Yesterday afternoon I got the area “beside our shop/in front of the garden” and “garden perimeter” weed whacked.
Today I’m planning to weed whack “behind the shop/beside the garden” where I keep my trash cans of Mel’s Mix ingredients, garden tools, cement (soil) mixer, etc. The weeds are over my knees out there. I would like to get that all weed whacked, and then spray the whole area with KILLZALL, since it would be MUCH easier upkeep that way. Wish me luck?
I’m drinking some coffee before heading out to weed whack the front and the back yard. My husband is going to mow. So the yard will look like someone cares before it gets too hot to. The temperature for this last day of summer is forecast to be 101 with a heat index this afternoon. Oh, GOOD. I’m SO ready for some cool. My list of things to do outside is longer than my leg now…
Today is DAY 68 in my efforts to make daily yoga a habit. I’m starting to think that yoga is essential to my ability to move without pain, stay reasonably flexible, and avoid falling on my head as I age. I still have to consciously make myself do it, but I feel much looser after my practice.
I’m going to get outside now and work before it gets lethal out there.
I have to admit that at this very moment I’m feeling a bit older than usual. I just finished weed-whacking the front yard, the driveway area in front of our trio of planters, around the driveway pad, the back sidewalk edge and a bit more. I’m inside, drinking water and trying to cool off before we fix lunch. Then, I’m HOPING it won’t be too hot for me to finish the back.
For ME to do weed whacking, I have to get in a certain position. Holding that position while working, plus the weight of the weed whacker, plus fighting with the 100 foot extension cord I need to use makes me tired pretty fast. I used to be able to do the whole job in one session. Now I quit after 45 minutes. Oh, well. Maybe I’ll feel younger later…. :0)
I’m resting from my first session of weed whacking. By noon today, until 8pm tonight, our heat index is going to be 106, so I’m out NOW, trying to get the weed whacking done while it’s ONLY 85.
There’s about half an hour towards the end of the day, when the sun is starting to go down when it’s fabulous outside here. I try to arrange things so I can walk around then, soaking up the glory of it. I take pictures, make mental notes of the next thing I need to tackle, wish I had more flowers (there are never enough), play with Amber and Abby, who follow me around, and maybe sit for a bit on the front porch steps or on the back deck before going in. The world is perfect then, ‘free’ from problems, strife, and stupidity, when I feel filled with the joy of being alive.
If our weather here were like that for more of the day, I might spend all day outside. Since I’m older than dirt, it’s probably a good thing that our Arkansas weather in the summer is totally UN-civilized, hitting you in the face with the heat the minute you step outside, moving from one place of a/c to the next as fast as you can.
I have one more weed whacking session in me before I will have to stop for the day, clean up outside, then come in and shower, getting ready for the rest of my day.
I think this squirrel looks ready for action, not ‘flopped.’
We had a really nice evening cooking out last night. My husband had a bottle of Corona with a slice of lime. I had a sugar-free Dr. Pepper Creme Soda over ice. Our dog, Amber, went between checking each of us, tail wagging frantically, and running around in the yard, nosing everything. Our cat, Abby, just found a spot on the deck and sprawled on her back, feet up in the air. We had the LED rope lights on, so everything looked party-like, and colorful. The charcoal smelled good even before my husband added the hamburger patties. No one was mowing, so it was quiet. The worst of the heat was gone and it was pleasant with the deck ceiling fan stirring the air. We talked, played with the animals, thoroughly enjoying ourselves.
We added corn on the cob to our dinner. We were too full for our strawberries and ice cream, though. We’ll enjoy some of that tonight.
Today I’m dressed to the nines in sweatband, old shirt, old jeans, long socks, old shoes, ready to go out in a minute and weed whack before it gets too hot for man or beast outside. Actually, it’ll be ‘regular’ summer weather, nothing out of the ordinary, but it’s smart to work first thing in the morning or right before dark to avoid overheating. I’m going to try to get the main yard done, front and back, to go with my husband’s goal of mowing the yard yet again, although I think he’s planning to only hit the high spots today. The lack of rain has finally meant that some of the grass is holding steady while the more weeded areas have shot up again. By the end of the day it should look like someone cares around here.
