When I was in school I couldn’t wait for the lazy days of summer.   It seemed like there was nothing to do and plenty of time to do it.   I really didn’t appreciate it at the time. Now it seems like there is always a list of dozens of things to do  and when I look at the clock I always ask myself where the day went.

I have been doing a lot of outdoor work and the list is growing.     But I did make a dent in it. It rained almost all day yesterday.   That is really a good thing for the garden because I don’t have to water but it did add a day to the deck project.   I cleaned the deck on Thursday and got a coat of paint on it on Friday , rain on Saturday, but got the second coat on today after it dried.   I think it looks great.

Here it is before cleaning and staining.

and after.


I have to give it a few days to totally dry , Teddy is very upset with me for not letting him on the deck.   He thinks it is his personal space.

Another item on the to do list was the front steps.    They were really scary.   The rise and run were all wrong.    The rise from step to step was all different with the space between the top step and the porch deck at about 2 inches.   So I ripped them out (which really was not a big task since they were so poorly made) and replaced them .   I Still need to stain to match, but they are safe to use now.


I transplanted some Hostas in the side bed


Those are the old steps in the bottom left corner of the pic.

I put in some bird feeders.   I can see them from the quilting frame on the first floor and from the sewing machine on the second.


They were both full to the top on Friday.    One holds 5 pounds and one holds 8.   Hungry birds!   And fun to watch squirrels try to get into them.

Here are some more garden pics (click pictures to enlarge)

There is a lot left to do!   I think I will make another list….LOL
Quilting stuff next time



44 thoughts on “Summer

  1. Sharon in Galesburg says:

    Is there anything you can’t do? Everything looks so great. It really feels good to cross those items off the “ole list”, doesn’t it? Somebody should really have a long talk with you about being so darn lazy!! Thanks for the update….I look forward to one every day😊. Belly rub for Teddy, please.

  2. Debbie ballard says:

    Thank you for sharing the progress. I’m amazed at all you get done! Everything looks terrific.

  3. Susan Cohen says:

    the deck looks great!!! what paint did you use???

  4. Ann Genaske says:

    Thank you very much for filling in the names of your plants. I know it takes extra time but it’s so helpful for those of us who are green thumb deficient. Your homes are beautiful. Wishing you and Teddy many happy, healthy, busy years to come in them.

    • timquilts says:

      Thanks Ann, I seem to always be in a hurry lately, It was good to sit for a few extra min and write out the names….It is amazing how soon I can forget them if I don’t write them out every once in a while. I must confess i had to look up a few for spelling….but I will try to continue to add the names in the future. It is good for me to keep the Horticulture brain cells working, and put that degree to use 🙂

  5. Laura says:

    I concur with the others about your amazing talents. Your porch looks terrific. Do you happen to have a pic of the deck after cleaning but before painting? We need to clean ours but won’t be able to paint it since it’s made of pressure treated lumber. So I’m curious about what it would look like once cleaned. Thanks!

    • timquilts says:

      I am afraid I did not get a picture of it before painting. The wood became much less Gray, it looked a lot better, the rail actually looked like new, but the deck boards were in pretty bad shape , cracks and splinters, so they were cleaner and it got the moss and mold off, but still looked pretty worn.

      • Laura says:

        Thanks, Tim. I’m sure cleaning will improve the look of our deck, even if it doesn’t make it look like new. It could hardly look worse than it does now! Again, many thanks for sharing your experience!

      • timquilts says:

        🙂 you are welcome …..

  6. glendajean says:

    Hi Tim and Teddy, what a difference a day makes in the decks case two days LOL. Like Ann I really appreciate the time you spend adding the names of the flowers for us who love to roam your Secret Garden, that photo of the foxtail lilly is stunning, how lovely it must be to take time out on your busy days and stroll around your garden with Teddy photographing their beauty. How peaceful for the soul. Cheers Glenda

    • timquilts says:

      Thanks. sometimes I really don’t take the time to appreciate the beauty until I pick up the camera and go for a real objective look. It helps me slow down and enjoy

  7. kathi says:

    the gardens look glorious and the deck is so beautiful. Please do make sure you allow yourself (and Teddy!) plenty of time to enjoy both!
    You certainly deserve it after all your hard work. Kudos on the transformation of the new property!

