11 – pathway to a cleaner garden, and believing your way to success

Pathway to a cleaner garden, and believing your way to success - an inspiring writeup on how to succeed / funkyjunkinteriors.net
If there’s anything I grow really well, it’s weeds.

The other day, there was a break in our monsoons, and I just flat out needed outdoors. 

Upon venturing outside, I wasn’t all that impressed with what I saw.

a flower bed full of weeds / funkyjunkinteriors.net
a flower bed full of weeds / funkyjunkinteriors.net
Oh my word…

I have a viral post out there all about my infamous garden edging… so don’t tell a soul it can slip into the gutter pretty quickly!

a flower bed full of weeds / funkyjunkinteriors.net
Groaning, I nearly turned around and walked back in.

But instead, I got down on my knees, and started yanking weeds.

Before I changed my mind.

weeding the flowerbeds / funkyjunkinteriors.net
This is about the time I start scolding myself. 

“You want to MOVE to a bigger yard? You can’t even keep this up! What were you thinking? And you know, if you’d just stay on top of this, it wouldn’t even be a thing.”

Blah blah blah.

weeding the flowerbeds / funkyjunkinteriors.net
This yard isn’t really even all that big… until you have 20 wheelbarrows of weeds to haul out of course.

weeding the flowerbeds / funkyjunkinteriors.net
But after a few wheelbarrow runs, I was making headway.

But naturally, ran out of time, and had to leave my poor front yard in a pretty messy state.

It took a good solid week before I saw the yard again.

Oh how I was tempted to jump on my bike for a new adventure! But… I had these fantasies that my front yard would look all dazzling and pressure washed and weeded before Christmas….

weeding the flowerbeds / funkyjunkinteriors.net
So I split my day up. I treated myself to a very quick bike ride down the road to the store, picked up a coffee on the way home, then got to work again.

But if I can be perfectly honest, I nearly slapped my helmut back on and head down the bike path instead. Agony.

Yes! No! Yes! No!

Before I got back to yes, I got down on my knees and started on the pallet wood walkway.

weeding a pallet wood garden walkway / funkyjunkinteriors.net
Each plank is picked up, scraped off, weeds removed, then put back again.

With lots of coffee in between, for encouragement.

weeding a pallet wood garden walkway / funkyjunkinteriors.net
a freshly weeded pallet wood garden walkway / funkyjunkinteriors.net
Hmmm.. well, now that’s something!

And that’s all it took. Totally encouraged with one semi finished area, I was plugged in. And tore into the rest.

I mean, maybe if I finished, I could go on a bike ride the next time it didn’t rain!

weeding the flowerbeds / funkyjunkinteriors.net
PUSH PUSH PUSH PUSH.

Can you tell where I’ve been?!

weeding the flowerbeds / funkyjunkinteriors.net
miniature japanese maple tree in a flowerbed / funkyjunkinteriors.net
My son wandered home from school at this point. Ohhh bad timing, son. He was instructed to rake the back yard. Lucky dude!

a weeded flowerbed / funkyjunkinteriors.net
And… you guessed it. Time ran out once again. Drat! I had hoped to stage this area pretty for a picture… but… well, it is what it is.

Sighing, I packed the garden tools up, and did one last thing before heading indoors again. Because who knows when I’ll be out here again at this rate!

But first, a small story…

purple fall hydrangeas / funkyjunkinteriors.net
I have a great friend down the road. He’s built this pretty amazing dream home. But interestingly enough, his yard sat undone for a good long while.

One time I asked him, “What are your plans for the yard?”

He ran down his dream list, and it sounded AMAZING. Intentionally made rolling hills, flower beds with overflowing flower baskets, the works. It was a far cry from that at the moment. And as if reading my mind, he added, 

“But it doesn’t have to be done right away. We’re just doing what we can when we can. And we’re ok with that.”

See, if that had been me, I’d have been super impatient. I’d have wanted that yard done yesterday to match the sharp, new house.

Knowing me, I’d have spent a bunch of time on an area I didn’t have time for. Messing up what really needed to be done right away.

On my return from our Maui trip, I went by his yard and couldn’t believe my eyes. The yard did get done, and it turned out STUNNING. More stunning than I even imagined.