It looks like we’re going to have another week where our plumber hasn’t been able to make time to help us with our 2nd line. We’re watering manually in the front planters. I’ll be glad when it can be automated, but it’s not that bad yet.
I hope that you are able to stay cool wherever you are today and that you’re doing something fun.
I finished the weed whacking I wanted to do yesterday! The tomato planters are clean, the debris is gone, and I got the grass and weeds down from around the planters, under the house, under the deck, down the back sidewalk, and around the brick planter beside the garage pad. And now it’s raining, right on schedule. Hooray!
We’ll run our errands in half an hour, delighted by the rain even if we drown while we’re out. My husband will spew bad words because he’s tired of mowing for the season, but the plants are all breathing a sigh of relief.
It’s quite dark outside, looking like nighttime instead of morning, but we aren’t supposed to have severe weather, just a cold front with cooler temperatures. I’M READY! :0)
If the wind isn’t blowing a lot when we get home, I may get out my umbrella and enjoy a walk in the rain.
Our weather experts are predicting scattered showers and a heat advisory this afternoon and evening of 100+, so I got out this morning and did another session of weed whacking in the waist-high area behind our shop and beside our garden. You can actually SEE the 250 gallon propane tank now! I also cleared the area around the trash cans where we keep the ingredients for Mel’s Mix for the square foot garden.
While I was out there, I went into the shop and worked on the Christmas presents for my friends some more.
We’ll eat lunch in about an hour, so I have time to cool off, drink a bottle of water, treat myself to another cup of coffee, and enjoy being at the computer before I need to get our meal together. :0)
I hope your Saturday is shaping up to be a good one.
YARD – My sanity may be waning. I’m really trying to tackle the waist-high grass and weeds that have taken over behind the shop and beside the garden. When it’s not raining and dry enough to work, the heat index is 100+. ARRGGHHHH!
Yesterday morning I did get a start on it. The first part of the project is trying to ‘free’ the 250 gallon propane tank out there. It’s almost buried with all the high grass around it.
The reason that I have this project is that, due to the guy wire making one corner of the garden fence border secure being in the way, my husband can’t mow this area. (actually, he DID do it once, being hard-headed in the extreme. He got the grass cut, but had tears and rips in his arms and on the side of his head from forcing his way through the small opening while on the mower – and then back out again – while I was occupied elsewhere. I ripped him a new one while cleaning up his wounds, making him promise not to try this again. I told him that I would use the weed whacker on the area.
Since I’m a lazy, procrastinating person, I’ve let it get totally out of hand. My husband noticed it the other day, so I’ve redoubled my efforts to get this area under control before he decides to ‘handle’ it again.
It rained overnight, so things are too wet right now. We will go to Lunch Bunch in about an hour and then I’m hoping to be able to do a session or two when we return, though the forecast is egg-frying-outside this afternoon. Fingers crossed.
SHOP – I should be able to spend some time out in the shop this afternoon. I got a bit more done on the Christmas presents I’m making, plus am now ready to start re-painting the dragonfly after making sure the glass is secure on his wings and gluing new eyes on.
I just treated myself to watching bloopers from The Carol Burnett Show on YouTube. I just happened upon them and now I’m exhausted from laughing. My husband came in from the living room to find out why I was laughing so hard.
Tim Conway was a truly gifted man. His sense of humor was wonderful, of course, but his timing – adding layer on layer – was genius. He and Jonathan Winters were right on my wave length, having the same kind of humor – a combination of funny situation, words, and using their body to enhance the picture. They made me laugh so hard my stomach hurt. The only other person who can do that to me is our son. He will get on a tear, see me laugh, and just build it and build it until I’m begging him to stop. He doesn’t, of course, until he’s good and ready. :0)
So, still feeling exhausted, I’m still smiling as I type. What a wonderful way to start a day!
