Monday, April 8, 2013

Garden Funky

This past weekend was very close to perfect here at the House of Cockrell.  We spent nearly the entire weekend outside in the yard and got many outdoor projects accomplished.  But the main thing was the four us were home together and able to be out in the beautiful sunny weather for two whole days!  Saturday morning we actually had to go to the store to get gas for the mower and ended up buying flowers for the yard at the Wal-Mart garden center...  There was nothing wrong with them, but they were mysteriously marked with a 50% off discount.  I'm pretty sure the goofballs working there thought they were dead because they weren't actively yippee for us, we scored cheap flowers!!  We were able to buy creeping phlox for like $1.60 a pot, petunias for $.61 (yes, that really was the price), some big pots of petunias for $1 something, and then an even bigger pot of petunias for $3!  Overall, combined with some other flowers I bought Friday, I think we spent maybe $50 or so and were able to fill up all the flowerbeds in the front yard.  We also already had our rosebushes and things like that, so we didn't have tons and tons of space, but we were pretty proud of our bargain hunting and got some really nice looking stuff planted.  (The "dead" petunias are blooming today like crazy.)  Anyway, we spent the rest of Saturday planting and doing yard work.  Mark mowed everywhere, which looks amazing.  I think we had wolf clover that was about 2 feet tall already in the back yard!  

On Sunday, I decided to tackle another DIY project.  We have two end tables in our living room that have been begging to be given a facelift.  They're not extremely nice, but they weren't really awful either.  Just plain twenty-something dollar tables we got at where else, Wal-Mart, once upon a time.  
However, after repainting and reflooring the living room recently, I've had this decor idea growing and growing and our 'blah' wooden end tables were not fitting in with my Funky Garden Party theme for the room.  I decided you cannot have vanilla tables when you have a yellow living room with a tree painted in the corner.  (Okay, I don't have a tree yet, but Bad Dad has promised to paint one for me.)  I have to give credit where credit is due for the tables and thank Sharon first of all, for sending me an HGTV magazine a while back...  I didn't know they made it, but it's been dangerous for me to read!  Anyway, while perusing this wonderful publication I saw this idea to cover an end table with fabric.  The proverbial light bulb went off and I knew that's what I wanted to do with ours.  I already had fabric (I'm a terrible hoarder of fabric and craft supplies in general, I should probably go to meetings...), I already had the tables, all I needed was a container of ModPodge and some Polycrylic, which were easily bought at our lovely local Wal-Mart.  (For as much as I hate that place, I spend way too much time there...)  So in the end, Sunday afternoon found me on our front sidewalk, surrounded by end tables, paintbrushes, trash bags, rags, and my trusty HGTV magazine.  By the end of the day, I was covered in blue and purple paint (I used leftover room paint from the upstairs bathroom, blue, and our laundry room, purple to paint the table legs), ModPodge, and was slightly sunburned from hours of standing in the sun painting, but I had two end tables that did NOT look like they were bought four years ago at Wal-Mart, but rather like I found them at an estate sale of some crazy old hippie woman who had way too much time on her hands and also hoarded craft supplies and fabric...  Which was pretty much my end goal.

While I worked on my crazy hippie lady tables, Mark and the kids were busy elsewhere.  They took the other corner of the yard to prep their "Palette Garden" and ready it for seed planting next weekend.  Mark found the idea to use an old palette as a garden planter.  Not sure where or how he found it, but it was a really awesome idea, especially for us, because we really wanted to have fresh vegetables, but also didn't want a huge garden to keep up with.  So, we chose a sunny spot in the front yard and laid out our palette (which we happened to already have because that's what our flooring came in).  Mark and I laid trash bags
under the holes in it and the kids set to work painting it.  The painting was a totally unnecessary step, but I really wanted them busy while I worked on the tables!  Our project next weekend is to fill it with soil and plant our seeds!!  We are planning on putting in lettuce, spinach, green beans, small carrots, and a couple of different types of peppers.  We also have a cherry tomato plant and a regular tomato plant, which we are keeping in containers.  Little Mark also has two strawberry plants and some watermelon seeds (which I have no idea where we will plant...).  Throughout the palette garden, we are going to plant a couple of marigolds and other flowers that will help keep the bugs away and add a little color here and there.
 I am hoping to get a 'porch container garden' going for herbs. I'd love to have fresh herbs like basil, cilantro, rosemary, dill, etc. to use in the summer and dry for the winter!  Yum. We are also going to try out a more vegetarian diet (not completely, but we plan to radically cut back on our meat intake) next time we get groceries, so having fresh veggies and fruit will surely only help us stick with it.  After tasting my mom's black bean quesadillas with mango salsa, we are totally excited to make stuff like that ourselves!  They were awesome. Wish I had one right now...  Anyway, life is good here at the House of Cockrell.  The weather is warming up, the yard is colorful again, and we are actually looking forward to being more active and eating better!  My Garden Funky living room is coming together nicely and I'm eyeing our bedroom as our next DIY project...  We have just enough flooring leftover for in there...