Rain Barrel

It was a pretty darn dry summer, and it was super stinky hot too. We have talked a few times about getting a rain barrel to help supplement the water we use for food crops, and this year we got one. In researching rain barrels, we saw images of some with beautiful paintings on them.

Given that we have amazing artists in the family, and the one who excels in painting was going to be home for a month, it seemed a shame to leave the rain barrel in its plain state.

Here are some images of the rain barrel project.

Base coat:


Fargo supervised:


Adding some background:


Looking amazing already:


Finished and we LOVE it!


Yard art at its FINEST!




Beautiful New Fence!

It has been a long time since I posted about ripping down our old disintigrating garden fence, \which the hubby designed and built and I loved, in preparation for a new one. In the interim, there has been much planning/research/design/purchasing and there have been lots of things going on that have kept it from actually getting built.

We typically spend a good chunk of Memorial Day Weekend planting the garden. This time around, during Memorial Day, the soil was ready (once we got Fargo to let us broadfork his new favorite spot) and the pathways were cleared:

soil ready

soil ready 2

And the plants were ready:

veggies ready

The peppers were so ready they had flowers and…peppers!

pepper flowers

baby peppers

I mean, these veggie starts are SCREAMING to be planted. Given that we share space with bunnies, deer, groundhogs, etc. where we live, I would have bet money that planting without a fence would have meant disappearing veggie plants within a day or two.

As of yesterday evening, we have a fence!! I have to admit, I was worried about whether I would like it. I knew what the plan was, but I just couldn’t decide if I thought it was a good plan. I can honestly say…I LOVE IT! I think the hubster did an absolutely amazing job with the design and construction (even through rain).

finished fence

There are some finishing touches that still need to be added, and I think we will eventually relocate the gate. The plan was to do that right away, but it got scrapped for the sake of getting the project finished. But I truly think it is beautiful.

I think the bluebirds agree and will be happy the construction is finished:


I’m not sure Fargo approves, however.

poor fargo



Apparently, weeks of abnormally dry weather, followed by weeks of ridiculously wet weather makes for an incredibly beautiful dogwood. It is truly one of the highlights of Spring each year, but this year it deserves its own post.

early dogwood


fargo dogwood

dogwood close


I try to spend time looking at it to balance out the amount of weeds I look at during the MANY hours I’ve spent weeding during the last few weeks. The dogwood makes me happy!


Beauty of Spring

Although I have only run once since Sunday, and if I went and changed right this very minute I’d have time to do a short run this morning, it’s not happening. Maybe I will run after work? In the meantime, I am looking back at pictures I have taken over the past two weeks and realizing how much I love the beauty of Spring. If I’m going to be honest, I must add that I’m not a fan of spring allergies.

Fargo and I have spent a ton of time outside this week. I weed, he spies on the neighbors and poses for pictures.

fargo tulips

He knows everything that goes on next door!

fargo spying

This dogwood tree made a great backdrop for prom pictures.

fargo dogwood

Sometimes Fargo needs to rest…while I continue to weed…

fargo resting

This bleeding heart looked rough after the late frost, but has really recovered nicely.

bleeding heart

It was cold and rainy yesterday and it’s supposed to stay that way for a while. We needed the rain, for sure, but there is still so much outside work to do. Of course, there’s quite a bit of inside work to do as well, since I’ve been ignoring the inside list for the outside list…


Lamb’s Ear

Do NOT let it get out of control…like this…

lambs ear

It takes forever to do this…

ripping lamb's ear out of garden

That pile is the base of an old butterfly bush (invasive, do not plant) and the lamb’s ear from about 1/3 of one perennial bed. Great way to work the hammies and make them sore to balance out the OUCH in my quads from the Half.

Love/Hate Relationship

I have a love/hate relationship with my perennial beds. Right now, I’m leaning more towards hate. They are SO MUCH WORK!! For whatever reason, the past two years, the grass and the lambs ear have been attempting a coup.

It’s all lambs ear!!!!! Last year I ripped the lambs ear out of the closer half, and you’d never know it.

lambs ear

I was late in removing the old growth from the front beds, saved it for last, because I worry about Fargo being out front, near the road. And because I didn’t want to see all of the grass and the weeds hiding under last year’s dead flowers.

old growth

Fargo was quite helpful, as usual.

Fargo always helping

At least it will look better from the road, just don’t look up close.

cleared and raked

It would be easier if we used chemicals, but we don’t. I have spent at least an hour weeding, almost every day, for the last two weeks, and you would never know. But once the flowers, and the plants that are supposed to be there, really kick into gear I will be back on the love side of the scale.

The hubster thought it would be fun to share that his dinner tonight, was wild roasted turkey (he brought home from a hunting trip last week and prepared himself), on a sandwich with home baked bread, a sweet potato from our garden and homemade cookies for desert. All of the hard work does have its rewards!