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Saturday, 15 July 2017

Yellow and Cacti Flowers

My house is a mess!
The building work continues and the men clean up after themselves, but the house feels dusty and messy and a bit Work in Progress.

So I've turned my back temporarily on the house and am giving all my focus to the garden.

This past week I've been painting wood panels in the pergola and sprucing up all the wooden and metal garden furniture.  Hence my rather embarrassing number of visits to B&Q for paint, the insatiable old furniture is drinking up any paint I splodge on it.

Dress code for painting garden furniture?  V. old and battered jeans and a long sleeved t shirt.   And even fully covered up, I've managed to have paint  seep through both garments on to the skin underneath!  Messy, huh?

So it was with arms outstretched that I greeted the entry in my diary on Thursday, which simply said "night out with the girls".

It was so nice to shower after that day's work (painting garden table and chairs), slap on some slap, and throw on a pretty frock.
Isn't it wonderful how just throwing on a simple dress can change your day.  Your mood.  From garden toiler to summertime fun seeker?!!!

Next floral linen dress, 2-3 years old.  Doesn't yellow make you feel so fresh in summer?

Our rendezvous was the Rockie, which I've featured many times before so I won't bore you with the internal and external shots and pics of my yummy food, for you have far better things to do with your time on a beautiful day.  The evening was sunny and hot.  We had fun,  eating tapas by open doors overlooking the sea, drinking a crisp, beautifully chilled Sauvignon Blanc and chatting.  Boy can we chat when we catch up!

It was such a lovely feel, that feel somehow being "human" again in dress, comfy shoes, doing something for a few hours that didn't involve a dust sheet and paint pots!
And they call this retirement?!!

Yes, I'm spending much time out of the house and in the garden.  Which is fine when the sun is shining.

 Recently I had a "duh" moment, which is rather embarrassing for someone who thrives on analysis, process, ergonomics, time and motion ...
I moved closer to the garden hose all potted plants that require daily watering, like tomatoes and peppers, that sort of stuff.  And I moved all plants which require infrequent watering the fartherest away from the garden hose's limits.
It has made watering so much easier.  Why oh why did I not think to do this years ago?!

Not only is my daily watering routine so much easier, but the plants seem to love their new spots.
The cacti are loving banishment into the wilderness, shoved in an afterthought sort of corner of the garden.
They all seem to be flowering.  For the first time!

This cactus got eaten by some creature last year.  As you know, I don't give up on most things, including plants.  So although it looked awful, I felt it was alive and deserved a place in the garden.
A few days ago I noticed a weird growth coming from it.  Next day, a beautiful white flower appeared!

So proud of my desert survivors!

By mid afternoon today, I splodged on my last bit of paint on our garden furniture for this summer.  I finished my last brushstroke on the metal table and chair and walked away from the garden.
I ceremoniously tore off my battered jeans and t shirt, threw them on a heap in the utility room and walked away, and suggested that the equally hard working Photographer do the same when he'd finished his last steamer chair.  It felt good.

So good, that I'm off to celebrate with a glass of Sauvignon Blanc.  Sitting out on the patio.  Admiring all my freshly painted garden furniture.
I hope you're enjoying a lovely Saturday.  Maybe enjoying looking on some of your efforts in the garden.   Maybe enjoying a glass of wine or bubbly.
Wishing you a happy rest of weekend.

A la perchoine.


  1. Hope you had a fun evening out with friends, Mary. We've been trying to spruce up our deck furniture with a fresh coat of paint, too. But it's taking forever. Mostly because it rains every frigging day!

    1. Oh so sorry to hear that, Sue, we've been doing so well with the weather so that we could complete the arduous task of furniture painting yet still enjoy grandkiddies, voluntary work ... And the dreaded golf!!! I'll post some pics of my labours soon, hope you do too! Maybe whilst you're visiting, you can check out my attempt at off the shoulder slouchy!

  2. Your cactus with the beautiful white bloom: did it bloom at night? Did the bloom last only a single day? Was it incredibly fragrant?

    I suspect it is a jungle cactus rather than a desert dweller, perhaps an epiphyllum species.

    1. Once again I thank you so much for your guidance, Jean! Yes it did bloom overnight but it did last for more than
      a day. And, embarrassingly, I didn't check it's fragrance. I'll check out the link but thank you for identifying my jungle cactus. This plant identification service is wonderful!

  3. You've made me feel guilty - our garden furniture desperately needs painting but I've been putting it off. The white flower on the cactus is just lovely, as is your yellow patterned dress.

    1. Thanks for popping in, Gail, and thanks for your nice words. Please don't feel guilty, we all put off that type of job. I had to forget about looking presentable and just hope no one popped in unexpectedly!

  4. Blooming is a lovely event for those who takes care of plants and the white flower of your desert survivor is so beautiful!

    I completely agree with you about how a dress can change your mood!
    Surely you spent a nice evening out ...

    1. Hi Dan, great to hear from you. Yes, I have been so excited to see these cacti bloom, especially seeing that beautiful flower from a bug-eaten plant!
      I had a lovely night out with my ladies, thanks, and yes, dresses can do marvellous things in the few seconds it takes to slip them on.

  5. That dress is absolutely gorgeous. I know what you mean about showering and putting nice clothes on after a day in the garden and suddenly feeling "Human again". Most summer days I'm covered in dirt and sweat and it feels so wonderful to have a normal day once in awhile when I'm 'Clean'.

    1. Thank you so much, Amy. I hope the size of the garden is commensurate with how dirty you get, because mine's small and your garden looks massive ... I just think I'm an unusually messy gardener! But yes, getting dirty and sweaty makes the shower and change to nice clothes so much more appreciated.

  6. I'm just about to spray paint my garden funiture. From a silver that has seen better days to a Black. Wish me luck! The Catus flower is beautiful. I don't recall seeing this one before. And I totally get you on dressing up after days like these. The Yellow dress is lovely on Mary. And I'm liking those cool shades xx

    1. Oh spraying - please wear protective glasses and a nose mask and please be careful and keep shaking the can. It's a messy way to paint, well, if you're me, that is! Please let's see pics too.
      The flower has knocked me for six.
      Thanks for your sweet words on the dress. The sunnies are for cataracts but I try to kid myself they're cool. Thank goodness huge sunglasses are trendy right now !!