I walked in the yard with my jaw open and had to stare at everything. How… in just a few weeks… from barren to a paradise?!

The key was waiting for a break in the work load. Once that hit, his entire work crew ploughed through what needed to be done. In lighting speed I might add. 

Timing was key. A season for everything. Patience paid off.

But the point is, the belief was there all along. No doubt to be had. No giving up at all.

a pallet wood garden walkway / funkyjunkinteriors.net
Before I left the yard, I wandered back to the little pathway that encouraged me, and focused on JUST that.

And took a moment to appreciate the hard work that went into it. 

a pallet wood garden walkway / funkyjunkinteriors.net
And the beauty that came as a result.

a pallet wood garden walkway / funkyjunkinteriors.net
Just maybe we ought to put more effort into focusing on what we CAN do, vs. what we can’t… 

From Crap to Clean before Christmas! Funky Junk Interiors.57 PM
How did you make out this past week?

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Categories: Junk Drawer
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21 thoughts on “11 – pathway to a cleaner garden, and believing your way to success

  1. Oh My Gosh! You are not alone about the issues of caring for your gardens/yard vs. too many other pressing/fun things to do; like painting, card making, creating whatever!!!
    I try to get in my yard at least 1-2 spurts of energy a week; also weed pulling as I walk down our long driveway to get the mail each day!! Ha, it all works.
    Patience is not one of my virtues, but as the years pass (getting older), I have learned that it will be there tomorrow and tomorrow will be another day of progress. Now that I am retired, there is more time to do and procrastinate
    for tomorrow!! Enjoy your work and blog.

    • I laughed at your ‘more time to procrastinate’ Eloise… I’m truly afraid of all the things I seemingly won’t have time for during retirement years when there’s no pressure to perform! haha

  2. The patience part is the hard part for me. I keep coming back to the saying by Robert Riley, “You can eat an elephant if you do it one bite at a time.” I have this saying on my refrigerator.

    I’m in the middle of a garden project myself: Installing two brick garden bed borders. The bricks are kind of in place but need to be leveled and adjusted. We have rain so I get one side done and then have to stop or I have commitments outside of the house so I can’t finish. It will get done. It just won’t get done in one day. It looks bad temporarily, but it will get better.

    I like the idea of focusing on what I CAN do even if it’s inch by inch and minute by minute.

  3. You did a great job! I envy your soil, we have mostly clay. And the shot of your well worn “green” and white shoes is perfect. WE all agree with wanting to play when work needs to be done. Have a great day.

    • You are right Laurie, we do have great soil out here! I do try and top up the flowerbeds with new soil every 2 years or so. And of course… it always looks much more amazing after a good rainfall… as pictured! haha

  4. Great job Donna – I’m a Master Gardener & my yard still gets ahead of me. There never seems to be enough time to keep my yard looking like i really want it to look. The key is doing something everyday in the yard & that way at least I get something done!! πŸ™‚
    Would love to see pictures of your neighbors new yard if they will allow you to post. Always looking for new ideas!!!
    Thanks!

  5. We are doing the same thing over here in NJ. Little by little. ORGANIZED by Christmas. We built a mantel in the living room, finally. I came up with that idea LAST fall looking at all these bloggers with mantels! LOL

    Last night the mantel was DONE…all the fall decor was up, mirror was attached to the wall, fall lights and garland along the entire mantel. PERFECTO!

    Now I have to say that i did settle for this mirror. It was beveled like I wanted, but the frame was not exactly what I had envisioned. I wanted a wider flat frame that I could eventually mosaic to look similar to the mirror I loved at Pier One (like $289 for that one…so No way could I buy it.)

    I got this one at the Habitat for Humanity ReStore for a mere $12!
    We attached it to the wall because it was very heavy. We did not just want to “rest” it up there…it could fall. And since the couch and coffee table are right there…and I sit right there…not taking any chances.

    So, it was on the wall, and off to church we went last night. We came home….mirror EVERYWHERE!!! The wall hook was still on the wall. The hook was still on the back of the frame.The cheap metal frame had broken because the mirror was too heavy.

