Last couple of months have been busy since I returned from
Texas. Our garden has grown, produced and keeping me stocked with goodies. You
just can’t beat fresh food. I was able to freeze homemade marinara sauce and tomatoes.
I am not a flower person, but I added a rose bush and a couple hibiscus plants to
my collection. Now we are ready to sit down and plan out our fall planting. We
will be moving our garden and planning some landscaping we need to do as well.
We just finished going through all the family history boxes
and are starting the reorganization. It took some time to get started. But we
did it! Now I can concentrate on proper storage and organizing it for future
generations. Let’s just say I will be glued to the scanner for a while. We are
finally going to step into doing our family genealogy. Added that to our list
of projects this year.
We are still working on my glass storage and organizing the garage. Unfortunately, that is where all the storage containers from the family history went. Now I need to get them in the attic so that I can get more room in the garage. I am excited about having an organized area to do my work. A new work bench is needed and hoping for a few new toys this year to add to my arsenal. There are so many things I wanna do!
I spent the weekend working on stripping electrical wiring
for the copper. Marie so graciously let me have it from the little ranch house
renovations they have going on. It ain’t easy but worth it. I use so much
copper in my projects and you can’t beat ‘free’ supplies. A little elbow grease
and I now have a nice supply of copper wiring. A little advice on copper
wiring, it will tarnish. I only stripped the outer casing on the wiring. I will
strip the inner casing when I know I will need it. Saves me from having to clean
the wiring again before I use it.
Today I am finally sitting down and make a list of projects I want to do. I am a list person. I even have a list of lists on my phone with a reminder for me to check them. You laugh, but it helps. Oh, and I love reminders. I just must remember not to cancel them until I get things done. But back to my list making today. I am starting on my project list. Some are things people have asked me to do, some will be things I want to do for myself, and some will be for Christmas. So, I will do a little research, get the plans ready, check my supplies and start planning my schedule to get things done. Are you ready to see what I will be doing? Me too! Now the fun begins!
When I headed to Texas, we had just planted our garden. My wonderful
husband was swamped with work so I was a little concerned whether anything
would survive my departure.
When I got home, I was so surprised at how much it had
grown. He did an amazing job keeping everything growing. These red buckets are
the bomb when it comes to container gardening.
We have been eating tomatoes from my garden for months now
but to see everything else growing so fast was unbelievable. Lettuce and bell
peppers has been picked several times already.
Squash, zucchini and eggplant are so beautiful to watch
Can you believe these cut little cucumbers?
One of my favorites are these watermelons. I have such fond
memories of my Grandma Penny and watermelon growing up. I still to this day blend
mine in the blender to drink just like she did. I can’t wait to taste these!
Pineapple is nothing new at our house to grow but this year
we have four producing at once. We have some plants in the ground and some in
pots. So, no excuse not to grow these tasty treats. The trick is apple core
placed in the center.
The lemon trees we planted last year gave us a few fruits,
literally three. But this year they are making up for it. Again folks, in pots.
Our soil is not conducive for growing anything well, so we have planted our garden
in pots. I can’t wait to eat all this amazing food!
Y’all, I’ve had the blahs since we got back from Texas. It was an amazing wedding and we had a great time in Texas. But my heart just hasn’t been into it lately. ‘It’ means anything. We had such a busy year last year as you well know. And I was excited to share about the wedding when we got back in January. I sat down at the keyboard and nothing. I struggled for the words and images to share with you. Exhausted both mentally and physically, I sat day after day at my keyboard and wrote, deleted it, wrote again, deleted it and on and on. I haven’t even been to Disney in months!!! For those of you that know we well, I love going and getting my exercise walking around the different parks. And nope, haven’t been. Don’t even know the when was the last time I went!
I sat in my office and was overwhelmed with the chaos. Uninspired to do anything. Slowly I started rearranging it. Little by little cleaning and reorganizing it until finally I felt that I could stand to be in it. I took a long look at my house and felt the same thing. The blahs were overwhelming me. So, I started to make a list of what I wanted to change around me. I decided to start in the man cave. When we added on to it a few years ago we had a huge closet built for storage. It has been driving me crazy (and my husband) that we had just threw up some shelves to hold bins and not really organized it. I took a trip over to the Container Store and had them work me up a design for it. With a couple tweaks from my husband, I placed the order and patiently waited for it to arrive. When my wonderful husband is going to have time to install it, I don’t know.
You see, there is this snowball/domino effect happening now. While I was working on my glass projects last year, I was frustrated that I didn’t have the room or organization that I needed. Those shelves that are in the closet now, I need in the garage to organize my stuff out there. I can’t start working in the garage until we do that closet. And I can’t do the closet until my busy husband can put up the new shelving system picked up yesterday. Oh, and did I mention how busy my husband is right now?!
