Sunday, April 29, 2012

Arbor Day Foundation

Arbor Day

I have been a member of the Arbor Day Foundation since 2004.  I became a member when I decided to give trees as wedding favors.  I’m not sure if anyone was able to grow their tree (ours didn’t grow), but I continue to renew my membership every year. 

Each year they give me the opportunity to receive 10 free trees.  I did take them a few years ago, but none of them survived.  This year I decided to give it another go.  Earlier this week I received a Colorado Blue Spruce, White Pine, White Flowering Dogwood, Pin Oak, Sugar Maple, Silver Maple, Red Maple, Northern Red Oak, River Birch and Eastern Redbud. 


They arrived while I was out of town, so Jamie stored them in the refrigerator for about 3 days.  The trees have a small painted area above the roots to distinguish them but I like to make tags so I don’t forget which is which.  I soaked the roots in lukewarm water for about 2-3 hours. 


I found these cute colorful plastic pots at Walmart for $2 each.  I filled them with topsoil and then added a tree to each one.  I added a layer of mulch to help keep them from drying out.



I gave the White Pine, Blue Spruce and Flowering Dogwood to a friend and I have one to give to my BIL to celebrate his new home.  Let me know if you would like to plant one in your yard.  They can stay in these pots for 1-2 years before finding their permanent home in the ground.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Spring Cleaning

These past 6 weeks I’ve been Spring cleaning so we can get the condo listed again next week.  Here’s a list of things we’ve been doing:


  • Bedroom closets
  • Hallway closet
  • Under sinks
  • Kitchen cabinets
  • Storage crawl space
  • Garage 

A lot of things were thrown away or donated to Goodwill.  I sent some of Jake’s clothes and toys to work for some co-workers.  The rest went to a storage unit we are renting.  We also removed some furniture from the basement, bedrooms, and living room.


  • One bedroom was still the same since we moved in, so that is now a nice cream color called Sand Trap (Ace)
  • Stained the deck which only needed it on all horizontal surfaces and took about 2 hours

We still need to touch up the trim outside and do the hallway down to the basement.


  • Jake’s bedroom wall with crayon marks was cleaned with the Magic Eraser, worked great!  Luckily the crayon was on the wall behind the door.
  • The vertical blinds for the patio door were so dirty and grimy.  They are cloth, so I figured before throwing in the towel I would see what happened if they went in the washing machine.  They look brand new!  Should have done that years ago.
  • All windows inside and out were cleaned with Windex Foaming Glass and Multi-Surface Cleaner and it worked amazingly well! 
  • Wiped down all ceiling fans
  • Basement carpet was cleaned with Resolve High Traffic Powder.  This worked okay, a steam cleaner would probably make it even better.
  • The shower stall in the basement was all Jamie.  He removed all the doors, re-calked the inside, and did his best to clean all the doors.  Not as good as we would like, but about as good as it will get.
  • Cleaned up two flower beds and planted some wildflower seeds.  I know it’s early, but I can always try again later.


  • Jamie bought and installed a new entry door and a new door to the garage.  They are so much better than the old ones.
  • I put in a new screen for the front door and Jamie helped me with the patio screen.  Advice: buy fiberglass screen, not aluminum screen.
  • I re-glued some wallpaper that Jake liked to pull on.
  • I replaced the ugly brick retainers under the deck with some better bricks.
  • Grass seed was put down yesterday to try and patch some bad spots in the lawn. I hope this works.

We still need to fix/replace a corner piece of siding and also a downspout.  

We have done so much and I really hope that we are able to sell the condo.  The hardest part is just keeping it clean all the time which is hard to do with a 3 year old.