Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Seven Things...

Gayla at You Grow Girl challenged all her readers, of which I am one, to a "Seven Random Things" MeMe. One reader (of those who participate) will win a copy of Gayla's first book, the aptly-titled You Grow Girl. While my initial temptation is to simply read the submissions of others and lurk about anonymously, I started thinking about it and realized I not only have a list of seven things but, in the spirit of the challenge, they also just happen to be garden/yard-related.

So, here you go: Seven Things I Want To Accomplish in Our Yard!

1. I'd like to build something cool to both protect and hide the air-conditioner. It's just sitting there right now, all exposed to the elements. I know it doesn't have feelings, but I feel like I should put a sweater on it or something. Instead, I'm thinking maybe gravel around the base of it and some 4-foot fencing of some sort, set about a foot away from the unit. With some low maintenance plants on the outside of the structure...it could be the prettiest air-conditioner in the West.

2. Fences are going to be a big deal. The one in the front is going to both keep deer out and keep the Biggest Girl in, but it absolutely will not be made of pre-fab pickets. In fact, I saw a fence made of corrugated roofing and it looked so fabulous that I'm beginning to entertain the idea. The back yard is going to have the tall, privacy fence, but, again, I'm really loving the corrugated look. It's going to take some more research, but I'm hoping to have both planned (at least) by the Spring.

3. I'd like the entire backyard to be a garden that allows us to be as self-reliant as possible when it comes to fruits and veggies. I know there will be things we will still have to buy (citrus and bananas, at the very least), but I reeeally want to be able to step out back and pick our dinner, rather than having to get ready, get Buns ready, get in the car, drive, get out of the car, get Buns out of the car, go into the store...it just seems like so much work and it would be nice to just wander into the yard to do my "shopping".

4. If I'm going to become a fabulous gardner, I'm also going to have to learn to preserve. I'm talking canning, dehydrating, and the like. This won't really take place in the yard, but it's a necessary step in the process and that's why it's on the list. I have a dishwasher that can sanitize (see...I was thinking ahead!), but, past that, I'm a total amateur. I can freeze things pretty well, but the thought of canning my own salsa=woohoo!

5. Grass. I would really like it if my grass would grow. It's been 9 days since I scattered the seed and, with a germination time of 10-14 days, I'm fully expecting to wake up in the morning (day 10!) and see a soft, neon green blanket of fuzzy grass. This is one of the most nerve-wracking projects I've ever tackled! There are greasy forehead prints on the living room window and I'm pretty sure my neighbors must think I'm wacky, what with all the staring at the lawn at all hours of the day. I can't help it. I want grass. Just grow already!

6. I want a funky, beautiful yard. The neighborhood we live in is sadly lacking in landscaping character and I am so determined to change that. Part of the problem is that it's a relatively new development and, therefore, the landscaping is relatively new, as well. Past that, though, it's all so...safe. So expected. Not here. Nope. I'm going for it. The Bauer's Dracaena is our jumping off point and I am so excited to see where we land. I want the plants we choose to be unexpected, but fabulous. It's a little scary leaping out of the lavender/hydrangea/boxwood box and into the world of more exotic landscaping, but nothing ventured, nothing gained, right?

7. I want to make sure this is a family thing. I'm definitely the one with the vision, but it's not just my yard. It's our yard and I hope the Biggest Girl and Mr. Mallard get as much out of it as I do. Working on the yard together is a great chance for us to have some family time that doesn't require an admission ticket or an overpriced snack of some sort. It's just us and the plants and the dirt and I can't imagine a better time or, once we get the garden going, a better opportunity to teach our awesome baby girl how to live a simple, beautiful, healthy life.

And there you have it! Seven things I want to accomplish in our yard. My To-Do list for the next six months, essentially. While it all seems like a lot of work, I'm truly thrilled to have the chance to make this list. Having this yard, that just happens to be attached to our first house, represents so much more to me than just a list of chores. It's the greatest blank canvas ever and we are so lucky, especially in these times, to be in a position to get our hands dirty as we build and grow something of our own.

So...do you have seven things? hmmm?

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