Easy Peasy Veggie Trellis

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When Derek said he wanted a hot tub, I begged him to let me do a little edible landscaping instead. 

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In less than an hour, I turned our small, overrun with Russian Sage space into a perfect place to grow zucchini and peas (or any climbing veggie). 

The best part? You can easily unassemble your trellis and store it for next year. 

This is how I made our Easy Peasy Garden Trellis:

What You Need

8 large zip ties
4 3ft stakes
4 6ft Wood Trellis 
4 screws
Screwdriver
15 minutes

*Click on links to see what products I used

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The Steps

  • Line up your 4 trellis pieces and match them together like a puzzle.
  • Zip tie the bottoms and tops
  • Place a stake on each corner and let it stick out from the bottom about 10"
  • Screw the stake to the trellis. I added an extra zip tie around the stake just to secure it better.
  • Next, place the trellis in the ground. Wiggle it around and get those stakes deep into the ground
  • Plant your veggies! 
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Worried you are too late to plant vegetables? Don't be! In mid-August, you can start planting cool weather plants (like peas, lettuce, radishes, etc.) and you trellis will come in handy!

Let me know if you give this project a try and happy Gardening!

With Love,

The Lavenders 

How to Host Your Own Olympic Games

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For the past few years, we've loved hosting a Memorial Weekend Campout.

Our tradition was interrupted by an untimely motorcycle accident in 2016, so you can image how excited we were to get back at it last weekend. If you love hosting or just want fresh ideas for your 4th of July party, here's some details: 

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Schedule:

We do set a semi-loose schedule (since it is a whole weekend) and send it out (via text) a few days ahead of time. 

Friday night (grilling, bonfire, set up tents)
Saturday mid-morning we start the games
Announce the winners around dinner
Eat dinner (even though we've been eating all day)
Campout
Sunday brunch
Farewells

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Olympic Setup:

Without going into Derek's 4 page Bi-law handbook, the Quarry Olympics are essentialy created to encourage people to play games and get to know eachother. Each game you play, you earn points. First place will get you 10 points, second place 7, and third place 4. 

You can assign points however you want (Scooter Race was worth more because there were a lot more competitors) and everyone just writes down their total on a sheet of paper.

To determine the winner, you then take the average of how many games they played and what their score was. In order to qualify for prizes, you must play at least 7 games of 5 different varients.

We did have a couples prize and single best athlete prize. Try to make your prizes someone enticing...it helps a lot!

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A Few Games Options:


Bocchi Ball
Egg Toss
Croquet
1 legged race
Razor Scooter Relay Race
Darts
Corn Hole
Trivia Questions

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Food:

For large gatherings, try this Smoked Pork recipe for pulled pork sandwiches or a super delicious nacho bar. We fed lots of mouths with a $15 Costco Pork Loin. I did have to put the pork on at 7am but it was DELICIOUS.

This year, we asked each couple to bring a specific side dish and drinks to share which GREATLY helped my stress. 

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We are firm believers in building a community with whoever God has placed around you. These get togethers tend to involve lots of random couples who actually have never met...but by the end of the weekend they feel like close friends. 

Any games we should try next year?

Let us know if you give the Olympic Games a try! 

The Lavenders

Plastic Wrap Hack with Barkus' Chicken Burger Recipe

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We're coming at you with
Reynolds KITCHENS® Quick Cut™ Plastic Wrap

Raise your hand if you find yourself giddy over the littlest things. Only me? Eh ok. Well, I was pretty pumped when I learned that there is a plastic wrap out there that doesn't have those sharp little teeth that still haunt me in my sleep. It's all about the tiny victories folks. 

Now raise your hand if you hate making burgers because all that raw meat squishes between your fingers. Yup, didn't think I was alone. Well, we have a solution for you. 

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Barkus and I took to making our favorite Chicken Guacamole burgers while using our Reynolds KITCHENS® Quick Cut™ Plastic Wrap:

Barky Boy's Chicken Guacamole Burgers

Makes 4 burgers
1 lb ground chicken
1 egg
1 tsp chili spice
1 tsp crushed garlic
pinch of salt & pepper

Guacamole
3 avocados smooshed
1 Roma tomato diced
1/2 red onion diced
a little squirt of lime juice
Salt to taste

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Mix all your chicken patty ingredients together.