    I guess I could have rested it on the mantel, and attached a “stopper’ so it did not slide. (Hindsight.LOL)

    So…back to PATIENCE…my dream mirror will come…in time. Now it’s time to sort through a box of craft stuff I had in the living room and was avoiding doing…it now has glass chards in it. Then it all goes to the basement to my NEW craft area. I SOOO don’t want to do this!LOL

    Little by little….and it will get done! (kitchen wall is next…making it a chalk board AND magnetic.)

    Keep up these great encouraging posts. I think we women often feel like we have to get it ALL done RIGHT NOW. We are multitasking overachievers (LOL) and it often burns us out.We need bloggers like you who help set us straight with your own “struggles”. It’s OKAY not to have EVERYTHING done RIGHT NOW.

    • Robin, I am so sorry about your mirror! I would have died…

      I generally lean mine and just insert a couple of screws right into the mantel if need be. Holes, schmoles… there’s no one here to tell me I shouldn’t do that I guess? haha

      But maybe now you’ll find the mirror you REALLY want… or can even make… silver linings, right? πŸ™‚

      • Yes…now I just might! In the meantime…I went back to the ReStore and was telling the manager about what happened. (I talk to her often when I am there.) I was concerned that the other mirrors they sold might do the same thing and somebody could get hurt. She said that so far no one has complained. She had a pile of mirrors that were donated by what might have been a motel or hotel. They are exactly alike. They look like something ya would see in a Florida hotel/motel. She had chairs to match.She GAVE me a mirror! I paid $12 for mine and these were selling for $29. I’d be a FOOL to turn down a FREE anything! hahaha

        It may be too small for my really wide mantel of 13 feet. (No fireplace here so technically it is a 13 foot SHELF.LOL) BUT I will repaint this mirror and use it somewhere. It has fake bamboo around the edges and a wicker insert. And that is framed as well. It has been painted off white from the get go…but after some paint…I can mosaic over that wickery stuff! So either way I can have a mosaic framed mirror….just might not go on the mantel.

        It’s a win-win! πŸ™‚

  6. Hi. Love your garden. I have a problem with Lamb’s Ear, it’s everywhere. I’ve sprayed, I’ve pulled , I’ve even threatened it. I have it next to a brick walkway and it’s growing in there plus creeping into the lawn. Other than blowing it up what can I do? I do love the leaves, just not the invasive qualities. I’m 66 years old with Arthritis, but I try to garden. I grow herbs, vegetables, and flowers on my deck in the Summer. I’m going to try your Christmas Challenge. Wish me luck. Thank you, Pam

    • Oh yes, lambs ear goes a little crazy, doesn’t it? Maybe it’s time to dig it right out if it’s too much? Mine hasn’t gotten to that point quite yet! So glad you’re trying the challenge!

  7. It’s already too cold to garden where I live, but at least I can admire yours πŸ™‚

    And you know, most people hate weeding their garden, but I actually love it. Not the actual act of weeding, which is tiring and pretty boring, but the satisfaction you get after you’re done and you step back and look at what you’ve accomplished.

    • You are so right Anthony! If I didn’t leave things so long in between, it would probably be even more enjoyable! πŸ™‚ It needs to stop raining here so much. Glad you found a silver lining to the work involved!

  8. I am so envious of your dark soil! And it looks like you have no rocks in it all…we grow rocks here in our hard white dirt & if you want to dig a hole you really WANT to dig it. You have to use a pick ax – no exaggeration at all. It is such HARD WORK.

    But I am planning a big clean up in my flower beds as soon as we have a hard frost. I plan to pull everything out & add a nice layer mulch for the winter – shredded wood chips mostly. Every winter I add nice rich compost to at least one or two beds. I can’t afford to do it on all of them every year. Slowly, the soil is getting darker in them just like yours.

  9. Ohhhh that darn yard work. Right now the flower beds are looking pretty sad now that cooler weather has arrived. Luckily, we had a huge storm blow through here with gale force winds so it cleared out a lot of the Fallen leaves. That sure saved me a lot of raking!

    Fortunately, I managed to put my largest bed to rest for the winter and am only left with the smaller ones to clean up. (Nothing worse than wilted mushy hosts! !) All this along with writing report cards all weekend. It will all be a ton of fun! ?

  10. You did great!! Weeds are never done, are they? The last line of your post got me and I really needed to hear it!! Thank you πŸ™‚

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