My next out-in-the-yard project is weed whacking an area where my husband can’t get the riding mower. It’s behind our shop and beside my garden. I don’t think I’m exaggerating to say the ‘grass’ is about my waist high right now. Because of our weird weather this summer and my general laziness, I’ve basically ignored it. Now that I have my garden boxes cleaned out and covered with tarps, it’s time to turn my attention to this. This is an area where I keep the trash cans that hold the materials I combine to create Mel’s Mix for my garden boxes. I store tools and the used cement mixer we bought to mix the materials. There is also a 250 gallon propane tank that provides fuel to the shop. The weather people have said that it will be cooler today (only 80s) with lower humidity. Of course, they lied when they said that yesterday, so I’m learning to take what they say with a grain of salt. I’ll go out in awhile and see what I can get accomplished.
I’ll check our two brick planters on the side of the house to see if, by chance, we have more ripe tomatoes, but I would be surprised if we do. I think our tomatoes are finished for the season.
In my art room, I’m still trying techniques to create art using a technique called, “Acrylic Pour.” So far, I’m bombing out, but I saw another technique yesterday I would like to try. I’m having a good time creating messes. :0)
In our shop, I’m refurbishing a dragonfly that lives on the side of our house and also starting work on some things I’m making as Christmas presents for my friends. They will take awhile, having many steps, so I’m doing a bit at a time, starting early.
My husband has been griping about the north side of our shop. It has been overgrown with not only weeds taller than I am, but poison ivy, things with stickers, other things with burrs, etc. We don’t usually make a habit of walking on the north side of our shop, but it was bothering him, so I told him I would handle it.
The project was larger than I thought. I first sprayed thing with KillzAll, my champion weed killer, mixed in a 2-gallon container. That didn’t do much. I then took our weed eater – battery-powered – out there and worked for three days to finally get things cut down enough to make a difference. Then I sprayed it again two or three times with KillzAll.
This picture is taken from the end of the shop looking toward our house.
This one is taken from the opposite end of the shop, looking west.
Now that the job is done, the first thing I’m going to do is make my husband come out, look at things, and do the appropriate ‘oohing’ and ‘ahhing’ that we now have a good path on the north side of the shop,
second, I’ll make sure he actually USES the path at least once to make all the work more worth it.
I am learning the hard way that I need to pay attention to the ORDER of my activities to get some control of the civilized part of our yard. As I type, I’m TRYING not to scratch all the chigger bites I gathered yesterday while trying to clear a path on the north side of our shop. It was totally overgrown, so I had sprayed it pretty heavily a couple of times with weed killer previously. It hadn’t done the job, so I got serious yesterday.
I got a path cleared, but learned-
to spritz on Ben’s Tick and Insect Repellent before heading outside. We just got this. It got really high ratings from Consumer’s Reports. It says it is the “wilderness formula” 30% Deet, and repels mosquitoes that may carry the Zika virus. At any given time we are outside, my husband is unaware of bugs. I come back in with bites all over. I will TRY to get in the habit of spritzing this on before I even think of going outside.
2) I will then mix up bug spray (We use Eight – great on killing bugs, but doesn’t harm plants or our animals) in our 2-gallon container and spray it over the areas I will try to weed whack in.
3) After I have sprayed the bug killer thoroughly, I will weed whack, getting everything cleared out.
4) Then I will spray the weed killer (we use KillzAll) again, hosing down the area.
5) Then I will spray again with bug killer.
I’m HOPING that if I build this habit, I won’t end up looking like someone chewed on by zombies with my usually sunny disposition marred by trying really hard not to scratch….
I’m going to have to switch gears for the coming week, starting today – hopefully.
