Monday, May 25, 2020

DIY House Projects: Creating a Garden and Covering a Well Pump

One garden down, a few more to go!

My mom has always loved to garden and her parents always loved to garden too. So, I come from a line of gardeners and I think I was destined to want to dig in the dirt. But, I have no idea what I'm doing. I thought I would start small with a little area that is in our yard up by the road.

Want to see where this started?

Believe it or not, you are looking at the same view. Crazy right? When we moved in we had this ugly rusted well pipe that was broken and sticking up out of the ground. A couple of months back Tim made a call and we got the pipe itself replaced. It was bight white and while it looked better and not rusted out, I still didn't want to look at a pipe sticking out of the ground like a Mario game.

I decided my best bet was to pick up a fake rock from Amazon and I ended up purchasing this one. Any one else with weird quarantine purchases? A huge fake rock might be the number one strangest item purchased in quarantine...but I'm not trying to start a contest or anything!

So, I dug up the area and got the fake rock set up and this is what our neighbors looked at for a couple of weeks. 

Then, I got my act together and headed to Home Depot to grab some mulch, top soil and a few plants!

I planted what I picked out and realized I needed more mulch and a few more plants so I headed to Walmart to finish up this area.

My little car can't hold too much but I got what I could fit!

I plan to shape out the area a bit more and add some more mulch on the edges to neaten it up, but I'm waiting for a few more garden areas to be dug out to get more mulch. I am so pleased with how it turned out!

I realize that in the future I may need to move some of the shrubs in the future if this tree grows, but I plan to adjust my gardens as needed. There are a few annual flowers in the front, which I plan to dig out at the end of the season and hopefully replace with tulip bulbs in the fall. Hopefully this will make this area come to life early each spring and prevent me from having to buy new flowers each season.

My main focus was to get some perennials in here so I would have to do less work in the future. I also wanted to make sure several of the plants were evergreen. Our gardens contained zero winter interest, meaning that all winter long all I saw was white snow and brown dead trees. I want to have some evergreens to see all year long!

I also planted some perennial flowers and a lilac bush. I hope these will bring some color to the garden. I mostly stuck with coral, white and pink for my colors. I have seen some gardens with a ton of color and some with the focus on only a few colors and I'm still trying to decide exactly what I prefer. 

I think when I do get tulip bulbs I will try to get only pink and white tulips to keep this area fairly color-coded. (See I'm even organizing the plants.....out of control over here!)

My plan is to stay far enough away from the well pump that if they need to dig it up for any reason it won't disturb the larger plants, but if they do it's okay. Nothing that I purchased is super expensive, so if it was dug up in the future that wouldn't be the end of the world. 

I took far too many pictures of this area and I apologize for that, but I was just so darn excited to do this area all by myself!

Up next? Gardens around the walkway, which I hopefully will be able to share with you soon!

I hope it's sunny where you are today! After some intense rain on Saturday, the sun has been shining the rest of this long weekend and I love it!

Monday, May 18, 2020

DIY House Projects: Completed Front Walkway

Today I'm sharing our completed front walkway! I can't stop gushing about my husband. I am in awe with the amazing job he did!! I never knew he was so talented at home projects but this walkway is just incredible. 

It was just an empty lawn and when we stepped off the front steps it was muddy and gross.

Now, we have this......

Isn't it beautiful?!

I love the pattern and cannot believe what a great job he did!

He did such an amazing job and I'm so proud to have an amazing and talented husband.

My plan is to create gardens to surround this walkway with gardens and I can't wait to get this next part of the project done!

Also, do you see that little fluff ball in the window? :)

What do you think of the walkway? Have you ever built something like this before?

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Our Master Bedroom

Today I am sharing with you our bedroom! Again, as I think I said during our living room tour this is what our house looks like right now. Things will change as we update our home, especially if we turn this into our forever home, which is still up in the air!

We chose the biggest bedroom for our "master bedroom" although it is only slightly bigger than the other rooms. All of the bedrooms are quite small but we managed to fit all our bedroom furniture inside this room.

Here is the view when you enter the room...

I am still torn about curtains, I'm not sure if I want them or not. When I see a picture like this I think it looks empty and needs curtains but on a day to day basis I like the simplicity of just having the shades.

When you walk into our master bedroom you see our bed immediately which always holds Sophie's blanket and "Piggy" the stuffed animal pig that Sophie sleeps with every night.

