Monday, April 21, 2014

Spring Greens

We hit 70 degrees today and I have the pink nose to prove it.

And while I'm gridlocked in a daily battle with one Calvin Lee on whether or not this is "summer" and whether or not he should be allowed to wear shorts, what this actually means is that it's officially spring, in the most legit way possible.

So, let's not jump ahead, homies.

Let's chill here for a while, and by "chill", I of course mean, let's sun our ankles and sing along with Phil Collins on the radio because it feels like the right thing to do.

This right here is another good way to start.

I worked from this recipe, but added more lemon juice (along with some zest) and doubled the dressing, because if a little is good, a lot is better. That's my motto on most things in life and it's never much of a problem unless we're talking about eyebrow tweezing (they grew back) and that Bohemian Rhapsody bender back in 1992.

I've also been springing things up around our digs. I never used to switch things around to this degree until we moved to the city. I think it's a combination of the white walls, the smaller space, and the growing need to exert some control in my environment. Plus, having just one main living area makes it easy to focus and all our moving forced me to weed out a good bit of my extra junk. I never realized how overwhelming I found all my stuff until I got rid of most of it. And having less cash-flow has forced me to exercise underused portions of my psyche and soul. Letting go oddly made me a more creative and inspired person.

But I digress!

I bought this Lucky Money plant from Aldi over a year ago. It doesn't seem to be growing as much as it seems to be not dying, but I call that a major win for this Zone of Utter Houseplant Destruction.

Overall, this minor success has made me extra-gutsy. I think of myself as a plant person, now.

You're a dog person?
I'm a plant person.

I don't know much about all the plants, just my personal ones, and yes, I have plural plants now. Because I'm a real plant person.

Oh, the stories I could tell about me and my plants!

They're just the cutest things. Little rascals.

I keep taking them in when I see them at Aldi looking so forlorn with their big, leafy-plant eyes.
This one is particularly loyal. He almost never needs watering. So crispy and stout!

(Another part of my Spring redecorating jaunt is the magazine ad I tore out and taped to the main wall in my living room. It has an inspiring message and has a decidedly Springy color scheme. I'm of the opinion we often overthink this whole decorating thing.)

Then  I saw the idea to stick a couple plants in a drawer and call it a day.
That is my kind of decorating trick. And I happen to have drawers.

Open drawer, insert plants, close drawer, just not all the way.

This one? I have no idea. It looks like a geranium leaf or a hollyhock, but both of those options seem
far from likely to this plant person. All I know is, it was $2.47 at Wal Mart and it hasn't died yet, even though Silas took a mini star-shaped hole-punch to several of its leaves.

We're even growing our sunflowers by seed this year.
Because we're just a bunch of plant people now. We can't even help it at this point.

So there you have it, my best tricks for welcoming True Spring. Asparagus, lemon, and cheap houseplants, though I prefer to call them economical houseplants, because maybe they're sensitive about things like that.

Do you decorate for spring? Do you let your kids wear shorts to church on Easter Sunday when it's only supposed to be a high of 70 and it's in the low 40's in the morning? Might you be one of the parents of a child in Calvin's class, and, if so, is it true that he's the "only kid in the entire class who has to go to bed at whippy 8 o'clock?"

(Because that's what he said. And he was realllly mad when he said it. But that "whippy" thing immediately diffused any angst I was feeling toward him. And I laughed. Then he laughed, too, but only for a second. And then he got even more mad.

The end. For now.


  1. My kids are both in college now, so I feel like I've been there, done that sometimes. I am all for early bed times, even if they are "the only one" who has to. Believe me, the time that you can enforce bed times that happen before yours is SHORT (I guess you already know that because, Robert). Also, how can our kids learn that shorts may not be comfortable in chilly weather unless you let them do it? And if Calvin is like my son, he runs warm like a little heater. Maybe I shouldn't be handing out advice, though, since my son as a college freshman this year played volleyball in the shorts. College boys have little common sense to begin with, I think. And they got their photo in the newspaper which made it a win in their eyes :) Love your spring decor by the way! You are so right that we over think it all.

  2. My youngest son wanted to wear shorts ALL.THE.TIME. Drove my hubby nuts. They finally came to an agreement. If the temp was below 40 when we got up in the morning then he had to wear long pants....otherwise, he could wear shorts. (We even got a note home from the teacher about shorts in the winter and we just chose to ignore it! :-) Anyway, that compromise was a life saver!

  3. I'm thinking I need to see more of this plant-in-a-drawer idea. Doesn't it stick out in the way?
    I'm extra clumsy so I don't need any help with things trying to trip me up, but I kind of love the idea.
    All of my plants (all 3 of them) are just sitting in regular pots on a ordinary shelf looking kind of boring...

    1. Well, my drawers are little and don't stick out too far.
      But if you're afraid of that, then maybe you could stick some of your plants in a Campbell's soup can or another weird planter? Or just put something quirky next to your regular-potted plants? I have lots of regular potted plants and I love them all the same. :)

    2. Yes, I think weird planters are where it's at.
      Don't get me wrong, I love my plants...and the fact that I haven't killed them yet.
      but just had some temporary plant decor envy (apparently that's a thing!)

