This blog is simply the story about my little life
with my sweet family that the Lord has blessed me with
and the day in, day out things that we do.
It basically is my online diary/photo album of our life.
I'm glad you're here!

Monday, September 19, 2011


I have a confession to make. It's about our level of yard care we've done this year. Here's a picture of our backyard.... first glance it looks pretty good, as though it's been given lots of love and attention, but upon closer inspection.....'s been really neglected this summer. We are yard abusers!!!
There are dead leaves laying in the path.
There is cement-hard dried mud in the grass. This big mess was caused by natural underground springs that are all over our property. When we first moved here my husband dug trenches and placed drainage pipes under the grass, but we think that one of the pipes broke this spring, thus the mud bowl in our backyard, thus the dried caked mud trenches. You can see a small trench that my husband quickly dug out a few months ago just to divert the "lake water" we had sitting in our grass and it's pretty much just stayed that way ever since. What a mess!
Our Rose of Sharon bush is blooming, but it's too big and needs to be trimmed back.
We never got out and harvested our cherries. I can't believe it. When I finally thought about the cherries and had the time to pick them, I was so bummed when I went out there and realized that the season was over and I missed it. All that's left are shriveled up hard balls of what used to be gorgeous red cherries left on the tree. I feel so guilty.
Everything looks so messy and dry.
We have an old basketball hoop laying near the garden shed area and the lattice wall of the shed is all broken. There is, however, a darling little kitten laying there in the grass!
The bird bath is dry and dirty!
This Rhodie needs help! It looks like it is in desperate need of water and it probably needs to be transplanted to a spot with better soil. Also, the ivy is overgrown and taking over this little island!
The grass is turning yellow because we haven't watered it.
These shrubs died this winter and, yet, they are still standing proudly. We never got out here to remove them.
We didn't put any color spots in these flower beds this year.
The grapes are ridiculously overgrown.
It's almost impossible to walk through the grape arbor without being attacked by the grape vines.
Our little fruit orchard is so overgrown and neglected.  There are fallen apples strewn all around in the orchard and garden area.
All that delicious fruit just rotting. Guilt...guilt...guilt!!!
The vegetable garden is completely out of control! There are giant weeds taking over! Eric and Hayden did plant a small garden, but it's barely holding on. At least we have not wasted the garden produce and we have harvested and eaten cucumbers, tomatoes and bush beans this year.
We never picked our artichokes, so they went to seed.
However, I will stop and take notice of their beauty!
The squirrel crossing sign is knocked over on it's side in the middle of a neglected flower bed.
More weeds!
It's amazing to me how somethings keep thriving although they've been ignored, such as our gladiolas and our ferns.
Yellow grass.
I feel like we are turning into trashy people with our "boy toys" everywhere.
We removed our above ground pool that was an eyesore and replaced it with an even bigger eyesore, the quad trailer.
We never completely took care of the spot where the pool used to be and then we got the quads and Eric just put the trailer there. You can still see the old sand there with the rock border. It's so unattractive!
Oh boo-hoo!
This is so sad.
It's the kid's old swing-set. These seats were once a cheerful bright yellow, but now they are all dirty and stained from years of weather exposure and use from the kids.
Now it's completely abandoned and has been unused for many years now. Boo-hoo! Can I please just go back in time to 1998 and watch my four little boys playing out here? Please? Pretty please?
And now their old fort is being used for storage of the old swimming pool furniture. Why are we saving that old stuff anyway?
Do you even recognize this plant?
It's a Hydrangea in desperate need of water. If there was a Department of Plant Services, they would come and take all of our plants away from us!
We still have the old pigeon cage that Grayson made for an injured pigeon that he had found. That was back in 2005...why is it still up?
Another empty flower bed.
And lastly, my neglected, overgrown, full of weeds, herb garden! This is all just so shameful! Well, the first step to recovery is admitting you have a problem, so that is what I am doing! Haha! Actually, this has been an unusual year for us. There are many contributing situations that led to this neglect. 

1. The weather. Oregon had another very wet spring and early summer. We had rain and overcast days all the way up through the end of July. We had a few nice days in between, but it was not a traditional beautiful summer that we normally get. 

2. We are pretty much fair-weathered gardeners, so we didn't get out there and work in the yard. Usually in Mid may we start our annual pre-summer yard clean up and we prepare the garden, but this past May, the weekends seemed to be always pouring down rain and we didn't get out there. 

3. June and July both were crazy busy for us with trips, parties, and company. Also, we tore down the pool, which was an involved project and took time away from our regular yard work those first few weeks in June. 

4. Eric had carpal tunnel surgery. 

5. Our water bill in our little town has skyrocketed because we voted in a new sewer system and we all have to pay the cost of it. Our water bill used to be about $30.00 in the summer and now it's about $150.00. So by the time the end of July and August were here and we had some hot sunny days, we didn't feel much like watering because our hearts were just not into the yard, and thinking about that crazy water bill, we just didn't water. Well, we actually did water the garden and our flower baskets on the front and back porches, but we didn't water our grass. 

6. We bought quads and have spent pretty much the rest of our summer on them!

7. Lastly, and I think this has a lot to do with all of this neglect is that there are no more children playing in the back yard. Our youngest, Hayden, is almost 18 and he works now and is too busy to hang out back there. The trampoline broke in the spring and we got rid of the pool in June, so there's nothing to do back there any more for a young man. In summer's past, the boys were always hanging out in our backyard, thus Eric and I were always out there and we kept it nice for all of us. It's sad, but true. 

So, this is our plan. Hayden graduates from high school in June of 2012 and we will be having a big party in our backyard for him. Parties are the best motivators for us! We are already talking about pulling out dead plants and trees, pruning back the fruit trees and other plants that are overgrown, redesigning the old pool area, building mobile wooden screens to hide all the boats, quads, and junk we have accumulated, and tearing down the old swing-set, fort and pigeon cage. We will plant new shrubs and more flowers and hopefully we will have a beautiful backyard again!

I do feel really bad about our yard situations, but sometimes you just have off years and this was ours. I feel ashamed about all of the neglect, but we will do better next year. I promise!

"And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper." Psalm 1:3

Hugs, Sharon


adsgram said... bad as it seems, your 'shame' made me feel better about my yard,,which is almost as bad this year, and I have NO excuses! I just wanted to mention that with your rainy Springs, you might want to check into rain barrels to catch water for yard use. We bought one with a spigot on the bottom to attach a hose to. Not sure where hubby got it, but with one or two of them you would have plenty of time to catch some for next Summer's yard and party! ..LOL!

jen said...

Aww don't be so hard on yourself. The same thing happened in my yard this year. -we are in Vancouver. You also didn't list commitments helping out your parents that you have blogged about which is very important/necessary.
My parents went through the same thing in their yard a few years ago too- then my sister got married and reception in yard- that was the motivator-
All things have a time and that time will come
Thanks for your wonderful blog
God bless

Kathi said...

I so relate to this post in more ways than one. We have kept up this year with watering and gardening, but other areas of my life need sprucing up, and yes, a party is the perfect motivator. Kathi

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