Recent Blog Posts Get Caught Up

Practical Organic Gardening Explained, Plus How to Solve Garden Challenges Naturally with Mark Highland

April 20, 2018

Brand New Podcast – Just in time for Spring! Practical Organic Gardening Explained, Plus How to Solve Garden Challenges Naturally with Mark Highland.

Growing Money: Calculating The Real Value of Trees with Al Zelaya

March 16, 2018

Al Zelaya is on the show today and we’re talking about the real value of trees.   You know the old saying, “money doesn’t grow on trees”?     Well, Al Zelaya might beg to differ. He’s been working on tree valuation for quite a while and he’s about to show us just how to value a…

Composting Solutions: Cleaner, Faster Methods to Redefine Rotten with Michelle Balz

March 9, 2018

Michelle Balz (pronounced Balts) is on the show today and she’s the author of Composting for a New Generation: Latest Techniques for the Bin and Beyond .     A long-time backyard composter with a passion for reducing our impact on the planet, Michelle offers laid-back advice for home composters in the Confessions of a Composter blog, teaching classes on…

How to Create a Foliage Framework for your Garden with Karen Chapman and Christina Salwitz

March 2, 2018

Karen Chapman and Christina Salwitz are on the show today and they are the authors of Gardening with Foliage First: 127 Dazzling Combinations that Pair the Beauty of Leaves with Flowers, Bark, Berries, and More. As landscape designers, Karen and Christina see gardens through a different lens. They like to begin their work on a garden space by…

How to Keep – Not Kill – Houseplants with Barbara Pleasant

February 23, 2018

Barbara Pleasant (SG584) is back on the show and she’s the author of  The Complete Houseplant Survival Manual. Barbara shares some excellent tips:– why you should buy plants from low light areas– Container vs. Plant: who lives? who dies to live another day?– Pets vs. Houseplants: Addressing Poisonous Houseplant Concerns– Barbara’s trick for harvesting and storing…

SG601: The Chinese Kitchen Garden with Wendy Kiang-Spray

February 16, 2018

Wendy Kiang-Spray is on the show and she’s the author of The Chinese Kitchen Garden. And boy, do I love this book. It’s half how to grow, half how to cook, and half an amazing glimpse into the wonderful Kiang-Spray Family – so that’s 150% worth of yummy, beautiful, love in one book. Plus – it’s…

SG600: My Apprenticeship in the Gardens of Kyoto with Leslie Buck

February 9, 2018

Today’s show is a dream come true for me – Leslie Buck is on the show and she’s the author of Cutting Back: My Apprenticeship in the Gardens of Kyoto. Cutting Back is Leslie’s charming memoir of her time spent in the gardens of Kyoto, Japan.    Now, I read about Leslie and her memoir last…

SG599: The Smart Start Garden Planner with Megan Cain

February 2, 2018

Megan Cain (SG557) – aka The Creative Vegetable Gardener  is back  on the show today and we’re discussing how to garden smart and how to be a smart gardener with the help of her Smart Start Garden Planner.   Think of all the adjectives you associate with the term gardener: Hopeful Constant Keen Enthusiastic Practical Skilled …

SG598: Top Easy-to-Grow Houseplants with Lisa Eldred Steinkopf

January 26, 2018

Lisa Eldred Steinkopf, a.k.a. The Houseplant Guru, is on the show today and guess what we’re talking about?  Ding! Ding! Ding! You’re right! Her new book on houseplants published by Cool Springs Press called Houseplants: The Complete Guide to Choosing, Growing and Caring for Indoor Plants.

One of the things I appreciated the most about Lisa’s book, is that she divided the 125 houseplants featured in her book into three helpful categories: Easy to Grow, Moderately Easy-to-Grow, and Don’t-Try-This-at-Home-It’s-A-Waste-of-Money-and-Time-and-You-Really-Need-That-New-Pair-of-Shoes. Just kidding. It’s actually just called Challenging to Grow. (Which actually doesn’t sound so bad now, does it? Still – be careful here.)
 
