Sprucing Up The Homestead

Discussion in 'Home Improvement' started by Diane Lane, Apr 4, 2016.

  1. Diane Lane

    Diane Lane Very Well-Known Member
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    The front looks fairly decent now that everything's mowed and trimmed. I sprayed for weeds, which should make my life a little easier, and got the front walkway all swept just now. The gate and fence need to be mended in a few places, and they could both really use a painting, but I'm putting that off until I have some energy.

    I've planted some tomato and carrot seeds, and will put some more in this week or next. I'm moving at least one bird feeder up to the balcony, since I rarely remember to fill the ones downstairs. I'm going to work on the carpets this week or next, depending on when I can get the cleaners and enough energy. I'm also considering setting up the smaller aquarium again, since the cats and I enjoy watching the fish swim. This time, I'll probably get small fish, maybe some fancy guppies.

    What are y'all doing around the house?
     
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  2. Ruby Begonia

    Ruby Begonia Very Well-Known Member
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    Lol,
    Making plans.
     
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  3. Diane Lane

    Diane Lane Very Well-Known Member
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    What kind of plans, @Ruby Begonia? Something you post could give us some ideas of things we could do, and vice versa. I like reading about what everyone's doing.

    If I had the money, I'd be making walkways from the driveway fence to the shed and back porch, and from the porch to the shed, as well. I'm letting the back of the back yard grow into a meadow, since I rarely use it, and it's nice and colorful when I gaze at it from the balcony, which is where I spend most of my outdoor time.

    My neighbor has a power or pressure washer, and I might borrow that, because i'd like to clean off the front of the house. The side is brick, so I'll leave that as is, and no one goes around back anyway, so if I do borrow it, I'll just focus on the front. Years ago, I'd have started with the back, because whether or not others would see it wouldn't have mattered to me. I would want it all to be equally clean. These days, I pick my battles, since I have limited energy. That friend also has a tree lopper that I'll be borrowing, because the neighbor's trees are getting too close to the balcony again. I'll also use it on the tree out front because when it grows it limits my view, and I like to be able to see the end of my driveway.
     
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  4. Ruby Begonia

    Ruby Begonia Very Well-Known Member
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    Oh Diane, I just can't get motivated! Arthritis kicking up and it's snowing!
    I will however, hire carpet cleaners, take my drapes to the cleaners, hire someone to clean the oven.

    I did get one bathroom painted and new lighting and hardware installed.

    I own a condo, so no garden. Soon I'll be getting a hanging basket for the front and some potted plants for the back deck, but I'm not looking forward to watering them every day this year. If nothing else, I will have a large pot of basil.
     
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  5. Babs Hunt

    Babs Hunt Veteran Member
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    I've got a lot of "Spring Cleaning" to take care of when I get home from my beach trip. I will be washing winter things and packing them away while unpacking Spring things and putting them in place in our home. There are walls and baseboards to wipe down, windows to give a good cleaning to, and if I have time I want to take everything out our walk in closet and paint the walls of the closet a bright cheery color...as it is a kind of mud color brown right now that depresses me every time I see it. I also want to add some cheery color to my pantry walls. One thing I'm looking forward to doing is buying some frames for these pictures I'm bringing home from my beach trip and hanging them on the wall in our bedroom. The colors in these pictures will blend well with the colors I've done our bedroom in. I just know once those pictures are framed and hung I will wake up each morning, see them, and get a big smile on my face! :D After I finish everything that needs doing inside I might go see what needs doing outside...but for the most part my Honey takes care of that for us. So unless there is something I want to add outside like some new flowers, etc...the tough stuff out there will not be something I have to concern myself with.
    IMG_2458.JPG

    IMG_0485.JPG
     
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  6. Sandy Wood

    Sandy Wood Active Member
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    I like the idea of sprucing up the homestead. Walkways can be made with patio stones or gravel, or even mulch. Depending on the area of country where you live. I am planning on making a small patio using slate rock. My neighbor has some on his garage floor that he wants to get rid of and I have a few big pieces in my yard from an old pool patio. Moving them thou is going to require muscle and a small loader or doily and a shovel. Then I need a few truck loads of dirt to fill in the hole left from where the pool was. Plant grass and I have my yard back. Big dreams and not sure I can find help to get job done. Same ole want and wish list. lol
     
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  7. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Veteran Member
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    It's still too cold here to do much outdoors, but my plans include...
    • Making a new compost area to replace the old one that's falling apart.
    • Replacing my back steps, possibly with a small enclosed deck or mud room.
    • Either building or buying a small shed to store my lawn mower and maybe a snow blower.
     
