Saturday, May 6, 2017

The hills of Tennessee are showing their green...


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I know I constantly gush about how pretty it is in Tennessee, but just look at this picture.  I snapped it from the car window this week, and I’m just in awe of how how beautiful it is and pinch myself because I’m so lucky to live in such a lovely part of these great United States.

Middle Tennessee sits in a valley, so everything is surrounded by hills.  This spring has been so rainy, everything is lush and the views are  just magnificent.



The weather has been warm, we’ve been doing a lot of landscaping, and I’ve been doing a lot of sitting on the front porch.  It’s just a tiny little porch, but we enjoy it more than any outdoor area we’ve ever had.  For hubby it’s because there is activity.  We often say we live on Sesame Street because there are so many young families with children.  Fortunately for us, Don and Jacquie moved in last month across the street and they are also children of the 60’s.  We were doing the happy dance the day we saw their car pull in with age appropriate people inside :) 

But back to hubby and sitting on the porch.  People walk by with their kids and dogs and stop to say hi, he watches traffic, he isn’t bored.  We had such a pretty patio in Heavensville and he never sat outside.  He’s not a nature lover, there was nothing to watch except the birds and when we moved here, I was totally shocked to see him actually sit on the porch and relax.  I bought an outdoor lamp, it seems to be a southern thing, people  in Nashville often have lamps on their porches, and of course I jumped right on that bandwagon.  He mounted it to my table so the wind doesn’t blow it away and I sit early mornings in a chair with my coffee on the table, checking mail on my laptop and it’s a beautiful thing.  Our outdoor areas in Heavensville were beautiful, but the condo faced west and there was nothing to shield it from the sun so I rarely sat outside.  I sat on the back patio a lot, but usually by myself since hubby wasn’t a fan, so this works far better than I ever imagined.  Our house now faces north, so there is always shade.   I hung ferns, plopped a topiary in a pot by the front door, planted our iron tiered basket that we’ve had forever with impatiens and now I’m on the hunt for the perfect wreath for the front door.  LC put in the micro irrigation, so no watering for me this summer.

I have two mandevillas planted on trellises on either side of the porch and they are flourishing, the entire front of the house is landscaped with trees and bushes.  V and Rich visited last month and she helped me plan things.  The azaleas are flowering, there are big buds on the mountain laurels, the beds of Stella D’oro day lilies are blooming and the birds are singing.  The crape myrtle has leafed out and I just love watching everything grow.  LC knows I’m a sucker for a birch tree, he got a lovely one and planted it, we bought a dozen boxwoods to line the driveway and now we’re waiting on the sprinkler company to come and work on the system.  Then we mulch and we’re pretty much finished.  Well, gardens are never finished, but for this spring we’ve done enough.

Our back porch is covered as well, it only gets early morning sun, so it’s accessible as well.  Summers are hot in middle Tennessee, but hopefully we can sit outside some evenings and enjoy dinner. But what’s been a defining moment for me is the realization that it doesn’t take a lot of space to make an area your own.  We brought all of our favorite outdoor pots and statuaries and were able to use most of them.  My big concrete roosters are sitting under the birch tree, my stone rabbits are tucked under bushes and my favorite big clay frog is sitting on the back porch.  I planted hydrangeas in pots and sat them in the landscaping since there was limited space on the back porch for pots, I hung colorful baskets and planted herbs.  It’s small, contained and just the right size for me to putter around in without being overwhelmed.  

And that’s what I’ve been up to.  It’s starting to feel like home, it takes awhile to adjust to new surroundings, but I’m getting there and loving it...


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