Hello Bloglandia!

Just a quick post to say Happy Birthday to myself.

No, really. To myself.

I had to paint my own birthday card…

I’d like to take credit for this cute design but it’s actually “reinvented” from a pattern in World of Cross Stitching Magazine.

Unfortunately, while I do like how the cat and cake came out, I’ll be the first to admit I screwed up the border (should have gone with an orange-yellow sort of shade). Ah well.

I also had to make my own birthday cake….

It’s a chocolate cake made with cocoa powder and yogurt (and sugar and butter and all those birthday necessities) and in the middle I put a layer of blackberries. It’s REALLY tasty.

But, of course, to continue my birthday blunders, this was the first time the recipe didn’t come out perfectly and the bottom layer cracked (Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood would not be happy…).

Mary and Paul would also probably not be thrilled with my cake decorating skills.

Sigh, it’s starting to seem like I’m having a very Eeyore-ish It’s All Up To Me Birthday, Complete with Blunders and Screw-Ups.

Yes, I really do have an Eeyore mug.

But wait a minute, what’s all that banging and cursing going on outside?

It’s a birthday present…and one I didn’t have to make myself!!

Along our driveway was once a pointless strip of grass. However, this strip of grass is also one of the few spots in the yard that gets a ton of sun, so one year Mr Husband put in raised beds. Then, maybe four years ago, we also put in a couple grape vines at the very edge.

But wet Pacific Northwest weather doesn’t treat wood kindly (especially the untreated wood used for the raised beds). Plus, I have a bad habit of walking on the edges of the beds while trimming and picking my grapes (better than standing in the dirt, right?).

So, what with my weight and wet weather, the old raised beds were starting to fall apart. Maybe I should eat less cake?

Using much ingenuity (and again, much cursing), Mr Husband took bits and scraps of wood (and even logs) he’s “collected” to build new frames for beds.

I’ll be honest, I had my doubts these would work (mainly because he kept saying, “I don’t think this is going to work”). Then, last weekend, the old beds started going out, and the new ones started going in.

RIP Old Veggie Beds

And they fit with crazy precision!! You can’t really tell, but the base of the beds (meaning, the lowest part) is a thick tree limb with a notch cut out for the frame of the beds (the blue bit) to rest in.

All those wind storms and fallen fir limbs finally paid off!

I should also note, our driveway is on a pretty steep slope, so the design of the frames has to be just right so they end up level. Which they did…and which makes this bit of crafty engineering even more impressive!

Climbers of Everest start their training in our driveway, it’s that steep ; )

Anyway, bed one (the lowest one) went in, bed two went in, bed three went in, and bed four nearly went in, but then a HUGE thunderstorm kicked up.

Almost there!!

But, finally, bed four went in and voila! a birthday present I didn’t have to make myself, and one that will provide a home for our future tomatoes, peppers, basil, and cucumbers*!

*I do realize three of those are fruits, not veggies, making the title of this blog biologically and botanically inaccurate. Sorry.

Okay, the dirt still needs filled back in, but close enough to done!

We even have a few veggie (sorry, “fruit”) starts waiting to move into their new home.

So, a happy birthday to me, a happy housewarming to those veggie/fruit starts, and a big thanks to Mr Husband and all his cursing

: )

For reference, here’s the old veggie beds…and a few weeds…



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