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  8. Krissttina Isobe

    Krissttina Isobe Very Well-Known Member
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    We live in an apt., so just spring cleaning like some others. It's so nice to have your own place even if you have to keep it up yourself. You can have pets, we can't have pets, so I watch videos on youtube.com to get my fix of seeing pets. They are so cute and some are really camera ready!
     
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  9. Diane Lane

    Diane Lane Very Well-Known Member
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    @Ruby Begonia It sounds like you're doing a lot, despite the aches and pains :). I'm so glad I don't have to worry much about watering. I rarely remember to do it, but thankfully, it tends to rain enough here to satisfy the plants I've had for years now. I have a drought resistant asian jasmine downstairs, and only water that a few times a year. It doesn't flower, so I leave it there, and don't bother transplanting some up to the balcony where my garden is.

    @Krissttina Isobe I rent a single family, and I wouldn't like not having animals. I've had them all of my adult life and most of my childhood, and I consider them family. It's surprising how many places don't allow them, which is another reason why I stayed here, even when I could afford to move.

    @Sandy Wood Those do sound like ambitious plans, but I'll bet if you're able to accomplish all of that, you'll be very happy with your yard. Someone here in the neighborhood was selling bricks, but I'd rather slate tiles/stones like you mentioned, although if I stay here and do build the walkways, I may end up using bricks. I probably won't get around to that this year, but who knows.

    @Ken Anderson Sheds are so useful. We stored everything in the cellar or under the back porch growing up, but after we moved out, my parents finally got a shed, and then they realized how much handier it was to have everything readily available. I hope you're feeling up to snuff soon and are able to knock out some of those items on your To Do list.

    I used my carrot pot to hold the shepherd's hook, and used cotton yarn to tie it to the railing. Obviously I'll have to plant carrots in another pot, since a lot of bird seed is falling into the pot and the birds are pecking around to get it. I'm fairly happy with using the hook/pot/bird feeder, but I think I'll move it over somewhat, so i can actually see it when I'm sitting here at the desk.
     
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  10. Ruby Begonia

    Ruby Begonia Very Well-Known Member
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    Babs, I visualize those pretty Beach pictures in black frames.
     
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  11. Yvonne Smith

    Yvonne Smith Very Well-Known Member
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    We have been working on the spring cleaning things here at home, too. The days are warm enough now that we moved all of the houseplants outside, and put the hanging basket ones on the front deck where it is shady. If we get one of those really hot summers, some of them will have to come back inside, but for now, they seem to be loving it outside.
    About time to put away the sweatpants and take out the summer cutoffs, too ! That is always a happy time of year that we look forward to.
    One thing I wish was different, and that is the pine trees all around on the property and the lot next door. The pine needles fall off year around, and the raking job is just neverending. Plus, even though the shade is nice, we could have more room for flowers if there were not so many trees.
    The mint that I started last year is spreading, and we are hoping that it actually does help to deter the moquitoes this summer.
    Mint is one of the plants that those pests are not supposed to like at all, and I am planting it around the area of the front porch and yard.
     
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  12. Babs Hunt

    Babs Hunt Veteran Member
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    Well @Ruby Begonia They are not in black frames but I'm happy with the results.
    IMG_2546.JPG
     
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  13. Babs Hunt

    Babs Hunt Veteran Member
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    Like in no pets...does that even include like a goldfish or a hamster, etc.? @Krissttina Isobe
     
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  14. Babs Hunt

    Babs Hunt Veteran Member
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    It sounds like your "Spring Cleaning" is coming along just fine Yvonne. :) Mine has become more of a step by step thing right now as I started off really well, then got the urge to cook up a storm for my Honey...and now in between taking care of normal everyday duties, my mind is off to research land once again. The good thing is now that's it's just me and my Honey to take care of...I have the freedom to do things a little at a time while enjoying the things I like to do too.
     
