Garden Notes 2015 – The Back Flower Beds




I stuck to my original plan and only planted seeds in my back beds. I was going to be ambitious and plant all three sides of my yard with flowers – about 175 ft x 4 feet . . . I need a lot of seeds.

I was about to buy 1lb quantities off the internet . . . then I found a wholesaler to the public here in Salt Lake. But they sold in 1 oz quantities. (1 oz = 1/16 of a lb). It didn’t seem like it would be enough. Then I asked: how many seeds are in an oz (of zinnia seeds) . . .

Approximately 4000 they told me. And then I laughed. Can you imagine if I had bought a pound off the internet? HAHAHAHAHA

Del Sol Sunflower

Sensation Mix Cosmos


California Giants Zinnias

Anyhoo, when I was planning my garden I was going to do all different types of flowers. But it ended up just being Zinnia’s (California Giant Mix, Mountain Valley Seed Company) and Cosmos (Sensation Mix, MVSC)(Seashells Mix, Burpee)(Rubenza, Burpee)(Gazebo Mix, Burpee) and Sunflowers (Del Sol Hybrid, Burpee)

Along my back bed I did two rows of alternating sunflowers (these sunflowers are only 5-6 feet, my first time not planting giants!), then a row of cosmos, a row of zinnias, another row of cosmos, and another row of zinnias.

Along the side yards I planted fanning semicircles of zinnias alternating with cosmos.


Oh, I did plant a flat of petunia’s along the railing around the hole – purples, whites and reds.

Garden Notes, 2015: The Front Bed




I’ve started planting a little early this year. We’ve had such a mild winter, and everyone thinks we’re done with the frost for good.

In my front bed:

Originally because we had such a mild winter (read: NO SNOW) I was going to do very  little in my yard. I wanted to be water concous. I thought it would be a great year to expiriment with seed.

But when I went to the nursery . . . ah! The beautiful flowers were calling my name.

I’ve never bought annuals at a retail store before. I’ve only ever bought them at the State surplus sale at the end of May. They’re about $11/flat, a great price . . .  but it’s very much a “you get what you get” situation, with very limited selection of types of plants and colors.

So this year I went to Smiths in search of seeds, and saw the variety in the annuals, and the flats were just a little more at $14/flat. It was fun to go through the flats of petunias and actually choose which colors I wanted.

Here are the plants and varieties I chose:

Petunias: Daddy’s Mix – shades of purples and pinks in big flowers.

Petunia Daddy's Mix

Marigolds: Bonanza Yellow

Potato Vine: Margarita (3) (Proven Selections)

Margarita Sweet Potato Vine

Impatiens: I don’t remember what varieties I got – in the bed by the house they are shades of pinks and purples, like the petunias. In the bed under and around the tree they are red, purple and white (plus leftovers from the other bed)


Coleus – A variety

Zinnia: Thumbelina Mix (Burpee) (planted along the top of the bed in front of the porch, mixed in with the four o’clock’s)

Burpee Zinnia Thumbelina Mix

Four o’Clock’s:  Kaleidoscope Mix (Burpee) (planted along the top of the bed in front of the porch, mixed in with the Zinnia’s.

Burpee Four O'Clock Kaleidoscope Mix

I also planted zinnias and marigolds (from seed, Burbee, Burpee’s Best Mix) around the rock in the front corner of the garden by the driveway.

And I FINALLY (after three years of looking) found purple coneflowers! I bought two varieties –

Primadonna Deep Rose (Sunshine Perennials) – planted south of the rock by the driveway

PowWow Wild Berry (Sunshine Perennials) – planted on the left of the path to the front door.


I also split my blue salvia and put the two divisions in front of the porch posts. I moved the yellow daisy-like flowers (why can’t I think of what they’re called?!) that were in front of the porch post by the door, into the center where the blue salvia originally was. I think I will still get blooms on the daisy’s this year, but I think the salvia will be out of the game for this year. I also moved the blue lupine that I had behind the rock by the driveway over to the other bed in the corner front yard. It has done really well and even bloomed since the transplant. I also moved the lavender from the front bed by the front door to the back by the shed.

A Story About Ejo





This one should never be forgotten. I think I had it written down years ago. It may be one that was lost in a site-failure. And then I remembered it, and searched my site, but can’t find it. So I’m going to write it down again.

In this story . . .

Everett was probably about 2 or maybe 3, and Calvin was 4, perhaps 5. We were out and about for the day, and we stopped at McDonalds for some lunch and a break on the playground. The kids ate their lunch, and set off for the fun of the jungle gym. Another boy, probably Calvin’s age, but quite a bit bigger than him, approached Calvin to play. And I saw this whole event in wide angle . . .

Everett, playing at the bottom of the slide, seeing the large boy making his way toward Calvin, jumped up with determination and ran to Calvin, jumping in front of him just as the boy stepped within reach. Then, raising his pointer finger to the boy’s chest, Everett looked up at this boy (who towered over the little toddler) and said with his Everett-fierce-determination: “No, this is my brother, you leave him alone!”

And the boy backed up in confused alarm. After a moment or two Everett realized the boy was not a foe, but a friend and the three went off in happy play.

But I was both astonished and bemused at Everett’s loyalty and love for his big brother – enough to throw himself into harm’s way to protect him.

That story perfectly sums up who Everett is as a soul.

Pioneer Stories While We Hiked Timp





Last summer we took the kids on a hike up to Timp Cave. The hike itself went incredibly smoothly considering we were taking 4 young children while I was seven months pregnant.

But towards the end, as we were hiking down, and nearly to the bottom, the kids were starting to get . . . a little whiney.

And so I did what I do . . . I told them stories to distract them.

I told them pioneer stories . . . ones I had heard and learned over the years.

The thing is, as I was telling the stories, I could barely get through them . . . the spirit was SO strong in testifying to me of the legacy and miracle of our pioneer heritage. I was choking up on the trail as I tried to convey the beauty and power of each story.

And little Everett, he asked over and over for the stories. I told them again and again as best I could.

And then, finally we made it to the bottom of the trail. We packed up. We went home. I remembered that sweet spirit, and those wonderful last moments on that hot summer day all year.

Then . . . just yesterday, Sunday, May 24th, 2015, we were at the cabin. We watched the new VHS tape we got at the D.I. earlier in the week – Legacy. And . . . I kid you not, 15 seconds before we got to the miracle of the healing of the oxen, Everett asked: “Are the cows going to die, and then they pray that they will be healed, and they get all better?”

. . . This was a remembrance of the story I told him last summer on our hike . . . and then just as he asked, the movie came to that part.

It was so neat to have him remember those stories that I told that day. I know the spirit testified to me of those miracles. I only hope my children also received testimonies of those events.

Girls Weekend 2015




A couple years ago I decided we should have a “girls weekend” in St. George.

Mostly I wanted a chance to go to St. George to see people I don’t otherwise have time for with the rest of the family in tow.

Originally it was going to be twice a year. Then we decided every six months was too hard to get away. Once a year was good.

We do art projects and eat and shop and lounge around. It’s never quite as productive or relaxing as I think it’s going to be, but it is ALWAYS FUN!

This year we made marbled paper, went clothes shopping, hung out at the pool, had a picnic at the park with my aunties and cousins, and went to dinner. So fun!



Olivia marbling paper a la this process.