The backyard was graded so there's better water flow from the house. The firepit also was leveled - along with all the weeds that were growing in it.
Although I asked for the firepit to be leveled, I didn't anticipate that such a huge part of our backyard would be re-graded. It was quite the shock when I came home from doing errands.
On July 14th, my sister and I went on a farm tour sponsored by the local co-op. We went to several farms in Wisconsin. It was interesting to see some of the farms, though it wouldn't be an event we would do again.
We were expecting more activities and information at each farm than there was; and, although there were food samples at some, they were either sitting out in the heat and not properly chilled or had flies on them. No thank you...I don't want to get sick.
By the third week of July, the concrete pad for the garage had been built. We were enjoying the open views to the west now that the trees had come down a week before.
The most inspiring thing we experienced was...seeing two little fawns eating grass by the side of the road. They were a little too close to the highway, so we stopped and gradually moved the car forward so that they would run into the forest.
Sure enough, that's what they did.
Our outdoor time made us ask (or wonder about)...what trees would be ones that would appropriate for us to plant to replace the ones that were removed because of the fire?
We would like to have more diversity of trees at the farm. Although we have lots of pines, oaks, and fruit trees, there are a lot of boxelder trees. These type of trees are considered "junk" trees - they grow prolifically and quickly. We have little groves of boxelder trees in some of our pastures that never used to be there when we moved here in 1995. These mini-forests provide cover and shelter for birds and animals. However, I'd like to see more diversity in trees.
The question is: which ones would do well in our climate and be most beneficial to birds, wildlife, and the environment?
In the garden, we are planning/planting/harvesting....flowers mostly. We're enjoying the tiger lilies in full bloom on July 4th.
I started working on the butterfly garden in the backyard - weeding and adding a lot of new perennials. There are even two blueberry plants in there!
Around the 11th of July, the lilies that my Dad gave me in the late 1990s or early 2000s were in full bloom. It's nice seeing that these flowers have done so well for over a decade.
I added nature journal pages about...nothing yet this month. I need to sit down and create some pages that look back on the highlights from July.
I am reading...nothing that is nature related.
I am dreaming about…days without mosquitoes and horseflies. Both of these have gotten in the way of taking the dogs on walks this summer. Combined with high humidity and hot temperatures (and consequently hot asphalt), it's not enjoyable for the dogs or I to go on walks in the middle of the summer.
A photo I would like to share...is of a new swing set, fort house, slide, and climbing wall that we got to replace the playhouse that was destroyed by the fire in May. Our swing set was on its last leg and not functional anymore, so we got a new - much sturdier - set that can handle teens and adults.
Olivia loves to swing each day (I think it helps here a lot with her sensory processing disorder), so this is good for her. Both the girls are enjoying the fort and have been reading in it on cooler days.
Thank you to Barb the Outdoor Hour Challenge for the idea of doing an Outdoor Mom's Journal.