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  15. Diane Lane

    Diane Lane Very Well-Known Member
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    Your room looks very relaxing @Babs Hunt. I like doing things in spurts, as well. That's about how long my energy lasts anyway, then I can rest and take on something less active.

    Outdoor chores have been on hold, and I'm starting to go through things inside, although at a pretty slow pace. When I'm feeling better, I can tackle it with gusto, and I'm planning to donate some of the things I don't want/need, such as clothing and perhaps a few pieces of furniture.
     
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  16. Babs Hunt

    Babs Hunt Veteran Member
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    Thank you @Diane Lane Our room is very relaxing. These are my favorite beach pictures next to my side of the bed...these two photos at the beach taken by two of my sisters that I enlarged and framed...so now I wake up to the pleasure of the beach and the love of two of my sisters each morning! ;)

    One of the things I really enjoy about being a senior citizen is being able to slow my own life down to the pace I want it to be most days!
    IMG_2553.JPG
     
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  17. Krissttina Isobe

    Krissttina Isobe Very Well-Known Member
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    :)Probably, we just never asked. Don't like to rock the boat, so just us humans. I get my pet fix from videos on youtube and I like pet places on facebook and get fascinating videos and pictures, so it's okay. I wouldn't be able to afford pets today anyway.
     
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  18. K E Gordon

    K E Gordon Very Well-Known Member
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    Well I am planting flowers and doing yardwork currently. I have a lot I have to do. I think that I will try to have a yard sale this weekend because I have a number of things I have to get rid of. My oirginal idea was to put the house on the market June 1. However, I can see that isn't going to happen. I just don't really have the cash flow to get everything done that needs to be done to get top dollar.
     
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  19. Diane Lane

    Diane Lane Very Well-Known Member
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    @Babs Hunt Those pictures are gorgeous. I love how vivid the colors are. I have some pelican pictures on the walls here, just small ones by a local photographer. I have a few of my own photographs blown up and framed on the stairway, but haven't blown up or framed anything I've taken lately. I have one of mine here in the office, it's a pic of a large wooden cross in the courtyard at a church where I used to work. It was the view out my office window, and I loved seeing it daily, so decided to take the picture and hang in in here, so I could still see it after I left that job.

    @K E Gordon Are you still considering selling the house? You might want to look around to see if there are any grants that fit your situation. I know there is a lot of money out there earmarked for specific purposes. My ex is native american, and I'd looked into some grants/loans in the past for him, so I know there is some money available for use in rural areas.
     
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  20. Von Jones

    Von Jones Very Well-Known Member
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    Yesterday was a taste that Spring is nearing. It was cloudy but the temperature was so nice that it drew me outside. Of course I didn't just sit on the porch for too long before I grabbed the key to the carriage house and snatched my rake, broom and a couple of other things and began raking up last year's remnants of leaves in my front yard. One of my neighbors always sees me when I'm out there and said to me once, 'You're always doing something when I see you.' I wonder what he would have said yeaterday.:rolleyes:

    The salt used really did a job on our walkway where I attempted to repair it myself from the year before. That's a project I put on my to-do list but I'm not really wanting to use the cement again since I feel my attempt failed through this winter. I want something that I know will last for more than one winter. I'm open to suggestions.
     
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  21. Yvonne Smith

    Yvonne Smith Very Well-Known Member
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    It is almost 70 here today, although still cloudy and overcast, with a light breeze. Bobby has been out working in the shop, and I charged up the battery weedeater, and am starting to fear the first areas where I want to plant this spring.
    Since we get so little sunshine, and my garden has not done well the last couple of years, this year I really want to focus on the fruit trees and Bettie's and see if I can get them growing and producing better. I am going to replant both the raspberries and the blackberries where there is more sunshine, and I am even thinking about moving the blueberries. They are out front and get good sun until all the trees around here leaf out for summer, and then they are in shade. They are growing; but barely, and I have only ever gotten a few berries from any of them.
    I also want to dig up some of the Jerusalem artichokes and plant them around the back fence line. They will help cover up the ugly fence during the summer and add to our privacy here. I think it might be too early to do that yet; so I will have to go out with the shovel and see if I can find some of the tubers. They seem to transplant better before they start to sprout, providing that I can locate them first.
     
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