Spring is Coming…Eventually…and a Correction

First, I must correct some information I gave out last week about the Hattie Davish mystery series by Anna Loan-Wilsey. You all read how much I enjoyed Anything But Civil, the second book in the series. The third book is actually called A Sense of Entitlement and it was released last June. The fourth book in the series is A Deceptive Homecoming.  I’m so sorry to have caused any confusion about this! I’m looking forward to reading the other three books in the series!

Here in New Jersey we’re expecting another snowstorm to blow in by Tuesday morning. No surprise there. What would surprise me is if we actually got some snow. It’s been way too cold, but really that’s nothing compared to the temperatures they’re experiencing in northern and central New York, where I know many of you, dear readers, live and wait anxiously for spring.

Spring–that’s where my thoughts are headed this week. It’s only a little over a month away, you know, at least by the calendar. Sometimes I think Mother Nature gets the memo a bit late, but we know it’ll be here eventually.

I thought I’d share with you some of the ideas I have for my yard and flower beds. I am always afraid of running afoul of the copyright laws, so I only post pictures on this blog that I take myself or that my family members take; therefore, I don’t have pictures of the things I want to plant this year, but I will provide links for you to look at them if you’d like.

As anyone who has ever been to my house will tell you, the front of my house needs some landscaping work, to say the least (it sports a look now that I like to call “haunted”). Currently there are two beds full of scraggly azaleas that do not thrive in full sun (they bloom for one day, get sunburned, and die), poison ivy, those wild onions (are they ramps? I have no idea), one wayward cedar tree that we swear we’re going to transplant one of these days (it’s about 8 feet tall now and we’ve been saying that since it was knee-high), two obnoxious holly bushes, and a euonymous that is completely out of control.

My dream is to have two raised beds full of things that like full sun and don’t require much fuss. Sure, poison ivy fits the bill, but that’s not really what I have in mind. I’m thinking seagrass, the kind that looks like Fraggle hair. Google “Fraggles” if you’re too young to remember what they are. But not just seagrass- I’d also like some flowers, and I almost always go with perennials because I don’t have the time or the patience to deal with annuals (well, that’s not completely true. I do hang four baskets filled with annuals on my porch, and I have a bunch of containers that I use for annuals on the patio out back…almost everything is dead by August). I might try Shasta daisies and Stella de Oro daylilies. I think I’d like some Russian Sage, too. See http://www.hgtvgardens.com/perennials/15-perennials-you-cant-kill and http://www.bhg.com/gardening/flowers/perennials/top-perennials-for-your-garden/#page=20 for some photos of the plants I’ve mentioned.

Under our trees, I plant almost exclusively hostas. They literally require no care. I do have a spot in the backyard that is perfect for a couple shade-loving plants. I hear that Lily-of-the-Valley is impossible to kill, but I have done it. Maybe I’ll try it again (planting it, not killing it). HGTV recommends the unfortunately-named Toadlily as a plant that will withstand shade, but I think I’ll plant something else with my Lilies-of-the-Valley.

Do you have any ideas for me? My criteria are as follows: easy, Zone 7. I’m looking for things mainly to plant in the sunny spots.

Until next week, stay warm!

Amy

New Year’s Resolutions 2.0

Happy 2015!

Last year at about this time, I shared with you the things I wanted to accomplish in 2014. I was successful with some, not so much with others. This year I’ve decided to give resolutions a different name: a wish list. The word “resolutions” has a do-or-die sound to it, and I don’t want to feel bad at the end of the year when, inevitably, I haven’t accomplished everything I wanted to do.

For example, you may remember (I know certain people do and they keep mentioning it to me) that I wanted to clean the garage. Didn’t happen.

I also wanted to clean the attic. Also didn’t happen. I  tried, believe me. But it wasn’t to be (nor was the replacement of my kids’ closet doors).

But I did write more and I hope I improved, I took more pictures, I became more active on social media, and I ran a 5K.

So I know you’re dying to find out what I have planned for this year. Not surprisingly, I’d like to clean the attic and the garage. I’m not going to call these resolutions, but I will simply refer to them as two items on my 2015 wish list. By the way, these will probably be on my wish list every year until I die. Replacing my kids’ closet doors should also go on the list.

Here are some other things I’ve added to my wish list:

1. start another new novel (more on this later in the year) (this is actually more of a resolution than a wish);

2. start writing a series (again, more on this later in the year–hopefully) (ditto about being a resolution);

3. replace the garage doors, one of which is held in place with a broom handle;

4. landscape my yard with something other than dead plants;

5. run another 5K; and

6. help my daughter sew the tote bag I’ve been promising to help her with for two years.

Wait! I’ve already done #6! Cross that right off my wish list!

Want to see pictures? I knew you would (some of you may already have seen these on Facebook).

tote bag 1tote bag 2

As I think of other things I want to add to my list, I’ll let you know. In the meantime, what’s on your wish list for this year? I’d love to know!

Until next week,

Amy