friday fun: ferns and first flowers

even though tulips and daffodils and other first bloomers have been going for weeks, these are my garden's first official 2012 flowers from a perennial geranium that didn't do super well last year. in fact, i'm not even sure i knew what color the flowers would be until i turned the corner yesterday and saw one blooming. today there are three. loving the purple.


and even though our back fence line is a wild mess of shrubs, vines, and decaying yard waste, i spotted these lovely ferns while mowing the lawn and clipped them for the kitchen.


i'm crossing my fingers that my annabelle hydrangeas and shasta daisies do well this year, because i'd love to have fresh flowers in the house all summer long. if not, i might just keep going back to the ferns, because i'm rather crazy about these pretty fronds.

do you plant flowers that you can cut and bring inside? any recommendations?

how does your garden grow?

let me show you what's growing around here!

first up: kitchen windowsill. last week i planted some basil, chives, and parsley. look at those little green buds!


that blows my mind. God devised a system in which sunlight and water cause seeds to grow into plants, some hundreds of feet tall. what a beautiful God.

next up: a lovely ranunculus plant on the front stoop [courtesy of my lovely mom].


i can't stop cutting these flowers and bringing them in the house. they look great in a bud vase and they are so layered that they keep unfolding for like a week before they turn brown. gorgeous.



and last: the side of the house. what is this?


no, seriously—what the heck is this? an iris? and is it possible that it is sticking its tongue out at me and telling me that it grew without my help? because it did. i came around the corner there it was. what a happy surprise. thank you, previous homeowners!

weekend update: mini-makeovers

this past weekend was full of small triumphs around the house.

first off: the front porch. i finally put out the housewarming gift dave and lauren got us. it is an adorable welcome mat from patina. my mom and i went to costco and she bought us this fantasticly huge plant. so they went up on the front porch. i know this is kind of like lipstick on a pig, but it brightened up our entryway significantly (even if the only person who notices is the postman).

before:


after:

to quote from clueless, "not a totally betty, but a vast improvement."

here's another small update:



(please excuse the sawdust.) i love the knobs. they add a great sheen to the kitchen that makes me really excited for shiny new appliances.

and finally, we painted the mudroom a lovely shade of gray. it was actually called "dorian gray" from sherwin williams. they had funny names. a close shade was even called "intellectual gray." i want that job: naming paint colors. we also installed a light fixture because we have our final electrical inspection coming up. we decided that the fixture wasn't bright enough, but we'll keep it up for the inspection and then change it out.

before (note the sad little light bulb):


after (note the sad lack of doorknob):


i think it will look awesome with crisp white trim. the doors will be painted a color to keep them from looking filthy; i'm just not quite sure which color yet.

this weekend involves a paint project in the half bath with a special guest. i'll post pics when it is finished!