Saturday, July 18, 2015

Tad is 4!

A couple of weeks ago, Tad turned 4. Can you believe it? He's such a big boy and so sweet. (And when he says, "I love you, Grandma", my heart just melts:) He had a pirate themed party with family and friends. Andrew did some great cooking, and Alison made a ship cake, treats and decorated the house. She is so creative! Everything was so cute.

We knew Tad really didn't need anymore toys, so Rick made him a picnic table just his size. He had made one when Andrew and his brothers were little and we got a lot of use out of it. I'm sure Tad and the twins will too. (I want Rick to make another one for our yard. The old one is long gone:)

The twins will be celebrating their 1st birthday next month. I can't wait to see what kind of party Alison comes up with for them!

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Back Porch Redo

Back in June of 2011 I did a post about our screened-in back porch. It has basically been the same since we added it on to the house in 1997.

We liked it, except for that tile which has driven me crazy since day one. We chose unglazed tile because it looked so good in the store, but in reality it was not a good choice for a floor exposed to the elements. It stained easily and every year we had to strip and retreat it. Arrrr... I was done!

So we chose a pretty ceramic tile in a mottled cream. Rick did the install.(We thought about having it done, but do you know how hard it is to get a good installer? I've got one right here:) Anyway, after he put it in we just had to continue with a redecoration. And this is how it turned out:

After A LOT of painting we love how it turned out! It is brighter and cleaner looking. I still have those old cushions,but I plan on replacing those next year when there are more choices in the stores. Though I might look online to get something more to my liking.

In other news, my hubby is recuperating from skin cancer surgery. The surgeon took out an extra big chunk to get it all, so it's more than a little painful. But I think he is feeling better because he is getting restless and ready to get back to work. Good news, I'd say!

Monday, July 6, 2015

The Garden This Week

I usually say that June is the best month for our gardens. But this year it looks like July will be. We had a very wet and mostly cool June and some flowers held off blooming. But, oh my, the yard is bright with monarda, lilies, roses, coneflower and many others. Here are a few examples:

A different view of the garden border looking toward the house.

The west side of the shed, in shade, but full of color.
I have no idea what this lily's name is, but the yellow flower in there is basket flower, a perennial variety of centaurea (bachelor button.)

Tiger Lily

Sitting area near the pond.

Part of the herb garden. Gotta love larkspur and calendula for easy color!

The newest bed in the side yard. I think I will move those monarda -  too tall for this spot.

Even though we have many garden beds, and can be a lot of work in the spring, right now it's not too bad. I try to get to the weeds early in the season, so that by midsummer I just have to go through each bed every other week or so. And I usually like to do the weeding. It can be relaxing. Though I have to say that the mosquitoes are driving us crazy right now, so doing anything in the yard takes preparation (bug spray, long sleeves, etc.) Yuck! Not so relaxing:)

I hope everyone had a great 4th! We had a wonderful party with friends and family. Lots of swimming, eating, and laughing. But I just wasn't taking pictures. Too busy having a good time, I guess!