The patch of strawberries I planted a few years ago hasn't ever yielded much of a harvest for me. This year, early on, when others were talking about how many strawberries they had, my little patch was doing a whole lot of nothing aside from sending out new shoots and leaves.

But then in the last couple of weeks, the strawberries started to appear.

Almost every night, I'd pick a handful (albeit a small handful) of strawberries.

Many I enjoyed fresh, standing over the sink munching on them. Others made their way into my morning bowl of oatmeal.

Any produce fresh from the garden is hard to beat, but strawberries may be up there near the top of the list.

Though let's be honest. Nothing will ever beat the wonder that is a fresh-picked tomato.


A Backyard Swing

If you can't find me, I suggest you check the backyard.

If the dishes are done and the baby food is made and the laundry is folded and there aren't any chores that require immediate attention, I'm probably right here.

Then again, even if there are chores to be done, I might be here.


Garlic Scapes

Getting our CSA delivery every week is a bit of an adventure. There's the usual variety of produce you'd expect to get this time of year in central Illinois, of course.

But there's often an item or two that I've never tried before—and, as was the case with the husk cherries from last year, sometimes that I've never even heard of before.

A few weeks ago, our weekly allotment included garlic scapes. Sure, I've used and am a big fan of garlic. But garlic scapes? That was a new one for me.

The scape is the curling top of the garlic plant that shoots up from the ground while the garlic is busy growing below. Cutting the scape off helps the garlic keep growing—and it just so happens that it's edible, too.

I've learned you can do all sorts of things with the shoots. Saute them, for instance. Or chop them up and add them to just about any savory dish you're making.

I tried making garlic scape pesto with mine. It has a nice, light garlic flavor. Not as yummy as my old favorite basil pesto, but it's pretty darn good nonetheless.


The Nursery

I realized the other day that although I gave you glimpses of the animals, the mobile, the handmade artwork, the growth chart, and a few other details of Collin's bedroom, I never actually showed you how the whole thing came together.

This is the reading, nursing, rocking corner. It's one of my favorite places to spend time with the little guy.

Here's the growth chart again, along with the adorable little lion chair Collin's Mimi and Papa gave him.

We kept a full-size bed in the room since we had the space. It's home to a menagerie of stuffed animals and a lovely handmade quilt from our across-the-street neighbor. It came in particularly handy early on, when Collin was sleeping in his bassinet and waking up so frequently I had the pleasure of sleeping in the nursery, too.

The changing table was a steal—$50 from a friend of a friend on Facebook, then I added new hardware. And the lamp on the table? It's a handy one that dims low enough to serve as Collin's night light, and best of all it actually came from Conservative Hubby's nursery when he was a baby!

Then of course there's the crib and the mobile, which Collin has only recently decided is fascinating to watch.

My Mom and I were talking the other day about how if we ever moved to a new house, we'd have to re-create this room (yellow paint and all) because it's such a happy, peaceful place to be.


Loving ...

Lazy Saturday mornings spent getting the little man to giggle (easy), drinking coffee and eating chocolate chip cookies and oatmeal (no, not at the same time), dreaming of houses with big kitchens and beautiful backyards, and discovering My Mom just folded my mountain of laundry for me.