Monday, August 11, 2014


I know I've been MIA for a bit. 

Besides the major life event of the birth of our grandson, we also had a wedding, a swift 3000 mile road trip, and a funeral. Very full, emotional, bittersweet times!

So happy to get back to this boy!

It was also lovely to be away from the news for awhile.

When we returned, I found a garden that had burst into bloom.

Even the dahlias were finally blooming.

So I decided to try to sell some of the bounty.

And, By Golly, I sold some!

Hubby did get some of the hardwood floor in earlier and now I need to paint the stair skirt and risers.

I love having hardwood floors, so done with carpet in the main part of the house :)

But it is gorgeous summer here presently so it's REALLY hard to focus on the inside of the house.

But I'll try, heheh.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Snail Pace

We were making some progress on the stair project a bit ago.

Risers installed.

We decided to wait to paint the final coats on the risers until after hubby installs the treads.

And then we got happily interrupted by the most wonderful event.
The birth of our grandson.

It sure slowed us down with things around here.
We are in love!!
Typical conversation this week:
Hubby: when do you want to go see the baby again? Today?
Me: Yes!! (drop everything)

And today we've discovered 3 huge bald-faced hornet nests on our house and garage. So I am not going to work outside anywhere near the buildings.
No photos, either, since I can't get close enough, heheh.

I could continue cleaning out the office so we can get going on demo.

Or gather flowers from the cutting garden which is far away from the hornet nests.

I am not minding the snail pace at all.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Here we go!

Happy Independence Day Everyone!

Here at our cottage I've moved the wicker furniture outside for the summer.

The front porch!

We get quite a bit of moisture here in the PNW so I don't do curtains, rugs, etc. And I don't have lighting, either, because of mosquitoes in the evenings. Someday I hope to have a screened porch.

I am loving all the blooms in the July garden.

I'm pretty excited to get started on our new flooring projects.

Last weekend, hubby removed the "lip" of the stairs. They were shaped for carpet and needed to be refigured for the hardwood.

 The bottom step face was too thick and damaged so hubby removed it and discovered piles of sheet rock scraps hiding in that space!

We've run into that over the years when running wires through the walls. I guess they just dumped all the scraps behind the sheet rock during installation. We ended up with two huge bags of pieces!

I got the stair skirt sanded and primed.

And here is what I've hauled out of the office so far.


Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Wish us luck.

One of our goals this year has been to finally finished the remodeling.

But here it is almost July already!

My focus tends to always be on the garden.

But I am weary of plywood floors, clutter, uncomfortable spaces. So I am pulling myself up by the bootstraps and doing all I can do in prep for demolition, painting, flooring. Yikes!

I get overwhelmed easily.

This room is my #1 priority.

The Office

Hubby has some great ideas on how to make this space work better. The cabinet doesn't need to be this wide anymore with today's slimmer TVs.

Neither of us use this desk (junk collector) nor do we need such a huge file cabinet.

Most of the information stored in there is now easily accessed online. (Old seminary notes from the late 70's included!)

The carpet needs to go and the walls need painting.

The closet is packed full.

I actually can't believe I'm showing you all this, heheh!

Hubby is thinking of building a desk in the closet with a two drawer file cabinet for needed storage (taxes, bills and such).

We have this weird open closet for the water heater, too.  Almost 30 years later we still haven't made a door or a curtain.

So, I've begun to clear the space out.

But where to put it all? Some is behind the loveseat in the living room, oy!

I am thinking of renting a storage box to put in the driveway for the time being.

So, wish us luck, we have this room, all the floors in the downstairs, a bathroom and kitchen remodel to do. Not sure we have the energy.

I am so ready for a nice house, however.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Dahlias and Sweet Peas

My very favorite flowers for bouquets in the house are dahlias and sweet peas. So, I've been trying to get mine planted and supported! I've needed hubby's help with the supports. The dahlias get so heavy that the posts needed to be all the way down in the hard, clay soil underneath the raised beds.

 Four stakes down the middle of each bed.
Dahlias planted on each side.

 Some grown in pots in the greenhouse for a head start and other new bulbs fresh from the growers.

15 plants with room for one more new one!

 The sweet peas are a bit of a tangled mess since it's taken awhile to find time to build the chicken wire supports so they can happily climb, and bloom!

 I could let them climb the net fence but then the deer would be able to munch so the chicken wire will hold the plants a few inches from the netting.

Not quite finished and got chased inside during a downpour! The garden is well watered from our recent rains, and rather beat down, but sun is predicted so stand back. 

There will be more of June's beauty.

Friday, May 23, 2014

A few favorites. . .

There is a lovely soft rain falling today. The garden needs it. I find myself saying what my mother used to say, that we need rain. Even though I live in rainy Western Washington, when it dries out, it dries out quickly. Out come the hoses & sprinklers. I was already having to use them so I am happy for a gentle rain to do my job for me. Nature does it better anyway (another thing my mother always said).

Anyway, recently I snapped a few photos of some of my favorites in the garden blooming now.

This deciduous azalea fills the yard with fragrance. That lovely scent stopped me in my tracks at the nursery a few years ago and I had to have it.  "Soir de Paris"

You'd think living here in Western Washington I'd have a yard full of rhododendrons. I have not had good success with them for some strange reason. Last year this one did not bloom at all. I kept it watered all summer in hopes for a better showing. And about half of the bush is blooming. "Minnetonka"

I am wanting to successfully add more rhodies to the garden and have some ideas. One of my favorites is an old one in my mother's garden, "Pink Pearl". Every spring when I see it in bloom I go on the hunt for one. This year I successfully purchased one! Mine isn't in bloom now but is a nice healthy plant still in it's container. Here's some photos of my mother's plant.

The first blossom has opened on the orange oriental poppies. Long ago I planted a red poppy only to find it was orange, and I loved it. Such a bright cheerful color for the late spring garden.

 This is one of my favorite tiny plants with sweet tiny blossoms. It grows under the arbor in the Wedding Garden.  It is a type of hardy, true geranium which grow successfully in my yard. The deer leave them alone and they bloom all summer. They are all beginning to bloom. "Erodium chamaedryoides 'Pink'"

It seems that each day another favorite begins to bloom. I love walking around the yard to see the latest. Thanks for coming along with me!