Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Landscaping in the Front Yard

We've been hard at work in the yard at the new house. I've never had to do much gardening before, but I have discovered that I love it! It's so satisfying to watch things bloom and change through the seasons. Our front yard is far from done, but it has come a long way so far and I wanted to share some of the changes with you today.

Here's what the home looked like when we first came to look at it last September:


The nasty juniper bush was a mouse breeding zone (ew!) so it had to go. And although I love the color of the bright red bush at the corner of the driveway and the walk to the front steps, it was full of thorns. Not exactly a welcoming plant to rub against every time you come to visit, right? We tied a tow rope around that big ole bush, hooked it up to my brother's truck, and ripped that sucker out. The two big mum bushes in front of the basement window blocked a lot of light and were too big for the space. I transplanted them to another part of the yard. The flower beds were so choked with grass and weeds that you could hardly see the cement border. And the gravel driveway was overrun with weeds too.

After hours of back breaking labor, this is where we are today:


There's still a ton of work to do out here, but it's starting to look a lot better. One thing you can't really see in that first picture is this lovely fish pond that the previous owners built:


I personally thought it was ugly, plus with little children around, it's a huge safety hazard. So the pond had to go. I just finished shoveling the last wheel barrow full of dirt this morning, and I have to say, I'm proud of myself. I filled that pond in all by myself! That's a LOT of dirt, my friends!


Now that everything is level, I am going to finish off the landscaping. I bought a bunch of plants from Gurneys online that will be shipped to me soon. I'm hoping to install weedcloth and mulch, at least in the area that's currently empty.


In the photo above, you can see the two mums I transplanted from under the window. No flowers yet, but they sure will be pretty in another month or so.


Thank heavens for petunias. They are growing really well for me and are super low key.


I just added three Stella D'Oro daylilies to the mix. Love these plants!


It's been fun to watch the yard transform. I'm learning a ton! I'm a little nervous about the plants I ordered. I hope they grow and look good together. What are your favorite plants? Any suggestions of things that are easy to grow?

Monday, July 27, 2015

Don't Look At My Sink

Hey friends. Sorry for the lack of posts lately... summer is kicking my tush. I've been camping, hiking, swimming, visiting family and trying to keep up on yard work and housework. Plus we're getting close on the craft room remodel. Woot!

I love a lot of things about our home. It is just the right size for us. Two car garage. A fireplace. The price was right. We have huge trees. The lot is amazing:


But I hate that the first thing you see when you walk up the stairs is the kitchen sink:


The kitchen is the most used and mess-prone room in the house and I am not a stellar housekeeper... I'd rather be crafting. I don't always want people to see into my kitchen!

This is the layout of the room, photo taken when we first looked at the house:


The picture was taken from the living room. See how there's a natural dividing line between the kitchen and the living room? Here's my idea for being able to block off the kitchen and still have the open concept layout that is so convenient:


These sliding doors with frosted glass are the perfect solution! The kitchen can be closed off when we have more formal guests stop by, but can be opened back up again for everyday living and casual parties.


Of course, it's a lot easier to Photoshop an idea than it is to actually get it done. We've got a thousand other projects in line ahead of this one, but it's going to happen some day. What do you think? Good idea? Just keep your kitchen clean instead, woman, and save yourself the hassle? Ha!
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