Friday, May 17, 2024

First Things First

 I see it was May 4th when we went to the nursery and got my Mother's Day plants.  It's nearly two weeks, and the porch is finally getting to where I want it.  

Last weekend was the hard part, but I don't think it tired anyone else but me - just watching everyone work.  

Emily was determined to get all the windows washed, and she did.  We raised the blinds in the three front windows and one side window, and she figured out how to take off the screens and got just the right cleaner and right drying method, and those windows were sparkling before she left.

This is what I see when I lie on my bed.  Unfortunately, I hardly ever have the blinds up this high since we have a balcony right above us to the right, and if I can see it, they have a nice view of me.  I do it enjoy it though, in rain or sunshine.

Again the bedroom view with the side of my porch and the balcony above.  It's a nice neighborhood, and I don't mind the close neighbors.  I think I prefer it.  

The family across the street has two little boys, and they're not home much, but they're very friendly.  Cute little front porch with their happy red door.

Another family just moved into the house next door to theirs last week, and they also have a little boy and a teen or preteen boy who seems to already have a following of little girls riding by his house on their bikes.

This is the side window where the table and chairs are.  I'll get the hummingbird feeder back up and a couple of birdfeeders, so I should have some pretty things to look at.  So will the cats.  I'm ordering some plastic trays for the window sills so I can grow some herbs there.  Hopefully.  There's not much sun, but if I put them out back where the sun shines, they're not as handy to grab when I'm cooking, and I forget to water them enough. The pink rhododendrons are blooming since this picture, and are huge and so beautiful.  

The one thing that has taken some getting used to is how close the sidewalk is that runs between the two buildings.  You pretty quickly get used to it, and most people who walk by here don't pay much attention to what's in the windows.

The view from the living room window of the little park across the street where the girls like to run over and play.  There's no equipment there except a big rock and some benches, but they don't care.  They climb the trees and make up games, and I can usually hear them and keep an eye on them.  If not, I'll walk outside and look for them or call them.  

I have a good place for sewing if I'll ever get myself back into the mood.  This window overlooks the front porch.  We got Katherine to stand on the sewing table to wash those top inside windows.  She felt pretty important.

I didn't do much all day except clean the window sills and carry things back and forth to the porch and then to the laundry room when Emily got ready to vacuum.  She worked so hard that day.  Besides the windows, she vacuumed the whole apartment, got several candles lit and the house smelling good, picked up heavy things and low things for me and kept the girls on task.

I don't have a picture of them washing the baseboards in the living room and picking up things that had gotten out of my reach behind furniture.

Once I suggested cleaning the screen grooves with a paintbrush, they got busy.  I had in mind a bigger paintbrush, but they seemed to feel more creative with the little artist ones.

Even the doorbell got a got cleaning, and I don't think I heard them ring it one time that day.  

I had not been to the grocery store to replenish their favorite snacks, so we had to be creative.  I had some Italian bread, butter, and raspberry fruit spread which immediately became the best snack ever.  I had to promise to always keep Italian bread in my house.  I hope I remember.

Ryan worked all morning in the background, pressure washing not only the porch and walls but the screens and sidewalks too.  Once he gets started, he finds it hard to find a stopping place.  Woodrow is such a good helper too.  So patient.  

By the time they left, all the plants and furniture were back on the porch, the windows were sparkly (no other word works for them and for the day), and I had a clean, good-smelling house.  Happy Mother's Day to me!

These arrived Saturday after from Griffin, GA and are just beautiful.  Thanks to Gray and Stephanie.

One thing I noticed once they were gone is that I have these new blinds in the living room window that are raised and lowered just by pulling on the bottom and not by a cord.  As night fell and it became time to lower the blinds, I realized that I could not reach the bottom of the shade to pull it down without going to the garage and bringing in the ladder.

So I just left it open all night.  Now all the midnight dog walkers know exactly what's in my living room and kitchen if they care to look.

It's still been a little cool at times on the porch, so it wasn't until yesterday that I got the last plant in it's new pot.  I touched up the chairs with some black spray paint and even gave the little table a first coat of paint.  

This is going to be my favorite pot this summer, I can already tell.  It's exactly what I had in mind with the coleus in two colors, the creeping jenny, and the million bells.  I can't think of what their name is, but I'll find out.  I'm starting a plant journal this summer to keep up with the fertilizing and other things instead of leaving it to chance.  

This will be pretty with a little time with the coleus, petunias, and  creeping jenny.  There's also a parrot's beak in one of those pots that I'm hoping to see bloom.

I struggled some with getting this hydrangea planted, and now I'm going to have to move it to a sunnier spot.  

It's just what I wanted - a vanilla strawberry hydrangea that is supposed to look like this when it blooms:

Unfortunately, my porch is too shady, and I'll have to move it around back where it will get more sunshine.  At least, someone else will have to move it for me.  That's a heavy pot!

This will be nice when I find some things to fill in around Wilma, the dwarf lemon cypress tree.  I've lost two small evergreens that I've tried to keep on the porch, so this year I plan to take this one inside to be an indoor plant for the winter.  So cute.

The girls found Carly yesterday and took advantage of a sunny afternoon to decorate Ryan's clean sidewalk.  

The girls' musical programs were excellent, and we had such a good time.  Both of them knew their songs and dances, and it was just a fun night.  Unfortunately, I forgot my camera on Gray's night and didn't get any pictures.  I just had to settle for the Facebook one.  

This video just gets to me, and my eyes get watery when I play it.  I told Katherine she made me cry with her song, and she said, "I almost cried too.  I got really emotional." 

How did I get lucky enough to get to experience their lives up close?  

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