• gardening and landscape,  colonial farmhouse

    Removing Rotten Trees and a Chainlink Fence

    Last week I shared how we cleared a sight line to the pool and in that post I mentioned another section of our property that we’ve also been working on clearing and cleaning up. This was the back of our house when we moved in. There was nothing wrong with the back of the house, but there were some areas we knew could be improved upon fairly easily. The chainlink fence is what really bothered me. It wasn’t the prettiest fence ever built. It also made that space unusable since we don’t have a dog and don’t have plans to get a dog. The trees are what really bothered Handy…

  • clearing a sight line to the pool
    gardening and landscape

    Clearing a Sight Line to the Pool

    One of the perks of buying a really old home is that the landscaping is mature. But with every rule there’s always an exception, right? In the case of our colonial farmhouse, our landscaping had ventured into a realm past mature. I’m not sure how to say this delicately…so I won’t. Every single tree, bush, shrub, weed, flower, vine and blade of grass on the property was overgrown when we moved in. Not just overgrown, but out-of-control. Not just out-of-control, but rapidly taking over anything and everything in its path. It crossed my mind that if I stood still for more than a minute, the Virginia Creeper vine would probably…

  • 1849 colonial farmhouse
    house hunting,  gardening and landscape

    Welcome to Our Colonial Farmhouse

    This is not a drill. I repeat! This is not a drill. Our house hunt is over and I can finally talk about our new home without jinxing the deal. Thank goodness! Our new home is actually quite old. Old as in founding fathers old! So without further ado, welcome to our colonial farmhouse! If the story is correct, the original part of this house was supposedly built in the 1780s. The “new” section of the house (shown above) was built around 1849. There is some etching in a stone in the attic with the builder’s name and date to verify the 1849 date. Let me do the math for you. At…

  • Herringbone Rolling Plant Caddy
    DIY,  gardening and landscape

    Herringbone Rolling Plant Caddy

    We might have leveled up our reuse and repurpose game with our latest DIY project – a Herringbone Rolling Plant Caddy. We created it from items we had in our house, which made it a zero cost project. And I love it so much. Three main items were repurposed to make this rolling plant caddy. The first item was an old board that we cut into a square. What would I do without old boards in my life? The second item was a set of wheels that we removed from this thrift store dresser. The third thing we repurposed to make this plant caddy was a set of wood blocks that…

  • succulent in a shot glass
    decorating,  gardening and landscape

    3 Unexpected Succulent Planters

    I’m excited to show you how I’ve planted my succulents in 3 unexpected planters. I do not have a green thumb, but I seem to be able to keep succulents alive. This is probably because succulents tend to do well with a little neglect less watering than regular houseplants. Now that I’ve inspired your confidence in my abilities (ha!), let’s get to the fun stuff. Pretty much anything is fair game around my house to be used or reused in an unexpected way! Unexpected Succulent Planter #1: Shot Glass This idea could go very tacky very quickly. Believe me, I know. However, we happen to have a brass shot glass that…

  • Family,  gardening and landscape

    Our Backyard in Winter

    There are certain athletic pursuits I am comfortable saying aren’t for me given the high likelihood of falling and/or crashing into stationary objects. Yes, I’m speaking of sports that involve snow and ice and hurtling yourself down or across slippery surfaces at high rates of speed. That’s why I find it slightly ironic that I’m excited to share our winter ‘backyard’ with you. What looked like this in the summer… Now looks like this in the winter… That’s right! Our pond has frozen over. Also, we have neighbors! Who knew?!?! Before the grandparents start sending me messages about being careful about skating on our winter backyard, let me reassure you…

  • Family,  gardening and landscape

    The Best $16 I’ve Ever Spent

    I should have called this post “welcome to our backyard,” but I went the sensational route. That sometimes happens when I write late it was actually 9 p.m. at night. The home we rented for our arrival back in the U.S. has a cute cabin-y exterior. This is from the day we moved in… Fun, right? But my first impression was OH. NO. WAY. Truly. What the pictures don’t tell you is that the location of this home has some drawbacks due to its close proximity to a busy road and some commercial development. However, the backyard almost makes me forget all of those things and I can see why the owners…

  • gardening and landscape,  Ireland

    Living in Ireland: That Time A Tree Came Down

    In mid-August the Irish village I live in started replacing sections of sidewalks (aka footpaths) on our street. It’s now October and they are still working on it. One might assume I live on a really long street. Nope. Not at all. There are probably 14 houses along this stretch of road. One might also assume this construction crew is juggling projects all over the area. Wrong again! I know this because I finally broke down and asked. Anyway, the point is I like to judge things I have no expertise in I don’t understand why, but it’s taking a really long time to replace the sidewalks. So imagine my surprise when…

  • decorating,  gardening and landscape

    Natural Rock Soap Dish

    The last day of our trip to the U.S. was pretty special. First, we got to spend the morning playing with friends. Can’t go wrong there. After that, I ran into my very first piano teacher. There are a few people God gifted with a sweet spirit and an abundance of talent and she’s one of them. You really need to see her portfolio of oil paintings. (image: Nathelle Norfleet) Then, my son got a lesson on how to operate the tractor bucket. Apparently, he now thinks that makes him qualified to help Grandpa make hay next year. He’ll be 8. Finally, we capped the day off with a trip…

  • gardening and landscape,  Ireland

    Living in Ireland: Spring Flowers in Our Yard

    Can you believe it is April already? Time sure is flying! Last April we visited Ireland for the first time. It was rainy, windy and miserable. To which we said, “Yeah! Let’s move here!” Now that I have an Irish winter under my belt, I can say spring in Ireland means the rain is…a little bit warmer. Ha! There are nice days too. More than you’d think. One thing I’ve learned is that the Irish do not squander a nice day or a nice hour. I’m a quick learner, so I try to follow their example! Sunday was super nice here (upper 50s Fahrenheit – practically summer weather), so I spent…