ATTENTION!!! Please do not steal my content! ALL of the content on this page is property of Tootsie Time is not to be copied and used elsewhere unless with the expressed permission of Tootsie! There have been a lot of my photos found on various websites and none have permission. Removing the watermark is not permitted under any circumstances. My work is MINE to share, and should never be seen with someone else's name attached to it. That is stealing!


Monday, June 21, 2010

A Day In The Garden…Making It MINE.

Happy Monday everyone!!! I hope you all had a wonderful weekend…and a great Father’s day. I did.

Today I will be linking this post in to Nan over at Mom's the word...she has a great meme called making your home sing monday! click the logo to visit the others who are singing right along with her.

Now…those of you who know me as a friend and fellow blogger, know I have not been having the very best time of things the last couple of years…almost 4 to be exact…and that things are still a bit bumpy. I have been stressed to the max, and busy as I can be. (some busy is by choice…some not so much) Thank you from the bottom of my heart to those of you who have helped hold me up through the most devastating time…and for holding me and the kids in your hearts and prayers as we heal.

I keep busy as a way to cope with the stresses in my world. My favorite way to keep my sanity is to play in my gardens. Now, there were times over the past few years, that things were really bad and I did not care about a lot I did just the basics to keep things alive, but did not have it in me to get anything new going. I am beginning a new chapter in my life…healing and getting stronger every day…and I have decided that this year I would do all of those things in my house or garden that I either was not allowed to do…or never got around to before. This ... is two of those things.

Lets begin.


I know you all remember the post I did on the day of junkin’ I did last summer. I had a wonderful time…and I got all the wagon wheels and the iron piece as well as a few tree stumps that day…remember the story about how all I had for tools with me was the claw foot hammer??? How I hacked that large wheel away from it’s axel with the claw? Well…this area looks okay for now…but I thought it could look much much better with a little effort…so…I put in some effort.

I got in my truck…and went for a little drive…I drove around until I found a pile of larger rocks… loaded up until my truck was almost over loaded with weight. Then as fast as a girl with too much weight in the box of her little truck could go…I headed for home.

I worked my bum off for over an hour to remove 6 inches of gravel from the area under the “olden pile” . I have always wanted a rock garden in my yard…it just never happened. Until now…

I grunted and sweated…and grunted some more… I hauled some soil from the bed I had in the back alley…and …three hours later…


TA-DA!!! Tootsie has her rock garden…in the gravel area of her yard!


I planted an Elder tree in there…some monkshood, some iris, and a few other things from the back alley bed…(trying to clean up that bed out back) I robbed two pots of marigolds to fill in…and that’s my new look for my “olden junk”.


In total I put about 9 inches of soil into the bed…and it sure did clean up the area. I recently moved the fire pit area into the gravel part…and thought it would be a great place to build a new feature. The kid’s trampoline is back here…and for 6 years I have hated the gravel area…it was grungy and dirty looking…a catch all for weeds, unwanted crap and just plain ugly.

It is the first area you see when you walk into the back gate…so why not make it look nice? In the past it was used as winter storage for boat, trailers, trucks…whatever…but that is the past…the future is now…and it’s MINE. I did what I wanted to do with it.


I think it looks much more inviting now.


I am happy with the result…it was worth the effort. I am considering a short strand of lights to accent it in the evening…what do you think?

After I finished that, it was almost a million degrees outside…and anyone else would have stopped for the day, had a lemonade and sat and admired the new area…but not me!!! I headed out to the alley to clean up the disgusting mess of weeds and trash that had accumulated over the winter.

I have always wanted to clean the alley area up and make it look nice. No one in the area keeps their weeds down but me...and it is making me crazy. In my other house, I had a whole bed set up out in the alley behind the fence… my neighbors loved it…and it was one of my favorite beds…so why not make one here (but on a much smaller scale)?

(I don’t have a before photo…you will just have to take my word that it was a disgrace to my Tootsieness.)


The guy across the alley had pulled out a brick type path from his yard and piled the bricks out behind his property…slated for a dump trip. We were exchanging the usual small talk and chit chat one morning and the pile of bricks came up … they became mine!


So I put them in the back alley bed to contain the soil. I have already borrowed a lot of the plants that I had in that area for the front yard, that new rock garden and a couple of other places, so it was a mess of weeds…and needed some attention.


I dug them into the soil, packed it firm…and pulled a LOT of weeds…cleaned up the 1/2 dead grass and this is where is is at today!


There were a few good ones left over…so I placed them to make a platform to keep the yard waste bins when they are full and waiting for the waste removal guys…


I made a little walk way thing for the front of the garbage bag corral.

