Thursday, May 31, 2012

Baby Love

The girls are a huge help. They change diapers, pick out clothes, get her dressed, carry her around and soothe her to sleep. This is one lucky baby to have such amazing big sisters.

Daniel gets a chance to hold her when the girls aren't around:)

Monday, May 28, 2012

Introducing Katherine Louise Kruidenier

Born May 28th, Memorial Day, 3:30am. She's a big, healthy, sweet, and very peaceful girl. Just like her sisters. Jennifer is resting lots. More soon...

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Some flowers...while we're waiting...

Many of you are waiting expectantly for our birth announcement. Thanks to all for your support, encouragement, thoughts, and prayers. We are near. And while contractions haven't started as of the writing of this post Jennifer can feel her body preparing for labor. And so, patiently, we wait.

Today is also our twelve year anniversary. Could we have a baby on our anniversary? Sure, what a gift! It remains one of the sweetest of mysteries that we wandered to Boone and found in each others' hearts a kinship, strength, and rest. We are together today and so thankful for marriage and family. Life is hard, brief, and fraught with uncertainty. How good to journey hand in hand.

Arianna and I have been collecting flower pictures from our yard together and the following are long overdue. Arianna is quite the photographer now. Enjoy!
Wisteria. One of the most fragrant flowers we have. Upon sight of such an aromatic bounty I thrust my face in the midst, tickle the clusters with my smeller,  and inhale like my life depended on it.
Florida Betony (aka rattle snake weed): this is an invasive species that grows from tubers under ground that look like rattle snake rattles. Surely, it has some good purpose on this earth. In our yard it is hunted toward extinction.
Wild Black Cherry: we are now expectantly waiting the ripening of this sweet fruit.
Red Tip: a common shrub and hedge here in the Midlands.
Pomegranate flower before it opens.
Apple flowers.
Onion flowers
Wild Lantana
Ligustrum: another mature hedge shrub in our yard that puts out bunches of tiny fragrant flowers.
Amaryllis: we were given this by a neighbor. These flowers are lovely and huge.
Marigold getting started in the garden.
Day Lily: why only for a day? Its beauty is always tinged with the sorrow of its brevity.
More Lantana. This variety has a wonderful scent.
Gardenia: one of our favorites. Jennifer and I regularly cut these flowers and leave them lying around the house. The sweet scent fills each room and is never overwhelming.
Dahlia: these overwintered in the ground (their tubers look kinda like ginger) and have come up strong this summer. No smell, but beautiful flowers and incredible productivity. Each large stalk will produce all summer long as we cut these for show inside.
Sunflower. Is there a happier, cheerier flower? And to watch them follow the sun throughout the day turning and tilting as if in continual worship.
Echinacea (cone flower).
These large lily like flowers with huge bulbs are one of my favorites. They originally were under our gutter spout. I dug them up several year ago and relocated the bulbs to a new area. They are incredibly drought resistant and vigorous growers. After several years they are looking like they need to be spread out again. I call them "Cinnamon Lily" for their sweet candy like scent.
Potato in full bloom. Of course we're more interested in what is happening under ground. But the flowers are pretty on their own.

Monday, May 14, 2012

40 Weeks

Taken this evening after teaching my 4 ballet classes today. I sadly quit taking my own class about 3 weeks ago. To stay in shape I'm taking walks regularly with the family.
My good friend, Alyse, threw Ellen and Arianna a surprise big sister baby shower one week after their regular ballet class. They played games and opened presents for the baby. It was very sweet.

I'm feeling great, just a bit uncomfortable. I was 2 weeks late with both of the girls so I was expecting to carry this baby until now. All we have to do is wait now. Everything and everyone is ready...

Sunday, May 06, 2012

Our Garden

We love the garden this time of year. It looks healthy and we are getting a lot of my favorite vegetable--Kale! The cabbage harvest has been very nice also. Daniel is the gardener of the family. I simply do a little harvesting here and there whenever I need something for the kitchen. He actually does most of the harvesting as well.
I'm proud to say that everything you see in the these pictures was started from seed (except some onions were started from sets). The indoor grow light station (go here for a post that we wrote last year on our indoor seed starting) that Daniel created was a big success for all the tomatoes, cabbage, kale, collards, chard, eggplant, peppers, and flowers.
lacinato kale (garlic in the bed to left of kale)
We are using the pvc pipe drip irrigation system again this year. Go to this post to read more about how we made and installed it. This is hopefully allowing for deep watering and saves us lots of time and water. There are shut off valves at the top of all the rows. Daniel has even recruited the girls help in turning them on and off during the week while he is at work. (We water 2 rows at a time.)


mix of onion, flowers, chard, kale, collards

Daniel getting the stakes ready for the tomatoes