I’ve been working outside, whacking down weeds, cutting back trees, spraying weed killer and ant killer, etc., in an effort to keep Mother Nature from reclaiming the totally wild, wooded land we bought around 33 years ago now. (We built our home on top of this ridge line in 1987.) This is a full-time, never-ending job, and I have to say that we grow some really healthy, impressive weeds here. Some of them are taller than I am!
Last night, while my husband and I enjoyed a much-appreciated evening on the deck while grilling our dinner, we talked about the fact that the ‘weed trees’ were again encroaching on our view of the valley below. The slope of our land is impressive, too, and there are totally rocky places where it is treacherous to even think about walking. This is where the weed trees are. I am going to attempt to cut these down, a few at a time, over the coming weeks to try to reclaim our view.
This gives you an idea of what we can usually see.
That said, here is the 10 day forecast for our area –
Maybe I should be trying to built a raft or boat instead of thinking about weed whacking….
The end result of a forecast like this is I want to take a nap. I feel super lazy. I can’t even get excited about playing in my art room right now, though that could change once I’ve finished my coffee.
The only thing I PROMISE I will do today is make a ‘sausage-egg-and-cheese bake’ for our dinner tonight. This is a wonderful keto recipe from Suzanne Ryan of Simply Keto. My husband grinned and gave a happy thumbs up when I told him what I planned to make today. Actually, I’ll promise another thing – I will do at least 35 minutes of gentle yoga stretches today.
Otherwise, I’ll have to fight my natural inclination to stretch out in my chair in the living room under my snuggly throw and take cat naps (with at least one, if not two, actual cats!) today.
We bought our land here in Arkansas in 1987. Actually, my husband put a deposit on it and then brought me out here to see it. We stopped on the road in what I thought was an arbitrary spot one really hot summer day. My husband proceeded to guide me up a hill, through heavy woods, thick brush, what I HOPED wasn’t poison ivy, and finally to the top, where I was stunned by a beautiful view of the valley below. We dynamited some parts of the hill, cleared other parts, left most of it wooded, and built our home. Ever since, the land and Mother Nature have conspired to take back the land.
I saw on the weather forecast that ALL of next week – every day with the exception of Thursday – has at least a 50% chance or better of rain. I have devoted this weekend to working outside, trying to get things in reasonable shape before the monsoon starts.
Yesterday I spent all day in our veggie garden – weeding, harvesting, weed whacking, and finally spraying weed killer. My husband got the yard mowed. Today I will spend the day in sessions of weed whacking over the rest of the yard. Since I’m older than dirt, a little bit of weed whacking goes a LONG way, so I do it for awhile until my back starts talking to me, and then come in and rest, drinking a big mug of water, and then going out for another session. This allows me to get a reasonable amount done outside by the end of the afternoon without killing myself. :0)
Murdering weeds doesn’t sound like a very SWEET thing to do on Mother’s Day, but it works for me.
I spent most of the day in my veggie garden today. I started weeding and harvesting the lettuce, brought that in and rested. Then I went out again and did the same, bringing in another full basket. I then weed whacked under the garden boxes, and finally sprayed weed killer under the boxes and around the inside perimeter.
Our weather forecast for next week is rain every day except Thursday, and we have a 60% to 80% chance each day. That’s a LOT of rain. We may need a boat by the end of the week.
So that meant that we basically had today and tomorrow to try to get the yard and garden under as good control as possible before the rain starts. My husband mowed the yard.
I got the garden under control and will do a lot of weed whacking and clean up tomorrow.
My plants are doing well so far. Everything is looking healthy and happy.
I took this close up to show you that the lettuce, as well as providing lots of leaves for salads, is starting to form heads!
This picture is a bit over the top on what I’m actually going to do, but the motivation is there.
I went out to finish weed whacking around our burn barrel this morning. I then hauled all the weed trees I cut down a couple of days ago, putting them in a pile we will burn later. Then I went back and weed whacked some more, trying to give us a good margin of safety.
