Saturday, April 29, 2017

This Week

Today I got up around 7 AM, which is late for me. I usually get up around 6. Sometimes as early as 5:30. I wasn’t always an early riser. There was a time when I slept past nine in the morning. Then full time employment came along followed by kids. With a job I had weekends off and could sleep in if I chose to. But with young kids it was a different story. They got me up early seven days a week. And now that they’re grown and have moved out, I have my cats. Try telling cats they have to wait to be fed. They will nag you to death until that bowl is filled. And after you’ve been dragged out of bed and they fill their bellies, you know what they do? Go sleep. The little stinkers.


The most amazing man in the world is also the handiest. He can do every job around the house including taking apart big and small appliances that need repairs. When he was a little boy he was very curious about how things work. He’d dismantle items like clocks to explore the inner workings and then put them back together. Not always successfully in the beginning, mind you, and not always with his parents’ knowledge. But they weren’t too hard on him, he said, so he continued to build these skills that just got better and more diverse over time. Right now he’s tackling our vacuum that decided to up and quit at the worst possible time. Dust quickly builds up around here as we scrub and paint and organize, and a vacuum has become an essential item. If it can’t be fixed, we’ll be forced to buy another one quickly. We’ll see how this plays out.


Yesterday when we were out for coffee, we discussed our back yard/garden area. We have a corner lot with a 4 foot high chain link fence around it. You know how much privacy that offers. Zero. You know how disturbing that is to an introvert who wants to garden in peace without passersby and nosy curious neighbours peeking in? Very. A new, higher and more private fence is out of the question right now. Much too expensive. We need other options. Natural ones. Evergreen shrubs come to mind even though I’m not a big fan of them. I’m thinking boxwood, which is very popular. Do you have/grow these? What other suggestions do you have for a green solution?

We hung a bird feeder outside and have been enjoying visits from a variety of birds, but mostly American Goldfinches. They are so adorable. The cats have been enjoying the visits, too. From behind a patio door. I know they would love to get their paws (or jaws) on one of these little critters but that won't be happening. Ever. In any case, all these signs of spring are wonderful.

That’s all I have to say for now. Have a lovely weekend!

43 comments:

  1. Around here the only boxwood varietys are very slow growers. That makes them great for people who don't want to hedge often or for those who like to make their shrubs into fancy shapes. Good luck finding your privacy (a very necessary thing, if you ask me).

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    1. Yes, very necessary! It is something we will definitely work on.

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  2. I would go with a short-term AND a long-term solution for that fence. Short-term: buy those plastic strips that can be woven through the chain link to reduce visibility into your yard. Yes, not the most attractive solution but it would work quickly. Long-term: plant shrubs, trees, etc as you say and let them grow!

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    1. I know about those plastic strips because some of our neighbours use them but I never thought to do both that and the greenery at the same time! That is a great idea. While we wait for the shrubs and trees to grow, we can at least reduce some visibility into our yard. Thanks, Debra!

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  3. Is there a patio or deck area that you would prefer to sit in??? How about just a privacy "fence" near there?? Boxwood are very small and very $$$$...Home Depot and Walmart have their Cedars on now, for a pretty good price...and they can create instant privacy...
    Enjoy your weekend...
    Cheers!
    Linda :o)

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    1. There is an area that we are thinking to work on for privacy. It will include a patio and deck, and some gardening space. If that section is screened for privacy, it will be great. I'll have to check the stores soon to see what's available.

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  4. one of our neighbours planted a living cedar fence. They were lucky it rained a lot that year and the hedge looks fantastic now.

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    1. That sounds really nice. I'll have to check information on that.

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  5. Hahahaha on the meme. Pick up with our hands. Love it. Hope you find a great new machine, soon.

    I'm not introvert but I do value my quiet time outside. Here's to getting the privacy you're looking for.

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    1. The vacuum got fixed! Thank goodness. One less expense to concern ourselves with. Now we can concentrate on other things...like getting privacy for our back yard!

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  6. Boxwoods aren't the most beautiful hedge to look at. Cedars are nice. Maybe a long line of shower curtains down the length of the property?

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    1. After comments and some research, I'm rethinking boxwoods. We'll have to look at other options.

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  7. I agree fencing is so expensive. How about conifers they look nice?

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    1. I'm looking into those, too. They are so many options. We want to make the right decision because once they're planted...

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  8. Good suggestion by Debra with those strips...I believe they come in different colours.
    We have a number of and have had great success with boxwood....particularly the Green Mountain variety which grows quickly (ok let's put it this way quicker than the English/original variety of boxwood which takes forever).
    It is evergreen as you know and once it establishes itself and is 'comfortable (when the roots are happy where they are) it does grow a lot year by years. Ours are 15+ years and need to be pruned throughout the summer as they never stop growing. Thank gawd Ron loves to prune!!

