Photos Of My Patio & What I’m Reading

I just love to walk in the kitchen and be greeted by this couple that holds my silverware. They are such a sweet sight that I always smile.

Then I had cereal and iced coffee. The last couple of days I’ve been adding about a tablespoon of protein powder to my iced coffee when I blend it. It gives it a little thickness that I kind of like.


Charlie had already been outside earlier. But after my iced coffee I went out with him to check out what was happening on the patio.

I am always so surprised at how fast things grow. You can see a bit of Jade there and the blue raised garden, so lush and green.

The wild vine growing on the fence will probably be purple morning glories. They come up everywhere. I have to pull some up or they’d be pushing out the other plants.

my patio

my patio

Here’s a different view. From the alley side forward. I’ve been going out and watering several times a day and my sweet potato vine seems less stressed. One of you mentioned doing that.

Jade is so pretty. Getting more beautiful by the day. What an unusual and hardy little tree.

container plants

And above is yet a different viewpoint.

It’s almost a jungle out there. I snip and clip every few days, and then it’s time to do it all over again before I know it. Maybe two or three days later. If I wait longer than that the vines are growing all over the cement.

This is the first time I’ve grown eucalyptus. I love the texture of it and the shade of green of the leaves.

There are so many different shades of green in nature. Green is such a peaceful and tranquil color.

white petunias

Sometimes when I’m feeling low, all I have to do is walk out here and take in all of this. The flowers and herbs and vines and Jade of course.

I am not fertilizing my plants. I just let Mother Nature do her thing.

I regularly tend to them and give them lots of love. And that seems to be enough on my end.

house plants

Some of my house plants are spending the summer in a shady corner on my patio. The only bit of shade I have out there now that they’ve cut those two big trees down.

The other house plants are basking here in the window of my bedroom. And a couple more are in my living room.

pony tail palm

monstera plant

Those red faux berry stems are still in the vintage mail box. I put them there before Christmas last year. And here it is June.

I like the contrast of the red against the sage green. What does it really matter if it’s a bit Christmas-y? Those kinds of things don’t matter to me.

teacup and saucer

Last night I started reading “How Far She’s Come” by Holly Brown.

I read one of her books a few months ago. It was “This Is Not Over.” Maybe you recall my review of it. It was about two women fighting one another on social media. I loved that book.

This book, “How Far She’s Come” is also a psychological thriller. Holly Brown is a therapist, so she knows her subject matter well.

A blurb from…


Twenty-four-year-old Cheyenne Florian has just received her dream job offer. On the strength of a few vlogs, she’s recruited to be the new correspondent on the recently hatched Independent News Network, INN.

With the slogan “Because independent thinking is the only way out,” INN has branded itself as innovative. Yet once Cheyenne joins the INN team, she finds age-old dynamics in play. Some of the female staff resent her meteoric rise, while a number of the men are only too happy to welcome her.

Then there’s the diary left for her anonymously, written in 1991 by a female broadcaster named Elyse Rohrbach. The mysterious diary is accompanied by a note, urging Cheyenne to learn from the past. She wants to believe it’s intended as inspiration and friendly advice, or at most, a warning.

But as disturbing—and increasingly dangerous—parallels begin to emerge, she starts to wonder if something more sinister is at work.


How is your garden (if you have one)? And what are you reading (if you’re currently reading a book?)



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  1. Your patio looks great, Brenda! I just finished two books this past weekend and they were both great, I couldn’t put them down. The first was Friend Request by Laura Marshall and the second was The Secret Mother.
    I read The Memory Watcher before that, it was fantastic also!

    I love a good thriller!

  2. Love ours patio space with its beautiful plants. You certainly have a green thumb.
    Am currently reading numerous devotional and short story books. This morning I read one with my granddaughter who sometimes struggles with comprehension of things she reads. Hopefully this will help her as I intend to do this regularly with her, explaining as I go.
    She just walked by as I was reading your blog and laughed and asked, “Is that you and Granddad?” She was referring to your silverware holders! We keep some in a drawer but also keep some in cheery mugs to place on the table as there are only three of us and we can take out what we need. I copied your idea when you first posted doing this.
    Hope You and Charlie have a great day. I hope to get a good book and have time to read. Problem is, I start a good one and do not want to stop reading till done!!!

  3. I wish I could get my deck to look like your patio! It’s pitifully sparse of plants, right now. This is the first year I’ve tried to grow things mostly in pots on the deck. But when I went to the hospital for ten days the beginning of this month I got all behind taking care of and planting things. Your plants certainly are lovely. What are all the plants you grow on your patio? I know there’s Jade and petunias, but I can’t identify all the lush greenery. I love it. What a peaceful place to just sit and think.

    I’m not giving up on my plants in pots yet. It’ been so hot here the last few days I haven’t gotten outside much but I will water tomorrow and see what I can do to perk them up.

    I’m not reading anything except some magazines right now. I just finished a book called “Angry Housewives Eating Bon Bons” by Lorna Landvik. It follows the lives of five neighbors–housewives–from the 1968 through 1998 as they share their lives and the books they read in the Angry Housewives Eating Bon Bons Book Club that they form. I really loved the book as it is set in the years that I was a young woman and wife. I didn’t want it to end.

