Mailbox inspiration

Does your mind ever go to weird places?  Do you ever find inspiration for your home and garden in the most unusual places?  Some times I do.

As I was walking to the mailbox  the other day I was thinking of all the unique mailboxes I have seen over the years and how some of these might be used to decorate my garden.  There are house mail boxes  and cow mail boxes, I even saw one once that was shaped like a baseball hat.

What kind of mail box design could you use in your garden this spring?  I did some looking online and do you know that besides the standard half oval residential mailboxes residential mailboxes that come in hundreds maybe even thousands of shapes, sizes and colors there are more then a ton of them that looking nothing like a mailbox at first glance.  As I was looking through these a storm of ideas came to mind for ways I could use them to decorate my home and garden and even use them for a organizing things here in my office.  You could use small square wall mount to keep your keys in.  You could use and extra wide stainless steel one for locking documents in.  The possibilities are endless.  Heck you might even just decide to replace your existing mailbox.

Even if your neighborhood or house already has a mailbox provided, do not fret take a look at some of the more interesting shapes and designs for the mailbox and I think you will agree that maybe there is more to the mail box then just mail.

Dreams of an Outdoor Firepit

As I sit here staring at my gas fireplace, my thoughts go to an outdoor gas logs firepit. I love being outside. I love being in the hot tub on a crisp day. I tend to use my hot tub long after most people have shut theirs down for the season. What I have always wanted was a glassed in room overlooking the garden with a hot tub and a nice gas fireplace. Now don’t get me wrong wood burning fireplaces are great but once you have had a gas fireplace it is really hard to go go back to wood. With a wood fireplace you have to want to buy wood or pellets for them constantly. You have to keep adding wood or pellets to them while they are running to keep them working. Not to mention having to clean ash out of them and so on. It is so wonderful when you can just flip the switch and have a nice, warm fire in minutes. Gas logs are SO much easier to use and much more convenient.

So lets talk about what we will need to have a gas logs fireplace. First we need to determine what is the area our fireplace is going to be like; Is it indoors or is it outdoors? Can we use a ventless gas log or do we need a vent? Then, of course, we need to know what company would make us a great deal on all our gas log needs? One company I know of is Hansen Wholesale. Hansen is an exclusive dealer for R. H. Peterson Real Fyre Gas Logs. They guarantee the lowest price, which is a tough claim to make these days on the internet, but they make it. Hansen Wholesale has been making this guarantee since they opening in 1994. Perhaps the best news of all is that Hansen Wholesale is currently running a $75 additional discount AND no sales tax AND FREE shipping!!! – Now how is THAT for a heck of a deal.

The shocking part of the whole gas logs fireplace decision isn’t the price, it is how many different types, styles, and options there is to choose from. That is why I love the Gas Log FAQ which helps you determine not only what there is available, but what you are looking for, how things work, why they work that way and what will work best for you.

So why not; let’s have a gas logs firepit in our backyard or screen porch area and enjoy the outdoors even more. Think of how much longer (maybe even all year long) we can enjoy the outdoors if we have a nice, blazing fire to cuddle up to while we watch the sunset.

My Grandpa’s Garden

dscf1454.JPGWhile I was growing up, I was taught to garden by two great men: my Dad and my Grandpa. I learned to work hard and to get my hands dirty in the soil as we planted a garden and nurtured the plants so we could benefit from the bounty they provided.

One thing that my Grandpa always planted was flowers. There were always flowers to cut and make into bouquets to bring into the house and enjoy. He grew Sunflowers, Zinnias, Gladiolas, Peonies and Roses. He also grew lots of Marigolds. Of course, since I have grown up, I now know that those were for pest control in the vegetable garden more than anything. But I enjoyed them growing up and my own garden must have flowers.

This season of my life now finds me moving back home. We are moving into my Grandpa’s house and along with the memories; there is a lot of renovation going on. In fact, I was just there yesterday and since I am still recovering from my accident, I watched two great men, my Dad and my Husband, work together to tear out the old kitchen to prepare it for the new one. (There were some fun things that were found there that I will share with you later this week.)

