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Apr. 24th, 2015

Bone tired but happy

It's a good thing I love gardening and getting dirty, because right now, I'm thoroughly sick and tired of it.

But the raised bed out back has been extended- took 2 days and 2 trips to Lowes and it still need more dirt, but it's pretty much done except for that. Today, I put up the extra section of 6ft privacy fence, trimmed back- ok, chopped- the honeysuckle to get the fence section in, cleared out all the old wood- most of which went INTO the bed- and leaves so we can get almost all the way around it easily.

Two more beds to build and plant, then the patio and other than the veggie garden, it'll be upkeep only from there on out.

Need to get some potting soil and repot the spiderplant, it's vastly outgrown the pot it's in. Need to find a new hanging pot for the wandering jew so it can be split into two and repotted. It'll be happier then. Have to remove the dead butterfly bush- it'd been declining for a cuple years now and gave up this winter. I can pull entire sections off or split 5" thick branches just by pulling on them, so out it comes. Then that area gets amended and a new one will be planted in its place. It lasted nearly 15 years, so I guess that's a good thing. After that, it's newspaper mulch and river rocks to cover it and the front bed is completed.

Thankfully all the new crepe myrtles- including the black diamond one in the pot- survived. The black diamond one will be put in the ground, it barely survived in a pot. That's part of one of the two beds that need built though. That'll happen in mid to late May and June.

So. Hopefully by August-Sept, we'll have a nice patio and completed hardscaping that just needs trimming and cleaning up come fall and spring.}:P

This weekend, I'm hoping to get a table easel and play with my new toy.}:P



A handmade from salvaged 100yr old barnwood 3ft triangle loom, from Clarksville Weaver. Isn't it lovely? Hee.



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Apr. 20th, 2015

An open letter to the bees

Dear bees-

I like you I really do. I see that you're loaded down with pollen and building materials. You're ready to make a new hive and have chosen my yard.

Great!

But there's just one problem.

You see, the place you've decided would be ideal to build a nest... isn't so ideal after all.

For one, it's got really tiny entrances, really, they're screw holes in the upright part of the baker's rack that serves as a potting bench and empty pot storage for me.

Secondly , it's on the front porch. Lots of traffic there. Lots of birds that would love to eat you.

Thirdly, and most importantly- it's next to the front door. That's a big one since that's the door, you know, we use regularly, several times a day. That's where my mail and packages are delivered, where my husband exits to go to work and comes home through, where we go to buy groceries and plants that you like.

So, you see, while I'd love to have a colony in my yard, what you perceive as an ideal hive spot, in reality, isn't.

I've moved the baker's rack, I've wafted air at you, I've firmly and sternly told you this was not the place to build.

Please take the hint. I really don't want to resort to extreme measures and currently, there's only 4 of you right now- scouts, I presume. There's lots of bushes and dead wood out back at the top of the hill- the mock oranges will be blooming soon- go build your ideal hive up there. I promise it's a lot less busy and you'll be much, much happier there.

And so will I.

Lots of love because I really do want you to stick around- unless you're yellow jackets, which you aren't, or killer bees which you damn well better not be (they didn't attack me and simply buzzed me when I was moving things around, so I'm inclined to say no, they aren't),

Me.



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Mar. 30th, 2015

Pictures make a post...

Recent garden blooms-

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And recently made things-

Gaming bags-

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Mini Bags, Available Here.

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Full sized bags, Available Here.


And I made myself a lap throw, which was promptly taken over by the cats-

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There's more, all of which are listed Here.


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Oct. 31st, 2014

Preparing for winter...

Today, I went out and finally dug out a 1ft x 1ft trench around the new Crepe Myrtle planted by the driveway, added good dirt and covered it back over with the hard gravel. All in an attempt to help it settle its roots in better before winter really gets going, since it's pretty hard packed where it is.

Then I moved potted plants on the porch that will overwinter there, up against the house, well sheltered with the heavy pond liner up against them. I need to get burlap or something to cover them with and then, hopefully, they'll be ok there.

Everything that needed watering, was thoroughly watered. Cut back the butterfly bush to well below the front window for the winter, it'll come back fuller and better next spring. Cleaned out the bird bath and refilled it- the sparrows are enjoying it. Added dirt to that bed and the side bed.

Moved metal edging back around front where we will build a new raised bed for vine like veggies against the fence next year. The new gate works extremely well. Swept up leaves off the front walk and against the fence where they'll mulch in.

I think I'm as prepared for the wintry weather they're calling for this weekend as I can be right now. And now I can go back to weaving a new winter scarf for listing.



Hand dyed some 100% wool yarn last weekend, let it sit for several days and got a varigated reddish brown shade to much of it, with hints of black. Lovely color, if I do say so myself. May overdeye the finished product with a dark red, to bring out the red tones more, not decided yet.



I'm about 2/3rds of the way finished with weaving the scarf. It's a straight forward, standard weave, no fancy stuff. Trying to do some simpler, less expensive, warm scarves for the winter. It's roughly 12" wide right now, but will shrink when washed, to between 10.5" and 11.5". Not sure on the length, but generally between 5.5' and 6.5', good for wrapping around the neck, head AND shoulders, I think.

Hope to get it listed by next week and several more over the course of November, with an eye towards a good sale in December (thinking 40-50% off to move some stock and catch last minute shoppers who need stocking stuffers, etc.).

Anyway. Back to work I go.



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Oct. 28th, 2014

Catch up post of sorts

I really need to get back to blogging here again.

