Posts Tagged ‘Square Foot Gardening’

Our Garden Plot at Westwood Church Community Garden

Thursday, February 7th, 2013

In the spring of 2012, Westwood Church started a community garden.  It is among my favorite things in the whole wide world.

Russ put a Square Foot garden grid and a small trellis on our plot.  I planted seeds and plants and took pictures.  Then I planted more seeds and plants.  And took more pictures.  And rearranged.  And took more pictures.

We had a huge delicious bowl of lemon basil pesto pasta, some wonderful beets and a few onions.  Otherwise, we just admired how beautiful the plants were.  And, you know, took pictures.

We met several gardeners from the surrounding neighborhoods who came to garden with us, gardeners from our own church family we had not known before, or not known well, and one very kind man walking his dogs who came to see the garden and ended up meeting the wonderful family that is Westwood Church.  I imagine there are thirty sets of such stories from thirty gardening families…just perhaps none who found themselves in quite as obsessive of a plant-photograph-rearrange cycle as I did.

So while the only tangible things I have to share this year are pictures, I do believe Westwood’s community garden was a beautiful, understated, resounding, incredible success.

Here are my pictures…

The Stuff that Russ Built

Friday, November 2nd, 2012

Russ is my husband, and he is a really good carpenter.  Here are some things that he has built.  I think they are pretty. It is fun when my cases and his projects intersect, like when a dog patient needs a fence, or a kitty patient needs a scratching post, or an arthritic patient needs a ramp or stairs.

If you would like Russ to build you a thing, call him at 402-218-3472.

This is the roof of my parents’ gazebo. I think it is as pretty from the inside as it is from the outside.

This is the deck Russ built for our friends Dawn and Cory. Dawn traded Russ for piano lessons for our girls, so everyone won!

This kid is so cute! He kept asking “Whatcha doing Russell?” His Mom took this picture of him watching Russ build their pergola.

Here are before and after pictures of Dr. McIlnay’s deck. Dr. McIlnay is Omaha’s veterinary ophthalmologist.

Another friend’s new deck. Building decks is Russ’ favorite. I think they always turn out so pretty! Notice the giant dog sized ramp on the left side of the deck for one of my favorite patients ever, Moby.

My parents’ gazebo – my favorite place in the world!

Maybe the Wheelers have trash like normal folks, and maybe they just have a beautiful gated fence!

This is at Russ’ parents’ cabin near Valley, Nebraska. Isn’t the lake beautiful?? Russ built the deck and the “kid-sized” picnic table.

Access ramp at our church. TONS of kids tromp up and down this all week, so it has to be safe!

Double Decker Deck!

It is so peaceful on Mom and Dad’s deck. This was one of Russ’ first projects in Omaha, which he did with a very nice carpenter named Tom.

Russ built this teepee so I could grow Morning Glories and Runner Beans. It also served as a good tea party headquarters when the girls were younger :)

Russ has built me 300-and-counting 1 foot squares for our Square Foot Garden and the fence behind it…

…And Three Squares for Max!

Russ built the fence around our church community garden and the Square Foot grid and teepee on our plot. God grew the plants :)

Russ’ parents dogs safe behind their new fence!

This is a picture of Joy the Puppy on Day One over three years ago! She STILL loves to help Russ build stuff!

See? Here is Joy the Puppy RIGHT NOW with Russ at his parents’ neighbor’s home, building a fence for HIS Lab puppy!

Those are some of my favorite pictures of the things Russ has built.  He does free estimates and also does interior work.  I know this is early to mention, but he and Joy want you to know…They are not afraid of snow!  If he is building your deck or fence in a snowstorm, do not worry – I will bring him hot chocolate!

Thank you friends and family who have supported Russ in his new full time construction business.  We thought it would be a scary step to go out “on our own” but because of you it has been very fun and rewarding!

To ALL of our friends and family and all my awesome readers, please call Russ if you have projects you would like him to help you with.  He is ALWAYS available to advise, will ALWAYS give free estimates, and if it is a project he does not do, he ALWAYS knows the best person for the job.

