Oh, my! These young summer days are keeping me as busy as a bee outside! I celebrated the Summer Solstice by spending the whole day in the garden. Time in the garden has been a rare blessing for the past few weeks. So, it was a real treat to make time for a bit of pruning and weeding on the longest day of the year. What a glorious morning it was!
As I worked, surrounded by a sea of bright, orange Daylilies and fluffy, white ‘Annabelle’ Hydrangeas, the butterflies and bees were busy working right alongside me. The birdsong was especially cheerful on this special day, too!
As I busily pruned the Quince bush that grows near our ‘Welcome’ arbor, I had to suddenly stop cutting the long branches.
For there it was…
The mother robin must have seen me approach with my pruning sheers in hand and quickly flown away. I was astonished to find the sturdy nest with four beautiful eggs! Of course, I had to stop pruning and left the nest undisturbed, hoping the mother would return. The Quince bush has a very funny shape right now, short in front, with long branches remaining in the back to protect the nest.
Just a few feet away, while I weeded along the Friendship Garden bed, I could hear very cheery, bubbling birdsong nearby. I quickly discovered that the music was echoing from a unique, wooden birdhouse that has been in my garden for years. I’ve always considered it decorative, with its barnwood box, metal roof, and interesting, antique metal embellishments. Mounted on a pitchfork, this birdhouse always stands waist-high in a Daylily bed, near our garage.
Imagine my delight, as I followed the singing and peeked in to see little beaks bobbing up and down! All weeding stopped, as I reached for my camera, and watched Mother Nature’s show on this first day of summer! The happy family of house wrens continued to sing for their breakfast, while the mother and father dashed out to bring back moths and other insects. They watched me, as I sat motionless watching them. One-at-a-time, the adults would hunt for an insect, land on the white picket fence near the Foxglove, fly to the small Elm tree, fly to the birdhouse, look around and dart into the hole. It happened again and again as they worked to feed their happy, little family! (You can enjoy their bubbly birdsong here.)
There is nothing quite like a small, happy family taking good care of one another,
in an old home surrounded by colorful, flower gardens.
It is definitely a Home ‘Tweet’ Home kind of summer here this year!
I have undertaken a HUGE project that will truly keep me as busy as a bee for quite a while.
Working on home improvements makes me oh-so-happy!
I have always loved restoring the beauty of an older home.
In fact, that’s the reason that I moved into this cozy bungalow so many years ago.
All those years of watching This Old House and reading Old House Journal have left their mark on my heart.
As our home nears the century mark, it’s time for another project filled with hard work and tender, loving care.
While my parents were visiting us in May, we shopped together for the best tools and supplies for my big project. In early June, I began the front porch restoration. Scraping and painting the ceiling and trim took weeks. I am taking special care as I remove the old paint, so clean up each day has been long and meticulous. My husband and I wrapped the front of the house in plastic to protect it from dripping paint. (Thank goodness! There were lots of drips.) I’m so happy with the way the ceiling turned out!
This week, I will scrape and paint the four porch columns. In the coming weeks, I will work to strip and restore the floor. Finally, we will have new railings and stairs designed and built. With each phase of the project, I am learning new things. It was so exciting to discover all of the colors that the ceiling had been painted over the years! As I work, I often think about the history of our front porch and why it is so important to me to carefully preserve it. I can’t wait to hang the original porch swing again, bring out the original rocking chair, and add our vintage wicker furniture to this very special outdoor room!
Day-after-day as I work, neighbors are offering kind words of encouragement and passersby often call out, “Lookin’ good!” as they walk past. My favorite music is playing and I’ve been singing along to keep my energy high. I’ve had to climb down from my ladder several times to do a little happy dance… because that’s just how I am feeling! ♥
Taking on a HUGE project like this really feels quite
exhausting, achy (with sore muscles), hot (especially wearing protective gear), solitary (missing fun times with my friends), challenging (as I solve problems along the way),
but most of all…
I love it!
Waving from the top of my ladder!
I’ll be back just as soon as I can… with so much to share.
Sending happy summer wishes from our little Home ‘Tweet’ Home to yours!
P.S. When was the last time you completed a hard task that left you feeling empowered? Hope you will share with us…