This view is from the closet in this room. I love our Pier 1 headboard and as much as I would love to have a king sized bed someday I would be so sad to not use this headboard anymore! I laughed while looking up the headboard link because I remember Tim commenting on how I made such an expensive purchase. It's on clearance right now so definitely go check it out (it's 50% off currently!) but even when it was full price it's not as expensive as half the stuff we have to buy for the house nowadays. Oh my how things change :)

Our nightstands and both dressers are from IKEA. They have held up really well and are quite sturdy. I love that there are super deep drawers but if I could go back in time I would have purchased the white ones instead of the brown-black color. These show dust SO easily and I think the white would've been a little bit easier to hide dust.

Looking back towards the doorway you can see the closet door and our tall dresser. I love the decor on top of the dresser. I just set a few things on top and ended up loving it! The let's stay home sign has never been so relevant.

Our long dresser holds our tv and some personal care products. I also have two hampers, one for clothes and one for towels, blankets and sheets. I purchased these off Amazon and they are the XL and L size respectively. 

One more view back up the bed. Our comforter was a wedding gift and it's so soft! Our lamps were purchased at Target and are so simple but I like them that way. 

So that is our bedroom so far. Like I said, we will continue to make updates to our home so I'm sure someday you'll see this room and it will look totally different!

Monday, May 11, 2020

DIY House Projects: Walkway Progress

After an unintentional week off, I'm back! Guys, this is the beginning of week 9 of me working from home. I can't believe that I've actually been working from home all this time, I never imagined. I did assume I would get so much done if I worked from home each day but I never thought I wouldn't be able to walk outside without a dog attached to me. Leaving her inside means barking, yelping and pawing at the windows so unfortunately if Tim isn't home I'm not able to get outside to get any outside work done. On the weekends Tim has been working on the walkway so I wanted to share the progress with you guys today!

Please note that I am not able to help Tim with this project because he is a perfectionist and I have no patience. If I did the walkway it would come out much less perfect because I wouldn't be taking the time to make things perfect. Lucky for me with this perfectionist husband of mine it will look perfect :)

Tim spent this past Saturday getting all the stakes in and measuring out where the walkway should line up. He wanted to make sure that the walkway sloped away from the house so we won't get any water pooling near the house. 

That perfectionist hubby of mine spent so much time leveling everything out and making sure all his measurements were perfect. I would've probably just said that it looks good and been done with it, which is why I'm not helping :)

Once everything was all lined up it was time to fill in the gravel!

Sophie and I supervised the process. Tim was seriously kicking butt this past weekend!

Progress with the gravel!

We borrowed the tool seen above from my parents and it really packs everything in. See the difference between the left side and the right side?

This was almost the end point!

After all the gravel is in then Tim will lay the pavers and use sand to keep them in place. I am so excited we are getting to the end point of this walkway project and I'm sure that Tim is ecstatic as well but he's also probably wondering what is next for him :)

Sophie is checking out what her dad is doing! Also this is why I have to keep her on a leash while we are doing anything because she will stick her face right in whatever you are doing, making a project like this difficult!

But it doesn't stop her from watching like a true fan!

Now are you ready for what the walkway looks like as of today?


The crushed gravel is in!! 

Guys. I'm pretty sure the next time I update you it will be completed! I will be sharing before and after pictures of how this changes our front yard, I'm so excited!

Once the walkway is complete, I plan on making the front garden surround them. If you look at the picture above I am going to pull the garden all the way up to the walkway and plan on getting boxwoods to line the walkway on both sides. The garden that you can see in the back I plan to wrap all the way around the walkway. I also want to get solar lights for the sides of the walkway.

I can just picture mini pumpkins lining the walkway during fall :)

So those are the plans! Do you have any ideas that I haven't mentioned? I would love to hear them!

Monday, April 27, 2020

Our Living Room

Happy Monday everyone!

I promised pictures of each room of our house and today I am delivering! We are going to start off in the living room. 

Speaking of the living room I am sitting on the couch writing this and I just had to stop typing because Sophie jumped up into my lap to get some cuddles and then just as suddenly jumped back down to go back to her watch at the front door.

Our living room is the number one most used room in our home. We spend almost all of our time in here. This is where we watch tv, where we cuddle with Sophie, where we play games, etc. Basically if we are in the house and awake we are in the living room. 

Sophie is ready to show you around!

The view above is from the end of our hallway, entryway to our kitchen.

Here is the view from our front door. We keep things pretty casual in our living room. It's a cozy place with throw blankets and we very quickly move the throw pillows around to make ourselves comfortable. Sophie climbs on top of everything and doesn't hesitate to lay on the couch after digging in the dirt in the yard so we don't get to be super precious about anything. I would love a white couch but that will never work with our lifestyle. Don't even suggest dogs shouldn't be allowed on the couch because then where would we cuddle? :)

When I took these pictures I was watching Gilmore Girls obviously. I wish we had room to do a whole tv stand setup like Alexandra Beuter had on YouTube but unfortunately we just don't have the wall space. Someday when we rearrange the house that may be a possibility. 

