Gardening Tips with Pros and Cons

Each year we add and take away from our garden. It’s a fun way to experiment with where we plant and how we plant each plant. Learning and building off of each others ideas to decide what works and what isn’t worth it. We’ve made cinder block beds, wooden raised beds, metal raised beds, pea/cucumber trellis, and even removed all of our raspberry canes to make a pumpkin patch. We have a wall of sunflowers that shade tomatillos and our cucumbers climb our pea trellis to cover a couple of tomato plants and those tomato plants shade a bed of radishes. With each bed I try to build a relationship between plants becoming companions. While one may ward off a debilitating insect the other plant may attract a “good” one. It’s fun and you’re able to create beautiful spaces for flowers, herbs and vegetables to all coexist.

Gardening is something I grew up doing. As far back as I can remember, each summer was spent walking the rows of the garden and standing at the edge of the yard shucking corn and giving a good “eww” over each worm we uncovered. Maybe I’m forgetting but I never felt it as work. I enjoyed being there, playing in the dirt amongst the vegetables and watching our pantry grow.

When I  met my now husband, I was quick to ask him for a garden at his house. He too was raised picking beans and shucking corn but didn’t exactly have the same feelings about it as I did back then. But as we took on our own garden I believe his feelings began to change and bloom again. Desiring a place to raise our own food and seeing how successful we could be at it we thought, “Gosh this is too simple”. At the time we didn’t really care how we got them to grow… it was more like an at-all-costs type garden. It was going to be successful no matter what. We applied Miracle-Gro to our plants however so often (maybe even more than directed) and would cover them with pesticides to ensure nothing other than us harvest our plants… What is it called 7 Dust? Our first year garden was resilient, hardy, and bared more food than what we could eat fresh and me to can or us give away. BUT… (there’s a big but here) what were we really consuming??

Our views on using fertilizer changed. Our views on pesticides changed. We removed our railroad tie raised beds and switched to cinderblock beds. We decided if we’re going to use fertilizer that we would only use organic; We have only used soil conditioner this year. We DO NOT use pesticides and instead plant Marigolds, cover crops, herbs, other flowers amongst our garden. Playing around with companion planting becomes fun, requires a creative mind, research and paints a pretty picture in the garden.

Omitting the unnecessary, gardening has become harder trying to understand the plants and what they’re telling us that they need. By that statement you may be thinking, “Sounds like it is necessary”. No, it’s not. That’s the problem. Nowadays its seems like people want it easy. Less work. Things handed to them. Lets put in minimal effort to reap maximum reward. No and no. It doesn’t work like that. And frankly it gets frustrating seeing that mentality in people these days. We work for what we have and if it matters to us, we will do the work to figure out what may be wrong with our yellowing leafed plant. Maybe its over watering or is it not enough? Or that tomato plant that isn’t producing large fruit. Maybe we should experiment with suckering? Or maybe my plants are getting ate up with aphids. Maybe I should sow some buckwheat.. which attract aphids and just so happen to be the home of hover flies that feed on aphids.

I love figuring things out. I don’t even mind failing. It’s all a process and so rewarding. When I look at our home-canned food I know exactly what hard work went into a single jar and also what DIDN’T go into them. The investment shows and makes the jar taste so much better. It can be done naturally you just have to start and learn your space. Your plants will talk to you showing you signs of what you may need to show more attention to. You just have to be present and listen.

New in my garden:

As I mentioned on Instagram the other day, I have tried a few things this gardening that seems a little unorthodox. So far all plants seem to be loving their environment and everything looks healthy.

1. I pulled raised rows.

I pulled rows like you would for sweet potatoes, knocking the peak down and planted all plants in these. Burying a few leaves of peppers and tomatoes praying for a strong root system.

Pros: I have found that weeding is much easier with these raised rows. I literally take the weed-eater and knock down the grass in-between the rows. That’s it. I do pull weeds in-between the days that I choose to weed-eat this is just preference as I wouldn’t have to. I also have found that rows have made it much easier to weed-eat as the rows protect them.

