• Landscaping Diary – Weeks 4/5

    Landscaping Diary – Weeks 4/5

    THE SHUTTERS ARE UP!!

    Well, almost all of the shutters. I still have 5 more to go, but the ones on the front and east side of the house are up and they look great! I’m so happy with how they turned out. I think the gray looks like it’s always been there – in fact, I have a hard time even remembering what the white looked like!

    I think the gray shutters really help accent the green siding and tie in the dark roof to the overall color scheme of the house. And, we chose a softer gray with a green base which I think does the trick perfectly. Then, add in the dark brown mulch and green grass and everything really meshes well together.

    Remember where we were only a few short months ago?

    And here it is now…

    Things are going well outside – now inside is the problem… haha. More on our next big project later this week (we’re almost halfway done with it already!). But, I’ll leave you with our cute clematis that is doing so well out in front! Some gorgeous purple blooms are emerging and I love how it accents the colors on the house.

     

  • Landscaping Diary – Week 3

    Landscaping Diary – Week 3

    Progress is being made on the landscaping! My parents were a HUGE help this past weekend as we all worked to clear out almost all of the rock, bring in some more dirt, pull out half-dead bushes, plant a bunch of new plants and finally mulch all the way around the house!

    Alright – so let’s remind ourselves what the front of the house looked like a couple of weeks ago…

    Apart from nothing being leafed out yet, it is entirely depressing and lacks any type of personality. So, we got rid of all that pink rock, and it started taking shape.

    We removed those half-dead bushes (that the asian beetles really liked) and curved the bed out a little to round off the corner of the house. Much more organic & interesting looking, I think.

    Then, we brought in a load of dirt to bring the level of the beds up a little and have them slope away from the house. This is important to keep water running away from your foundation. No one likes a soggy basement! We also made a Menards trip and loaded up on some plants! Aren’t they cute?

    Then, some landscaping fabric went down and a nice fresh layer of dark brown mulch. Getting there!

    And here is what the front yard is looking like now! So much better!

    The red maple tree also got some lovin’ with a nice new bed underneath complete with hostas and blue bugleweed. Here’s the process. What a difference!

    So did the pine tree on the front corner of the lot. Here’s what it started out as…

    And this is after a little edging and some mulch. Now I don’t have to dance with those long, spiky limbs when I mow!

    The backyard before was full of weeds and it was impossible to mow properly because I had to get right up next to the house.

    So, we started laying the ground work for a larger bed that surrounded the porch and worked to rid the back bed of its resident thistles, dandelions, quack grass & moss.

    And here is the backyard now! Wow! That mulch is just amazing. Now, you can see just how many plants we actually had back there. We only planted a couple of small plants back here in addition to all the wonderful things that were already in place. I can’t wait for everything to bloom and grow!

    And, before I forget, we also got some cute little annuals to go in the front planter on the front stoop. I can’t wait to see how these grow and bloom, they will be such a nice accent to the front of the house!

    Alright, so now I have to finish painting the shutters and re-hang all of those and get a couple of planters planted to accent  the front & side doors. Oh, and we still have a little more rock along the driveway to figure out what to do with. Then, we’ll plant and mulch those beds for the final push to the finish of phase one. Then, it’s on to the patio!

    I hope you all had a wonderful holiday weekend, despite the kind of disheartening weather. More updates to come!

  • Landscaping Diary – Weeks 1 & 2

    Landscaping Diary – Weeks 1 & 2

    I think the overarching theme of these past couple of weeks of work outside has been “don’t stop until you drop”. Both Adam and I have put in many, many hours moving rock, then moving the rock that we already moved, then moving some more rock. It’s exhausting work, but we are finally seeing some results!

    Last week, I finally cleared out the left side of the front bed. It was so satisfying to finally get a nice clear patch of dirt! This past weekend, we both cleared out the right front bed and now we just have along the driveway to clear and a small section on the west side of the house still.

    I also removed all of the shutters and bought some exterior trim paint in a nice dark gray. We’ll see how the paint holds up on the vinyl shutters – I think I am breaking the rules by painting the previously white shutters a dark color, but I’m hoping the exterior paint will hold up.

    The front stoop area is also looking pretty sad. We’re planning on painting the concrete stoop, painting the metal railings dark gray to match the shutters, painting the door and potentially getting a new screen door. It’s hard to want to spend money on this front entryway as we seldom use it. Most people who come over come into the house on the east side, directly into the kitchen. So, hopefully by warming this front door up and making it look more presentable, it will be more approachable and welcoming to guests.

    My parents are coming up this weekend, so there will be lots of projects to post next week! Make way for new plants, mulch, and some painted shutters! I can’t wait!

  • A Small Update…

    A Small Update…

    Now that the nice weather has finally arrived (for the time being), I’ve been thinking about some small updates that can be done to our house to give it a little more personality. We’re going to be launching in on some major landscaping projects, so there will be plenty of posts once we get started on that. But, I was out on a walk the other day and started noticing how people use their shutters to either feature an accent color, or just add a little visual interest to the front of their house. Ours are currently white – the same as all of the trim on the outside of the house. So, it got me thinking…

    …what if they were dark gray? Our roof is brand new and a very dark gray, so would dark gray shutters look nice? I couldn’t resist photoshopping an iPhone shot of the front of our house just to see what it would look like. I’d also paint the railings on the front & side stoops. They need to be painted anyways, so why not have them match the shutters.

    What do you think? Should I go for it?