Now, guess which one we spent the most time talking about? 
You’re right, again – the easy-to-grow category because that’s the sweet spot. These are the plants that are the best investment of your time and money – and the plants that will give you the most personal satisfaction.

SG597: How to Speak Chicken with Melissa Caughey

January 19, 2018

Guten Tag. Ola. Bonjour. Bur-dup?
That’s the official greeting of the world’s most abundant domestic animal – chickens. Today we’re learning How to Speak Chicken with expert chicken translator Melissa Caughey of the blog Tilly’s Nest and the new book with the intriguing and quirky title, How to Speak Chicken. I’ve done lots of interviews over the years – and I guarantee you, this is one that I will personally never forget.

6ftmama Posts

Getting Feedback From Your Child About Their Teachers

Teacher Feedback 6ftmama blog

A few years ago, I wrote about how I prepare for Parent Teacher Conferences in my post The Ultimate Prep Checklist for Parent Teacher Conferences. Building on that, this year I wanted to go a little more in-depth and try to better understand what school is like for our kids from their perspective. Here are the…

Some things never change

Sonny rides to Puptown 2014 the Still Growing Gardening Podcast 6ftmama blog

Some things never change.

You know how Facebook reminds you of old status updates with those Time Hop photo memories?

Generally speaking, they make me feel a little sad because old pictures of the kids just seem to punctuate how fast they’re growing up now that they’re teenagers.

In the Kitchen

Oven-Roasted Asparagus (so easy your kids can make it!)

Oven-Roasted Asparagus John prep cook 6ftmama blog

Asparagus is a great vegetable for kids to prepare and cook because it is so darn easy to make. John’s in 4th grade and he’s my little prep cook. Asparagus is the perfect vegetable to practice your knife skills on because it doesn’t slide around and it’s fairly sturdy. I always have the kids chop the asparagus…

After School Snack Station

Lemon Pudding Cake Marked on Cake Plate with Expo Marker 6ftmama blog

This weekend we did absolutely nothing. As PJ announced on Friday after school, “It’s Relaxation Weekend!”  No basketball tournaments. No appointments. No gatherings. Just chilling at home. Which was fine and dandy until I realized we had no food in the house on Sunday night. So, before I walked Sonny, we ran to the grocery store…

In the Garden

Gardening Resources on Craigslist with a Complete List of My Favorite Search Terms

Gardening Resources on Craigslist Francy's Elevated Planter Bed from Craigslist 6ftmama blog

  Craigslist is such a great resource for gardeners. Did you know they have a farm + garden section? Last week, I bought this fabulous 4’x6′ elevated garden bed for $25 from a fabulous lady named Francy. (I’ve never met a Francy who is anything less than fabulous – great name!) When this marvelous beast…

They’re Here! Seed Packets from Renee’s Garden!

Seed Packets from Renee's Garden

Since Spring has decided to take a little break this week, I’ve been able to get a few indoor chores checked off my list. This afternoon, I started going through my seed library. Back in March, I received an invitation from Renee’s Garden to sample a dozen of their seed packets. Yaaassss! I ordered a…

Neverest Lane House

Mr. Fix-it

Yesterday morning, before school, John helped me repair a screen. Never mind that he’s just 10 years old.  He’s been helping with little projects like these for years now. (You’re welcome, John’s future wife!)   Help put away the breakfast dishes?  Nah.   Got your backpack so you’re ready for the bus?  Mom – I’ll…

The Port Room

Port Room

It took me a few years to collect the pieces of art I wanted to use for a gallery wall in our guest room ~ the Port Room.

I had a few things in mind for the pieces for the Port Room gallery wall:

Recycling: I wanted to find all the pieces at thrift stores
Theme: All the pictures needed to feature a boat or ship
Organic: I wanted collection to look curated – not planned. The frames could be any color, the art could be any style – but nothing matchy-matchy.
Consensus: Each piece needed to get a thumbs up from the kids. No matter how eclectic, if it made us happy, we bought it.
Combining all the different pieces was a little tricky – it was a little like putting together a giant puzzle. Whew!

It’s great to finally see all the art on the wall.

2018 February 6ftmama Header (1)

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