Cons: Initially, I was concerned with how they would absorb water. I had gotten discouraged once I planted my garden. Stepping back and looking I thought all of the water will run off meeting in the walkway. So I pulled back the mulch from the base of the plant, creating a well. Hoping to ensure that water would make it to the roots. Since then the wells have been pushed back and the plants are thriving. I guess my “con” would be for unsurety

2. I covered the rows in brown paper grocery bags.

I decided to try to suppress weeds with some Trader Joe bags that had been accumulating. I knew it would do so and also add organic matter back into the soil. Aiding in keeping it nice and loamy.

Pros: This method helped wonders with weed control! I would do it again and again. When I do pull a weed, it doesn’t even feel like its attached to the soil. It pulls up perfectly with all of the roots intact. You’re recycling your paper bags also and giving back to your soil. 

Cons: It’s more work but so worth it.

3. Mulch, mulch, mulch.

We mulched all raised rows in the garden, every raised bed and new in-ground garden spots throughout our nook. Mulching also aids in weed control and acts as a barrier to bacteria in the soil that can harm your plants and vegetables. It also acts as an insulator keeping your soil cool which also keeps it loose. I was shocked to feel how cool the inside of the rows where especially in the 95 degree heat that we’ve been having. And on-top of that, all of that the mulch keeps your soil hydrated. We went quite sometime without rain and left for vacation without any means of watering other than hopes for rain. No rain, but our garden still looked healthy and hydrated.

Pros: It gives a nice aesthetic touch while being functional. Plants seem to be happy, hydrated, and healthy. Also may I add, so far minimal bites and spotting on leaves (the only plant that does is my tomatillos).

Cons: More expensive. It’s going to cost you more but I think you’d be happy that you did. Pass on the box store single bags of mulch. Find a landscaping business and buy it by the scoop. Its much cheaper and goes way further. If you’re dealing with hard soil mulch would be a great thing to add to your garden.

4. Tomato Trellis.

I know tomatoes aren’t your climbing vine but this year we were going to experiment with putting our wire wall at an angle. Allowing the tomatoes to lay on the wire getting some support. We still tied them to the wire. This also allows us to companion plant a little differently too. Having our plants at an angle we now have shade in our garden allowing us to plant on the opposite side of our tomato wall in that very shade, lettuce and herbs maybe. I haven’t planted yet because I need the tomatoes to get a little bigger to give ample shade.

Pros: Opens up walkway and allows companion planting. With the tomatoes laid back at an angle the stems aren’t covering my walkway leaving it easy to walk through and work.

Cons: It’s the unsurety thing again. I’m not sure if this will affect the yield of my plants. I wouldn’t think it would but I just dont know. So this is still up in the air.

5. Soil Conditioner

With any new beds or with soil that didn’t feel like we wanted it, we added soil conditioner. This is extremely rich organic soil that is high in nitrogen.

Pros: Gives your soil nutrients that it may be lacking. Loosens up hard to manage dirt. It should promote healthier plants and higher yields.

Cons: More money. Its high in nitrogen so you wouldn’t want to put this directly on your plants.

I’m loving the direction that our garden is headed in. With time we shall see if these changes and hard work was worth it. Until then I’m going to enjoy the process and watch my garden unfold and listen every time they talk. I hope you find something from this article that you can apply to your garden or homestead. Let’s keep gardening fun and help each other make hard work easier.

A Few Camping Essentials and Our Latest Trip

Bryson City, North Carolina has been on our list of “top places” to see for quite sometime. I remember us talking about visiting years ago being drawn in by the history of Fontana Lake and reading about this town in Our State Magazine solidified the plan to go.

