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Fall Gardening…NOT for the Faint of Heart

As previously mentioned in this prior post, I love, love, LOVE to garden! But not all seasons are appreciated equally. You see, I have a problem with fall gardening.

fall gardening

I have a very large perennial garden and after all the thought and work I’ve put into it, the end is so sad. In Wisconsin, we call it “fall”. 

So many people love the changing colors of the trees and bushes. But why does no one but me notice our dying gardens? Arghhhh. I look out at my backyard and see brown ferns, the leftover stems from phlox, and  weeds that were previously hidden. Don’t even get me going on the  holes from when my grand dogs visited.

Here are some sanity strategies that I’ve come up with (instead of just mowing everything down and planting grass seed). 

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Craft the Life you Want…Start with Organizing Your Sock Drawer

The first step in crafting the life you want is to get rid of everything you don’t.

 

-JoshuaBecker

It was November 1998. Tom and I had just listed out the household items that we were dividing between the two of us. We were getting a divorce. He got the leather lounge chair with the matching ottoman, the good blender, and our best set of knives. I kept the master bedroom furniture, the new sofa, and the dishes we got for our wedding 13 years prior. He took the new Acura. I kept all of my flea-market treasures. Continue reading

Time to Clean – Becoming a FlyLady

cleaningIf you are anything like me, I have a hard time wanting to clean my house.  I don’t enjoy cleaning at all.  Growing up, my mom did it right.  She had it set up that Lisa and I had jobs to do to clean the whole house by the time she came home from work.  I dusted and Lisa vacuumed.  On Saturdays, you didn’t do anything else until those jobs were done.   Continue reading

Think and Grow What???

I recently reread the 1937 version of Napoleon Hills’ “Think and Grow Rich”. Mr. Hill opens his first chapter with the phrase “Thoughts are Things”. He goes on to say that when we mix our thoughts with purpose, persistence, and a burning desire for their translation into riches or other material objects, these thoughts have the power to create what we are desirous of.  Wow. That’s quite a statement.Thoughts are Things Continue reading

Spring Hygge Anyone?

Spring

Raindrops and puddles

Laughter, dressed in yellow coats,

Umbrellas in hand

Yeah. Right.

Have you seen any kids lately wearing those Hallmark-style yellow raincoats? Me neither. Spring here in Wisconsin seems to be one wet, cold, windy day after another. Kids still love their umbrellas, but we all seem to be wearing damp jackets and holding our breath…just waiting for summer to arrive.

Have you heard of Wisconsin’s eleven seasons? Winter, Fool’s Spring, Second Winter, Spring of Deception, Third Winter, Mud Season, Actual Spring, Summer, False Fall, Second Summer (one week), and Winter. 

Spring is sooooooo long. We feel impatience. There is a restlessness in the air. 

So, how do you get your mind in a place of appreciation, mindfulness, and gratitude? Continue reading

Fern Gardeners…Beware!

Years ago when I realized I had inherited the gardening gene from a favorite uncle of mine, I lived in a different house, on a different street, and had different sun exposure.

There was full sun on all sides of my just-built house. It was fun planting flowers such as snapdragons, marigolds, zinnias, geraniums and I achieved a profusion of flowers and consistently brilliant colors. I spent hundreds of dollars every spring purchasing annuals to accomplish this result. 

Then, we moved, and guess what? I now live in a house with mature maple and birch trees. This translates into a yard with almost no sun. Can you say…gardening challenge?  As noted before I was used to lots of sunlight and could grow almost all sun-loving plants.  Continue reading

Wallpaper With a Twist

home

In our family, we all like to help each other with projects, especially home projects.  Just one word of warning.  If Sandy is creating be sure you understand the parameters of the project. We were asked to help wallpaper Michelle’s bathroom. That request sounded tame enough. Right??

Wrong! Continue reading

Is Spring House Cleaning Even a Thing Any More?

The first day of spring this year is just around the corner. And that gets me thinking about…”Spring House Cleaning”! Crazy, I know. Isn’t this an antiquated activity?  I remember when some of the most beautiful spring days were dedicated to emptying out one room of a house at a time. Then we spent days cleaning windows, washing walls, scrubbing floors, shampooing carpets, organizing drawers, sorting out closets, you get the idea. We used to basically clean the whole damn house, from top to bottom, one room at a time. Continue reading

Halloween Is Not Just For Kids! – Enjoy Yourself!

halloweenWho thinks that Halloween is strictly for kids.  I have noticed that a lot of adults sure know how to enjoy themselves.  I have had a couple of fun memories that still make me laugh about Halloween!     Continue reading

Letting Go, Decluttering and Streamlining

letting go

A magical night (in the perfect dress)

We work from the time we’re old enough to make money to buy stuff.  Actually, it’s true that there’s a lot of good stuff out there like collectibles, beautiful crystal, all of the issues of Oprah Magazine from Day one, clothes, furniture, decorations, and shoes (my special weakness). This is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to stuff. Then one day when we’re older, our desire to have things turns into the need and desire to purge and to work on letting go of the extras in your life.

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Changes are Coming – Time to Streamline My Life!

changesThe women in my life are facing many changes and it’s brought to mind the idea that to have the kind of life you want, you need to let go of what you don’t want in your life.  So it’s time to ask myself, what kind of life do I want and what do I need to let go of in order to obtain that kind of life?  

The first thing that comes to my mind is the clutter that I’ve accumulated since I moved out on my own.  I tend to be a pack-rat and my basement contains so much clutter. The storage room contains toys and games from when the children were little, ceramics that Grandma Is never got around to painting, old prom dresses, etc.  For whatever reason – I have a hard time letting go of the old stuff. By letting go of this clutter, I can make room for the new and simplify my home.  I’ve currently been cleaning up some of the paperwork clutter.  I’ve been shredded old documents that I’ve been holding onto dating back to 1986!!!  (Don’t ask me why I’ve been saving documents for that long!!!) Continue reading