21 Jun 2016

Our Other Garden

If you've ever visited Poland, you may have seen little shacks along the side of the road, along with small gardens, and fruit trees. They look quite strange, almost like a 'shanty village'. I remember seeing them on bus rides into the city in my first years here and not quite knowing what to think.

Over the years we have learned that these are actually "Family Garden Allotments" that you sign a lease to rent. They were actually a major source of food and community under communism. People spent a lot of time there, making their world beautiful in spite of great trials... There is one of these associations just a 10 minute bike ride from our home. Last fall when i was on a bike ride with the boys, we found the gate open and were able to talk to one of the 'gardeners'. I inquired about ones that may be available and this 74 year old man was VERY excited that a family with young kids was interested in one of the plots! We quickly found out that basically they were giving them away for free, so that people would take care of the land! Our 'rental fee' is about $40/year! 

We had been considering it for a while, as we saw it as a place close to home that we could:
  • grow fruit and vegetables
  • expose the boys to nature and teach them about how things grow
  • teach the boys to work!
  • relax

- a black currant bush - 

... one of many fruit bushes/trees already on the property (4 plum trees, 2 apple trees, blackberries, raspberries) are the ones we've discovered so far!

- discovering caterpillars -

Lucas said that he tickled, and that God gave him shoes! After looking closer it did look like the caterpillar had boots on. And after looking up these critters online, i discovered what is eating the leaves of our trees :/ {the gypsy moth} 

- helping daddy paint-

Grandpa Davis actually spent a week helping us put a new roof on our garden shed. Part of it will be a picnic area, to relax under one day! But Ben is busy finishing the shed and roof and when he can he lets the boys help!

- my little gardener - 

This little guy is actually the most eager to help mommy! There are a million little things to do around the garden allotment, most of which include getting dirty!

- our new ride -

It's been amazing for me to watch the boys creativity emerge! They don't always play this well together, but in a 'technology age' where kids spend a lot of time in front of the computer/tv screen, this little place with no electricity is SO good for them! They're learning to create, make up their own games, and explore the world around them.

- bucket head - 

I turned around the other day and saw this guy with a bucket on his head swinging that rake like a sword at his older brother! I wasn't too concerned as i quickly realized he couldn't see and was more likely to hurt himself falling over than anyone else! Somehow in his make believe world, i'm pretty sure he was a knight in a brave battle.

- backyard washbasin band -

Then there was this. That's an old well, we're still trying to see if we can resurrect... and an old watering can nozzle (aka. microphone!) As well as the old sink we took out of the back part of the shed that apparently works well as a microphone as well! They were so proud of their stage and performed the same song over and over for more than 10 minutes. 

 - fire at sunset - 

The boys love making campfires. This night we burned a big grass pile which made a ton of smoke... We're actually not really supposed to have fires back there, but that's a story for another day! 


Laura said...

Love it! I wonder how the boys 'll look back on it!