Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Rock Haulers Anonymous

Hi. .my name is Melanie. . and I am addicted to limestone!
I wish I could say that I was recovering. . but I'm afraid that day will never come!
Around here, we have a strange notion of entertainment.  On the one day off from the craziness of this June, Grant and I found ourselves overhauling the north side of the deck while C slept and the other two boys worked on 4-H projects.
Now, you can see for yourselves how absolutely horrible it was. (this was BEFORE any work was done by G and I)  The plastic lattice that was supposed to live a lifetime, has been crumbling away slowly. This last huge hunk falling to the ground, got my brain to rolling. 
YIKES!!  What a disaster!!
We took the pickup to mom and dad's last weekend, and I lifted these monsters from the ground UP onto that pickup bed, while my 14 year old gave directions (to the tune of "You said only 10, that's like 12" and "Are you about done yet?" and  "I CAN'T lift that" to finally "MOOOOOOMMMMM, that's enough already, the pickup won't move").  I have long ago decided that I may someday be confined to a wheel chair secondary to arthritis from overuse. .but by golly, I will AT LEAST have something decent and lovely to look at!!  So the loading of the rocks, to me, is a work-out. .not WORK.
However, I won't lie to you--Grant was snapping these pictures. .and I had to laugh out loud when I got to this one--seriously, in the picture above, I was standing in 98 degree heat at 3 in the afternoon, by myself thinking. . ."whose STUPID idea was this anyway???  But being the type A OCD gal that I am, I pushed on to the grueling end! 
I unloaded rock and formed the raised planter.  Grant and Dev hauled in fill dirt, Tristan played with Cami when she woke up, and
J finally showed up with his saw to work on the steps.  I was pretty proud of myself, because, not only had I gotten this WHOLE load of rock myself, I also shopped in Lowes like a big girl--and gathered supplies for the steps and railing ALL BY MYSELF!! We hadn't even talked about it yet--I must be growing up!  The only thing I didn't get was the actual wood for the steps (because that's where I got confused), which he picked up today.  But the best fun of the whole weekend, was the part where we stopped at my aunt and uncles' to wander their gardens and say hello.  I was asking them the location of Hongs nursery in Wichita (primarily because they were open late enough Sat, that there was a little hope that I could get a spruce of some sort to put in the planter.)  My aunt came back out with a sale card for Harvest Greenhouse in Newton.  The sale started 30 minutes after she handed me the card, and she called ahead and they advised her that they had several different types of blue spruces.  JACKPOT!! Their shrubs and perennials were 51% off.  HEE HAW!! It was a fabulous place with beautiful stuff. .and I came out with a little more than I intended, but it worked fabulously!!  The spruce (which I adore) is a dwarf blue globe spruce.  It will get 3-5 feet tall and about 5 feet wide--perfect for the spot.  They also had a couple other varieties of smaller blue spruce trees that will someday HAVE to find a way to my yard!
And check this out!! A rudbeckia called Cherry Brandy.  I have only tasted cherry brandy once in a jello shot at our family Christmas (don't all families have jello shots for Christmas dinner???)  But if it tasted as yummy as this plant looks, I'd drink it often.  I have NEVER seen such a vibrant chocolate/red velvety bloom such as this.  WOW--I hope it lives--I bought two. .just in case (always planning ahead!)
And these--Denver daisies (gloriosa daisy)  The picture truly doesn't even do them justice.  I got a couple of 6 packs of those and placed them in several different beds.  This one is up against that globe spruce.  By the time the spruce gets big enough, I will be able to transplant these beauties somewhere else, maybe to Becky's yard.  I also picked up 3 new coneflowers--Tomato soup, Meriengue, and Sunrise, and some creeping Jenny.  Grant helped me transplant some of my sedums into some of the holes in the rock.  And Voila. . 
A new Sweet Spot!!
J will finish the steps this week.  Grant's new table will replace the octagon one after the fair--and I will post a complete finished picture then--hope the flowers are still alive!!

Today was my last day in the health department in Oklahoma--next week I will start in a different county, one clinic each week.  The big boys were deposited at church camp yesterday.  I thought Grant was going to do ok this time (We had to go get him on day 2, two years ago--and didn't make him go back last year, I made him go this year), however, his good friend was so homesick that his parents already picked him up last night.  Grant called sobbing right after that.  HOWEVER, it is after 10 right now, and I haven't heard from him yet.  God is teaching me the meaning of "fervent prayer"--as I have prayed more for this situation over the last two days than I have prayed for any other outcome thus far in my life.  I sure hope that the hand of God is with him right now.  Tomorrow, might be another story--as I told him he could call me again Wednesday if he just COULDN'T stand it--and we'd talk! Homesickness is such a heartbreaking affliction!! We look forward to picking them up Friday and heading into one of my favorite holidays. . July 4!!
We'll be busy cooking and putting finishing touches on projects for the upcoming fair!
Where has the summer gone???


  1. Wow! What beautiful flower specimen you found! They are gorgeous. As we returned from Alva last evening, I told Tom that we need to take the time to do a walking tour of Mel's gardens. The pictures you post have me drooling for more! As for where the summer has gone..please let me know when you find it! By the way, I'm the arthritic example of "just do it". Time does catch up with the lady who can "do it myself". Thanks for sharing your garden! Cindy

  2. You go girl!!! Awesome job on that project. I love limestone too. Wish I had an old limestone house. That Cherry Brandy flower is beautiful. I'm contemplating making one of my new flower beds all red flowers next year. That flower may have to be tracked down! You had a good support team for your project. It must be great to see the whole family contributing. Looking forward to the final photos.

  3. Oh my goodness...I am in LOVE LOVE LOVE with that Denver daisy. Very pretty. Might have to get me one for next year!!! Love the "new" deck. I can't wait to see G's table!! We were telling Jake last night he needs to start making more projects for "us" as his room is getting a bit hoarder like with all his stuff. I can't believe its almost fair time. The Bruckner Bunch is NOT ready, but that seems to be the theme every year, so we must not break tradition.

  4. That all looks amazing! Is Grant available for hire? I sure could use him around here to get my project list knocked out!

  5. Who needs membership at a gym. Gardening is a great workout. Looks really beautiful.

  6. Your deck project looks good! :) BEAUTIFUL spruce and flowers.

    I hope the homesickness stays away - that is hard. Jonathan just got done with his Junior Retreat - a whole 2 blocks away from the house. LOL C.R. has a camp coming up, then later his turn at the retreat 2 blocks from home. That just makes me laugh.

  7. Love your "sweet spot" project! Looks beautiful! Can't wait to see updates on how things are growing.