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As a family on a budget, we search for the most affordable places but also centered around awesome things to do that doesn’t rip the money straight from of your wallet. Typically you can find campgrounds close to a body of moving water for a decent price. These places tend to be “no-frills” campgrounds. We have found several of these over the course of camping for 8 years. These very campgrounds typically do not require a deposit on your site and simply ask for your name. This time we found Grumpy Bear Campground. It was right on the Tuckasegee river. Our kids had a river-stone beach and we spent many hours picking up river glass and flat stones that will end up our shower floor. Standing on this beach we could see the metal from the cars sticking out of the water that were placed along the banks to prevent erosion. I hear Oaklee say, “Look mama a car!”. Waking up to fog filled mountains and hearing the river rush over the rocks was exactly how I wanted to start my day


We were just a few minutes from town. The cutest town ever… Fishing shops, microbreweries, cafe, book store, small restaurants (that were ALWAYS full) with front porch seating, unique mountain shops, ice cream shops, and of course outdoor gear shop (Bryson City Outdoors which also had a taproom). We had conversations with almost every worker in The BOC and everyone was so friendly even Lager the store pup gave the kids ‘hello’ kisses.

Shopping isn’t really my thing but I do appreciate a good stroll though a pretty town and seeing what it has to offer. But if you’re like me and would rather go on a hike or see wildlife and read about history you’re in luck because Bryson City has all of that. Right outside of town you have one entrance to the Great Smoky National Park which leads to a trailhead splitting off into a few different trails and you can continue on the pavement to The Road To Nowhere. This was probably my favorite part of Bryson City. We left our campsite due to it pouring down rain. We were standing under our Kodiak Canvas awning and decided to drive to the national park just to look around and we ended up at the venue that was meant for Day 2 (and yes we always have an itinerary). It was perfect and meant to be because we pulled into an empty parking lot.

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We pushed through eerie fog and rain escaping it all within the black tunnel of The Road To Nowhere. I’m not going to lie, I didn’t exactly want to walk through this tunnel. I didn’t at all. Except our three-year-old begged us to walk through it. So we did and so did she… she walked the entire way through and back not scared at all. Just a few yards in a bat collides with my head. I really didn’t want to go now. With the light from just my Nikon we walked snapping pictures to make sure nothing and no-one was ahead of us. We could see a foggy silhouette of the exit on other side. Or was it? This place was spooky and gave us a good thrill. Whether the story, storm or the fight against darkness it gave a good rush. The walls had been dipped in graffiti and one part seemed to stand out more than the rest reading, “Have less. Be more”.


As we started walking back through we heard a group of people at the entrance that were also reluctant to walk The Road To Nowhere. The storm has passed at this point. We hear them yell to hear their echo and we returned the favor with a good “ooo”. They laugh unsurely saying “There’s someone in there!” and decided to walk through. As we pass we exchange hellos and keep walking. This tunnel echoed like nothing I had ever experienced. This place is a true gem and a great [free activity] to add to your list when visiting Bryson City. You seriously shouldn’t go home without doing this.

You can continue driving through town passing through “tubing town” to end in another entrance to The Great Smoky National Park finding trails to hike, tubing, public bathrooms, places for picnics, and waterfalls. This place was awesome and I had never seen so many people taking advantage of a park. It was humbling seeing thousands of people opting outside. We parked and had a secluded picnic and then decided to take a hike. It was more of a stroll. With a wide open trail and with minimal effort we were able to push our jogging stroller to two waterfalls. Perfect. [free activity]


Our last day in Bryson City and the kids needed a nap we just decided to drive and see where the road took us. We started seeing signs for the Nantahala National Forest. At this point I may have begged to go, I’m not sure. Another place we had wanted to see, so we did. We drove and took turns getting out and feeling the water, walking across swinging bridges, and breathing the crisp mountain air all while the kids slept. There is just something about the mountains and water that we’re drawn to… we just can’t help it. When I was younger I always wanted to go to the beach but the mountains is just a special special place to me and that’s where I want to be.

