I wanted to get something personal for the Cottage tenant who has been steadily fixing up the Cottage, taking care of the yard, and other truly nice things.
I like to get people things they wouldn’t get for themselves.
I saw that Zazzle.com was having a 30% off sale so I checked out if it applied to personalized postage stamps.
It did. I went onto “Custom Postage” then “Photo Postage” where I chose “Small Custom Postage” in a 49 cent denomination.
I uploaded my favorite photo of Glade Cottage which I had to “zoom” twice to fill the frame.
The package arrived in about a week. The final cost with a 30% coupon was just under $25 for 20 forty-nine cent stamps. As stamps go it’s not cost effective; as gifts go lots of bang for the buck.
What’s your favorite offbeat gift to give or get?
The Cottage tenant loves working in the yard.
I know. It’s a blessing.
The bottom of the chip path Charlie worked on last year when our big tree was taken down had never been finished.
Now it has been neatened up. And the chip pile is being whittled down.
Are you harvesting any veg from your garden?
When I started taking the shutters out of the shed I realized I had been “saving” stuff.
I took a few photos and listed 3 categories on Craigslist.
Windows — some still in the jamb, some almost rotten, some ready for projects or installation — take one, take all for $5.
I’m also selling the heavy old wood door to the Cottage.
It has a nice brass lock and handle for which we have the keys. $10
Finally we have some decorative shelving that we will no longer be using. Take any or all — $5.
I minimally price things to keep the moochers and scroungers away. Next weekend everything will be FREE. Everything that doesn’t go will be dumpsterated.
What’s next on your to-go list?
This summer I’m very involved with sunflowers.
Ours are blooming well and attracting bees and gold finches.
Now we’re chasing them all over the local counties.
The Sunflower Garden in Carroll County offers pick-your-own sunflowers ($10 for a large bunch) and other cut flowers ($12 a bunch).
The sunflowers at The Sunflower Garden will peak around August 15th.
I have 3 bouquets of happy sunflowers at the house for the mere price of $10.
What’s your floral focus this summer?
My plan for yesterday was to begin painting the exterior house shutters.
The actual plan was to paint them a year ago.
I pulled all the shutters — about a dozen pairs — out of the shed. I was going to lay them out on plastic in the backyard and spray paint them.
Unfortunately only 3 pairs had been scraped and those needed to be washed down.
And I got sidetracked getting rid of some clutter in the shed.
We washed down the 6 scraped shutters and paired the others together to get them ready to be painted next week (maybe).
The process is: prime rusty metal, prime fronts and backs, paint backs, paint fronts, hang shutters.
Are you easily sidetracked?
Since I have moved the outdoor table and grill away from the house I have an empty space.
This area could needs some interest.
I was planning to put a butterfly bush (buddleia) in there until I started to do research. Apparently in Maryland butterfly bush is considered an invasive plant and not recommended.
One alternative to butterfly bush is ChasteTree (Vitex) which usually grows very large — 10′ to 20′ tall.
But I’ve found a new variety call “Blue Diddley” that only grows 3′ to 6′.
Any experience with this bush?
In the Cottage is a piece of furniture that fits perfectly between the front door and large window.
It is a tall slender curio cabinet.
Its owner is thinking of getting rid of it but I suggested she might paint it.
To that end I sent a bunch of inspiration photos.
Similar cabinets transformed by paint.
Does one stand out as perfect?