Garden

It’s good to be outside again

I’ve been spending so much time outside lately and it is just lovely. The hubby and I have been working hard to get our yard in shape for spring. It’s been a challenge for a lot of reasons. First, BGE destroyed a part of our yard fixing a leak in our gas pipe. And then there’s the added challenge of the 8-foot-wide circle in the yard where a well used to be. Oh, and out of pure laziness, we didn’t rake the leaves well this past fall. So we’ve had lots to take care of.

We spent last weekend tackling the front yard and my garden area.

First, I cleared out backs and bags of leaves, weeds and general crap that had accumulated in my garden area from last year. When I had filled several yard waste bags and was ready to call it quits, I was instead inspired to attempt to remove the stump from my garden. We’d cut down the small tree in my garden last year and gotten the stump as small as we could, but it has always driven me nuts that I was losing that space where I could be growing more tomatoes!

After an hour and a half of hard work (digging, pick-axing, kicking, prodding, etc.), Brian and I actually got the stump out! I joked that we should start our own stump removal company. Yeah, right.

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See? No more stump! I just gained an extra 4 feet in my garden!

Once we were done with this, we filled in the hole with dirt and I promptly fenced off the garden from my evil dog. Remmy isn’t a huge digger, but he can’t resist large spans of dirt.

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There are still a few sections in my smaller gardens that I need to work on, but I am so happy to have this part complete!

The next day we started on our front yard. We decided it was a great idea to hand till up the circle where the well used to be. Two hours, eight yard waste bags and two sore backs later, we finished. Then Brian bought top soil and planted grass seed in the circle and in the patches of soil where BGE left its mark. They said they’d come out and fix the lawn, but at this rate it will be winter again before they come back out.

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I must just have that itch to be outside and do yard work, so I figured I’d take advantage of myself and this sudden inspiration to improve our yard. Last night I spent two hours raking our old leaves and clearing out large branches from the back of our yard.

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I raked everything behind our shed so it can compost down over time. Our yard looks infinitely better and my wrists are infinitely more sore. Ugh.

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It was worth it though. The yard still has a way to go and we still need to figure out what we are doing with some parts, but it has sure come a long way in just a week.

What lawn projects have you guys tackled this spring? Each year I get more and more into gardening. Who knows what else we’ll tackle this weekend!

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Home Improvement

The lamppost from hell

Our lamppost has been crooked since day one of moving into our house. Well, I’ve been on a mission this spring and summer to beautify the outside of our home. Landscaping, shutters, new doors, painted driveway, new mailbox, tree removal, new lattice for the garbage, redoing the rocks alongside the driveway… you name it, we’ve tackled it. My dad even removed the well from our front yard because he’s awesome.

He even took pictures for me to put on my blog.

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With the biggest eyesore of our front yard removed, we pretty much had no choice but to tackle the crooked lamppost.

It also helped that while we were on vacation by dad cleared out a spot for plants and bought a few stones to circle the post. He basically forced us into it haha.

See how much it leans? Bad news bears.

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So this lamppost was the post from hell. Originally, I bought a new post to replace it all together. Then my dad suggested I simple paint the current post in the ground. So I tried that.

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Many coats of black spray paint later, and it wasn’t looking to bad.

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Then came time to replace the fixture at the top, which I guess we didn’t have to do…. except that when we took it off we realized it was disgusting and broken.

The fixture came off the post just fine, but the ring and the screws holding the fixture to the post wouldn’t budge. At all. I tried every trick in the book to remove those screws, from WD-40 to putting a rubber band in the groove of the screw and turning it that way. Nothing worked. So I got fed up and started to tear the metal off the post. We were going to replace that part anyway, so what did it matter?

Well, here’s a fun fact. Hammering a screw driver into metal creates a lot of sharp metal pieces. And yes, I did manage to cut my hand. And yes, I did (eventually) get a tetanus shot for the cut. And yes, the place where I got my shot it still swollen because I’m a hot mess.

See why it is the lamppost from hell yet?

If you weren’t convinced, after all of my hard work on the darn pole, I got fed up and pulled it out of the ground. I ended up trekking back to Home Depot (that’s really melodramatic since Home Depot is less than 10 minutes away… not too much of a trek) to buy and even nicer lamppost than the first one I bought. I’m talking about a built-in light sensor and an outlet. Hot damn!

Hours later, my husband and I (mainly Brian — I was so proud of him!) managed to properly wire up the new post. I don’t think I’ve ever shouted so loudly with glee over a darn light working, but we were both really shocked and really excited that it worked.

Now our post isn’t crooked (we still need to cement it in place), it has a light sensor so it turns on automatically, and it is beautifully landscaped 🙂 Total win.

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That lamppost ain’t got nothing on us.

And it looks nice, too!