I'm daughter to Lissie, sister to Jess, wife to Brien, mom to Hannah, Lily and Eleanor. I am a stay at home mom to my girls, and my free time is dedicated to gardening (I confess I'm still a novice and look to Lissie and Jess for advice), baking and cooking, and card making. I'm doing my part to make the earth a bit greener, trying hard to avoid processed foods and HFCS, and find the "slow food" movement intriguing and inspiring. I love visits to my local farmers' market, fresh produce, reading, getting out in nature, and spending time with my family.


Catholic, homeschooler, lover of books and great wine and an amateur gardening addict.


I'm Melissa aka "Lissie", mother of Rachael and Jessica, and grandmother to a passel of the sweetest children on the planet. I'm a semi-retired public educator and professor who works from home for a small publisher. I am a lover of all things beautiful ... flowers, the mountains, nature scenes, the innocent faces of children, and my rock and fossil collection, to name a few. I enjoy shopping at the farmers' market for fresh foods and then experimenting with new recipes. Good food and good wine delight me. I love to travel so my suitcase is always packed. Like my daughters, I take pleasure in simple things ... clothes drying on the line, tomatoes so fresh they are still hot from the sun, good books, and interesting movies. I'd like to know everything before I die.
May in Northern VA

Lots of weird weather this spring. We had a day in March that reached 90 degrees and we've had some very cool days that didn't hit 50 in April. We finally got some much needed rain! We've been planting and making some updates/changes to existing beds.

 In the front we hung 3 window boxes and added a trellis with pyracantha. That poor pyracantha experienced the most severe transplant shock of anything I've planted in a long time. BioPlex, very expensive, but worth it, saved that shrub from totally giving in and dying. It took three treatments over three weeks and it is showing signs of life with some baby leaves popping out. I also cut it back a bit to help stimulate growth.

 We planted three new David Austin roses under the new crape myrtle on the side of the house. They shipped them very, very late (I was unhappy!) but they are finally leafing out. The westerland roses (orange on the trellis) are looking amazing this year. There are so many buds I think by this weekend that trellis is going to be covered in beautiful flowers. It is by far my favorite rose that I've planted. I really like that bright peachy color. The Christopher Marlowe roses in the front bed are also brimming with buds that are starting to open. They have such a pretty sharp pink with peach centers. As the flowers continue to open the pink fades to a softer color so it is sort of like getting 2 different flowers from one plant. Very fun!

 We added some small river rock around our raised garden beds in the back just to keep things neater and to make it easier to plant and walk in between the beds. We also added larger river rock between the new island and the older side bed. Our utility lines run right through there and nothing can be planted and I think they add a little something to the bed as well as allowing a clear path for utility workers for the future so they won't be tramping through the flower beds.


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