Camping has become very popular over the past few years as it is a cheaper way to vacation (per night I’ll add). The initial cost of your gear can be pricey and it takes planning and hard work. But to be sitting outside by a fire or laying in a hammock under the stars listening to natures third-shift is so worth all of the effort and money that is invested. You meet like-minded people who may develop into new friendships, have conversations that are forever held to your heart, and learn about yourself and each other more-so than you would if staying in a hotel room in-front of a tv. Being outdoors changes you all for the greater good. Everyone becomes involved whether it be for collecting firewood or for getting dinner ready and soon that translates into home life becoming how everyone works, together.

If you’re interested in opting outside for your next vacation you’re going to need to think of a few things to make your trip smooth.

I’m going to list a few ideas but certainly aren’t limited to just these. These few things have helped our camping trips (if you know us then you know we travel frequently) and hopefully if you’re already into camping or maybe just starting out they can help you too.

So when thinking of camping you may ask:

How am I going to prepare our meals?
— We often take our baby weber and cook on charcoal, sometimes we take our Coleman propane stove and Baking Steel, and others we take our compact jet stove. Each one has its pros. Consider your packing space and what you can allow. And even plan out your meals ahead of time. This will help you decide what cooking appliances you will need and hopefully not forget something. When we take our Coleman camping stove and Baking Steel we sacrifice little space and everything packs together nicely. Our Baking Steel fits perfectly on both eyes and we are able to maximize our cooking surface cooking multiple things at once, which I absolutely love. When using our charcoal grill we tend to have less dishes to clean. You can prepare foil packet meals and throw them right onto the grill. With aluminum foil acting as your plate, all you have to do is toss it and wash your fork. Let me clarify– you can also do this on your Baking Steel. AND the Coleman and Baking Steel pack together tighter and smaller. We really love our Baking Steel and is the main surface I cook on at home. This trip to Bryson City we took our weber and jet stove. Weber for food and jet stove for coffee. The jet stove has a pitcher of water ready in just a few minutes. I’m really not one to want to wait for coffee when I wake up. So if you’re like me you will appreciate this!

How will I keep my items cold?
— We purchased a Coleman Marine cooler off of Amazon that does the job! It’s a fair price in comparison to other coolers at that size and is made in USA. When we buy bagged ice we have to “re-up” every 3 days or so. But we recently switched to freezing our LeBleu water bottles to act as our ice. Allowing us to skip on paying for ice, we’re not dealing with a ton of water in our cooler seeping into our other items, we have bottled drinking water as they thaw and we can reuse the bottles again next time. Just fill them up and toss them into the freezer for your next camping trip.

Where will we sleep?

— You’ll need a tent or a hammock. There are so many options so do your research and read reviews. Thats the biggest tip I can give. Read about other peoples experiences with the product and company. We use a Kodiak Canvas tent and have waited out a lot of rain and even storms and we have never gotten wet. It is seriously the best tent that we have ever used. It’s also a breeze to set up and take down. We purchased our hammocks off Amazon. They come with a mosquito net built-in and are a fraction of the price of an Eno.

What will be our sleeping arrangements?

–We have spent many nights sleeping on the ground only wrapped in a sleeping bag. Doable for sure but investing in a sleeping mat will make your night’s rest just that, rest. You’re going to sleep well and be charged and ready to tackle your day come morning. When camping for long trips it will serve your body way better than the ground or your typical air mattress. We use a KingCamp Deluxe self inflating camping mat and its super comfortable. Once your tent is up, throw your mat into your tent and untwist the caps, walk away and continue getting things set up. It will inflate itself and all you have to do is tighten the caps back up once you’re finished setting up. You can even top the air off by blowing into the valves before you secure them. This item is well worth the purchase and you’ll be happy that you did!

What if it rains? Where will we hangout?

It’s a real bummer being rained on in the middle of the day and being cooped up in the tent. Especially for multiple days. Having a tarp to throw over a guyline and secure around some trees will make your rainy days dryer and more enjoyable and give you relief during those super hot and sunny days too. Our Kelty Noah tarp has been such a game changer for our trips. I wouldn’t go camping without it.