I haven’t even finished my guest room yet. At least that is painted but I need to rearrange it so that it is easier for guests to sleep in there. You would think with all of this I would be excited and posting the progress. What progress? Blahs remember? I am hoping that if I just keep moving forward, I will get through this. I wish I could blame it on the winter blues but this Florida folks. Blue skies and high 80s is all I see here. Oh, and my sister, she has the winter blues there is Texas. Marie is cold, tired and already has that little ranch house torn up and being remodeled by George. David has been working in her backyard with the hundreds of bulbs that were planted and the irrigation system going in. Her orchard is planted. Winter blahs have us both in it’s grasp. Not fun, not fun at all.
I hope everyone had a happy holiday season. I am already working on a few projects. We have a quite a few things happen in January. Marie is going to be a grandma! We have a few parties Marie wants to do this year, so we are starting the plans for those. Amber and Chris get married in a few weeks and you will see the cake stands I have been working on.
During our Christmas visit we were able to squeeze in a little shopping. Just wait until you see what I am making! I picked up a lot of new goodies and so did Marie. From Fort Worth to Mineral Wells, we hit the best places and came home with so many new ideas. Hang tight y’all, we have a lot going on to share with you this year. I am so excited!!!
I am always interested to see how people plan the new year. Some I know make resolutions (I don’t). I am already deep in the planning stages for what I know I am doing this year. I am sure Marie will throw me a couple more projects along the way. But I am one of those that likes it all planned out to some extent. I don’t like deadlines or to be rushed. When it comes my art, nope, can’t do those hard deadlines. I must feel it people (I am laughing so hard right now at that)!
So, do y’all stock up on your next year Christmas craft supplies after the holidays? I did it before because I was afraid things would not be there after Christmas. So glad I did because a lot of things were gone! I have yellow stickies on things, so I can remember why I bought them and the ideas. Marie and I were both trying to get last-minute decorating pieces and found the stores were out way before Christmas was even here. Sad but also good for those of us who are already working on the next seasons ideas.
Well folks, hang tight and get ready for what we will be sharing next. Marie is hunkered down on the ranch trying to keep warm. It’s a little cold there in Weatherford Texas. I am sitting here in a sundress and barefoot. It is a lovely 85 degrees here in Saint Cloud. I have tomatoes ripening on the vine and new blooms on my little lemon trees already! I bet Marie is happy she had that green house built last year.
Happy New Year Y’all!!!
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Well, it’s finally time. The house is ready. Marie and Jeff have an incredible backyard thanks to the hard work of David Bergman and Nacho with Weatherford Gardens. He went above and beyond in not only making the backyard a place out of a Hallmark movie, but he also helped prepare the whole yard and pasture for the big day. I must say, I have not seen a yard look as incredible as this one does. George Perry of George Perry Construction is the masterful craftsman who build Marie’s greenhouse after he did her renovations in the house and Biv’s playhouse. I can only imagine what the first snow fall is going to look like back here. Total Hallmark moment!!
Tables were provided by Kim and Lindsey of Borrowed Treasures in Weatherford Texas. They also provide seating, tables, glassware and so much more for the wedding. Check out their website y’all! As a bonus, they also rent out their location in town as well as have sets for holiday pictures.
Marie worked hard to set the table décor while I worked on the greenhouse. A few table runners from my stash of extras helped bring a little softness and a great backdrop to Marie’s finishing touches. Mother nature was lending a helping hand with a few fallen leaves. It looks like Marie planned them.
Dinner was some tasty barbeque catered by the Mesquite Pit in Weatherford Texas. Desserts were the perfect ending of the meal provided by the groom’s family. Wine from the Grape Creak Vineyard would be served. A special thank you to Fred and Kathy Harper for helping serve dinner. You were great!!
Marie had trash cans painted by Kylie Lacefield. Gave a nice touch to an otherwise not so pleasant necessity.
As the sun started to set it only got prettier folks! What a wonderful start to this romantic weekend here on the ranch. Can you feel the love in the air yet?
Ok, I am working on wedding projects. I also have a husband out of town hunting. There is a great deal going on here when I get that message from my sister. While Marie is having her back yard worked on before the wedding, she has a little project idea she needs me to add to the list.
You see, Marie has had a greenhouse built from old windows and doors. It really is beautiful, and she needed one. However, there are a few areas that are a little odd and there aren’t any windows to fit. George, the amazing and talented George has had a great idea that maybe I could do some stained-glass pieces for those areas. Yes folks, we are now a month out from the wedding and Marie has requested not 1, not 2, but 5 stained-glass pieces for the greenhouse.