Next, easily slice a piece of Reynolds KITCHENS® Quick Cut™ Plastic Wrap and lay that piece on your counter. Plop 1/4 of the chicken burger mix onto the wrap. Gently fold the plastic wrap around the burger and form into a patty. Boom. Once again with the tiny victories. 

Grill those babies. Place them on your dinner plate. Top with a big scoop of guacamole. Enjoy! 

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What's your favorite thing to grill? To learn more about Reynolds KITCHENS® Quick Cut™ Plastic Wrap  and help Barky & I to get a new comforter, click HERE.

With Love,

LeAnne & Barkus Adroolius

Shop My Garden Go-To's

Lavender's Garden Club

To plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow.

Audrey Hepburn

Your garden bed has been chosen and you are probably dreaming about vegetable seeds right now. So next up? I've listed out the few things you will want to consider purchasing before you start planting.

Why? Because running to your nearest hardware store last minute can be expensive and will slow down your gardening day!

Stock up now, plant later.

Ps. These are not collaborations. Just things I love and what will be helpful to you! 

Garden Essentials:

Spade

Garden Tool Set

Garden Boots & Apron

Garden Gloves

Garden Markers 

Watering Tool

 

 

Good luck garden buddies! Remember, if you live in the midwest, you can start planting your cool weather seeds beginning of April. It will be here before you know it! 

Comment below with questions.

With Love,

The Lavenders

Gardening Planning & Seed Buying

Lavender's Garden Club

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Last week, we learned that gardens really can be planted anywhere. This week, we discussed finding out what ZONE you are in, how to read the pack of a seed packet, and getting starting on growing your own little veggies.

I'll bulk up this post tomorrow but wanted you to have the links to the items we discussed today:

Considering Container Gardening? 

Great for patios and easy to store in the winter

Grid Notebook for Garden Planning

If you're feeling hardcore, test your soil! 

Grow your seeds

And those are all the links we discussed (I think). 

Questions? Leave them below and we will do our best to help!

Happy Growing!

 

The Lavenders

Best Garden Bed for Your Space

Lavender's Garden Club

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Welcome to the Lavender's Garden Club

Congratulations on joining this very elite group of individuals who don't know a lot about gardening but really want to learn.

We are so glad you are here! 

Here is a snippet of things we discussed last night with links:

Tomatoes Love Carrots Book- Certain veggies like to be planted next to each other. Quickly learn which ones through the first garden book I ever read.

Grow Bags for Container Gardens

Grid Notebook for Garden Plotting

Types of Garden Beds

Cliche' Garden- This is your typical dirt-in-the-ground type of bed. Fairly easy to maintain and easy to get going. Just rent a tiller from your local hardware store and consider purchasing a little fence. The may not be as cute (or trendy) as a raised bed, but it gets the job done.

Raised Bed- Beautiful and easy to work with, these guys take some time to set up but are there for the long haul. Make sure you love gardening before jumping straight into a raised bed. Or just do 1 bed and add from there. They help keep weeds at bay and also can save your back a bit since you don't have to bed down as low to work on them.

Edible Landscaping- Since you already have flower beds, just mix your veggies in there. Strawberries, carrots, herbs, radishes, bush beans, etc. A lot of vegetables do really well when mixed with flowers (grab the book listed above- Tomatoes Love Carrots) 

Container Gardens- Simple and fun, start with a container garden if you are nervous about this whole venture. Any container will do but Grow Bags are great because the water won't pool at the bottom (and therefore cause root rot). They are also easy to store for the next year!

 

HOMEWORK

For next weeks Garden Club meeting (Wednesday, February 28th @7:30PM EST. Instagram LIVE), come prepared with what type of BED works best for you. We will be discussing all things SEEDS.

Also, my favorite notebook for gardening HERE has grid lines which are important when you are plotting out your seeds. If you don't have one already, grab a grid notebook. 

Any questions, comments, or thoughts? Leave them below for all your Garden Club Members to read!

With Love,

LeAnne

4 Simple Ways to be the Hostess with the Mostest

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A Little Party Never Hurt Nobody

It's not much of a secret that we love hosting get togethers. Always have and hopefully always will.

Here are some simple tips to host a successful evening with friends. 