    1. That book sounds fun! Okay, I have many herbs (mints, lemon balm, lemon verbena, oregano, chives, pineapple sage and I’m sure I’m forgetting a few). I have sedum, lantana, daisies, eucalyptus, creeping jenny, pansies, sweet potato vine, sweet alyssum, passion flower vine, clematis vine, iris, rose, ornamental grass, and l know I’m forgetting some. In terms of your plants, if they are stressed due to heat, if they’re in pots I would temporarily move them into shade to get over the stress. All my plants are in containers. Easier to care for them and move them when necessary.

      1. Thanks for all the list of your patio plants. Also, the suggestion to move them into some shade for a while. I need to get a canopy of some sort for my deck as the sun from the East beats down on it all morning. Do get a copy of the book; I think you’ll love it, too.

  4. Brenda and Charlie,

    Good evening! I hope that you had a wonderful day. I love seeing photos of your beautiful garden, it is amazing! I think your tender care and nurturing are exactly why they grow and looks so beautiful. It must be a beautiful sight to see from inside your apartment.
    I hope Charlie is feeling better.
    The tea cup reminded me if you and your beautiful garden.
    Have a wonderful week!

  5. The books sounds intriguing. I’ve read many books based on your reviews – thank you.
    The garden is looking so lovely.

  6. So comforting! I was wondering the name of the little tree behind the table clock? I want one.

    1. Jade is a Ginkgo, Maidenhair Tree ‘Jade Butterfly’. Hence the name Jade. Yes, it is in a container.

  7. your patio is just another beautiful room! how lovely it must be to sit out there in a cool morning and begin your day. and WOW. yes. you DO have a green thumb! Jade is amazing. she seems to be very happy. 🙂

    1. Jade makes me happy. Such pretty intricate leaves. I’d never even heard of this tree before.

  8. When it’s cooler at night, I venture outside with my 3 little dogs. It’s more relaxing & I settle in my gravity chair & read. I can’t keep up with you in reading all those reccomended novels, but I have a list made at Amazon. Tonigt I should probably water my shrubs & perrennials as we have been very dry. I love your apartment as you can tell how everything was selected in love. Give Charlie a hug from us!!

    1. In a smallish space, only what you love will fit! It’s a good way to have to get rid of stuff, which I am continually doing. I like to go out with Charlie in the evening and dead head the petunias.

  9. I was surprised to hear you don’t fertilize. It’s true, you do have a green thumb!! I had a hibiscus plant that looked horrible. Bugs all over it and it had lost all leaves. I took 1 part Dawn to 10 parts water and sprayed it and leaves are popping out all over as are blooms!! I do not have a green thumb.

    1. Well, what you’ve sent me is still alive. I sure love that sedum autumn joy. You must have somewhat of a green thumb, or what you sent me wouldn’t have made it. I only use natural solutions out on that patio. Like Dawn and vinegar and cinnamon for ants.

  10. Do you use a special potting soil when planting your flowers/herbs? Your plants look so vibrant and healthy. I spent this weekend pulling up all of the leftover pansies/snapdragons (should’ve done this a month ago but they were still blooming and doing their best to extend their season). I have been planting lots of pentas (they seem to withstand the Florida heat fairly well) and daisies.

    Love that teacup!

    1. Elizabeth from Pinecones & Acorns ( sent me that teacup and dish yesterday along with baked goods and all kinds of goodies. I just use whatever soil is on sale. Miracle Grow or the ones from the nursery. Just make sure it says it’s for containers and not garden soil.

  11. Hello Brenda. I’ve been thinking of putting my silverware out in containers like that because I get tired of opening and closing the drawer all day. It looks so cute in those mugs. Your patio looks heavenly. I love red and green together. My kitchen is painted pale green and I often use red potholders and dish towels, any time of year. So I think your berries are so pretty in the green container.

    1. I don’t use the drawers here. Once there was mice and that did it for me. Now everything I eat off of is out in the open. Dishes, etc. in the blue cupboard in the dining space. I haven’t put silverware in drawers in ages. I don’t like the inconvenience of pulling out a drawer. I’m lazy like that. So easy to clean and plop them in a jar or mug or something.

  12. Having just moved I have acquired a lot of outdoor plants and bushes which I am very pleased with although I don’t know the names of a lot of them. I love grasses and there were 11 grasses when we arrived now there are 3! The reason being is that Dexter insisted on eating them. …… and then he throws up ,usually in the night! Also it makes it hard for him to get rid of his poop when there is a string of grass running through if you get what I mean! So 4 of the grasses have been located out the front of the house and 5 have been disposed of. What I have left is two lovely clumps of zebra grass and another smaller clump of another grass I love the look off. This is rather tough so thought he wouldn’t eat it, but I caught him eating it this morning so that will have to be re located. I have the two zebra grasses left and I really don’t want to move them.
    I am still reading James Pattison but am getting tired of them. I usually get my books from Value Village so next time I am in there I really have to look for another author.
    Love and hugs Brenda and to Charlie too of course.

    1. Yes, that’s a problem when a pet eats the ornamental grass. Too bad you can’t just speak in his language and tell him it isn’t good for him. Charlie only seems to like to eat the pineapple sage. I keep an eye on him.

  13. Your patio looks like a great place to relax with an iced coffee, read, or just gaze around! You are fortunate to have such a lovely, private outdoor space with living in an apartment.
    I am rereading a series of books by Helen Hoover about the experiences she and her husband had in moving from the big city and living in a small cabin in the north woods of Minnesota in the early 1950s.. I first read them in junior high school and since then always had the dream of doing the same! Things did not turn out that way but I still love her books and the north woods.

  14. Your patio is such a soothing place to lounge or to enjoy through your window. You have a real knack for making anyplace homey!

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