When Yard Work Takes Over

Since becoming homeowners in May, yard work has become the bane of my existence—I’d much rather paint a ceiling or remove smoke-stained bunny wallpaper any day. Luckily for me, Pete is an outdoorsy type who enjoys mowing the lawn and weed whacking. The thought of working outdoors in 95 degree heat with our neighbors getting a lovely view of my weeder’s crack (note to self: wear a belt next time) and sweaty upper lip is not my idea of an enjoyable weekend afternoon. That being said, I’m very grateful to have a partner in crime who tolerates my screaming and flailing when I inevitably mistake a caterpillar for a small garden snake during my hallucinating-in-the-heat breaking point.

I understand that a yard is a reflection of the people inside and an extension of their home, but sometimes I just want to ignore our curb appeal and enjoy the comfort of our A/C. Unfortunately, our yard has been looking so frightening lately that we mildly resemble the Klopek’s house from The Burbs. The front of our house and our brick path has practically disappeared since being taken over by weeds. There’s something about being sweaty, smelly, aching and totally covered in bug bites that makes you feel accomplished at the end of the day…but I still prefer paint in my hair or spackle under my nails if given a choice.

On Saturday, we decided to attempt to tackle weeding our brick path in just a few hours before our friends were scheduled to visit. What I thought would be about a two hour ordeal ended up taking at least six hours between Saturday and Sunday. The weeds were underneath the bricks entirely, so each and every brick had to be lifted and replaced. Once the weeds were cleared, the gaps between the bricks were a lot larger, so the spacing was totally off. I tackled the main path on my own while Pete mowed the lawn and put his new weed whacker to use. I realized I should have used a guide to keep the path straight, since now it looks absolutely wibble-wobbly. Pete bought a bag of sand to help fill in the spaces, but we soon realized we underestimated how much sand we needed, so the cracks still need to be filled in for the most part. I plan on re-laying my part of the path since the gaps are too large and the sides aren’t straight, but I’m going to save that for a cool autumn day. I am pretty embarrassed by the wavy lines since I’m a total perfectionist, but I’m going to try to not let it bother me until the heat wave dissipates.

Pete was much more skilled when laying down the other part of the path. I helped pull out bricks and weeded underneath while he meticulously smoothed the dirt and made sure everything was straight. He even chiseled custom-sized bricks since we needed a few half pieces toward the end of the path. I weeded near our hedges and what is left of our flowers while he finished up. The lesson learned after the past two days is that we should tackle yard work bit by bit instead of putting it off after a few weeks. I suppose that’s what happens when you spend an entire weekend laying a black and white checkerboard floor or cleaning out a strange concrete circle of weeds—which we have decided is perfect for either sacrificing goats or adding a fire pit.

Pete’s mom stopped by today with two huge bags full of fresh produce from the co-op his parents belong to. I am really looking forward to trying out some new recipes, since a lot of these items are new to us (dandelion greens, chard, kohlrabi). We are having a small barbecue this weekend with some of Pete’s friends, so I’m thinking of tackling potato salad, guacamole, grilled veggies and cucumber salad. Any other ideas of how to make the best out of 8 lbs. of tomatoes for some BBQ food?

Speaking of food, Veronika and Bryan came over this weekend and spoiled us with some amazing home-cooked treats. They set up a photo shoot scene in our back yard because the talented Amber of Live it out Photography was itchin’ to shoot the handsome couple. Veronika’s attention to detail in styling is amazing, whether she’s whipping up a rustic boutonniere or mastering beehive hair, she never ceases to impress me with her creativity. I’m really looking forward to seeing Amber’s photos and think it’s pretty exciting that our backyard will be making an appearance!

A freshly-groomed Betty White wishes you guys a happy August—we have a lot to look forward to this month and are excited to share our latest happenings with everyone.

11 thoughts on “When Yard Work Takes Over”

  1. Kohlrabi is awesome. Cut into little pieces, boil and then make a white sauce from flour, margarine and the water you cooked the Kohlrabi in. (add a little salt, pepper and nutmeg – can add a little Parmesan if you like to as well)


  2. The path is looking good!! Trust me, weed killer is your friend for brick. We have some bricks that we layed ourselves as well, and even with the sand, weeds still manage to work their way in!

    Your veggies look amaaazing! Kohlrabi is good in slaws or salads, it has a broccoli-like flavor but an apple-like texture. Very cool. They’d even be good in your potato salad!

    As for your tomatoes…I just did a WHOLE bunch of tomato cooking, and I love salsas, soups, and just plain old tomato salads. Another great option is stuffed tomatoes, with orzo or rice, or whatever you can get your hands on. Grill or roast it, and it’s a delish sidedish or veggie dish!


  3. Shannanana, use excess tomatoes to make bbq sauce! Also, don’t feel bad about your path, the weeds growing in the cracks of my driveway are taller than me. Seriously.


  4. You got a lot of veggies there that I have never even seen before. What is a co-op and how do I join one so I get a shit-ton of fresh produce?! Ha ha ha.
    ps I love your Burbs reference.


    1. Here’s more info about our local co-op: http://doylestown.coop/faqs/co-op-101/ It’s just something you sign up for (costs money obviously) and you can go every week or every other week depending on the place to get the fresh produce they make on-site. So it’s all local, fresh and super delicious! Pete and I are definitely considering signing up for it next year since we mostly raid the produce section of the grocery store anyway.


  5. Wow, an entire counter full of veggies. I’m sure you’ll do very creative and yummy things with them.

    Never heard of Kohlrabi (although sounds like it came from my fav store ~ Kohl’s).

    Nothing better or easier than fresh from the garden sliced tomatoes with sea salt and ground pepper. Yes, simple I know, but that’s me simple. Can always add fresh mozzarella, basil and balsamic vinaigrette. Yummy Dearest, I mean Mommy Dearest. ❤


  6. I really love reading your blog. Your house is absolutely stunning, and I can’t wait to see what you’ll muster up next! Thanks so much for sharing. It’s inspiring!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s