These are just a few things that have made our trips easier and more enjoyable. If you’re new to camping but kinda clueless on where to start this should help you get going in the right direction. I’ve had several people mention to me how they would like to start camping but didn’t have the first idea on what they needed which is what prompted this post. I will continue to make posts about exploring/camping and giving tips that we have learned on the way. Sometime soon I will make a post on some of my go-to camping meals.


To make things even easier, I have provided links to products that we love and confide in.


Coconut Herb Crusted [WILD CAUGHT] Salmon Fillets

Happy monday morning! I would like to preface by saying how amazing this rub is and how you need this for this weekend. Our 3-year-old loves fish. It doesn’t matter what type of fish, she crushes it every time I bring it to the table. Since she was little she would eat fish better than any other animal protein. It blew our minds!

I never liked fish growing up (my husband was the exact opposite). I would stick to the basic crustacean, deep-fried and doused in tartar sauce. When it was time that I get a job, I even went to the extent of working at a seafood restaurant because I knew I wouldn’t eat the food… The hush puppies were delish though!

As we get older, our taste buds change, as do our views. We slowly weave between the many definitions of healthy and how health matters to us. Then we develop our own idea of healthy and try to fit it to our lives and to our own bodies. We learn what our bodies need and what cripples us. I remember in school learning about the food pyramid and what was “healthy”, Fish and other animal proteins fell just below sugar and grains and pasta supported the pyramid as the primary foundation.

Ultimately, you will have to do your own research to find what best suits you and your family in terms of diet and healthy eats. I will tell you the Whole 30 books and cookbooks are AWESOME. And if you’re new to any diet change and completely lost in where to begin eating healthy, that is a great place to start! So, we try to eat fish regularly. Especially for our kids because they love it so much. I always shop wild caught. I’ve made the mistake and bought farm raised by accident. The “how an where” labels are not as clear or easy to find as they should be. And after reading Paul Nicklen’s post on Instagram a while back about farm raised fish, I made a point to never buy it again no matter how long I’m holding people up trying to figure out where its caught. This topic will have to be another post because it’s eye-opening and it needs to be heard. But Trader Joe’s has made it super simple by labeling their fish WILD or FARM RAISED right on the front of their package and even color coding the label which makes it even easier to double-check yourself.

Any who, this recipe is the bomb and I pair it with my Garlicky Coconut Milky Baby Potatoes. It was so so good!

2 WILD caught salmon fillets

For crust:
1/4 cup almond flour
1/4 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
1 tsp dried parsley
1 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp sea salt

1/4 tsp black pepper
2 teaspoons coconut oil


Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

Grease a small baking sheet, I used coconut oil spray, and set aside.

In a shallow dish (I used a pie dish), mix flour, coconut, and spices until well combined.

Add coconut oil and mix in with a fork until crumbly.

Take fillets and press meat side into the rub, lay skin side down onto the pan. Pat remaining rub onto fillets.

Bake fillets for 12-15 minutes.




Follow me on Instagram at @theoreganothymes and share photos with the hashtag #theoreganothymes. I would love to see what you’re making!

Double Chocolate Zucchini Cups


These are amazing. I’m keeping this post short and sweet so you can go ahead and whip some of these up.


These zucchini cups are made without gluten, without dairy, without eggs, and without nuts but taste amazing. Sweetened with coconut sugar this little treat will be your guilt free sweet. You will have to remind yourself that your’e also eating your vegetable.

Double Chocolate Zucchini Cups


Makes 12 Zucchini Cups

1 cup gluten free all purpose flour
1/2 cup cocoa
3/4 cup coconut sugar

1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp sea salt

1/2 cup coconut oil

2 flax seed meal eggs: (1 Tbl flax seed meal + 3 Tbl water = 1 (ONE) egg. Mix ingredients and let sit for 5 minutes)
1 tsp vanilla

1 1/2 cup shredded zucchini
1 cup enjoy life mega chunks


Preheat oven to 350F. Line a 12 count muffin tin with liners, set aside.