In all of the process…I managed to tick off a huge ant colony that had moved into the flower bed. I didn’t realize that it was even there until my upper body was literally covered in ants! Ya…I did a dance…and a lot of screaming…and then made sure I was alone in the alley. The only one who managed to see, hear and laugh out loud at me…was Justin…the young man who lets me boss him around in his gardens…Ha-ha. He thought it was hilarious! What he doesn’t know…is that the joke is on him…I planted a few more of those plants in his yard…he didn’t even notice…hee hee…and next week…time and my sore arm permitting…he might just be getting that hedge!!!! ( finally agreed to having a hedge if I insist on it- I love that he lets me be the boss!) {8~)


Ta-da! the whole project all finished up.

And that is what I did on Saturday between the hours of 6:30AM and 10:00PM. (yes… This Tootsie was POOPED! ha-ha)

The cost for both of these projects….ZERO Dollars. Just a lot of sweat…and a few sore muscles.

Oh…one more thing…I have already had several people stop-look and compliment me on having the nicest alley bed in the area! That made it all worthwhile right then and there!

Thanks for stopping in…see you in a couple days with more from the list of things I plan to do….{8~)

¸.•´¸.•*¨) ¸.•*¨)
(¸.•´ (¸.•´ .•´ ¸¸.•¨¯`•.


Gatsbys Gardens said...

Tootsie, I am all for alley beds. I have one also and am hoping to inspire some other beds in the alley. It sure makes it look a lot nicer than just weeds or gravel.


Robin@DecoratingTennisGirl said...

Looks beautiful, Tootsie. Glad things are getting better for you!

La Petite Gallery said...

In Boston I saw my first alley bed, makes a diff.
Fell Good.. Yvonne

Heather at Dusty Bay said...

Thanks for sharing and for the tour around - have yourself a great day!

Julie said...

I am here Tootsie! Your rock garden is so gorgeous! I always wanted one...for succulents, of course...but never have. My husband worries about rocks at mowing time. Anyway...your alley looks very nice now! Knowing you, you will be doing even more out there...I just betcha!
Take care!

Junebug said...

I love the rock garden with the old wheels. I have one that has been stored in the wood pile with future plans. You have inspired me to do a copy cat. Thanks for the idea! We don't have alleys but love how yours turned out. The future is bright because you have soul girlie!!!!

Gardener on Sherlock Street said...

You are so amazing. The rock bed is cool but I'm really excited to see you tackle the alley. I'm establishing a wildflower garden in our alley. I can't believe the number of bricks you got for FREE! Very good reuse. Way to go girl!

Andrea said...

Thank you so very much for your prayers, encouragement, and support.
You are awesome!

The JR said...

Good job!

I would have probably just covered the whole area with bricks so as to not have any grass to mow.....

The bed is going to be really nice when the flowers fill it in!

Lona said...

Well I am wore out just reading all that you did Saturday. LOL! Oh, I am with you and the new rock garden looks so much better. Lights would be good. Your alley bed looks so clean and decked out now. I never lived where there was an alley but I would have to keep it cleaned up to. It would drive me bananas. LOL! You have done a great job.

Marty@A Stroll Thru Life said...

Oh my word Lady, wish I had half of your energy. Love your alley and I really love the new rock garden you created. So pretty. You totally amaze me. Gorgeous. Hope you have a super day. Hugs, Marty

Unknown said...

All your hard work looks wonderful! I say "yes" to adding the lights. You really do have a talent for gardening and making your yard and gardens look very inviting.


9405018--Pat said...

Wow! I love your rock garden...Tootsie your an amazing woman...thanks for sharing...Pat H

Happy To Be/ Gl♥ria said...

Oh Girl it looks just wonderful...can't beleive you moved all those rocks and bricks by yourself...You are a trooper my friend...Girl it was so great talking with you laste night...Now do what I told you to do...You don't need another project to raise ha ha!! Love ya my Sweet friend...Hugs and smiles Gl♥ria

momstheword said...

You are still my hero, girlfriend. You are amazing! It all looks so lovely and if I lived in your town, I'd be driving by practically every day just to see what you were up to!

Thanks for linking up today.

Linda @ A La Carte said...

Tootsie I have so much admiration for you! What hard work but what wonderful results and they are yours! I don't know all the back history of the last 4 years but I can tell you are enjoying some hard earned freedom and respect!!

The Muse said...

you fill us with such inspiration!
i am glad that you have a place to go and de-stress :)

Erin said...

Wow! Tootsie, you were definitely inspired and energetic. It looks fabulous...I love the area around the trash looks so deliberate and neat. The garden, as always, looks fabulous and I do remember when you brought those wheels home.

Corner Gardener Sue said...

Hi Tootsie,
I thought your yard looked fine in the before photos, but then, when I saw what you did, I was amazed at the improvement. You have a gift! I love how you put the bricks around the alley bed at different heights. I don't know if I would have thought of that.

siteseer said...

AMAZING as always. Your energy levels are just awesome. I've been a little stressed lately and have learned that I kick it up a notch when stressed. Not always a bad thing lol. Love the new alley way and wish I had an alley to decorate :) Can't wait to see you next project.

Unknown said...

WOW! What a difference, amazing! I'm glad you have turned things around.

Take care & God bless!