Regardless of the shape or size, a beautiful life begins at home.
One of Dave the Builder’s favorite songs was “Little Houses” written by Skip Ewing and Mickey Cates and recorded by Doug Stone.
“But you know, love grows best in little houses
With fewer walls to separate
Where you eat and sleep so close together
You can’t help but communicate
Oh, and if we had more room between us, think of all we’d miss
Love grows best, in houses just like this”
Lyrics touch the heart when truth is at the core of the verse.
Stuck somewhere between blog post subject difficulty and the is it winter or is it spring seesaw, I began to grow bored until the content of one email and the lyrics to a classic Beatles song get the wheels of blog content inspiration turning once again.
Since the weatherman and the calendar have established spring has sprung, one’s thoughts naturally turn to spring activities, colors on parade, how does your garden grow planning, curb appeal and outdoor living ideas.
As sunny days and warm breezes become the norm, I look forward to the spring into summer activity of hanging freshly washed clothes out on the clothesline to dry.
Linens especially smell so summer sweet when line dried, and instantly take my thoughts back to summers sleepovers at Dave the Builder’s aunt’s house, where life in a Northern Louisiana town imitated that of your favorite episode of The Andy Griffith Show.
My laundry room falls into the category of not ready for prime blog time, but it is the little space that could.
Currently, the space lacks loads of style, but makes up for it in cabinets, countertops, shelves, and storage space that aid in getting the job done.
Back in our antiques shop days, Dave the Builder unearthed a vintage soda display stand from an old store, brought it home, and promptly placed it next to the washing machine as an absolutely perfect storage display for laundry soaps, fresheners, softeners, dryer sheets and the like.
This began an appreciation for display fixtures for home use.
Retail stores going out of business will usually sale display tables, cabinets, and racks for a song.
If this is not a feasible route, check out big box retail and home improvement stores.
As far as adding a touch of spring flair and fragrance goes, decorating with flowers is by far one of the loveliest, easiest, and visually delightful ways to bring the very best of the garden to the spring and summer decorating scheme.
Interior designer and tastemaker Charlotte Moss newest book, Charlotte Moss Flowers, is a delightful grab a cup or glass of tea-curl up with a good book guide to bringing in-full bloom beauty to house and home.
“There are always flowers for those who want to see them.”
Wedgwood Blue Jasperware
With the garden as her muse, Charlotte Moss celebrates the season of fresh and fragrant through inspired ideas for floral arrangements, tablescapes, and containers ideal for every-day living picture perfect placement around the house.
Thankfully, the ice storm spared both the flowering quince and azaleas.
Did you know azaleas are classified as an evergreen shrub?
Harsh winter weather was cause for concern with so many of our plants and shrubs; however, these Southern Indica azaleas are rated for down to zero degrees fahrenheit.
Spring’s in full bloom gift graces the vases and tabletop places in the home.
Our Deep South planting soil to temperature zone indicates the essential need for particular plants to be planted in the ground and growing by Easter in order to be strong enough to survive the heat of this region.
Some planting zones, climates, and soils ready for spring gardening quicker than others.
My steadfast rule and suggestion to fellow gardenistas is to first consult a zone map to know the best time for planting vegetables and/or flowers in your part of the world.
Two gardening go-to sources I consult is the USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map and the Louisiana Vegetable Planting Guide from the LSU AgCenter.
In this area April is the time for planting eggplant, okra, squash, cucumbers, peppers, snap and lima beans.
Based on information gleaned from a host of gardeners in the know, azaleas, jasmine, viburnum, camellias, and flowering quince are prime for pruning as soon as they finish flowering.
I shared this picture of the viburnum that did not fare so well during during and after the ice storm.
What, how, and when to cut back to promote new growth is the question I called the extension service with.
Our local extension service is a get it growing source of valuable lawn & garden information and get it growing tips.
Beauty and the bee is all the buzz, and you know I’m all about the theme.
Evidently watching me washing dishes is wildly entertaining.
We are one wild and crazy crew, animals included.
I dug this photo of Dave, the Canadian snowbird and Cottontail the rabbit out of the Places In The Home archives. If you think the photo quality is horrible in black and white, you should see the color version.
Mama Places In The Home snapped this circa 2005 pic with a throwaway camera.
Annie Leibovitz she is not.
Here’s the Reader’s Digest version of the bunny backstory:
Dave and I were checking out the newly planted flower beds late one spring afternoon. I was in the color in bloom zone, laser focused on the budding design features detailing my mad lawn and garden skills.
Dave on the other hand was channeling his inner Dr. Doolittle with the just discovered addition to our flower garden menagerie.
Cottontail the baby rabbit hopped right up to Dave in are you my father fashion. We brought him inside that evening and set him up in a toilet paper box direct from the discard bin at the local Kroger.
We lined the box with newspaper and grass clippings hoping to emulate a natural surrounding, and placed a water bowl and rabbit food over to one corner.
Cottontail was in high cotton for the evening.
The next morning it was back to the outdoors where he thrived and frolicked, nested in our yard and flower garden, adapted to the daily comings and goings of our schedules, and waited in the driveway each afternoon to greet Dave.
As mysteriously as he appeared he disappeared, leaving a hole in our hearts.
We got so attached to that silly rabbit, so much so that I cried for three days when he went away.
Dave stills tears up when he talks about that silly rabbit.
My Easter Eggstravaganza centerpiece is a build upon canvas.
Deconstructing the Mardi Gras King Cake centerpiece, it dawned on me that by adding to instead of taking away from the existing tulle a shimmering color rich nest effect would be created.
What nature does not provide, the Walmart-Michaels-Hobby Lobby floral department will.
Faux flowers serve the purpose in certain decorating for the holiday situations, and when quality stems are selected the finished result can be faux fabulous.
The incredible, dyeable, edible egg.
Easter week sets spring into motion.
Another season, another wonderful reason for decorating, planting, entertaining, and gathering round dining and picnic tables of stylish tablescapes and delicious dishes with dear loved ones and great friends.
Dave and I hope your Easter week, weekend and Sunday is one of blessings, love, laughter, and making wonderful traditions and memories time spent with family and friends who are like family.