1. In a medium size bowl combine all dry ingredients and mix well.
2. In a small bowl make flax seed eggs, set aside for 5 minutes to thicken (you can use this time to shred your zucchini).

3. Add coconut oil, vanilla and flax seed meal eggs to the dry ingredients, mixing well.
4. Stir in zucchini until well combined. You will see a change in your batter at this point, becoming less dry and more of a batter consistency.

5. Stir in mega chunks.
6. Disperse batter amongst the 12 muffin cups.

Bake for 25-30 minutes.


So simple and so delicious!

If you try them please let me know what you think!

Follow me on Instagram at @theoreganothymes.

Your Child’s First Garden

My eldest has been in the garden ever since she was a new baby. Helping us, till, pull rows, start seeds (even if she was in the stroller– she was there)… She has also always been genuinely interested in how a garden comes to life, “they’re growing to the sky!”, she’ll say. She will walk over to my spinach bed, grabbing leaf after leaf for an outdoor snack and cry if she can’t find an earthworm to hold. This is where she wants to be and it just so happens to be exactly where I want to be also.

So I made her a garden.


We already have several raised beds and are in the process of adding a lot more along with a fence, a sandy walkway with stepping-stones all connected by mulch. Trying my best to Joanna Gaines my garden on a budget. Sadly everything costs so much meaning we can’t do it all at once. but I’m certainly enjoying the process.
We typically plant a large field garden but have shied away from that this year solely focusing on our raised beds. We have nurtured each bed with heavy weeding, peat moss, organic fertilizer and mulch. Maybe mulching our beds will not only keep our soil nice and loamy but also suppress the weeds to where we don’t have to exert so much time to weeding each week.

We made a raised bed from cinder blocks last year. It started as an early year salad bed then they gained a couple of strawberry plants I bought from Whole Foods. The strawberries have grown and spread reclaiming their territory, making it their own bed. They have allowed me to plant onions in each hole of the cinderblocks at the top of the bed. It looks so inviting

When I decided to make Oaklee’s garden I wanted to add right onto this strawberry bed. The original bed was 2 cinderblocks high, so I left hers just one single row of cinderblocks. I ended up making her bed 1 (block) x 4 (blocks). Filling it will mulch, peat moss, and organic garden soil. I let her plant a few plants that she had started from seed weeks ago, bell peppers and oregano. When we were at the store the other day she begged me for a “pretty purple flower”. She picked out some petunias and carried them though the entire store. It was precious and she was so happy.


We planted the petunias in the center with the bell peppers on each side of them. We put the oregano in the lower corners. When everything takes off I think this addition to the strawberry bed will be just gorgeous! I was gifted a pack of marigolds for mother’s day because my mother in law knows I used them every year sprinkling them all throughout my garden. There was just enough to place in the center of each hole of each block. We added mulch and now its finished. Perfect.

Now, they have their very own garden that THEY helped grow from seed, work the soil, (add the earth worms), and mulch. They get to care for it and harvest it. I think this will be a very positive addition to our garden for me and them. Giving the kids responsibility and a sense of accomplishment.

If you’re looking to get your littles involved in gardening with you maybe consider building them a garden of their own. They will be so happy that they have something to work in, nourish, and watch come to life. It will even get them excited to eat THEIR vegetables. Teaching them how to care for plants will be something they carry with them throughout their life and maybe they will teach their kids what you once taught them.


What a beautiful lifetime gift a small garden could be.


A Greener Way of Giving


I love giving gifts but will certainly own up to not being the best at it. I normally struggle with what to get, but for this Mother’s Day I knew exactly what I wanted to give the Mothers in my life.

My husband and I never purchase cards. We mostly write to each other on a piece of paper or maybe some card stock. We actually have a drawer full handwritten letters that we’ve written to each other over the course of eight years being together. It has become super special to us both and I would almost be offended if he ever purchased a card. But I can promise you that he would never do that.

Writing a letter is more personal and even romantic. To me it shows more effort and allows your heart to be spilt over the lines. Then folded waiting to be unraveled by your loved one. No-one else is opening up a card with the same generic writing.

