I just had this awesome weekend! Full of what I love most: YARD WORK. Twice a year or so I will go to my uncle’s house and try to tame the monstrosity that is a rose we planted for him 5 years ago. Those roses are only supposed to grow 3-4 feet around but it was no joke almost 6 feet tall. While trimming the monster and trying to clear the smaller, original rose next to it (centipedes, ho!), I realized why people are into rose gardens. Pruning, trainings, encouraging certain growing patterns…it made desire a rose garden of my own. After demolishing it, I turned my attention to my uncle’s ugly mess of a flower bed. It was unattractive and bland when we left years ago, but it was even worse now. Actually overall the initial visual appeal of the house was completely nonexistent. When I drove up my first reaction was “eww.” He’s not there too much, and while he cuts his own lawn, the lack of grass edging was powerfully evident, last year’s mulch was falling from around the existing plants, the retaining stones looked bad, and then there was the bland jungle growing…or half growing. Half the boxwoods were suffering like there had been a fungal thing going on. It was just as well that I had planned on going through with my original design long ago to add some color. He didn’t want anything high maintenance since he doesn’t care for yard work maintenance and knew that he wouldn’t be home much. So I had bought some Knockout roses because they were on sale and I knew I was coming to clean up a bit. Anyways, long story short, I spent longer than I anticipated because it was far more in trouble than I’d thought. Boxwoods dug up, climbing rose salvaged, holes dug in terrible white clay and large rocks, garden soil down, roses in, red mulch on top and clean up, soil added to the backyard apple trees. My uncle came out right around clean up time and talked to me for like 1 hour straight. I was completely satisfied with the result, even if I didn’t take a very good picture at the end. In my opinion it looked 80% better than when I started, and I’d already noticed neighbors snooping. Pictures!

before and after

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before and after different angle of the monster rose!!!



evidence of carnage


The scariness of the already unattractive flowerbeds, and after I ripped things out.  My uncle started talking to me before I could take a final up close picture, so just image 2 here with the roses down and nice new red mulch covering it.

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Blurry, but the final product! At least it looks more spacious…


Before that, on Saturday, my mom had a rare Saturday off so down south we went and I jump right in to yard work! After a visit to my favorite store ever: Lowe’s of course. This time I had my mom and she got all excited and bought flowers for the townhouse even though we were south. I was supposed to be employing my new cash-only (which was great for one day, but not thereafter…) rule. It occurred to me that the reason I love being outside so much were all the good memories doing it with my mom when we were younger. Seeing her excited and happy like that made me happy…but not as happy as seeing her able to get in the yard and be active. :)

So then what do I do today? Go buy an Asian pear tree for the other house (coupon!!) which means I have to go down and plant it. Only working 3 days this week, but I have to work Monday. THe plan is to head down on Friday so that I’ll have 2 days there. Come home after grocery shopping, laze around for a bit, think about putting off planting the flowers, but change my mind because my body wants to go do something, and end up spending the next 3 hours trampling my beautiful grass. Planted flowers, cut things, finally set the stones, and cleanup. THREE HOURS which ended up being about the same amount of time it took to do my uncle’s house. Looking good, but by now I’m really tired and have no energy to cut the grass again even though I should…maybe I’ll do it during the week days. Come in, play some monster hunter, walk dogs (on an unusually long walk…my body apparently wants to move), come back to water plants and then in to start dinner right away: chicken rolls with 1)spinach, bacon, mozzarella, and 2) spinach, bacon, a-1 steak sauce with mango marinade. #2 being for my brother since he doesn’t like cheese. All rolled in Kellogg’s crumbs and coming with a side of fries since I was too lazy to make pasta or fresh veggies. Surprisingly #2 was very good and while #1 was good, I almost preferred the A-1 variation. Dogs gobbled everything up and brother actually said it was decent. I thought I added too much garlic powder, but it ended up not being enough. And best of all: I didn’t overcook it this time. WHOOOO!

Townhouse yard and flower bed. Lookin’ sharp!! :)

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So here I am! Immersed in the great outdoors, I hadn’t checked any of my emails and so now I don’t care to see all the messages I have on the dating sites. Weekends like these make it so that I don’t want to look for a mate anymore. I’m just too happy doing my own thing like that. 3 days straight of yard work and gardening? HEAVEN. But I will admit that I am just exhausted. :) Maybe this can be my 2nd career…but I’m always reminded of the dangers of taking something you love and trying to make a living out of it.


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