Thursday, April 29, 2010

New Blog Name - Same Ol' Mandy

As you can tell, I've pretty much just been posting about my yard lately, so I decided to change the name temporarily to "Mandy's Garden". Let's face it, there was no reason to keep the name "Daily Dose" since I never wrote daily! To continue with the theme: Here are some more pics from my garden!

This is my rhodedendron. The leaves got eaten up pretty badly last year by bugs (mainly japanese beetles), but it still is blooming! It's got plenty more buds on it.

My peony is beginning to bloom. It hasn't bloomed in 3 years and it decides to finally bloom right when we're moving...well, at least I still get to enjoy it now.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

more yard pics

I betcha can't tell that I'm proud of my yard!

More flowers blooming everyday! You can really notice my azaleas.

my spiderwort flowers in the morning and they close up at night

This iris was trying to bloom for several days now and finally opened.

Monday, April 19, 2010

My yard, a sentimental memoir - Part 3

Today we signed off on the contract for a couple to buy our house. Now we wait for their approval letter and the home inspections on both houses. I'm excited and fearful of this new chapter in our lives. I'll be glad that now I can feel like I can do things when I get home and sleep 30 minutes later in the morning or go for a morning run. I'm very proud of what I was able to accomplish in the yard at my Lake View home over the past almost 5 years and looking forward to work on my new yard. You know, it amazes me how different my back yard looks just after a few weeks of spring. I love this time of year and new things popping up everyday. I hope the new owners enjoy it just as much as I do and take care of it just as well too!

The above picture was taken on 3/27/10 and the one below was taken 4/17/10.
Amazing, huh?!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

My Yard, a sentimental memoir - Part 2

Well, today we put in our counter-offer for our house. I hope they accept it. Apparently they really fell in love with our house and I hope the back yard too. I am giving up my refrigerator as part of the deal. It was a graduation/house warming gift from my dad, so I was reluctant to do it, but in the end gave it up for the greater good. Plus, I can get a newer one with all the bells and whistles now. The buyers requested May 31st for closing. That's a significant day - not only is it Memorial Day (so I'm not really sure we can close on that day), but it's also our 7th wedding anniversary. We were planning on coming back from Gulf Shores on that day and if all goes according to plan, we'll have another thing to add to that day's importance. Here's some more of my memoir of my yard:

Just a note that I didn't mention before - our backyard had some grass then woods behind with more weeds than anything. The first spring, I remember waking up to see millions of huge weeds that I swear were not there the day before! It took a lot of hard work, but eventually we got it to where it had a purpose and got all of our neighbors jealous, yet motivated to make their yards look nice too!

my hammock: such a relaxing place in the springtime. It's also one of the first parts of the yard we worked on. It was a perfect place between 2 trees.

I designed this arbor with 3 support posts instead of one. Daniel, his brother, and brother's friend built it for me. We later put in a floor, which is kinda backwards. We were indecisive on whether doing pavers, the wood decking, or river rock.

The pond was one of the hardest projects ever! It really has taken 3 years to really perfect. We got the pond liner from Daniel's Aunt Tricia. Mom and I dug, but the ground was so hard we couldn't get it all the way down. We added dirt and rock. The next year we pulled it up and dug down even farther using all the water from the pond to soften the ground. We were able to get it down to the lip of the pond and added the rocks back to hide the liner. We did have a different kind of waterfall that was more like a stream, but last year I got the this waterfall in the hopes of hiding all the "unnatural" portions of the pond/pump system. It's really hidden now!

My pond features goldfish. It once had fancy koi and shubunkins, but an owl got to them. He had expensive tastes. We noticed that they kept disappearing without a trace (not floating on the top). Once night I was feeding them at dusk and saw the reflection of a flying animal in the water that landed on a tree over the pond. I looked up and there was an owl, waiting for his supper! Now I have the 15 cent goldfish from Walmart/PetsMart. They procreate so I never had to really replace them.

I have lots of little creatures hiding in my yard. They are mostly turtles and frogs. For some reason, most of my turtles lose their heads; this one's just lounging around.

You can't see me!

I've had this peony for 3 years now. When my mother first bought it (and made me plant it), it had a few blooms. Every year after that, it never bloomed for me. But, apparently that's typical for when you move or plant one. This is the first year it's bloomed for me and I have at least 7 buds on it!

Can you believe that this was one little plant? One little piece of grassy stalk sticking up out of the ground? Well, we've coined it "the peach park plant". My mom saw it in Clanton at the Peach Park. It had a pretty orange flower and she wanted us to find one. Well, she "took" it and I planted it. We never found it at a store. It spread and spread and spread. I even have given some away! I can't wait until it blooms!