Branded and always Texas Proud Stained-Glass Greenhouse
Now I am in glass mode folks! I drop what I am doing and try to get some ideas. I had already worked up their cattle brand for a present for Jeff. And of course, we must have something Texas. George suggests the Texas star perhaps. I am nervous at this point. I think about my sister and what she loves as well as where these pieces are going. Just to add a little more pressure, we are now having the rehearsal dinner served from the greenhouse.
I pour my heart and soul into these new pieces. Two are my own original designs. With raw bleeding fingers I am pushed right up to the time we leave getting these done. I did not send Marie any pictures of what I was doing or what they would look like. But I must say, I believe she loved them!
I was worried about how my potted garden was going to make out. I have tried to grow things in the ground here before to no luck. I had roses bushes that were over 6 feet tall that had very little branching and maybe one or two flowers a year. My rosemary I planted a few years ago never took root and died. I had potted Indonesian peppers from my sister-in-law that did great for a while and then got a bug that just demolished them. My yard is primarily Bahia grass because of the heat and sandy soil.
To my surprise my tomato plants are about 5 feet high with lots of incredible blooms on them. I have a beef steak tomato and I forgot the other one that I planted. Can’t wait to see how they produce. My okra has done amazingly well. I will be cutting a few of those tasty treats today to put on the grill for my dinner tonight. How exciting is that!
My lemon trees are growing well, and I have 2 lemons on each tree already. One tree came with a lemon but to see new ones growing already is surprising.
I have been clipping my herbs and using them for cooking. They did great and I have new basil already growing after it has gone to seed. My lavender and mint got a little beaten up the past few storms we have had but they are hanging in there.
It is a sauna here most days and with the fierce rain storms we have been having I am just happy everything is still alive. While my sister struggles with lack of rain for weeks at a time, I am here hoping not to drown the roots of my little garden. We are expecting very little rain for the next few days, so I will be having to water. All in all, just the few months I have had my garden we are doing pretty good. I will be prepping for fall planting in a few weeks. I am excited to see if we can keep this thing going.
Part of me would like to have a green house so that I can protect my garden. My sister is going to have one built since they freeze for long periods of time. She has A LOT of plants in pots too! I can’t wait to see when she gets that built. Oh and the changes to the ranch, I will take lots of pictures for you when I visit so you can see what she has been up to. She is so busy she hasn’t had a chance to share anything. Don’t worry, she will be back soon to show you what is happening!
I missed the spring planting season. I have everything ready to have an above ground garden but was too busy to get anything planted. (I went to Antique Week in Texas instead of planting). Marie taught me about the cattle feeding buckets and how well they work for growing plants. So, we picked some up a couple years ago from a project my husband has designed. With my little pineapple growing in the yard it has given me a little hope that maybe I can get fall planting going this year.
Above Ground Gardening
My deck was missing some color too. When I picked furniture for the deck I went with a bring red (one of my favorite colors). And we got the outdoor kitchen all set up and our hot tub up and running a while ago. It still needed that touch of softness and color that comes from plants. I picked up some hanging plants from Home Depot as well as couple house plants. I already had five pineapple plants growing in tiny pots and picked up two lemon trees while we were in Texas. My aloe had bloomed several times and out grew its tiny pot so that had to be divided and replanted. I picked up a few herbs like basil, oregano, thyme, mint, rosemary, lavender and sage. My succulents are doing amazing in this Florida humidity and rain so no need to change them. I added a couple blueberry plants to my front yard too. After losing trees with the hurricane my yard is more open and needs a few more plants.
Deck In Progress
Back Yard in progress
My Wicker Chairs
I went to At Home to pick up some new planters for my trees. I also need a few umbrellas for my patio area. Luckily our deck helps with the hot Florida sun, but you do need the cover of shade in the middle of the day. I had already purchased a couple chaise and chairs and cushions early this year from At Home to go with my deck furniture. Our deck was finished last year, and I am still slowly working on it. We got an amazing outdoor kitchen from Lowes. Now I need color, or more color and décor to be exact. It is hard to find things that go with our taste. At Home has great products but not exactly what I am looking for. We have a love for the Spanish décor. My house is full of Mexican furniture and our entry area with the rocks and my metal cactus go well with it.
Relaxing in Red
I broke down and picked up a couple tomato and okra plants for the red tubs to begin our garden area. Better late than never and in Florida it is still good for an early fall harvest. I have four of the eight tubs planted and ready to go. Eventually where my veggie garden is located will have fencing around it to protect from the deer. Hopefully they leave my lemon trees and berries alone, but we will see. I am going to keep my other pineapple plants in pots this time. Add a few more plants for the deck and patio. I take my time and little by little I will get it feeling more welcoming out there. I want it to be an oasis for my husband and me. We enjoy our hot tub and grilling out together.