Giving has become more and more expensive. Companies want more, making the cards now around $6 and wrapping paper or a gift bag around $4 (and if you’re using a bag, most people use tissue paper). It hasn’t always been that expensive! $10 dollars just in things that will be thrown away. Talk about wasting your money. If we could all be a little greener in our gift giving I wonder how things could change?

Just off the top of my head we have around 12 birthdays that we typically buy for each year. So if we were to buy a card and bag/tissue paper or wrapping paper for each person then we’re literally throwing away $120 just in birthdays. That’s not including baby showers, weddings, and let’s not forget Christmas! Just throw the numbers around in your head… how much could you be saving?
This Mother’s Day I wanted to bag my gift a little differently. I wanted something that they each could use as I know that they both love flowers, herbs and even garden. I knew a terra-cotta pot would serve as a beautiful bag holding my gift and flowers almost as a bouquet arrangement. Okay okay, I may not be the best at that but I was happy with it! I stuffed it with some of my favorite beauty products that I personally use myself, along with flower stems from a bouquet of flowers from Trader Joes that I disassembled. Which is the BEST place to get flowers in my opinion!


It is reusable, cheaper than the wrapping paper, it was fun to assemble, and there wasn’t that awkwardness of unwrapping a gift in front of everyone. This is a true thing and if you say that it doesn’t bother you then you’re lying. I thought everything came together beautifully and both mommas were genuinely happy.


Maybe we can become greener in our gift giving with new fun ideas. Get creative and have fun! Remember a personal note goes a long way! And if you’re not into writing on a piece of paper use a pretty card stock. You can buy in bulk and it will go a LONG ways and literally cost less than a penny per card. Maybe, I’m actually not 100% sure. But it’d be cheap!


If you get inspired by this post I would love to see what you came up with!

Follow me on Instagram at @theoreganothymes and share your creation using #theoreganothymes

“Blemon” Smoothie





We sold our camper earlier this year so we could spend more time under the stars in our Kodiak canvas tent. When we went to Michigan last Fall, we tent camped our way up… stopping at Mohican State Park and Put In Bay. Our kids LOVED it. They enjoyed tent camping far more than staying in the camper. It warmed our hearts to see that same joy that we once felt as a child tent camping.

So we sold the camper.

Selling the camper was not only putting our kids in a better situation to enjoy nature but it was also helping us out a lot. We were able to sell the camper and put the money towards bills. From this move we paid of debt and weren’t confined to a camping program. This move broadened our camping “map”.

Next Tuesday is our 5 year wedding anniversary. We thought we would be going on a cruise or another trip to Mexico… but we decided to go camping with our kids. There will be a time where we will get to go alone (Lord willing), so for now we will enjoy this time with our little ones. Actually, it only makes sense that they go with us because we found out we were pregnant with Oaklee on our 1 year anniversary. So naturally, I always think of her and that first year when our anniversary rolls around.

So this year we are going to Blythe Island Regional Park. It’s in southern Georgia and is surrounded by St. Simons Island, Sea Island, Jekyll Island and Brunswick. It sounds so amazing and I can’t wait to explore. We are looking to go to Driftwood Beach which is on Jekyll Island, hike Earth Day Nature Trail, see the Avenue Of The Oaks, and several more. By the way, this campground that we are staying at is 1,100 acres with tons of bikes trails, a lake and domestic rabbits. Yes, you heard me. The camp host apparently has a TON of domestic rabbits that live on the campground that you can walk up to a pet and love on. How crazy is that?! The kids are going to love it! And I can’t wait to share pictures from this trip!

Okay, Blemon Smoothie. and FYI, my husband named this smoothie

You’re going to love it.


1 frozen banana
2 cups frozen blueberries
1 cup almond milk

zest of 2 lemons

juice of 2 lemons


Throw all ingredients into a blender and pulse until smooth.

I hope you enjoy it as much as my tester and I did!