  8. Sandra B says:

    Oh my goodness, Tim….I don’t know where you find the energy to do all you do!
    Everything looks great! Sounds like the bird seed is a big hit…do the birds bother Teddy? Or the squirrels, trying to get to the birdseed. We have a lot of squirrels and they can get obnoxious sometimes. We have a cat, but he’s indoor only, otherwise he’d keep our yard free of squirrels.
    Thanks for sharing the garden pictures…I always enjoy them and look forward to the “walk” thru, to see what is blooming….
    Don’t work too hard….take some time to get in a few minutes at the quilting frame… Hello to Teddy.

    • timquilts says:

      Teddy is really a funny dog. He doesn’t even seem to see the birds and squirrels but once I saw him chase a rabbit and he would have got it but I stopped him before he ran into the street. I guess he is selectively bothered by other animals

  9. Ángela says:

    It is true, where did the day go? What have you been doing? Oh, yeah, it is Sunday, so you took a well deserved break. Now, tomorrow is Monday, so no more vacation, it is time for you to go to work!
    Please, tell Teddy I really like how the deck came out, he did a wonderful job. If you only helped a little!

  10. adaisygarden says:

    Those bird feeders are great! I have been looking for some that won’t let the squirrels get into the seeds – we have a ridiculous amount of squirrels around here – but I haven’t been able to find one like yours. Now that I know exactly what they look like, I’m looking forward to getting feeders like in ones in your pics.

    • timquilts says:

      there are 2 different types in the pic….the one on the right is the cage type….the small birds can get through the cage to get at the perches and get the seed but squirrels are too big. the one on the left is the spring type…..if a squirrel climbs on his weight closes up all the holes because the frame around the plastic feed tube is on light weight springs…..the weight of the squirrel is too much for the spring and it closes…..but birds no problem.

  11. Marla says:

    You are making great progress on the new house! I really enjoyed all the photos of your beautiful garden.

  12. Everything is shaping up beautifully love your garden. Can’t wait for summer to return down here is NZ.

  13. Pam G. says:

    Totally amazing what you continue to do! The flowers are so beautiful. Thanks for the time you take to share everything with us.

  14. Janice says:

    Wow! You have sooo busy! I am amazed by all you accomplish in such a short time. Your home and gardens are looking really spectacular. Really great job( give yourself a pat on the back–you deserve it)!! I hope you and Teddy are not to exhausted!
    I do have a random question for you too….when you quilt using your hoop, did you say you prefer to start at one end and work across, or do you start in the middle and work outward like most teach? Does it really matter?

    • timquilts says:

      in a hoop I always start in the center and work out…..I do vary little basting with just a few pins and starting in the center lets me readjust the backing if needed to work out any extra fullness to the edges…..It just makes me feel safer to do it from the center

  15. Lorij says:

    Everything looks great. Any procrastinator who follows your example will no longer be able to put things off. It’s really wonderful to be able to do your own repairs. It’s done as you want and all you pay for are the needed materials. Maybe when you’re done you can have a gathering with some quilting friends or family. 😊 Give Teddy a snuggle for me

    • timquilts says:

      I think that is a good idea….will see… seems like the place will never be done…..but I always have a million ideas of things that I want to do …..

  16. Eileen Mele says:

    Love hearing from you and seeing your life and yard and porch and doggie! Here we have a lot of concrete, and heat. I’m proud of a few plants and two bushes. But we have a drought! Lawns going brown all over the neighborhood. Some being replaced with brown stuff. I think our soul needs greenery and colorful plants.that’s my religion! Enjoy your summer, they are short I know. Glad I know you, even in print!

  17. Jean says:

    wonderful improvements to the yard! Cutting that tree out, and removing lower branches on the one in front really opened up the yard. Love what you are doing! How long have you lived in this house?

  18. Gaye Ingram says:

    Tim, how much work you’ve done. I’ve wanted to get a ‘Pink Mink’ and am glad to see it growing. Love everything, esp the fat foxtail lilies and all the leaves of the stems of plants. Deer have denuded mine. Thanks for posting.

    • timquilts says:

      The pink mink is new this year and it looks very promising. it is growing fast and is loaded with buds. Sorry about your deer destruction 😦 I am really glad the Deer dont like to come into the city here….

  19. Connie Combs says:

    Always love reading your blogposts and seeing all the wonderful pictures of your garden. I’m having so much fun following the transformation of your “quilting cottage” next door. What a fun, inspiring and tranquil space for you and Teddy. Anxiously awaiting your next post.
    Connie Combs

  20. Lorij says:

    Tim, for the person who has deer issues deer don’t generally like lavender. Don’t know where she lives or if it will grow there but maybe she can give it a try.

  21. Lindsay Pavel says:

    I didn’t think it was possible for your garden to become any more beautiful than it already was, but that’s what has happened. It is swoon-worthy!


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