Friday, July 29, 2011

A Post about The Post

Since we bought our house, we've spent most of our time, energy, and cash working on the inside...which has been great! But, that's meant that the yard hasn't gotten the attention that it deserves, and so desperately needs in order to get it where we want it to be.

Bobby does an excellent job keeping the lawn (which is getting more and more brown by the day, through no fault of Bobby's and despite his valiant efforts to keep it alive...which has grown more and more difficult thanks to Royal's treatment of the sprinkler...but I digress) mowed on a regular basis. This act in itself is more attention than the yard had been getting before we moved in, but the flower beds are overgrown with weeds (there's only so much we can do, Grandma!), and there are shrubs that have turned into trees. 

I'm really hoping that next year (or even this fall, perhaps?) we'll be able to focus a bit more on outside projects. That seems likely. 

But, we have been able to make some progress lately in the landscaping department....

The lamp post in the front yard (I think of Narnia every time I say that..."lamp post"....) had a clematis plant attempting to climb it...key word, "attempting". It was really just more of a mess, and the look was quite dated. So, it had to go. (We still have a clematis in the back yard that is thriving, so I didn't feel quite so terrible ripping this one out in the front.)

Much better. Except that then we were left with the issue of the rotting wood at the base...which isn't quite the look we're going for. So, it had to go, too. 

After the wood was gone, the initial thought was to create a rock border around the base instead. So, we carried (okay, Bobby carried; I was on doggy-duty) lots of rocks from the backyard that had previously been used near the fountain. 

The fountain, I should mention, is no more. My sister said months ago that we "aren't fountain people", and though I can't say that I agree with her entirely, it was seeming to be more of a hassle than it was worth. Yes, the sound of trickling water was pleasant, but Royal was growing interested in the area, we didn't want to mess with chlorine tablets, we weren't particularly excited about paying for the electricity to run the thing...and, well, we know what it was doing to the bird population. So, when the pump stopped working and the standing water attracted bunches of Japanese beetles, we decided that enough was enough. Out came the fountain.

Anyway, Bobby carried lots of rocks to the front of the house, and I arranged them around the flower bed. And, wouldn't you know, I didn't like the finished look of it at all. It did coordinate well with the other rock landscaping around the yard, but it just wasn't working for me there. So, the rocks were removed...again (thanks, dear!)...and now we've decided to flatten out the dirt, lose the flower bed, and just let the grass grow around the lamp post. (Sweet Mr. Tumnus....)

I'll keep you posted. Pun most-definitely intended.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

"Royal, NO!" - Part Three

Our screen didn't always look like this:

I'll give you one guess as to who is responsible.

Bingo. (Well, of course, not B-I-N-G-O.... It was Royal.)

Apparently the doggy door was just too tedious an exit, so Royal made a new one. Bobby says he was chasing a bug on the other side of the screen (Royal was, not Bobby...that would be weird), and just got too excited. 

Speaking of bugs. Screened-in porches are great...when all of the screens are present and accounted for. When they aren't, though...well, let's just say that I think our chances of being not surrounded by insects are better outside of the patio. It's been quite the popular stop for flies and wasps lately. And when I say "stop", I mean stop as in "last stop", since once they're in, they can never find their way out. 

Do we have problems, or what? 

(No, we don't. I love that my "problems" are having to fix a messed-up screen on the porch of the home my husband and I own because of our sweet puppy. Life is pretty darn good these days.) 

Once Royal started trampling on the flower bed, wouldn't you know the little tea roses started blooming? Go figure.

Then he trampled too much and they died. It happens.

The good news is that we found some matching screen out in the storage shed from previous owners. The bad news is that the piece doesn't fit. So, I guess that negates the good news. Rats.

We've Bobby has since removed the ripped screen, so at least it doesn't look mangled anymore. We'll replace it soon, but until then, Royal still has his "doggy opening"...and we're getting really talented with the fly swatter.

The End.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

"Royal, NO!" - Part Two

I mean, you saw the title of the you have to know what's coming. 

The none-too-pleased puppy parent.
The culprit.

Bobby and I came home one evening to find that the hose had been dragged into the middle of the yard, and entirely severed from the sprinkler to which it had previously been attached. 
I love this one.
"Son, I'm not happy with you...."
"Yeah, I know, Dad. So sorry about the hose. Couldn't help myself."
"See? You have another one! No big deal. Let me help!
By the way, I really like it here...please don't make me leave."
Sometimes he actually rests! (Sometimes.)
And he sure does look cute when he does.

The hose we're left with now has yet to be severed entirely, though it has been chewed to the point of having multiple holes throughout. Sure, it's annoying, but we're actually able to water about five plants at the same time...can you do that?! (It is pretty entertaining...the duct tape "plugs" didn't hold, so the holes are getting bigger and shooting off in several directions. Thank goodness it's so hot and getting a bit wet is refreshing!)

Anyway, there's not much point to replacing the hoses right now...who knows what else he's capable of?!

Stay tuned...I'll show you.

"Royal, NO!" - Part One

I've been looking through photos from the past month with the intention of getting up-to-date on all of Royal's latest "learning experiences". And, I'm discovering that in order to best showcase all of them, they need to be written in a series that I think I'll call, "Royal, NO!"

So, thus begins aforementioned series...the length of which depends on how quickly I can get these tails tales written...and what the dog decides to do in the meantime.

A few weeks ago, we had a morning thunderstorm. (You know, back when it still rained around here.) To be fair, I did very much appreciate that Royal decided to spend the rainy morning on the patio, instead of being outside and getting wet. But, mornings are usually his playtime and he had lots of energy to, he killed his blanket.

The blanket ended up with a lot less batting inside than was there before, and his bed got a lot less comfortable. His teething and chewing phase had begun...look out, world!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Doing the Laundry...Room

So, where were we when I last wrote in June? (June?! Has it really been that long?)

Ah, yes...Royal ate a squirrel and the living room was lined with file folders. We'll catch up later with the specifics of the last month, but let me just say that Royal has caused more destruction and the house has been further updated.

Speaking of house updates, I am happy to report that we have made serious progress in the laundry room!



After all of the wallpaper removal...and mold treatment...and re-mudding the damaged sheetrock, we painted the cabinets and the walls (and the fuse box!). The room is adjacent to the kitchen, so we opted to use that same color scheme in an effort to make the rooms feel more cohesive...and, truth be told, we needed to use the rest of the paint. I was skeptical with the choice at first, but I'm quite pleased with how it turned out. The rooms really do flow quite well now. (Thanks for the idea, Mom!)

On our initial cleaning day at the house, my sister and I made short work of removing the mirrored cabinet above the sink. It seemed out of place and bulky for the space, so it had to go! I was thrilled to find a black mirror at the thrift store ($6.98, thank you very much!), and after giving it a quick spray paint facelift, it suits the space perfectly.

Here is the laundry room as it stands now:

I'm picturing (pun intended) a gallery of frames
to the right of the mirror...we shall see!

Now, the dryer is actually pushed up against the wall.
We still had some work to do getting the dryer duct in place at this point.
(I'll spare you the was every bit as boring as you might expect...
except when Bobby cut his finger...that was kind of dramatic. He's okay, though.)
Big difference, yes? I think so. There's still work to be done, of course. (When is there not?) I can imagine a patterned Roman shade over the window, and the walls need...something. There's also still the issue of finding a hanging space for clean clothes, but we're getting there.

Oh, yeah...I'm back in the blogging mood now. More to come soon!