Russell Finch Construction


More Great Pictures on Facebook…

Russell Finch Construction Fan Page 

Read New Books But Keep The Old…

Monday, January 2nd, 2012

…one is silver and the other gold.

Or something.

I LOVE books.  Remember when Veterinary Economics published that article by Tom McFerson, 25 Books for your Summer Reading?  And someone said something like, “Of course you can’t read ALL the books…”

That was fun.

Where is that guy?  I heard he was publishing a list of 25 more books.  I have been kind of lost waiting.  You do NOT want me to come up with a list!  You think THAT list got random?  Mine would be crazy random.  You would be whispering, “This is SO not focused on veterinary medicine…”  So in the meantime, while we wait for THE list, here are books I plan to re-read this year.  They are some of my very favorites.

The New Testament


Some years I try to read the whole Bible.  Having the NIV One Year Bible version has made that very fun and easy the past few years.  This year, I am going to take a break from the Old Testament, and I will tell you why.  There are two  details of minor stories of the Old Testament, that if you read them when you are already sad will sucker punch you.  Not that they should not be in there or that God condones evil by any stretch, but I just don’t want to read those two stories this year.  But I will read Esther.  I love her.  And the Psalms and Proverbs.  And…the New Testament.  See?  I told you, random.  Maybe in my crazy tangents, sometimes there are big important things.  These next ones get randomer though…

The Tightwad Gazette by Amy Dacyczyn


I found this collection of newsletters years ago and I just love it.  I don’t know if it is the Kristin Fuhs-size family of the author or her fun, chit-chatty tone, or the fact that when I found it we were broke new parents looking for fun, free stuff to do, but I still love flipping through this book.  It’s pretty worn.  I don’t think I’ve read it cover to cover since I got it.  Fun.

Sink Reflections by Marla Cilley – The FlyLady


Great tips for the domestically challenged (that is, me) with some really profound wisdom when you read through it a second time.  Here’s hoping that is true the third time as well!

Bread Machine Magic and More Bread Machine Magic by Linda Rehberg and Lois Conway


Fun books, great comments and awesome bread.  Not a cover-to-cover stay up past bedtime with a flashlight sort of read, but definitely two of my very favorite books.  Thanks Mom!!

All New Square Foot Gardening by Mel Bartholomew


We got this when we started gardening about eight years ago, so we didn’t realize it wasn’t a normal way to garden.  I LOVE Square Foot Gardening and am anxious to start again this spring.  We took 2011 off because we missed Ebony Dog and how she would run around (never through!) the boxes while we worked in the garden.  See?  Back to pets!  I CAN focus!


Blackwell’s Five Minute Veterinary Consult:  Canine and Feline, Fifth Edition, edited by Lary P. Tilley and Francis W.K. Smith, Jr.

So I haven’t read this cover-to-cover, but I have wanted to do so since the first edition came out.   And now I have my own copy!  Woo!  (Thank you Veterinary Practice News!)

Skills for Communicating with Patients, Second Edition by Jonathan Silverman, Suzanne Kurtz and Juliet Draper

This was one of the “25 Books” and the one I found most helpful.  I plan on reading through it again this year, and tracking down and reading the companion book, Teaching and Learning Communication Skills in Medicine.


This is going to be fun!  I also still have that whole spin-off list you helped me make last year, and two books I read and loved last year to review – The Thank You Economy by Gary Vaynerchuk (Thank you Dave!) and The Happiness Project by Gretchin Rubin.  (Thank you Cara!)

And I will read some fiction…and your blog posts…and of course, newspaper, journal and magazine articles.

Oh, and Made to Stick by Chip Heath and Dan Heath, which Mike Falconer recommended.  (Thank you Mike!  And thank you for helping me with the Twitter and Facebook buttons!  I almost have them figured out!)

Tom McFerson, I LOVED your list!  Thank you so much.  I  can’t wait to read your next list.  But until then, I think I will be able to keep myself out of trouble.

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