Currently Digging

14 Sep

potting bench4

My love affair with potting benches started in early spring when I saw a beautifully styled potting bench repurposed in a Pottery Barn catalog (see above). Before I knew it, I was fantasizing about all the cute ways I could style mine with drink dispensers and cute handmade or vintage signs for parties out in our garden.

potting bench

The thing is, the “potting bench” in current use in my garden is a good sized picnic table absolutely covered in dirt, empty plastic pots, and flats of various seedlings I’m in the middle of starting. There is nothing cute or styled about any of it – it’s a functional workspace and I’d be hard presses to keep it as neat as a lot of these inspiration photos.

potting bench2

In studying these pictures and thinking more about the whole concept of a designated spot for “potting” things, I’ve come to a few conclusions —

1st – A working potting bench needs to be functional and hold everything I need to pot up plants in the garden. This could mean there are a variety of pots, containers of various potting soils and soil amendments like peat, sand, or potting soil as well as gloves and various tools for the task.

2nd – Know that it’s not a greenhouse. Part of the problem with my current set-up is the fact that I let my stuff stay there. My lettuce seedlings are hanging out in the exact same spot they started in this past spring and taking up precious real estate I could be using.

3rd – Although a potting bench is a place to muck around in the dirt, a little inspiration never hurt anyone so it’s nice to seek out cute little garden signs, pretty gardening gloves, and attractive containers


potting bench 3


What is the difference between Christening and Baptism

11 Sep

Baptism PrintWe celebrated Caroline’s Baptism over the weekend and while chatting with family, I mentioned that it had always confused me that the terms “christening” and “Baptism” seemed to be used interchangeably for describe what we’d all gathered together to celebrate that day.

What is the difference between Christening and Baptism?

Christening refers to the naming ceremony (to “christen” means to “give a name to”) whereas baptism is one of seven sacraments in the Catholic Church. In the sacrament of Baptism the baby’s name is used and mentioned, however it is the rite of claiming the child for Christ and his Church that is celebrated. The word “baptism” comes from the Greek word “to plunge” or “immerse.”

What is the significance of white clothing for Baptism?

I actually learned the significance of the white clothing typically worn during a baptismal ceremony during the preparation to Baptize my older daughter, Emilia. Although most parents tend to bring their infants already dressed in their white Baptismal outfits, technically there should be a wardrobe change mid-ceremony since the white clothing symbolizes rebirth in Christ. Since the white Christening gowns have become such a tradition though, most churches don’t mention this and give an additional white item, like a bib, to be added after the ceremony is complete. For example, at both of our daughter’s Baptismal ceremonies, we received an embroidered white bib immediately following the anointment with the Chrism.

The white garment symbolizes that the child has “put on Christ” has “risen with Christ.” This symbolism is repeated at our funeral when the coffin will be covered with a white cloth, reminding us that we will rise again with Christ.

Pretty interesting, right? I love ritual and tradition and learning the symbolism behind ceremonies and rites like this. Hope this was helpful if you’d also been wondering the same.

Image credit: I threw the above image together in Photoshop to use as part of the party decor following the ceremony. Although I probably should have used a Roman Catholic cross, I chose a Celtic cross to honor Caroline’s Irish and Scottish ancestory.

Garden Update: September 2017

6 Sep

IMG_0341Now that Labor Day weekend has come and gone, it seems like a good time to do a quick check-in on the Garden To Do List. Also, my list has grown so before I update it for the fall, I thought I’d give a status update where things ended up and why. Here’s where we started in the fall and what we got done:

Our 2017 Spring/Summer Garden Priority List

Stump and tree removal in the backyard
Deal with the chipmunks
Remove two shrubs under kitchen window
– Level the backyard
– Redo and build-out the patio
– Build-up berms along the back perimeter
– Seed the lawn
Start our vegetable garden
– Plant privacy trees and shrubs on back perimeter
– Install side yard arbor and gate; plant clematis and roses
– Purchase lounge chair seating
– Find the perfect hammock
– Find a swing set for Emilia
Install front window boxes

Now, to be totally honest, a few of the above are multi-step items that may be only partially done, but I feel like we got a lot accomplished in hindsight, so I’m going to count them. The fact is, there is one lingering chipmunk, we have quite a few more trees and stumps to deal with and our veggie garden has a ways to go, namely, we need to secure it from the bunnies and the day pigeons (who ate all our bush beans) which means some sort of fencing next year.

For the moment, I’m just going to enjoy the fact that we were able to get the garden in at all since I was in my third trimester at the start of the planting season. It was also a terrible year for gardening because we had SO much rain in June.

There are a few things I didn’t put on my priority list earlier this spring like planting asparagus and purchasing fruit trees to get started, but as I’ve settled into this house and gotten to know a bit more about our property and its potential, I’ve realized we might not have the best conditions for a lot of the things I’d hoped to eventually put in, like a pear tree, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t hidden potential to be unlocked!

Stay tuned…