A little curb appeal

Charlie and I go on lots of walks. LOTS of walks. Minimum two a day. This is getting a little harder now because it’s getting so hot. It really doesn’t seem to bother Charlie, though because the shade on his stroller is so big. Only half of his little shins stick out. It’s pretty cute! Baby sunscreen, here we come! So anyways, on these walks, I look at everyone’s yard. People must think I’m crazy, but for months I was trying to figure out what plants I wanted. I promise, I’m not creepy! Just looking for yard inspiration! Well, I found it. No, I’m not posting a picture of a stranger’s yard. That would be creepy. Maybe one day…

During the two glorious weeks Nathan had off, we took a few family trips down to Lukas nursery- Charlie loved it (and got a free plant! just for being a baby!) We found lots of plants we both loved and hauled them all home. This took two separate trips because the billion plants we bought and Charlie’s stroller didn’t all want to fit in the trunk together.

Nathan hung out with Mr. Baby for the afternoon and I planted and planted. I’m quite happy with the result! The purple flowers all bloomed a few days after I planted them. You can see our little herb “garden” in all those pots on the sidewalk. Here is the before, just in case you forgot.

I realize it looks a little…bare? They’ll grow!

I still need to plant that last oleander. Only problem is, there’s a sprinkler right where I want to plant it! (to the left of the other ones on the side of the house) We’ll figure something out!

How does your garden grow?

With lots of weeds and dead palm fronds. Thanks for asking!

I finally decided to tackle the growing mass of weeds in our front garden. Believe it or not, it used to look about a million times worse than this. Last fall, when I was about 8 months pregnant, Nathan and I (mostly Nathan) went all gung-ho out there and weeded like crazy and put down the red lava rocks. We even splurged for the “professional” level weed mat thing. See how well that turned out? Obviously, our weeds must be on steroids or something, because that kept out about zero weeds.

So, during nap time I went out there with the baby monitor and showed those weeds who’s boss. Me. Charlie woke up in the middle of it, so he came out to help.

In the end, I think it turned out quite nicely. All ready to finally be planted one day in the (hopefully) not so distant future.

A few weeks ago, we planted two little strawberry plants. One of the plants had a perfect little Charlie-sized  strawberry ready to be picked. Imagine my surprise when I went to go pick it and found this:

Someone ate it!!! No wonder Julio next door has crazy cages all over every one of his plants! That’s okay. We still have these ones:

HA that was a silly joke, because after Charlie and I got back from our walk this afternoon (about one hour after that picture was taken) ALL the strawberries were gone.

What is eating my strawberries?! Whoever you are, go away!

The higher the number, the smoother the lumber!

See? Camp can teach you things! Useful things! The days of me pretending to know what I’m doing in PA (wood shop for all you non CCSCers) are long gone, but I do remember how to sand things! Frosty would be so proud. Isn’t it hysterical that anyone would think I’m capable of using a bandsaw? By myself? In fact, until I just typed this and googled it, I thought it was called a ban saw. wow. Don’t tell anyone.

Moving on. I used my sweet sanding skills the other weekend on Little Blue. I did a little research over at Young House Love beforehand on what needed to be done to turn this desk into something fabulous. I know everyone is just dying to see what she (is my desk a girl?) looks like. Here’s a “before” shot as she lounges on the Burnett waterfront.

Sanding is a lot of work. Apparently I didn’t know what I was getting myself into. I also wore white shorts. Stupid idea. Oh well, all the little blue dust pieces eventually came off. Did I mention it was extremely windy? I sanded and sanded. In fact, I almost sanded my fingers right down to the bone. Note to self: wear gloves next time. After what felt like FOREVER, I decided I was done. I cleaned everything up and moved her back inside.

Okay. So it looks the same, just taken apart. Darn. I guess I needed to do more sanding.

Last weekend, Christine and Alexina came to visit, so I put Christine to work. We decided to sand Little Blue in the driveway. This was a mistake due to her wobbly legs combined with our paver driveway. Christine’s job was to hold her still while I gave her the sanding smackdown. It was windy and we were cold. And I wore a different pair of white shorts. What is wrong with me!? Oh well, I think she looks much better now.

As we were driving through the neighborhood, we saw one of my neighbors in HIS driveway sanding a table. Apparently, this is the thing to do on Saturdays in Oviedo. He was much smarter, though. He had an electric sander. My fingers would have really appreciated one of those. At least my sanding days are over! Hopefully I’ll at least get her primed this weekend! Stay tuned.

Little Blue

Over a year ago, when Nathan and I were engaged and I was living in my teeny 1 bedroom condo, I decided I NEEDED a desk for my sewing machine to live on. Not just any desk, one with character. After perusing Craigslist for a grand total of about 30 seconds, I found it. It lived in Ocoee. It was blue and had little spindly nimbly bimbly legs. I told Nathan we had to go- immediately. Obviously a desk with such character would be in high demand and I needed to beat out any other potential competition.

Okay. So there was no other competition. Whatever.

When we arrived to the little old lady’s house that was selling it, she invited us in to a living room full of randomly placed old furniture. Apparently she and her husband were going through a bunch of their belongings and kicking lots of it to the curb (aka my condo).¬† I knew immediately that I wanted it, despite the horrible paint job and general wobbliness of it. I didn’t care- I still loved it. And besides, it added character- my main requirement.

After I told her I’d take it, she really started to seem like she didn’t want to sell it. She started telling me stories about how she did every piece of homework ever assigned to her on that desk. How she had painted it blue (an internet tutorial could have REALLY helped her out here. Too bad it wasn’t invented yet.) How she put that white knob on it. Clearly, she was very emotionally attached to this desk… But, it was my turn to be emotionally attached to this desk! After all, she’s cleaning house! As we loaded it into the car, I told her I promised to take good care of it and she quickly turned her head away. Was she crying? Maybe. I like to think she was. Not in a “haha! I made an old lady cry” kind of way, but in a way that I knew I was getting a very special desk that had been oh so loved its whole life. So what if its REALLY wobbly?

I had big plans for this desk. I was going to take it home and fix it up and love it every day. But I got kinda busy. I was a grad student and graduate assistant. I got married, got pregnant, moved, and had a baby, all in about 2.5 seconds. This left no time for my little blue desk. My sewing machine still lived on it, but I didn’t love it the way the little old lady loved it. I knew if I fixed it up that I would. Now, I have time. Okay, not really, but I’m MAKING time for my little wobbily blue desk with spindly legs.

I’ll keep you updated.