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    1. Oh, I'll have to look into that, Jim! I've gotten some negative feedback about boxwood but perhaps it depends on the type. I'll keep an open mind. Debra's idea about that strips is something worth checking out right away.

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  9. We planted a (single) boxwood two summers ago to see how it would do. I don't think it has grown a bit. I'm not sure what kind it is (see Jim's info above); I thought there was only one kind! I pretty much know nothing. Except that I like my privacy in the yard, too. That's why we leave our jungle along the back of the property. Once the leaves come out - hey, it looks great! Good luck finding something suitable.

    Love the memes. Too funny :)

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    1. Even though I do gardening, I don't know much about evergreens, so this will be a learning experience for me. Hopefully we make the right choice!

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  10. Sorry I have no suggestions on what to grown for privacy, but I certainly understand your wanting to garden in peace. I also know all about cats waking us up for breakfast, although ours let us sleep until 7:30. After that, Phoebe pulls the shade open, Prancie knocks things off the nightstand and Sammy stomps on my bladder. Enjoy the rest of your weekend.

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    1. HAHA! Your cats certainly get the point across when they tell you it's time to wake up! That is funny and cute.

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  11. I concur with the idea of using cedars. They grow quickly and aren't fussy about soil (just keep them watered well the first year, like anything). Funny meme with the cat! -Jenn

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    1. Cedars are definitely a favourite. We'll have to look into that and see if it works for us.

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  12. It's sure nice to have a handy hubby! Mine is good at fixing things too and it's a godsend.

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    1. It is great, Linda. It has saved us so much money over the years!

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  13. My mom's cat jumped ninja style on the window today to spy on the birds

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    1. HAHA! That is funny. Cats tend to do silly things like that.

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  14. No clue about the fence; I would be like you though, trying to figure out some way to preserve my privacy. I'm an early riser; always have been. Hubby needs to get up at 5:30 for work and I'll get up with him. Its nice to have the time before I start work (at 9:30) to get things done around the house, quiet time, etc. I really enjoy it :)

    Can you loan out your hubby to visit Phoenix for a few days? Our vacuum is on the blink too; maybe he could find out a way to make it work?? You could come along too, what fun it would be!

    betty

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    1. That would be a lot of fun, Betty! You have no idea how much I'd love to visit Arizona.

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  15. I would avoid boxwood. We have (well, had) them in the yard. They are very temperamental shrubs. They die easily ... we had 20-30 of them lined as a hedge, and I kid you not .... at this point we have a total of one left. I would try juniper or azalea bushes.

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    1. Boxwood sounds fussy. I'll check out the juniper and azalea bushes and see if they'd work for us.

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    2. Juniper can be hard on some people's skin (like mine) - I break out in blisters after touching it. It's lovely to look at though.

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    3. I had no idea! Most things to consider :)

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  16. I'd go for an eight-foot privacy fence, but those are expensive...there is so much noise and lack of privacy where I live, I'm thinking a cave would be nice...

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  17. A vacuum that doesn't suck...well, that just sucks!!!
    We planted "scrub pines" along a privacy fence for even more privacy because a neighbor of ours loves to keep old cars and machinery behind his barn. Now we don't see his "used rusted out junk yard" anymore but it did take about ten years for the trees to reach a decent height.

    Good Luck Martha~

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    1. Nothing like a neighbour's junk, Jan. I'd do the same thing. For us, shrubs or trees that will grow about 6 or 7 feet would make a huge difference. This is definitely something we'll work on!

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  18. Boxwood are small and won't give a lot of privacy. How about some sort of vines to grow over the chain link fence ... perhaps honeysuckle vine. But come winter when all the leaves are gone so is a lot of the privacy. Cedars grow daily quickly (if you buy a decent size to start with) and can be trimmed. Fencing certainly is an investment. This is the perfect time to check around garden centres and see all the choices.

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    1. That's what we're going to do, Linda. We're going to check around and see what our options are. You are right; it's the perfect time to do this! As for the vines, I have one side of the yard where I'm planning to do that.

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  19. So please the vacuum was fixed ... I hate it when electrical things go wrong, Eddie is good at fixing things though!

    I do think Debra's idea of the strips in the short-term and then plants in the longer term is a good idea.

    All the best Jan

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    1. It is great when someone in the household knows how to fix things. It saves tons of money. I'm so glad our vacuum is fixed and we're not forced to buy another one!

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  20. I have the same problem when I'm vacuuming! LOL

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