Despite the changes, one thing has remained a constant: my Grandpa’s garden. We were standing outside the house a couple of weeks ago and were discussing that we needed to put a garden in the garden spot. Wouldn’t you know, just about that time, a man came by on a tractor with a spade and we flagged him down. He tilled the garden area for us for a phenomenal price and we were ready to plant. I love small towns!

So now I have a garden planted at my new/old home, and it has been said by more than one person that everyone will think my Grandpa is back. We planted it very similar to the same way he taught me as a youth and we have flowers planted in the same spots. I am sure that as we rejuvenate the old garden spot and the yard, that Grandpa will smile down from Heaven. I will share pictures as we make progress all along the way.

To the three men who have taught me how to garden…My Grandpa, My Dad and My Husband…Happy Father’s Day! Thank you for teaching me how to enjoy the garden and to work hard. I love you all!

What are some of your gardening memories while growing up? Leave me a comment and share!

How to Buy a Hammock

With Fathers Day quickly approaching, many people are busy trying to find that perfect gift for Dad to show their love and appreciation for all he does. A very popular gift is a hammock. A hammock can help Dad to relax after a hard day at work in his garden and yard. But how do you choose the right hammock for the Dad in your life?

There are many different styles available on the market today and you are sure to find one that will be perfect for Dad. In this short video, we will explore several choices and options for buying that perfect hammock.

Now that you have seen the many different styles available, which hammock will you choose for your Dad? Why did you choose the one you did?

Fathers Day Gift Ideas Kids Can Make

With Fathers Day just around the corner, you may be trying to think of things that your kids can make to give to their dad. Why not have the kids make a garden gift that he will enjoy using or will cause him to laugh? These gifts do not have to be expensive, and with a little bit of effort and a few supplies, you can help your kids make a gift for dad that is sure to bring a smile to his face.

Barbecue Kit

spot.jpgIf Dad loves to grill, why not make a barbecue kit that will keep him smiling all year long? This project can be quite simple to do and the kids will enjoy making it.

First, find Dad some new barbecue utensils. If Dad has some favorite utensils that are in primo condition, then just swipe those at the last minute Saturday night. Now, you will need to find a terra-cotta pot or gardening container that is deep enough to hold those utensils. Have the kids paint and decorate the pot. Then when it is dry, seal it with a clear coat spray varnish.

Fill the decorated pot with the barbecue utensils, a new barbecue mitt, and Dad’s favorite dry rub and sauce.

Garden Seed Box

350x255_decoupage_rdax_65.jpgIf Dad has leftover seeds from planting the garden, why not make him a box to hold them in? This can be fairly simple as all you will really need is a large recipe file box and some decorations. The kids can decorate the box with garden pictures. If you are feeling especially adventurous, you might take empty seed packets and have the lids decoupage them onto the box for decoration. Then place the leftover seed packets in the box and Dad will be smiling.

Money Tree

1.GIFWe all know that at times, dads like to ask their kids something along the lines of, “Do you think money grows on trees?” Well, why not make a money tree that is sure to make him laugh?

Have the kids find a nice twiggy branch in the yard or garden. In an empty soup can that the kids have painted in dad’s favorite color, place the branch and some plaster of paris. Wait for the plaster to harden. Then simply tie money onto the branches of the tree with string. You can just use play money if you want…the effect will be the same.

Funny Dad Plant

growing-grass.JPGFor a gift that is sure to get a chuckle, have you kids make a Funny Dad Plant. These are simple to make and the end result will be more than one smile on everyone’s face.

Have your kids draw a funny face on a Styrofoam cup. You can help them to glue wiggle eyes on for an even greater effect if desired. Once the cup is decorated, fill it with potting soil. Sprinkle some perennial rye grass seed on top and lightly water. To encourage the growth of the grass, for dad’s green hair, place a Ziploc bag over the top and place in a sunny location inside the house. The grass should germinate in time for Fathers Day if you do this early enough in the week. It is fun and the kids and Dad will love it.

Gifts for Dad don’t have to be expensive. But he will love gifts that the kids make because they come from the heart. What are some of your ideas for gifts that kids can make for Dad?