Maintaining

Owning a home doesn’t always mean a makeover.  Sometimes, a home simply needs upkeep.  And this weekend, I had a little of both.  In one day, I managed to get a ton of outdoor tasks accomplished – which would make for a ridiculously long post if I grouped everything together.  So instead, I’m going to break it up into smaller posts which will help me cover everything sufficiently.  First up: outdoor home maintenance.

I have been really proud of myself for choosing the right flowers for the yard this year.  In years past, I’ve done some experimenting and realized that part of my problem wasn’t that I had a unique ability to kill plants in record time; it was that I wasn’t choosing the right plants for the area.  I would (ignorantly) mix up the “full sun” and “partial shade” flowers in favor of how things looked aesthetically.  As you can imagine, I got mixed results (some flowers thrived; most of them died).  This year, I planted two very hardy sun plants near the mailbox (which is also in a new spot after the old one fell over).  The bright magenta flowers are geraniums; the smaller yellow-white ones are salvia.  Both love the sun, which is perfect for my mailbox.  They’ve been growing relatively maintenance-free all spring.

Crabgrass is a problem in my yard, and one that I’m not quite ready to deal with (tried it, failed, will wait to try again another year with proper seeding).  So for now, I simply weeded and re-mulched the mailbox while Dad mowed the lawn (forever grateful when I don’t have to do it myself).  He and our neighborhood friend Tony (he lives in my parents neighborhood and helps my parents, my sister, and me with various home projects at our respective houses) were over to help me take care of some of the bigger tasks I’ll cover later this week.  You may recall some of it from my birthday wishlist – and I’m happy to report that some of it is now rightfully checked off the list.

While Dad was mowing and I was mulching, Tony was up on my roof.  I generally have no problem opening my master bedroom window and climbing out onto the first story to sweep off the pine straw; but when it comes to the second story, I’m frozen in terror (I really need to suck it up, but I’m getting there).  So, every now and then, Dad and Tony come over to help me sweep off the top.  He also cleared up the gutters.  Not too glamorous, but necessary!

Another new development: my Dad is learning how to take pictures using an iPhone.  The majority of the pics in this week’s posts are his handiwork.  It’s the typical child-teaching-parent-technology dynamic.  But it seems that he’s starting to get this whole blog idea, in that I insist on:

  • being a part of the action; if there’s a new power tool in my presence, I want to try it out
  • learning, learning, learning… so I can depend on the two of them less and tackle it on my own
  • getting in front of the camera… he kept asking every few minutes if I wanted him to take my picture.  Thanks, Dad!

How was your weekend?  Tackle any big projects?  I can’t wait to share the rest!

Comments

    • Sarah says

      CUTE! Miss that little guy. Or should I say BIG guy. He’s growing up so fast.

  1. Diana says

    I feel you on this one – our Saturday consisted of brushing moss off the roof, trimming a tree that grows over the roof, power washing the house, cleaning screens and caulking gaps around windows. Not glamorous or part of the fun home improvement category, but so necessary to keeping your house looking well cared for!

  2. says

    I have finally realised the same thing about reading the plant labels and putting them in the right spot so they grow. I find succulents pretty hardy too and look great as feature plants in pots. Looks like a successful day in the garden, nice work Pocahontas:)

  3. Tams says

    Crabgrass I can handle and I’d gladly take the pine needle sweeping even tho like you I don’t enjoy heights. Unfortunately here I need to deal with Zoysia grass and I despise with every fiber of my being. Last summer it took over my 10′ by 4′ vintage varied type lily bed (only original landscaping left from the previous owners besides the tiger lily bed on the side of the house) at the back of our property. My hubby, in his need to help (I was reduced to tears by the end of summer watching all my lilies get choked out no matter how much grass I pulled) applied weedkiller early this spring. My lily bed was reduced to 8 plants returning as spring is morphing into summer. I have spent the ensuing hours of my days off on my butt in the lily bed pulling runner after runner out of the ground. My legs are covered in ant bites, I have blisters on my half of fingers and the doctor has put me on RX painkillers for the pain in my ‘need to be replaced like yesterday’ knees that are taking the abuse of rescuing my lily bed. I have filled an 18 gallon tub at least 6 times over with runners. And there is still more. *sigh* Can we trade? I’ll go South and tackle your crabgrass plus put pretty perennials and annuals in the spots they thrive best if you’ll come North and pull runners for me. Pretty please?

    Tams

  4. says

    Maintaining is no joke. Before I bought my house, I had no idea about all this “maintaining” stuff. Obviously I did not pay attention when I lived with the folks and they kept up the house and keeping it lookin’ good.
    Just last weekend, I pulled weeds and that was not the business! These were the long, grassy type of weeds that are really hard to pull out (it doesn’t help that I didn’t have the proper tools). It’s sort of like playing tug-of-war. I was sore for about 3 days after – apparently I used muscles I never knew I had. lol
    Keep up the good work! All the up-keep isn’t fun, but it’s so worth it in the end.

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