  4. I would like an avocado for breakfast! I don't decorate for spring. Or fall. Or even Christmas. I am a total mom fail! Happy Monday. Shine your light. Definitely let Calvin wear shorts. Kaish wore them every day all winter. You might wonder why. Me too!!!! : )

    1. You guys are making me feel like I should put down my weapon and let the kid wear shorts. He will love you forever!!

      Also, we didn't do Easter baskets because I'm over all this candy and mostly b/c I'm just not ON IT. And for the first time EVER we were going to dye eggs. We got as far as hard-boiling them. The end. haha

  5. my 3 cents
    consistent bedtime makes for a happy life - we miss the days of kids going to bed at 8 - now we go to bed at 8 :(
    shorts? been.there.done.that. uuuuuuggggghhhhhh. pick your battles. let him get cold. this is in hindsight, so take it or leave it :)
    no bunny, no hunting, though you might enjoy this little trick for next year - ROTTEN EGGS - fill most of your plastic eggs with a treat, or whatever; write chores or messages such as: make your sister's bed for 1 week, do your brother's chores this week, etc. have your camera ready for the priceless expressions on their faces! I guess we're just mean that way.

  6. I finally gave up on the shorts issue as well. When all the other boys wore collared shirts or something else suitable to church on Sunday, my kid wore a lacrosse t shirt and shorts. It was 40 degrees. I have bigger fish to fry with this kid, so if he wants to be cold, so be it. Also, he's twelve. So there's that.

    1. Part of my problem is that C doesn't give me many other battles, so I pick the dumb one, because it's there! If this were his little brother, I'd probably let him leave the house in his skivvies.
      You people are so smart and kind. I need to cave on this dumb shorts thing.

  7. My 17 year old has always - since he was an infant - run hot. Shorts, ahoy! from about 1st grade on, *and* NO COAT. Even while skiing and snow camping! If I forced him to wear a coat when he was little, he would peel it off as soon as he could; it would return home inside out, and soaking, snowy or muddy from having been on the ground. And the 8:00 bedtime? Please pass along to Calvin that he most definitely is not alone; you know of a 17 year old high school kid who goes to bed every night at 8:00, too.

  8. Love this post! Let him wear the shorts. Natural consequences can serve as another parent... As to the plants, keep on keeping on! I love the round leafed one in particular.
    Question though:
    HOW did you get that lettering on your wall. Inquiring minds absolutely need to know!

    1. Vinyl letters from Ace hardware! :) (Near the garage sale signage.)

  9. Yes I do decorate for spring. And yes, it only consisted of buying two new houseplants and a floor lamp to replace another broken floor lamp. And even more yes-we are the only one's who seem to have any sort of bedtime for our kids-so boo, hiss, we're the worst parents in the world. Blah blah blah. Or maybe, just maybe, we're the smartest parents in the world because we know that when our kids go to bed at 8 we have approximately 35 minutes to talk about adult things before we collapse exhausted in bed ourselves.

    Also, your houseplants are adorable. Did you name them? Because I named mine-is that weird?

  10. Love that Silas hole punch genius!

  11. I am slightly envious of your mad houseplant skills! My husband calls our house "the place where plants come to die". I do decorate for spring..basically making sure I removed all the Christmas stuff, though. :-)

  12. It was 70 here today and yesterday as well!

    If Calvin lived in subzero Minnesota this would have been his outfit:
    Tank Top
    Flip Flops
    Soccer Ball

    All the while trying his darnedest to get on the local news at 6!

  13. My eight year old wants to wear shorts everyday. I'm done fighting that battle. If it's after spring break, it's his choice. This morning he surprised me and decided to go with pants!

  14. I grew up in a house full of plants. How many do I have in my house...usually only one. Recently we added a few marigolds planted by the kids at a birthday party. I guess the houseplant gene kind of skipped me.

    In other news...saw you in Midwest Living! I was flipping through and saw your island and knew it was you before I even saw you and Silas. How cool! Maybe you shared about it here and I missed it, but what a fun surprise to see you there. I love seeing your kitchen in print. I am trying to add some life and color to my own kitchen and it's good inspiration.

  15. Glad I'm not the only one with plants that aren't exactly growing, so much as they "aren't dying"!! Except for the dead ones... I can see 3 dead ones from my perch on the couch. My husband LOVES it.

  16. Thank you for sharing that recipe! We tried it tonight with your suggestions and it was awesome!! :)

    Way to go with the plants! I am pretty much guaranteed to kill anything green, but cross my fingers because we're going on 6 weeks and my little succulents are still alive! (I hope I didn't just jinx myself)

  17. I am so behind on commenting...but I could not let this pass me by! I laughed and laughed because I have kept a polka dot plant alive for like, oh, a month and suddenly you'd think I was Martha. I've got zinnias growing from seeds and a miniature rose bush out back. But we must not speak of the rozalea. We must not.

  18. Ok I wasn't done! My phone is insane! A great big congrats on your kitchen mag spread! Oh my goodness! And an even bigger congrats on sweet Siley. Heart. Melted.