At the risk of boring you all silly with more cat pictures (I think I’ve turned into the girlfriend you hide from because all she wants to do is show you pictures of her grandkids), I wanted you to see what a cutie Mr. Pip has become. And if you hang in there, I’ll give you a little gander at the stuff we’ve been doing in backyard land.
I know most cats—and dogs, too—really know how to relax, but his sleeping antics have got us all giggling.
And oh, the nicknames! I’ve never ever had a cat who inspired so many nicknames: Peep, Pipper, Mr. Peepers, Dr. Pipper, Mr. Sunshine, Mr. Fancy Pants, Fluffball, Fluff wuff, Puppy-cat, Pup, Pipsi, Pippty Do Da, Pippi…well, that’s just a few. Even sweet little Lucy only has Lulu, La, and Loola, though they share monikers “little a**hole,” and “b***head” when the occasion merits.
Actually, I’d love to hear what nicknames your little pals have, too!
As far as this backyard…what can I say? Neglect, neglect, neglect, I am guilty. I’ve been considering hanging out in Lowes on the weekend, scouting for that Ahmed guy who hosts HGTVs Yard Crashers.
...flax and sagos and ferns, oh my! This is so much worse than even this photo can show.
A serious mess, this backyard has become. But even the thought of going out to work in it makes me want to clean a bathroom and fold laundry.
It wasn’t always this way. I used to love gardening. From the time I was a kid growing up in Winfield, IL helping my grandfather with his huge vegetable garden, to the wooded and equally huge New Jersey landscape of our last home, I loved planting and weeding. It was fulfilling and creative.
But here…I just don’t know. I do know that many people claim that this is an ideal climate for growing stuff, but I haven’t found that to be entirely true. Firstly and most importantly, you need an in-ground sprinkler system wherever you want to plant. Secondly, the growing season is very different here. I’ve lived here (gasp) over 10 years and I still don’t know exactly the best time to prune my English roses. Our neighbor told us that January was when we should prune our perennial grasses. January?
I was also told to consult Sunset for the best info on gardening, and even though I bought “Western Gardening” and read it, the info just won’t stick in my brain. Sigh. On the other hand, I find it a little difficult to follow the wisdom of a publication that finds it necessary to create and use their own climate zones—take that USDA. Try to pick plants that way. Sheesh.
Anyway, I guess somewhere along the way I gave up. And then I lost interest entirely. The backyard became a bit like that pile of boxes in the corner of the guest room that you walk past and stop noticing after a while.
After! A nearly blank canvas!
So yesterday, poor CR decided he couldn’t stand it any more and took out the shovel, hatchet, pick-axe, and rake. I helped for a while, but what it took was manly brute strength to wrench the offensive and invasive ferns, flax, and awful sago palm out of the back border. I did my best to keep him fed and hydrated.
Before: 70s brown palm fabric inherited from my grandmother.
Here’s what I worked on to improve the backyard:
New slipcovers for the bamboo furniture. So far I’ve been working on them for several days and have managed to get just one finished. Long process, and I wish like heck I could afford to pay someone else to do it. Ah well.
At least I don’t have to garden. 😉