Feline Standoff


So this happened late last week. Neither would get out of the window for about 5 minutes. Sassy has the old lady glare down perfectly. Morrigan still runs from her, but she's learning to stand her ground more. They've started more or less with the ignore each other phase. Random hisses here and there, a few growls when one or the other gets too close, but fewer as time goes on. Will they become best of friends, let alone friends at all? I doubt it. It'll be more of a tolerate each other type of truce, I think.

This weekend we finally got the gate up that leads to the backyard.

Garden Gate


It's a lovely TARDIS-esque blue (as close as we can get anyway, but taking Mark's BBC official TARDIS mug to Lowe's and paint matching it, Valspar Stained Glass Blue in High Gloss Exterior. ) It matches the front and back doors and will be echoed in a couple large pots that will be put out on the back patio once it's built next spring- we're taking the winter to gather the needed materials for said building. We also put down landscaping cloth and spread the 4 bags of pea gravel we had, figured we need at least 6 more bags to finish this stage of the pathway that'll lead from the front to the back. So far we like how it looks. WE haven't decided whether we're going to go ahead and place stepping stones or leave it as is yet.

Last Sat, we spent with the BiL, SiL and niece, since it was the weekend of the SiL's birthday. They'd gotten some very nice club chairs for their family room from the ReStore, so we went by there to see what they had in terms of a couch and came home with a really nice bench that we got for $30.00.

New bench


It'll be sanded, the metal repainted a gloss black and the wood (cedar or possibly teak) will be restained a rich mahoghany and sealed. Then it'll go out on the patio next spring. Then all we'll need is a nice fire pit and a couple more chairs and our outdoor space will be set up. It's a good, solid bench, not sure if it's actually vintage or made to look vintage- there's a tag on the back I couldn't read in the store and needs cleaning before it'll be legible. Not bad for $30.00 from the ReStore if you ask me.

And now, I have yarn to rinse and dice bags to sew/weave.


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Sep. 8th, 2014

Catching up...

Last weekend we went up to the cabin for a nice get away.



While there, I worked on the most recent project, getting past the halfway point at the very least. It was fun, nice, serene and not too hot.

The bear had been back since the last time we were there. Fresh scratches on the pole out back, with hairs stuck in it and Mark found bear scat on the trail- it wasn't fresh, but was at least a week old. Lots of frogs in the pond and baby fish. Lots of raccoon and deer tracks too.

A couple of the maples up there had hints of color, so I expect by the end of this month when we go up again, more will have color on them.

This last week, we got the materials to finally start on the patio out back- the landscaping cloth, the metal edging, and a couple bags of pea gravel to start. Also picked up a can of Kilz to prime the gate sections and get them painted. Picked up a good sized watering trough for next year's tomatoes. 2ft deep x4ft long x1 ft wide, it'll be large enough for 4 plants and give them excellent root room and such.

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And I finished the wrap. It's lovely, very sunset color like, and although it's not exactly how I planned, still very lovely. All that's left is the fringe which is in progress. Mark says it's so not my colors, but it is definitely very warm.}:P It'll be listed in the shop by the end of the week.

Found another Black Diamond crepe myrtle- the kind with the purple-black leaves and deep red flowers. Potted it up in a deep navy blue pot, 3 times it's size- it'll sit out on the patio when it's built as a nice plant grouping along with the 2 red barberries I picked up and need to get blue pots for as well. 3 more barberries were planted today in front of the 2 dwarf Alberta spruces and white crepe myrtle in the next bed over. That fills out that bed nicely and gives it a variety of colors and textures. Behind everything, the daylilies will fill in too.

Mark had his last- for now- major dental appointment. He's still getting used to his new teeth now and is very selfconscious about them because he's still having issues with speaking (and he's still very tender).

His mom is doing about as well as can be expected. No worse, but obviously, no better.

Today, I also trimmed up the big crepe myrtle again- it's on it's second blooming, moved bricks to make room for the gate when it's put up and finished the raised bed by the garbage can where the clematis is, trimmed dead flowers from the geranium, pulled all the dead leaves and stems from the daylilies, picked a half dozen banana peppers- lost one to critters, picked one anaheim pepper and several pequito peppers. Trimmed the tomato plant- when the tomatoes left on it are ripe, it'll get pulled.

Now, I'm going to sit around and be lazy for a bit before I go do last night's dishes.


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Aug. 19th, 2014

Garden projects...

Since it's not pouring down rain today- not yet anyway- I decided to get to work on the next phase of the garden reworking.



The panel on the left was thoroughly scrubbed, the one on the right is what both looked like before scrubbing. Yeah. And I have 2 more about the same size to scrub down too. It makes a huge mess too, so much so, that I had to spray the entire porch down. Glad I closed the window by my desk earlier.

These two are exactly the same size and will be placed back to back, thoroughly attached together with hinges down one side and used as a gate. They'll also be primed and painted with exterior paint in what has become one of our garden accent colors- Tardis blue. (Ok, so it's really Valspar Stained Glass Blue in high gloss, but it was an almost exact match to the BBCA authorized Tardis Mug Mark got for his birthday a few years back from his sister. It is also the color of both the front and back exterior doors.), the other color(s) being shades of greens with a varying accents of cream and burnt orange.

All four panels will be primed and painted. Then the other two will be opposite the gate, with a nice pebble patio area between and my living wall of Wisteria on one side, the house- which is a cream color- on the other. They'll be in front of the cement block raised bed and help disguise it while still being able to be moved for access from that end.

But first I need to scrub the panels and then prime and paint them when they dry, hopefully by next weekend. They're on the porch, so should dry as long as the weather holds.

Oh look, it's raining again. *headdesk*


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