Pick a Theme:

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This may sound stressful but a theme actually helps make the food choices, decorations, and game decisions way easier!

And remember, you don't need a fancy reason to throw a party. The more random, the more available your friends will be! 

Some Themes We've Tried:
     Love & Sushi (sushi making party on Valentines Day)
     Bunker's Annual Memorial Day Campout (all things patriotic)
     Fall Party (just sweet and simple fall things)
     Murder Mystery Party (wine tasting)
 

 

 

Always Have a Game:

I'm super serious about this one. 

We know not everyone loves games or feels comfortable planning them, but we're telling you to do it anyway.

Games that go with your theme really help your friends get to know each other better, adds laughters, and breaks up the awkward small talk that usually happens at gatherings.

 

Grab Those Prizes:

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Keep your friends engaged and competitive. The prizes can be something that gives a nod to your theme. 

For the wine tasting party, the prize was a cheeseboard.  Sushi party? Some Japanese knives. 

Keep it simple and fun. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And of course, Food:

Don't over think this step and use your theme as a guide.

We've found it is always fun to do some type of "Bar". Nacho bar, chili bar, pizza bar, etc. This allows your guests to create their own meal and puts less stress on you for timing. 

 

And if guests offer to bring something, take them up on it!

 

 

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Do you have any party throwing advice?

Have fun and let us know if you try any of these tricks! 

 

With Love,

The Lavenders

You Can Still Plant That Dream Garden

Each spring, a majority of women in their late twenties get bit by the gardening bug.

They Pin, plan, and dream up their ideal raised beds. And then, something happens...SUMMER. All the pool parties, the bonfires, the non gardening responsibilities. Swoosh. Just like that, those little packages of seeds are thrown to the wayside for much better things...rosé with girlfriends

 

 

Well guess what? Come mid August, you get to start over! You see, now is the time to plant your fall garden, which happen to be the same thing as your spring garden! Same rules apply as they do in the spring, except maybe water your seeds a bit more if it is still pretty hot where you live. 

Hint: There are two types of veggies. Cold loving plants and heat loving plants. If you plant your cold loving seeds now, it will be chilly by the time they sprout up! 

Here are the easy fall garden plants to try:

  • Lettuce- SO EASY. If you just wanna give this gardening thing a shot, start here. Grab a little bag of lettuce seeds (pretty much any type will do) and start to sprinkling. You can even just put them right into your flower bed! 
  • Spinach- Same concept as lettuce. Actually, is spinach a type of lettuce? Either way. Easy peasy.
  • Peas- Speaking of easy peasy, peas. Now, they do take some kind of trellis system but if you have a fence, these are perfect! I love to grow snow peas and freeze them for winter. For an easy trellis, just grab two-three tall sticks, wrap fishing wire around them, TA-DA.
  • Carrots- Pop these seeds in the ground near your lettuce. They will be ready to pull up in October. Perfect timing for all those stews you are about to make. You can also freeze carrots to save for a later use.
  • Radishes- These are a favorite of mine. They don't take long to grow and are so pretty. They also go well mixed in with the lettuce patch.

 If you are feeling crazy, plant a row of any of the above vegetables one week and then come back on Labor Day and plant another row. This will help your harvest last a little longer! 

One fun thing you can plant over the winter? GARLIC...but that is another blog for another time.

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So, send your kids off to school, get those extra vegetable seeds out, and get to making your dreams come true. And of course, send us your pictures once you get your little garden patch going! Do you have a specific veggie you are hoping to grow?

You've totally got this!

With Love,

The Lavenders

Ps. These photos are from Bunker's produce selection last summer. They were taken by our lovely friend, Kaitlyn Vosler, who cared for the crazy garden I planted just weeks before the accident. 

Houseplants 101

I’ve got all my life to live.
I’ve got all my love to give.
And I’ll survive,
I will survive, hey, hey.
— Every Houseplant

If you take three steps into our apartment, you will quickly realize one of us has a thing for plants. This slight obsession started a few years ago and our collection has continued to grow.  So keep reading and you will discover a few of our favorite houseplants and care tips to make life a little easier on you:

  Monsteria    Looks department - 8  Ease of care - 7.8  Sunny spot - 7.5 These big boys who are pretty easy to manage. They love a good window spot and multiply like crazy. They are poisonous to people and animals, so make sure to place high or away from dogs, babies, and my 25 year old brother who ate a leaf to see what it would do to him. Hint- A call to Poison Control was placed and the operator asked how old the child was who ate the leaf.