While I was doing that, I apparently ran into an ant pile. All of a sudden I noticed I had ants on my arm around my watch. I stopped everything and brushed them off, but not before they had bitten/stung me. Since I came in, I have put on Benadryl and then some anti-itch ointment. My arm, plus the top of my right foot, are now pink and swollen, with raised welts. Oh, joy.
I wouldn’t be surprised if I hadn’t practically bathed in bug repellent spray before I went out there.
Later on today, I plan to mix up two gallons of Eight, the spray I use to kill all kinds of what I consider bad bugs, and plan to murder as many ants as possible. I don’t know that ants do anything important in our ecosystem. If they do, they’ll need to transfer their operations somewhere else.
I will also spray the area around the burn barrel with KillsAll, the stuff that is wonderful at keeping growth of greenery down. This is an area we can’t mow, and don’t need to have any grass or anything.
Picture me as Arnold Schwarzenegger, armed with a KillAll sprayer in one hand and an Eight sprayer in the other – taking on all comers!
I have just finished about an hour and a half of weed whacking in the yard this morning. I have probably one more session of weed whacking and then the leaf blower to clean off the sidewalks and garage pad before I’m finished.
My husband mowed the lawn yesterday, so the grass looks good. All the edges around everything were ragged, though, so I decided to get outside early this morning and see if I could clean things up.
With the heat index, it’s ONLY 95 right now. Since the index is supposed to get to 105 this afternoon, I decided it was best to get out there while it was COOL. :0)
The new-to-us riding mower we got recently from a wonderful friend and neighbor does a really good job. When the civilized part of our yard is freshly mowed, weed whacked and blown, we actually look pretty good!
With all the yard work this morning and bowling with good friends tonight, I’m not even going to feel guilty about not ‘exercising’ today. I’ve learned that the work I do uses different muscles than the ones used for more traditional ‘exercises,’ but when I’ve worked and played this much in a day, I’ll call it good enough.
I THINK the leaves are dry enough today that I can blow them into piles and put them through our leaf mulcher. If they aren’t, I’ll have to wait until NEXT week, since the rest of the week here is supposed to be rainy.
I just finished unhooking and gathering the extension cord we’ve been using for the greenhouse. This was a job, because we had TWO 75 foot HEAVY extension cords linked together to get from the house to the greenhouse. I THINK I have the greenhouse ready for winter now. My basic book for using a greenhouse says that I can extend my growing season in the spring by starting seeds for hardy plants, such as broccoli and cauliflower, in mid February, and most other early spring plants, such as lettuces, spinach and such at the beginning of March. Until then, things will be idle out there, though I’ll get out and try to organize for seed planting soon.
Meanwhile, I’m trying to do things like final weed whacking, clean up, mulching, pruning, etc. to get ready for winter. I’ll also harvest lettuce from the raised bed, square foot garden. I have two kinds of lettuce, Bibb and Simpson, carrots and celery left.
Right now, we have so many leaves in the front yard, you can hardly tell there is any grass under there.
This is our mulcher.
We attach a 39 gallon trash bag to the bottom part (orange). We dump the leaves in the top and run the mulcher to put the mulched leaves into the bag. Then I run the bag full again, because the first time doesn’t get nearly as small as I would like. Then the bags go into the garage until I have the flower planters cleaned out, and then I’ll fill them up with the mulch we’ve made.
This time of the year, it’s all I can do to try to get everything outside done, so I’m not doing yoga or my elliptical trainer until things are under control.
I hope the weather where you are is cooperating with your plans today.
Once a month I have a wonderful massage. I look forward to the next one just as soon as the one I’ve had is finished. My massage therapist is the best. Lynn Moody has the Town Square Day Spa in Greenwood, Arkansas. If you’re in the area, the spa address is 320 South Coker Street in Greenwood. Her phone number is 479-629-7601 and her email is firstname.lastname@example.org. If you’re not in the area, I’m sorry. You’re missing a really class act. She listens, she cares, she is an expert at helping you when you hurt, and makes you feel absolutely relaxed and good if you’re just needing a good massage. She is worth her weight in gold.
