Tuesday, March 1, 2011

More House Projects...Outside fun!

I have been very bad at blogging lately. For some reason I just lack the motivation. Anyway, Ivan and I have been doing some projects around the house. I wish I could say I have more pictures, but my camera is not the best so I don't normally take pictures.

Anyway, the first major project has been our fence.If you are an avid follower of the blog (which I know you ALL are.. heehee)... you may remember Ivan's post regarding the fence here. We had what is called a "friendly neighbor" fence. Basically it is a fence which has half of the boards facing you and half of them facing the neighbor's house. Well, we really hated this concept, because it looks as if the fence is incomplete. Therefore, Ivan boarded it up.. like so:
This was stage 1 of the fence. Well two weekends ago, we finally finished stage 2, staining the fence. We really weren't loving the multi-colored look above. Anyway, we freaked out at first because the stain was NOT going on the way we expected. Luckily, this problem went away once we got past the fence gate. For some reason they made the gates out of a different grain of wood or something. Either way, it had a ton of fibers coming off of it...I like to call it the "hairy" gate. :) Anyway, we spent almost all weekend working the fence.. and about 6 gallons of stain later... and a ton of work..it now looks like this (the picture is kinda dark.. sorry):

Anyway, we are loving the outcome. The fence color almost matches our front door now, and for the most part it is all the same color!

Another project which we have been dealing with lately is landscaping. It isn't so much of a project, and more like a "decision". Anyway, we had an oak out in front of our yard. Although the oak will not get THAT big before we move (most likely), it will eventually get huge and probably hit the house or at least tower over it. Anyway, we wanted some new trees. There are three trees in the front yard, 1-the oak, and 2 that are these ugly bush tree things.. which I hate.. Anyway, we replaced the recently. It was a crazy decision making process and we ended up actually getting two things that we never expected. So lets walk through the thought process. Originally we wanted a magnolia tree to replace the oak (not a little gem..), and then we wanted a saucer magnolia (pink flowering magnolia which does not keep all of its leaves). We found out quickly though that saucer magnolias are TINY and although they can get big... we didn't want to wait for it to start looking like a tree (for the most part it looked like a bunch of long twigs coming out of the ground). Therefore, we nixed that idea. Additionally, magnolia TREEs... grow VERY slowly. To buy one that was moreso grown would have been expensive. Therefore, that idea went out the window. Then we ran across... this little pretty thing:
 This is an apple tree. We never thought we would buy an apple tree. However, the flowers are just so gorgeous. Additionally, it will get bigger. It does grow somewhat slow and we will have to wait. In the meantime, it is sooo pretty.

We knew we also needed a big tree to put in the middle of the yard. Since the magnolia was out due to price, we figured we would buy another flowering tree. We needed one though that was reasonably priced for the size. We found a Bradford pear.. :) . Yes, I know it looks like sticks now... but it will have beautiful white flowers in the spring and gorgeous red/orange leaves in the fall.
Finally, we needed at least one tree that has leaves all year round. This tree needed to be fairly close to the house. Therefore, we got a magnolia little gem. Little gems do not get as big as normal magnolia trees. In fact they are kind of like overgrown bushes due the fact that branches grow out of the base. Now, that said they will get pretty big- up to 20 feet. They will not however, outgrow the pear. Sorry that the picture is so hard to see... I will try to take a better one later.
Here is a video of the trees if you would rather watch that.. you can get a better idea.

Also, here are some prettiful pictures of what these trees can look like eventually.

Apple.... notice the pretty pink/white flowers.. soo pretty

Little Gem Magnolia...Magnolias have large white flowers as well

Here is a bradford pear tree

And there you have it.... please feel free to comment and we would always love suggestions for other flowers, bushes, plants, and trees for our front and backyard... post away!