Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Backyard Repurposing

One of the features that sold us on our home was the small amount of grass in the backyard. Our prior home had a large backyard and Hubby has never been a fan of yard work. So, the appeal of "low maintenance perennial gardens" sounded great to us. 

Now that we've been in the house nearly 3 years, we have come to realize two things:
  1. The words garden & low maintenance should never be in the same sentence. 
  2. With three kiddos we need more grass. We backup to a large open green space, which we though would be a perfect place for the kids to run & play but they still are too young to be without adult supervision.

We've already eliminated two flower beds, one was actually dead smack in the middle of the yard folks! Now we have plans to size this bed down by nearly half providing 4.5 more feet of play space. 
Originally, the thought was to place our veggie garden here, but I decided upon an alternate location. 

Now you can see how there will be a nice stretch of grass for ball pitching, tag playing & slip'n sliding.

As for the garden, the spot below receives adequate sun, an already defined boarder & is close to a water spigot. Our yard guy actually showed up yesterday and I had him clear this bed of the three blah plants that occupied this space. Now it is a clean slate. Guess that means I need to get down to business. Hopefully the warm weather is hear to stay & we can get our veggies in the ground Mother's Day weekend when we traditional do all our planting. 

Monday, April 29, 2013

Oh Monday!

I am dragging this morning! It is definitely a 2 cups of coffee morning. This weekend was jam packed and super productive.

When our lawn service didn't show on Saturday morning to do the spring clean up Hubby & I got down to work.

I also tackled the front door. It isn't quite done yet. I have the second top coat to apply, but I am completely in love already. I don't know why I was so scared to paint it.

Belle stepped up to help us out with clean up and earned herself $10 for pine cone duty. She collected 8 buckets full!

Sunday after church and lunch with YiaYia Terry & Papou Yianni,  it was more clean up and then paint detail.

We spent the rest of the day outdoors, playing with neighbors & dining alfresco.

As for home projects, the mudroom is complete, the door will be after today & we've decided on a patio dining set. Now I just need to get motivated to write up all these posts. Hope your Monday is off to a better start….back to the Keurig I go:)

Friday, April 26, 2013

Back to the drawing board

In February when we ordered our new patio sofa & rockers, I located these dining chairs on amazon.com.

They were a steal at $212 for the pair, but rather than snag them while I had the chance, I bookmarked them for future reference. Fast forward 2 months, I log onto my amazon account intending to purchase the chairs and see:

Strathwood Falkner Dining Arm Chairs, Set of 2

by Strathwood

Currently unavailable.
We don't know when or if this item will be back in stock.

I can not believe it! Now I am on the brink of warm weather and outdoor dining season without chairs. Our current dining set is a Crate & Barrel hand-me-down from Bestie B that was on it's last leg when we moved here 3 years ago. Not to mention that the table is too small to accommodate a family of 5 & the substantial wooden chairs much too heavy for little ones to maneuver.

I fell in love with this table the moment I saw it. I had hoped to have Hubby build it to pair with the chairs, but now I'm second guessing whether the combination even works. The table is intended for use with coordinating benches, yet we would be opting for chairs with their back support. I feel like benches are great for quick meals, but when entertaining they aren't an inviting place to lounge and linger.

So now I'm on the hunt again.  Perhaps I should look into something like this, which appear to match our conversation set

Two negatives though:
1. I was hoping to avoid a "set" appearance.
2. The chairs are solid and block my sight line of the backyard. I preferred the airy open back of the amazon.com chairs. I wouldn't completely rule this option out, but I'm not in love with them.

As the search continued, I was able to located these substitutes. The cushions are sea foam green rather than ivory though & I was hoping to stick to neutrals. Not necessarily a deal breaker, but something to consider.  

And while I'm at it, do I just scrap the farm table (I can hear Hubby's cheers now) and purchase the "set" table?  Yes, I know two minutes ago I scuffed my nose at the idea of a "set", but I am brainstorming here folks. So continuing with this train of though, the deck furniture would be:


Conversation (3 person sofa & 2 club chair rockers)
I'm kind of leaning towards the iron "set". Perhaps I'm being swayed by the boxwoods and topiaries staged in the photo or just the ease of buying vs. building. Feel free to way in with your thoughts & I'll be sure to let you know what I decide. I'm an impatient thing so I'm sure the decision will be made before the weekend is over. Happy Friday!!!

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Out Front

So it has begun. The boxwood invasion that is. After swooning over the boxwoods gardens at Epcot, I was delighted to I pick up these two beauties from Costco. And they were a steal at only $16 a piece!

My eventual goal is to have all the beds in the front & backyard lined with boxwoods. Seeing as how the only exterior yard project on our 2013 Home Goals is the garden, it might be awhile until I see things come to fruition.

So for now I'll just enjoy these little lovelies. If only the weather would stay dry so I could tackle the front door…fingers crossed for the weekend.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Front Door Color Combo…Cast Your Vote.

You may recall this post back in February where I mentioned the idea of painting the front door. Well now that the weather is warmer, it is time to take some action. Above is a shot of our current color scheme. I reviewed my pinterest exterior board and found that I gravitated towards simple tonal color schemes…pretty much the same as my interior. (Sorry for the grainy photo quality.)

After some research, I narrowed my choice down to the following:

I stopped in to SW to grab samples since all I had seen to this point was online & this gorgeous color jumped out at me. 

It has just a hint of mint and I am obsessed. Can not get it out of my head. And the three of these together is pure heaven. I might even be in love enough to sandblast the brick shoji white in the relatively near future. 

My current dilemma is what color combo to choose. Here is a close up of the current door:

Do I go dark with urban bronze trim & the comfort gray door? My concern there is that the brass of the door and mint tones in the grey might look even more 80's than the orange oak. 

Or do I stick with my original plan and paint the trim shoji white, door urban bronze & then incorporate comfort gray via pots/planters?

Let me know your thoughts. The weather is still too wet for painting so I've got a little bit of time to mull this one over. I certainly am chomping at the bit to get started though.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

A Surprise Sprinkle {Bestie B's Baby Shower}

This past weekend Bestie H & I threw a "sprinkle" for Bestie B who is happily expecting baby #3 in early June. Bestie B is blessed with two of the most precious little girls, M & E, so her house is covered in all things pink, purple & frilly. Perfectly fine for now, but baby #3 is a boy! So we took this opportunity to spoil Mommy-of-3-to-be and shop for all things handsome and dapper. 

We held the shower in the boardroom of Bestie H's country club. The staff did a lovely job of setting up the room so we would have a table to dine at and then a lounge area where we could unwrap gifts. For the decor we went with varying shades of blue with yellow & grey accents thrown in for good measure. A large seersucker runner lent a seasonal feel to the decor along with the hydrangea, hyacinth & tulip floral arrangement. 

As favors, guests took home a cello baggie full of the most scrumptious sprinkle cookies every! I am not exaggerating when I say that; these cookies are that amazing. 

Bestie B arrived to room full of love for her and lil bambino. We enjoyed mimosas and a leisurely brunch before opening gifts. Five and a half hours later we finally loaded up in our cars and headed back home to our kiddies and Hubbies.

Bestie B's little gent has got the wardrobe down…now if Mommy & Daddy could just settle on a name!