Friday 18 May 2018

Getting the outside areas ready for summer

The weather has been so nice over the last few weeks, but every year it takes me a while to fully appreciate that the warmest days of the year often appear at the start of summer rather than the end. I think I get caught up in thinking that summer is in August, when in fact by the time August rolls around it can often be positively autumnal. So this year I'm determined to embrace the warm weather as soon as it arrives! Especially because I often think how we are lucky to have a good sized garden and yet we don't spend nearly as much time in it as we should.

This week we have had a couple of very warm days, so I've been very busy. We have a lovely wooden summerhouse which can end up as a bit of a dumping ground for all the outdoor toys. So I've had a good clear out in there, declutterin some of the more junky toys and the toddler ones that they've grown out of, and it's made a big difference to the space.

I also gave it a good hoover and sucked up all the cobwebs, and I cleaned the small cupboard that we keep inside for storage. It's looking really nice inside now, and I just need to give the outside a good clean - I'm hoping that the children will help with that!

Scruffy summerhouse with bunting outside

I have a fantasy of one day turning it into a she-shed with a coat of coloured paint and decent flooring, but I don't really know where to start when it comes to painting the wood so I need to do a bit of research. I love the idea of having a cosy chair out there with a little table, maybe a bookshelf and plenty of cushions!

I've also pulled out our garden furniture and given it a good hose down. I need to get into the habit of taking my cup of tea or lunch to eat outside, and I think I'd do a better job of keeping up with the weeding if I saw the flower beds more often! I'm not much of a gardener but I do have a few flower seeds lying about that I need to plant at some point, and I have some tomatoes growing inside ready to go in the vegetable patch.

While I was taking the garden furniture out of the garage I realised properly what a state it's in. It's not too cluttered fortunately, and most of the things in there are things that we need to keep - sledges, decorating materials, garden tools and so on. But it's all looking very dirty and there are some pretty impressive cobwebs. I'm hoping that there will be a warm day over the summer when I can pull everything out and give it a good sweep - I'm ashamed to say that I've not cleaned it properly in the six years that we've been here!

My next job is to cut the front hedges. Last year we left it until they were too overgrown, and we had to pay someone to come around and cut them for us as it was too big a job. I'm hoping that I can manage to do some more regular cutting this year and keep them in check.

Hedge that needs cutting

Let's hope for a nice warm summer to enjoy the fruits of my labour!

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