My favorite wall art in the house is my it's so good to be home sign. I purchased this on Etsy and I think it works so perfectly in our home. Nowadays it is so good to be home with everything that's going on. I'm thankful to have our home and have a place we can spend time during this crazy time. 

Sophie's bed is right under the window and she doesn't often lay there but I like to leave it here as an option for her. It does make the room a little more crowded but it's nice to give her a place to lay if she wants it. 

Fun fact: In her bed you can see a little pink toy. That is piggy, the first toy we gave her on our ride home. Piggy comes to bed with us every night and often she will go get him and bring him out of bed during the day. It is so cute when she goes to "wake him up"

I am still trying to keep my fiddle leaf fig alive on that table in the corner. Fingers crossed!

One final look towards the front door.  Thank you all for stopping by and taking a look at our living room! Is your living room the most used room in your house?

Wednesday, April 22, 2020

I Finished FIVE Books in THREE Days!

Guys, I finished FIVE books in THREE days! When quarantine first started I was reading Sarah J Maas' new book House of Earth and Blood which is part of her Crescent City series. I have loved everything that I've read by Sarah. Some of my favorites books have been a part of her A Court of Thorns and Roses series and I also loved the Throne of Glass series. 

This series started off slow. I mean there was action at the very beginning but then it seemed like a million pages to set the whole world up. The world of Crescent City is very complicated and there are a ton of characters and different kinds of creatures so I understand why she had to set the scene on so many pages but I moved at a snails pace through the first part. Then three days ago I was motivated to finish it and flew through the rest!

Overall I liked this book but it definitely isn't on the same level as the TOG and ACOTAR series. It was definitely a great story and took some turns that I didn't see coming but I wasn't in love with the main characters, so that made it not as fun for me to read. This is a looooooooong book. So enter  at your own risk! 

Next up, I read an entire four book series.....

These books are the Stella and Sol series by Kimberly Loth. I had heard about these from Elle Fowler on YouTube and I was excited to read them (especially since each one is only $4.99 on Kindle- not a bad price!)

Now this series is about two cities, Stella and Sol. In Stella there is never any daylight. It is nighttime all the time and magic exists. In Sol it is daytime all the time and it's a conservative city where everyone follows the rules. 

I thought the concept of the story was great. I really enjoyed the main character and her struggle between her home life in Sol and learning about Stella and the way they live life there. I loved the city of Stella and all the different types of magic they use there. I loved the relationships in the royal family of Stella.

However, there were things that I didn't love.

Things happened almost TOO quickly. Zwaantie (the main character) would think about doing something, go to do it and it would be done. There was no anticipation. She also flip flopped about decisions over and over again. Changing who she loved or who she was trying to fall in love with. 

Overall, I loved the story as a whole I just wish there had been a little more. I would recommend the series if you are looking for a quick series that you can get through quickly but don't expect a ton of substance.

What have you been reading lately? 

Monday, April 20, 2020

Sophie's April Barkbox

Another Monday working from home! I think we are on week 6 now and I never imagined that I would ever be allowed to work from home for 6 weeks but here we are! Sophie is thrilled, especially since Tim is home with us part of the time so she has all her humans in one place.

Today we are sharing Sophie's Barkbox for April. She always knows when the box is for her, it is so cute. 

We were waiting for Tim to open up the Barkbox with us at this point, because it's a full family event.

Neither of us will open it with her without the other because we both love it so much! She gets so excited and it's just the cutest thing.

Clearly she was getting tired of waiting for dad. 

This months Barkbox was themed "Night at the squeakeasy" and we thought it was very cute! I also want to point out that one toy is missing from the above picture because as soon as the lid opened Sophie grabbed the first toy she could get to and ran off. 

The toys that Barkbox sends over are always super intricate with so many details! I also love that there are toys inside most of the toys so if your pup destroys them then you have a ball or something like that for them to play with.

This is the bouncer who looks super angry.

A two in one toy, the whiskey glass with an ice cube inside. Sophie is loving the whiskey glass because she can stick her face right inside it and make crinkly sounds.

This is the toy that Sophie ran off with, she seems to like this one a lot too!

As usual all the treats are a hit with Sophie. She ate her long term chew in about three minutes and we've been giving her treats from the bags whenever she's a good girl which is pretty often. 

Do you get Barkbox for your dog? If so, let me know what toys you got this month!