Monday, September 09, 2013

September 9

Sept 9. Pick something you''ve "been meaning to do" and DO IT. I've been looking at this dead flower bed in front if my house for way too long. I spent my weekend digging and planting it. Really happy with it.

That was my instagram post for today's Simple Simple September entry.

It also says - more information at the blog. Here's the reality of this project.

It was all accomplished without spending any money. 

I had everything I needed to get to this point in the process. 

And I was armed with these images. And we all know if you see it on the internet it's true.


Upper left - she is clean - long dark hair flowing - white shirt still pristine. New gardening gloves. Quite obviously, she is just sitting there think about what to do in this case.

Upper right - well at least her hair is out of the way. but she's knelling down and those are clean knees and hands. 

Lower left - closer - he has at least just hit his knees --- easier on your whole body. And he does have some dirt on his hands. But check out that dark t-shirt - NOT ONE SWEAT STAIN - he ain't been there long.  

Oh - that last image - SHE IS SMILING - shirt still white - hands clean - not a hair out of place. 

Remember these images. I'll come back to this discussion. 

I've been looking at the barren plot of dirt below for WAY too long. 
And it is time to DO something about it. 
Remember DO is my word for the year. 

And contrary to a quote made by the Man at My Address - there is plenty to DO around here. But most of it is disguised as hard work. 

I gathered gloves - a shovel - a towel - a big cup of water - and dug in (pun fully intended)

That white panel covers an opening in the foundation. The foundation of the house is built of solid granite blocks and those openings were vents - of a very strange size. In addition to venting the space, they allow critters to get under the house, so we have to cover them. (the last critter mommy had all her babies under there and she was of the 
black and white and smelly variety) 

I'm not sure what that bootcamp instructor (me) is good for. 
She certainly has not prepared us for this kind of labor. 
Like digging rocks. 
It was HARD HARD work.
And as a self proclaimed shovelaphobic - yes I made up that word - this tested all of my mental toughness and determination to accomplish this task. 

I kept saying - ALMOST DONE - I did stop at my rose bush at the corner. I carefully dug out around it and then filled back in after adding some bricks around it. 

When all the breaking rock  initial shoveling work was done, I still had some MAJOR work to break up all those chunks and smooth this mess out. 

Again - HARD - HARD - HARD work. 

And there is a "drip line" below my tin roofs that has to be addressed. 

There are other places around the house with rows of stone or brick that serve no purpose but to keep the water from eroding the soil below. 

And I happened to have two chimneys' worth of salvaged brick in a pile under the pecan tree out back. (don't ask why). 

So now this project has grown to include cleaning mortar off of bricks. WhooHoo. 

And laying it in the drip line.

An added benefit - This is a deep bed and that will give me a place to step as it fills in (hopefully) with green growing things. 

I got the brick in some 6 hours after I started this project and I called it a day for Saturday. 

At this point I looked NOTHING like those pictures at the beginning of this post. 
Nope - not smiling.
Dirt all over me.
Smeared on my face because the dirty gloves were repeatedly use to wipe the sweat out of my eyes.
Sweat stained my shirt and pants and for that matter my damned underwear too.
Despite the gloves my nails were grungy too. 
I had a sock line around my ankles, but it was not sunburn --- hell no --- seems dirt is AN EXCELLENT SUNSCREEN. 
And my hair --- twisted and bedraggled does not even begin to describe - I had tucked and twisted and added a pin here and a hairbow there. 

I looked like I had been mud wrestling and lost. 

But oh my I slept GOOOOOOD Saturday night. 

Church on Sunday.
Lunch at our favorite Sunday spot.
Softball Princess joined us. (that was a treat)
Then a nap.

Then,  I dug some wayward clumps of monkey grass from another bed. 
Note - as thick as this stuff is around those beds there is enough to plant all the way to Danielsville and back. 

I cut those down and planted the divisions. 

I left a spot for a hydrangea to go in.
And for two clematis. 

I spread a late summer meadow seed mix in and through here to provide some greening until I get more of my plants going. 

And watered it all in. 

I like it. 

Now about that white panel. I hated it - always have, but until I can get some custom vents/screens made, this will have to work. 

I cleaned it really well.
Scuffed it with a metal brush.
Attacked it with several grey, black, nickle, gold, brown spray paints and kinda blended it with the granite foundation.

It helps.

I also had this wonderful piece of metal. 
Gifted to me.
We used it in the wedding decor. 
And I've been trying to decide where it will live permanently.

Here it is. I'll plant the clematis so they will climb it.

There will be updates as this bed fills in.

Anyway, back to that image at the top. 
Having proven that not all you see on the internet is true, I went searching for a more realistic image of my day.

I did find this one. 

It's close --- but she's still smiling. 

Not me. 

Not yet. 

Have a great Day. 

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