I used to feel massage was an expensive luxury. If the bottom fell out of the world, I would have to give it up, but otherwise, it’s high on my list of wonderful things to do for myself. I feel good. My attitude is so much better. It definitely keeps me healthier. If you’re wavering about the whole idea of massage, my suggestion is to dive in and prepare to love it.
When I came home, my husband was in the ‘check-off-stuff-on-the-get-ready-for-winter list’ mood. We decided to change the tires on the truck – from the regular tires to our snow tires. We do this ourselves in the shop. When we bought the Honda Ridgeline truck in 2006, we bought 4 extra wheels and 4 snow tires. We had the tires mounted on the wheels and stored them in the garage. Today we did the change in about 45 minutes from start to finish. We both get a lot of exercise, and we save money not having to pay someone else to do the tire change. We’ll change back to the regular tires in mid-March. About half of the time was moving stuff in the shop so that we could drive the truck inside, and then putting things back to rights when the tires were on and the truck was outside again. We did about the best we’ve ever done. No yelling, no injuries, no tears, no problems with equipment not working, no surprises. YES!
This afternoon we have our geothermal guy coming out to check our equipment to make sure all is good for the fall and winter. We had a geothermal heat and air system installed retroactively in 2010 and signed a contract with Air-Pro Heating & Air Conditioning Incorporated to come out in the spring and then again in the fall to be sure things are working as they should. This is a great company. The men are knowledgeable, know exactly what to check for, and are very nice, as an added bonus. If you need anyone to come and help with problems, their phone number is 479-646-9699, and their address is 9109 Zero St., For Smith AR 72903. They can fix any problems they find and you feel safe after they finish looking at things.
A great morning and a good day. Great weather, too!
I’m planning to make us some lunch and then see if I can do any good with our push-around weed whacker this afternoon. My husband has running that out of gas for the winter on his to-do list, too…
My husband is finishing running the mower and the push weed whacker out of gas so that we can store them until next spring. Essentially, I’ve been out in the yard the whole day trying to cut down what remained between what we affectionately call the ‘civilized’ part of our back yard and the hill below, mostly left wild.
Since we’re getting a little long in the tooth these days, we hired a young, strong highly recommended guy to cut down stuff to open our view back up and also create a fire break in the case of wildfire. He worked as he could on the weekends, holding a full-time job with the city and also taking care of the lawns of about 20 people.
I used one hand-held weed whacker which lost its cap for the cord about a third of the way through the job. My husband found a replacement cap and ordered it on the net. Meanwhile, I used the second hand-held weed whacker. It worked for a time and then I had to stop to pull out more cord, since what I was cutting was really too much for the little thing. After this happened for the fourth time, I stopped and came in to rest.
My husband got out our push weed whacker that looks much like a small lawn mower, saying it would make quick work of the remaining stuff. We couldn’t get it started, though. We decided that there was condensation in the gas and had to work with it for a LONG time to finally get it running. I used it and was able to do quite a bit more, but the land slopes pretty violently down across the yard and I didn’t want to end up on my head half way down the hill with various parts cut off. We also had stuff sticking up here and there that was too much for even the push around whacker.
Since the breeze was coming UP the hill, my husband took lighter fluid and a lighter down past where Shane had cut and lit it up while I stood ready with the garden hose with a sprayer attached.
The fire made quick work of the remaining stuff, and there were only a couple of small spots that were up in the yard portion.
My husband kept trying to get me to react more slowly to the fire, but to no avail. I did NOT want the thing to get out of control and burn the house down after we had spent all this money and time trying to prevent just that!
There’s still some neatening up we can do, plus more burning we can do if we get a really good rain, but the main part of the clean up is done now. We can again see the valley from anywhere in the back yard, and we have a reasonable fire break, making me feel a lot safer.
I had planned to do a lot more in the yard today, but I feel good that we at least finished one of the things on our to-do list.