Melanie's, Kira's and Joseph's blog.
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This is a sponge plant out of control…

  • August 23, 2010 10:44 am

All of this plant and not a single blossom.  I’m thinking there will be no naturally-grown loofah sponges in our house this winter.  I’ll give it until the first frost and then I guess I have to pull it up.  Sad…I was really looking forward to harvesting my first sponge.

Next year, I will try again and 1) plant it somewhere far far away from the flower bed and front porch, and 2) plant it earlier in the season.

Update on the Loofahs

  • July 26, 2010 11:03 am

The loofah sponge plant has suddenly burst forth and is growing like crazy.  Two of my entire packet of seeds took root and have really grown.  They seem to grow like watermelon/pumpkin plants.  I am watching daily for the first sign of a bloom that will mean at least one sponge before winter.  Fingers crossed!

Happy Birthday to Me!

  • June 17, 2010 8:50 am

Yes, it’s my birthday.  Should I point it out?  Probably not.  But how many times do you turn 35?  Thankfully only one!  Ugh.  As for celebrating, tomorrow we’re taking Kira to Lake Michigan for her first real beach experience.  It’s supposed to be really nice out so we’re hoping she’ll have fun and make it worth the hour drive to get there. 

Okay – an update on the measurements.  It’s been just shy of a month since I started taking my walks with my Skechers Shape-Ups and doing 10-20 minutes of light Pilates every night. 

Results so far:
Lower Abs:  -0.5″
Waist:  -0.5″
Hips:  -0.5″
Thighs:  -1.5″  (WOW)
Knees:  -1.0″
Calf(s):  -1.0″
Upper arms:  -1.0″

Those are pretty good results.  The waist/abs area is being a little stubborn, so I’ll concentrate more on that I guess.  But I was stunned at the legs and arms results.  Hooray!  Unfortunately the scale has been VERY slow to budge, but as long as my body keeps whittling itself away, I can’t stay in the 1xx’s forever, right?

Loofah sponges are very slow to grow.   They’re growing, but at this rate, it will be 2012 before I have an actual sponge to show.  Maybe once I get them in the ground they’ll take off.  Perhaps living in a container is stifling them.  Grow, loofahs, grow!

I love having a front porch.  I like it better than our back deck.  I like to sit out front with a nice drink, put my feet up, and watch the neighborhood.  Right now they’re building a new house across the street, so our view of the lake is now cut in half, but expanding the subdivision will only increase our home’s value, so I guess I can’t complain too much.    You’d think buying patio furniture would be easy, but when you start actually trying to find something comfortable in a decent price range, your options become a lot less.  Here’s what we finally got after weeks (yes, weeks!) of shopping:

And because summertime isn’t complete without an occasional ice cream cone, here’s Kira enjoying hers.  And enjoy it she did…she said “Yum yum” after almost every lick and ate the entire thing!

Stay tuned for pictures from the beach!

Swimming, Shoes, and Loofahs

  • May 27, 2010 1:18 pm

So many updates, so little time!

First things first:  Shoes update.  After a week of taking walks in my new Skechers Shape Ups (with strategically placed sports tape to protect against stupid seam placement), my measurements results are these:

  • Lower Abs:  -.75
  • Waist:  -.25
  • Hips:  no change
  • Thighs:  -.50
  • Knees:  -.50
  • Upper arms:  -.50

So…not too bad for the first week.  I will keep going.

In other news, my loofah sponge plants have finally made an appearance:

The weather has turned nice and hot and Kira loves to play outside.  I got her a new little swimming pool and swimming suit and set it out in her deck playland.  She spent lots of time playing in and out and with the water.  Give a toddler 2 inches of water and it’s fun for hours!

Shoes Update and a Day at the Farm

  • May 22, 2010 9:39 pm

First things first:  the shoes.  I’ve taken them for two 2-mile walks so far.  They are actually very comfortable.  However, they are definitely made large.  I bought a half-size smaller than normal and they still slip a little in the heel.  I couldn’t them any smaller though, or they’d be too narrow.  Probably will have to get some insert for the heel, as there’s an inconveniently-placed seam that has rubbed lovely blisters on my heels already.

Do they actually work out my legs?  Yes, they actually seem to.  First thing I noticed was that because I walk in a less slumped position, my lower ab muscles are being used more.  My lower and upper back feel slightly sore after the walk, and my calves and backs of my thighs definitely feel it.  It’s not so sore that I feel like “wow, I worked OUT”, it’s more like definitely the muscles are working a bit more than they do in regular shoes.  So, we’ll see…in the meantime, I have the fun task of breaking them in.  Hopefully it doesn’t take long for the leather to conform to my feet.

Today we took Kira to the local farm for their Spring Fling day.  I wanted to buy some more lamb chops (they sell the BEST lamb!) and some gruyere cheese, and since they were having a petting area, we decided we’d see how Kira did with the animals.  She wasn’t afraid of them, but she wasn’t all that interested in them either.  There was just too much else going on that she didn’t seem to be able to focus on the animals.  She had fun running around and checking things out though.

Petting the baby sheep

Petting a goat

Yikes - the goat jumped

Whoa - this lamb is really close

I think I'll touch this chicken though

Always the best place to touch a strange dog

Found a piece of a sheep

Marching right through the sheep shearing, completely oblivious

On the tractor


I was at a loss one day trying to figure out how to entertain Kira when she just couldn’t be satisfied with anything.  I thought “Fingerpainting!”.  Little kids love to smear and make messes.  So we stripped her down, taped the paper to the table, and got her all set up.  She gave the paint one big smear and then started to yell because her hand was messy.  I tried desperately to make her enjoy this like a normal kid – I added sprinkles, cookie cutters, and even some flour-dough.  She half-heartedly played with it for a while, pausing occasionally to hold out her hand and give a cranky yowl because it was messy.  Sigh.  Finally, after about 10 minutes of this fun, we cleaned her up and sent her on her way.  She was probably very relieved, wondering what on earth just happened.

And finally, this is what I have to deal with all day when I’m trying to work… 🙂

Please stop working and play with me, Mommy!