This is a portion of my yard behind the arbor. We have several azalea bushes and oak leaf hydrangeas surrounding a bird house that was given to us by Daniel's mother. It's like a duplex as it has 2 sides with a wall in the middle. Every year we have a pair of bluebirds that come to live in it. They keep a nest in there, but they only use the right side. Funny, huh?

This Japanese Maple is about 4 years old. We bought it from Pike in Birmingham at only 2 feet tall and scraggly-looking. We only paid $15 for it! That is unheard of! We really got a deal. It's probably worth $100 now.

This is an iris my neighbor gave me. She split a bunch that were taking over her garden and gave me about a dozen. They've done really well in my yard.

This plant was bought in honor of my brother. He moved to Charlottesville, VA a few years back to be a chef at a French restaurant up there. Mom found this a couple years ago - a Virginia Sweetspire.

You can't see them very well in this photo, but about 2 years ago, we put in 3 crepe myrtles to the right of our house as a decorative border between us and our neighbors. We thought the trees were going to die because it was so hot that summer. We split some daylillies from the other side of the driveway and put them between the trees. They're getting so big, they'll have to be split again this year!

These trees are our "cingular trees". You know the Cingular/ATT commercials with the ascending items in the background to symbolize their signal bars. Well, my trees were descending with the largest to the left and the smallest to the right. Now the middle tree has caught up. They were all the same size when we bought them!

These were old burglar bars from my mom's house. They work perfect as a fence/trellis for my carolina jasmine to grow.

Bauer will miss his backyard and holding down CTU (Canine Terrorist Unit).

Saturday, April 17, 2010

My Yard, a sentimental memoir

Well, several hours ago, we got a call from our Realtor stating that we had an offer on our house! We don't know any specifics yet as we'll meet with our Realtor tomorrow afternoon. Like I've said before, there are mixed feelings about this move. I love my house and my yard, but Daniel and I both work in Tuscaloosa and have for over a year now and it's getting really tiring. Thinking about the real possibility of moving, I began to get pretty weepy-eyed. I am really going to miss our first house and the yard I've put so much work into. I've been meaning to put newer pictures up for you to see, so here's my photo memoirs of my yard.

Our home

the back side

our patio furniture

my pride and joy

one of the first areas we planted
when we moved here

I have many different types of
hydrangeas in my yard. This one has
so many buds. I can't wait til it blooms!

One of my hydrangea trees

This is a hydrangea that Lowe's just about
killed and put on sale for something crazy like
$5. I revived 2 of them and they are huge!

Friday, April 16, 2010

5 Question Friday

I really have not blogged in a while. I actually have been somewhat busy and also haven't had much to say. Daniel and I have been working hard on our house: we had an open house Sunday, a showing on Tuesday, and another one with the same couple from Tuesday this afternoon (fingers crossed and numerous prayers prayed/ing). We both have mixed feelings about leaving our house. For one thing, it's our first house. And...I've (with my mom as the slavedriver) put so much work into my yard. I love my yard and my house, but do not love the drive everyday. I really wish I could have both, but who can afford that?! I'll miss my house and my backyard, but I'll have another one to work on, plus a pool!

Well here's my 5 Question Friday entries:
1. What words do you use on your blog/online that you don't use in real life?

I hyphenate or slash a lot of words and use parentheses a lot, but I pretty much type how my thoughts go which is usually how I talk because I don't have much of a filter and I write run-on sentences too.

2. Do you still write checks?

I write checks only to pay bills that I owe that won't let me pay online. Online is the way to go! No wondering if it got to the right place and on's worry free.

3. Who was your favorite President and why?

I'm going to have to say Reagan. He was a smart guy that surrounded himself with even smarter ones. He really cared about this country and fought for the good of America. He stood firm in his beliefs. That's all I care to share right now. I will not attempt to get on a soap box today.

4. Are you a yeller?

I can yell when led to, but mostly not. Daniel might say otherwise, but he's biased and generally deserves being yelled at sometimes ;)

5. Have you ever dumpster dived?
I can say with confidence that I have never dumpster dived. I have never seen anything that I wanted that badly to go through trash for it. I will admit that I once ate food out of the Wesley refridgerator because I had no money and felt too bad to ask my mom for money. That was as close to dumpster diving as I got.

I'll leave you with a few pics of flowers from my garden:

rose (above) and chinese snowball