I suppose we could call this “summer cleaning,” as long as it’s not too hot.

I’m a little surprised summer didn’t come into full fury four weeks ago. Usually the first weekend in May heralds a good long HOT summer til about late September. We still have a slight reprieve, but that heat index is making it what it is.

I managed to finish the first coat of paint on my front entryway’s railings and sides. It got way too hot (once that breeze stopped and the sun came out) to go ahead and start the second coat. It looks like crap, but at least it’s all covered and it’ll stay good and covered til I can go in and get another coat going. I was being a bit sparse because I felt that I was running low on paint. I probably have plenty, but I’m going to make sure to get another gallon from the store before I go to work tomorrow.

Besides, I’ll need to keep some around for touch-ups or covering mistakes, so why not?

I’m just glad I was able to get some stuff cleaned up around the house, and definitely the side porch. I got my scrubbing brush and some water and got rid of a bunch of dirt I hadn’t swept off the first two times (pretty gross water by the time I was done). I’d been itching to put some wood protector on the porch and steps since I moved in in December, but I couldn’t get the weather to cooperate, and was trying to find the best way to apply it.

17109-a-woman-sweeping-her-front-porch-pvI’m not using Thompson’s water-seal. I bought some a while back, but was told how much it damaged other people’s decks if they couldn’t re-apply every year. I’ve got some stuff that’s supposed to be good to cover for three years at least. It’s a covered area, so most of it should be good.

Re-applying on the front steps in a fully exposed area doesn’t matter to me. That’ll be easy. The side porch will be tougher because I’ll have to move furniture on and off in the next few years.

Still, as long as the weather cooperates tomorrow morning, I’ll be applying that sealant on the deck, and just let it sit all day while I’m at work.

I love that you don’t need a full 24 hours to stay off of it. I’m forgetful enough I’d have the dogs go out to potty that way and they’d mess it up.

That’s immediately what’s going on with the house. Otherwise, it’s time to get the debris and old wood out of the yard and on the burnpile (or in the trash). There’s broken bits of brick sticking out of mud, weeds as tall as me, trenches dug out by the tires on the old house (and the new one) that need filling… yeah, there’s plenty of outdoor work to do. I’ll have weeks just filling in low spots and those dang trenches in the yard.

My neighbor actually took pity on me and the weeds in my front yard. She used a sling blade to knock ’em down when I was at work (and yes, I thanked her for it). She was getting the high grass and weeds in her ditch and came across to help me out. I didn’t want my yard to stay so ragged (haven’t touched it with a mower since about October because of the holes and flooding). I was concerned about her smaller hubby coming over and breaking his ankle in one of those holes trying to cut those things down with a weed eater.

I definitely need another truckload of topsoil.

equipment-2047314_960_720

A step at a time. I just hate how my to-do list leaves a bunch of things half-done, but it can’t be helped. If the weather changes, I have to take advantage of it and work on what I can, rain or shine.

I’m starting to feel like a farmer for a bit, relying on the weather to do my chores and all. Feels simple and fulfilling, even though sometimes when it’s hot I have to give myself a pep talk to move my ass and clean or organize something in the house.

That brightness out there makes me tired just looking at it, makes me imagine how hot it is.

Today when I was finishing that coat of paint, it was 86 degrees according to AccuWeather, but 96 with the heat index. It wasn’t even noon yet, so I was glad to get it done as fast as I could and get in the house.

I just have to remember to get my hair under a hat tomorrow, hydrate, and take my time spreading that sealant. My hope is that I’ll be able to put the ceiling fans up out there and the furniture I bought back in December (but still haven’t taken out of the box). I want to enjoy my porch with the dogs, and have it nice and lit up at night, with fans to disperse the bugs and some citronella candles to make the mosquitoes take a hike.

I love being outside, but the gnats, flying ants, and mosquitoes are really annoying right now.

That’s my big project to finish for the week. A smaller one involves implementing my new practice schedule for my instruments and studies. I just have to remember that I really need to get this house and yard in order.

Then, I can concentrate on playing music, reading, and tending my garden. I’ve got a poblano as tiny as the top segment of my pinky, a skinny anaheim as long as my pinky toe, and a slightly bigger banana pepper.

Only the jalapeno plant doesn’t seem to be doing much in the pepper section. The bell peppers are flowering, too, but that’s about it. I’ve got some neat big flowers coming off the zucchini plants.

As long as I don’t overdo the outside (and wear a hat and sunscreen), I’ll be able to enjoy it, and get a ton of things accomplished this summer. I want to make this yard look really good.

And I want to feel like I’m officially at home.

Def not my porch, but my idea of what I want (with different colors, anyway).

 

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