, daily study of the scriptures, and in family home evening. We must prioritize and preserve these opportunities to build and strengthen … our families. President Hinckley said: “Try not to let anything interfere. Consider it sacred.”
(Claudio R. M. Costa, “Priesthood Responsibilities,” Ensign, May 2009, 56–58)

Then I testified of how I knew Family Home Evening is an inspired program and should be practiced in every home. I expressed gratitude for my awesome husband who takes Family Home Evening seriously. I should've doted on my husband more than I did, but he knows I think he's awesome.

So yeah, I think Family Home Evening is kind of important. Family fun rocks and helps build our armor to battle Satan because Satan is a jerk.

Preparing for the Sabbath

I'm still alive. Just preparing a talk for church tomorrow. I totally bailed out a few weeks ago when I was supposed to talk. Now I get to talk on Father's Day. I'll be back.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Summer Fun

When my parents were visiting they bought us popsicles. Not the cheap kind, but the real Popsicle brand that have the jokes on the sticks. My kids have been begging and begging me for the past 3 weeks to eat them. After a few broken promises I finally let them have them today at 10:30AM while the porch was still shaded. Their love was renewed towards me.


Even Rachel got her own Popsicle.


Of course the Popsicles had to be earned. Each child scrubbed his or her own kitchen chair.
They did a Fantasik job!


"I heart sweet treats"

I think I've bribed my kids with just about each of the sweet treats on her shirt this week, except for the cupcake. Maybe we'll do that one next week. I have to say, it's been quite successful. We've got a lot of cleaning done this week.


Bradley can't resist spraying the hose when he's outside despite that fact that we've told him over and over not to play with the hose. But how can you deny a little boy a garden hose? They are just so much fun! Thankfully we've had a lot of rain the past couple of weeks and we can afford to waste some water. But it wasn't totally wasted. It helped clean the Popsicle drips off of Rachel.

My Huggies Advertisement


Now for some good Popsicle humor:
Post your answer in the comments.

What animal unlocked the farm gate?

What does a mallard use to fix everything?

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

I wish.

Somedays I wish I could do this in the middle of the afternoon:

Also...

I flipped on a little bit of the Science channel this afternoon. I have to watch a little educational digital cable everyday to justify why I'm still paying to have cable. Today I learned about the power of the placebo. There was a study done that had average people doing bicep curls. One group trained on a bicep curl machine for six weeks, while the other group sat at the bicep curl machine and watched a video of themselves doing bicep curls. At the end of the study the group who watched the video ended up being stronger than the group that actually did the excercises for the six weeks. They concluded that while watching the video, the study particpants brains sent a message to their muscles that made the muscles think that they were getting stronger. The whole point was to show how the brain is very powerful. They hope to use the technology to help chronic pain sufferers. I thought it was pretty cool. I think I'm going to go make a video of me doing a whole bunch of exercises and watch it all day. I wish. The guy did say this should only be used for athletes that are temporarily injured or for short term use. Darn!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

3 Things

1. First of all let me just say how much I love clean toilets. When Emily asked me yesterday what we were doing for science this week, I told her Cleaning Science. With my husband working, I felt like I had the ability to regain control of my household domain. Not that he was begging to do cleaning chores while working from home, but being the only adult in the house now, I felt somewhat liberated and ready to take control. So on Monday we cleaned the kids' room. It was spotless. Then we cleaned the toilets. They are so sparkly clean! For some reason Emily loves to scrub toilets. She asked me questions while we cleaned such as, "Why are toilets so disgusting?" I started explaining more in depth about germs, mold, bacteria, etc. I explained that some bacteria are actually good and all that kind of sciency stuff. We talked about penicillin. I was feeling a little guilty about avoiding science camp in the name of "Cleaning Science", but when I sat down last night to look through my science book for the actual lessons I should be teaching this week I discovered that the next lessons were about fungus, molds, and bacteria. It turns out I was totally in tune with spirit of science! But anyway, I LOVE clean toilets. I just HATE cleaning them. Toilets are one of those chores I put off until I have guests or my gag reflex is triggered when I open the lid.

2. Little boys. Jason thought this was a good resting spot for the jug of pink lemonade. He didn't realize that a container of crayons doesn't make a good coaster. (Bradley rescued the jug before it had the chance to spill.)


3. This evening we harvested a dozen green peppers. This one won the prize for beauty. (The pepper, not the husband.)

My husband also taught his first class today. In addition to his new temp job, he is working part time for the local technical college teaching HTML/CSS (geek speak). He had a great time. It's only 2 days a month, but fun. He had a whopping 3 students in his class and he taught them how to create a web page. Go big Daddy-O!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Family Home Evening Treat

"Mommy, it's COLD!"

Tonight we went to McDonald's to get ice cream for Family Home Evening treat. My husband started a temp job today so now he thinks he's making the big bucks and can treat his family to ice cream. Ok, so he's not making the big bucks, but he is making slightly over the poverty line for a family our size. Go Daddy!

I also learned something tonight. When Emily saw a sign in the parking lot with a symbol of a person walking and the letters XING beneath she asked what it meant. I told her that it was a "Pedestrian Zing." My husband told her it was a "Pedestrian Crossing." Now that makes a whole lot more sense. I always wondered what a XING was.

X=Cross.
I get it now.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Tonight.....

my husband and I ate pizza. It was good.

Friday, June 12, 2009

My Three Worst Enemies

1. Japanese Beetles

These things love to mate and make lace out of my leaves. In case you didn't know, lace is not pretty in the garden!


My husband goes out daily with his scissors and likes to snip them in half.


2. Bambi


Bambi has been eating my green bean and okra leaves. Stupid deer! I don't even live in a forest!


That vine is supposed to have luscious leaves.


3. Squash Vine Borers
I was wondering why the bases of my zucchini plants were looking like this so I looked it up online.


I cut open the stem and there he was the ugly ugly Squash Vine Borer. BAD! VERY BAD!


Cross section view. I tore out all my zucchini plants because I was so disgusted and most plants were beyond saving. I learned that I need to control with something in May. Whoops. I take back anything I said about zucchini being easy to grow. I think I figured out why my zucchini stopped growing.


So we had an impromptu science experiment to see which method was most effective at killing them. We concluded that the methods involving water were most effective, probably because it drowned them and had nothing to do with the pH balance of the liquid. The ones in the plain salt and baking soda were still squirming by evening. This was also a lesson as to when revenge is appropriate.


I hypothesized that the ugly grubs would fizzle and die when immersed in salt like snails, but instead concluded that plain salt acts as an aphrodisiac for Squash Vine Borers and makes them want to kiss and snuggle. (Yes, the ugly brown things are their heads.) Plain baking soda caused them to want to make Squash Vine Borer snow angels. Those things are anything but angelic.


One more photo of a garden failure. This cucumber seems as if she is trying to watch her figure.


Gardening is no longer a relaxing stress relief. I can't wait to garden in heaven.