Where The Orange Blossoms Grow....

Hello! Welcome to the Stricklen's blog. We hope to keep our family and friends up to date with what is going on with our family. You will find a variety of experiences posted here -- you may find pictures of the never ending project of building our house, Callie helping William with his first steps, Mary studying a rare insect species, or perhaps you may be terribly bored with Molly's numerous fruit trees, berries, vegetables and rare plant pictures! Who knows what we may find Chris and CJ doing -- probably something having to do with a tractor or machine of sorts. Abby and Margaret will keep us entertained with costumes from other lands or a fairy story. Whatever we post, we trust it will lift your spirits and bring honor and glory to our Lord!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Our Spring Garden

Praise God from Whom all Blessings Flow!
We are thanking the Lord for His boutiful
blessings on our garden!

Here are some pictures from our Spring Garden. The veggies are
in different stages. Some as seedlings to full grown vegetables.

We have made an effort this season to plant only heirloom seeds!
We plan to save our seed from year to year. The Lord has blessed
our efforts. It has been so nice eating from the garden every day
as well as from our fruit trees (we will post on them later!)


We've been having fun
planting flowers in
the garden
that we have always
wanted to grow!
We are amazed by their beauty

This is our lovely Garden Girl

Wills has become quite taken with her!


~~~~ Tomatoes ~~~~

We planted 6 different heirloom tomato varieties.
They are our favorite thing to grow!
Some of the varieties include Pink Ponderosa,
German Lunchbox, Atkinson, and Marglobe.

Hopefully they will be as productive as our Fall tomatoes!

We are looking forward with
great anticipation to
eating some delicious
and juicy vine ripe
We have a few weeks to wait!

~~~~~ Cucumbers ~~~~~

We have Edmondson Pickling cukes and
Straight Eight slicing cukes.
Our cucumbers have grown alot since these pictures and are loadedwith cucumbers! We hope to make lots of pickles!

Chris built these great trellises!


We are growing Yellow Crookneck
and Costata Romanesco (an Italian zuccini)

Meet "Luigi"
(Mr. Pickles Italian cousin!)


We harvested about 15# of potatoes -
I think we had better plant more next time!

~~~ Lettuce ~~~

This is "Forellenschluss"
An old Austrian heirloom that means
"Speckled like a Trout"
We also grew the heirloom "Little Gem"
which is a mini Romaine.

"Callie Sue"
She's a great Southern variety - not heirloom though!

~~~Sweet Corn~~~

We planted 3 different varieties of corn. They are all GMO free
(which are becoming hard to find)

- Country Gentleman Sweet Corn

- Yellow Hickory King Dent Corn
-Stowell's Evergreen Sweet Corn

Mustard Greens from the early spring

~~~~Green Beans~~~~

We planted Contender and Mayflower Beans
(these were supposedly brought over on the Mayflower with the Pilgrims)

It's always fun to dig in the dirt with a friend

~~~ Onions ~~~

We grew "Texas Early" and "Red Creole" Onions

~~~ Peppers ~~~

We grew about 6 varieties of peppers.
Lots of banana peppers. Callie will pickle
these for Chris - He loves them!

Some hot weather crops
we just put in recently which
should grow well in the heat :)

Dixie Speckled Lima Beans
Black Eyed Peas
Sweet Potatoes


Well, that is all for now! Hope you enjoyed :)

God bless you!

Sunday, May 10, 2009



We LOVE you, Mama! You have always been a wonderful example of godly motherhood for all of us. Thank you for sacrificing so much for us to make sure we grow up to be women of God!


Callie, Mary, Abby, and Margaret

Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband [also], and he praiseth her.

Proverbs 31:28


"Oh, I am so surprised! I asked Mary to upload a picture for me of my mother so I could write a short tribute to her and I found this sweet tribute to me!" Molly

To my Blessed Mother

What a blessing you are to me! You bless me in more ways than I can express. Thank you so much for your STEDFAST faithfulness. I believe that is truly one of your greatest virtues - among many. Your stedfast faithfulness is something I can always depend on and it has challenged me to be sure to set that same example for my children. I appreciate your love for God's Holy Word. I am so thankful for your multi - generational vision and the fire you have in your heart for the generations that will come after you to have a Christ centered, Biblical worldview. Those who will come after you will definitely "find you faithful". I especially appreciate the "purist" that you are and strive to emulate that character trait you possess.
I appreciate all the homemaking skills you have taught me -- too many to number. I use those skills every day to enrich our family. You have taught me not only to be a loving Mother, but useful and competent helpmeet, teacher, cook, gardener, musician, and naturalist to name a few.
May the Lord keep His hand upon you and give you length of days and LONG life!
I love you very much!
Your loving daughter,

Monday, May 4, 2009

Happy 2nd Birthday, Wills! May 4th

Happy 2nd Birthday to our precious, rough and tumble, one-of-a-kind little Wills! You were uniquely made to be just who God wants you to be. Our prayer is that God will take all that makes you uniquely YOU, all that energy and personality, and that God will channel and direct it into your becoming a STRONG, BRAVE and COURAGEOUS man of God!

You are so very special to us and we love you so much!
Your Family