Monsteria

Looks department- 8
Ease of care- 7.8
Sunny spot- 7.5
These big boys who are pretty easy to manage. They love a good window spot and multiply like crazy. They are poisonous to people and animals, so make sure to place high or away from dogs, babies, and my 25 year old brother who ate a leaf to see what it would do to him. Hint- A call to Poison Control was placed and the operator asked how old the child was who ate the leaf.

  Mother-In-Laws Tongue (Snake plant)    Looks department - 7.2  Ease of care - 9  Sunny spot - 4  Talk about laid back. If you start looking around the waiting room at doctor's offices, you will notice these Snake plants. They are very easy and basically live anywhere. The only thing they don't like is to be overwatered, so pace yourself.

Mother-In-Laws Tongue (Snake plant)

Looks department- 7.2
Ease of care- 9
Sunny spot- 4

Talk about laid back. If you start looking around the waiting room at doctor's offices, you will notice these Snake plants. They are very easy and basically live anywhere. The only thing they don't like is to be overwatered, so pace yourself.

  Aloe Vera    Looks department - 7  Ease of care - 6  Sunny spot -6  For some reason, these fellows are so tricky for me but I love the way they look. And remember that time as a child you burnt your arm on a cookie sheet? Well, I bet your mom clipped off a small piece of this plant and rubbed it on there! They are a win win!

Aloe Vera

Looks department- 7
Ease of care- 6
Sunny spot-6

For some reason, these fellows are so tricky for me but I love the way they look. And remember that time as a child you burnt your arm on a cookie sheet? Well, I bet your mom clipped off a small piece of this plant and rubbed it on there! They are a win win!

  Fiddle Leaf Fig    Looks department - Shawty is a ten  Ease of care - 3  Sunny spot - 8  These are those trendy plants you see in hipster restaurants, Fixer Upper episodes, and probably every Mom blogger posts. Rumor has it Walmart and Lowes do occasionally carry these guys BUT worst case scenario, swing by your local garden nursery and ask for one! 

Fiddle Leaf Fig

Looks department- Shawty is a ten
Ease of care- 3
Sunny spot- 8

These are those trendy plants you see in hipster restaurants, Fixer Upper episodes, and probably every Mom blogger posts. Rumor has it Walmart and Lowes do occasionally carry these guys BUT worst case scenario, swing by your local garden nursery and ask for one! 

  Devil's Ivy  Looks department - 5  Ease of care - 7  Sunny spot - 5  If you need a nice, easy houseplant that trails, these are a very safe bet. You can place them on top of your cupboards, counters, and in hanging pots. I am basically attempting to kill on that I have had for 4 years and they do not go down easily. Trust me.

Devil's Ivy

Looks department
- 5
Ease of care- 7
Sunny spot- 5

If you need a nice, easy houseplant that trails, these are a very safe bet. You can place them on top of your cupboards, counters, and in hanging pots. I am basically attempting to kill on that I have had for 4 years and they do not go down easily. Trust me.

  Fern    Looks department - 9  Ease of care - 7  Sunny spot - 6  Yes, I know this isn't your typical houseplant but don't be afraid to think outside of the box! I love ferns but do not have a good outdoor space, so I brought one inside! 

Fern

Looks department- 9
Ease of care- 7
Sunny spot- 6

Yes, I know this isn't your typical houseplant but don't be afraid to think outside of the box! I love ferns but do not have a good outdoor space, so I brought one inside! 

A couple hints:

  • Name your plants. It helps you remember to take care of them.
  • For plants that don't need a lot of water (like a succulent), just pop an ice cube on top.
  • If your plant starts to turn yellow, gut reaction is too much water.
  • Try watering a little less and talking to it a little more. 

If you are struggling with getting started on your houseplant game, my favorite spot to head is Lowes. They usually have great selections and some funky plants. Just remember to read the tag correctly and pick one that goes best for where you image it being (aka low sun or high sun). Don't fall in love with a cactus and just plop it no where near a window...give that fellow a chance!

Good luck to you and your houseplant!

With Love,

The Lavenders