Today I’m working on the patio at my apartment. I just love that I’ve got this big space with a privacy fence for my dogs and my container gardens.

Today I also managed to tack a quilt on the wall over my bed. 

Working On My Patio:

Then plants and flowers outside just beckoned to me. So outside the pupsters and I headed.

This morning my hose and nozzle from Gardener’s Supply arrived. I hooked it up only to find out the problem is in the spigot where you turn it off and on. Not the hose.

So they’ll have to come out next week and fix that. Till then I’m lugging water in and out of the house to water plants.

The Bird Houses I Brought:

I attached my three bird houses onto the fence. And there is the little tree. Someone suggested I trim it a few inches. So I did. 

After dividing all the hostas, I told myself to go inside and work on the bedroom.

But of course I did not. It’s hard to tear me away from my garden.

Here is a beautiful pink calla. I so love being outside on the patio planting flowers.

Purple Irises:

I don’t recall which one of you sent me purple irises nearly three years ago, but it made the move in a big pot.

And here it is about to bloom.

I was afraid they wouldn’t bloom after being dug up during the season when they’re about to bloom. But they came through for me!

I got this little guy on the fence I share with the neighbors.

My Next Door Neighbor:

Charlie from next door was out today and yelled that he hadn’t seen me in a few days. I said: “I’ve been decorating.”

He probably saw me lug all the plants to the front door yesterday, because he said: “Don’t look at our patio.”

I said: “Too late. I already had a peek through the fence. You guys aren’t gardeners.”

All Kinds Of Containers:

I have purple-themed pots and white-themed pots and pots with no theme.

The new plants are looking a little bedraggled from being in the sun. But they’ll perk up in a few days.

I think I used about seven of the ten big bags of potting soil today. But there was no way I was filling every pot with that precious dirt. 

Planting The Pots:

Since I didn’t have pine cones to put in the bottom of the pots for drainage, I cut up some of the big pieces of plastic I hoisted plants home in. And then I threw in smaller pots.

You do this so your big pots are lighter. I had some broken terra cotta pieces to use for drainage. But when you run out of that, use those white popcorn things they pack boxes with if you have them. 

All the trellises are now attached to the fence. I’m through hammering for awhile. I’m not sure what vines I’ll plant here where I share the fence with my neighbor. 

Some of the pots are more full than others. But it won’t take what I planted long to spread.

In the turquoise pot are some daisies I brought with me. 

My Seating Area:

The photo below of the patio chairs was taken before five. By five p.m., the seating area is completely shaded. I like to go out and sit and put my feet up on the coffee table and survey my garden progress. 

Garden planning is as much fun for me as indoor decorating. Really one and the same. This is simply my outdoor square footage.

I so appreciate all your wonderful comments yesterday. Made me feel so good. All the work is certainly worth it.

And if you want to scale down and live in smaller digs, you can do it right along with me. 

Can you tell I’m loving it?

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  1. Knowing how happy you are makes me happy. The patio looks great already. So funny that you told Charlie you could tell he wasn't a gardener. Yep I bet you will change that.

  2. Brenda, you can now start another blog — My Cozy Patio. Your gardening area is lovely already. I love how the photos show the contrast of the wooden fence and the grainy driftwood with the colors and textures of the flowers. I think you are going to really enjoy the coming months in your new garden. Thanks for sharing it with us.

  3. The new living room looks so pretty!! You have done a great job! Love your round table–that just sets off the whole room! I'm loving your outdoor space too… are accomplishing so much very quickly!! The flowers are looking great! do the pups like it on the patio?

  4. Brenda, I can't help but see the "happy" in your post. So glad. Everything looks great. If you ever get tired of working in your patio or decorating your home, just know that I have an acre and a small little home that could use your touch! I will let you play till your heart is content! LoL

    Grace & Peace.

  5. Oh Brenda! Everything is beautiful, indoors and out! I don't know what I evvy more: your incredible eye for balance,colour and proportion or your amazing eergy which seems to know no bounds.
    So happy that the pups are adapting to their new home. They'd probably try be happy anywhere as long as they were with you

  6. Love what you've done out there! We will be renting when we move at least for a while and it has been many years since we've rented. Your patio gives me hope that I can make it like "home" when we get there!

  7. I love your outdoor patio. It's decorated so pretty. That fence gives you a great backdrop for garden art! Looks like you've got plenty of plants to fill it up too. Glad that you're getting settled and like your new place.

  8. The wasps have run me out of my potting shed, kindly left by the couple I bought the house from. My son is going to come over in a few days and work on getting rid of it for me. Want to get some color in the yard. Love all the things on your fence, I'm going to look for something too! I'm going to use the soda can tip too!

  9. The patio is going to be fabulous! You are going to want to spend a lot of time out there. And don't you just love that you can see it from your living and dining area? I bought some bedding plants and bags of soil to top off what I already have. Now I need the energy to get it all done. I'd like to spray paint some pots and freshen them up. I loved Diana's tip about using soda cans to fill up the bottom of the pots. Wish I'd thought of that sooner! Have a nice weekend, don't work too hard. ~Cheryl

  10. This is your dream come true – small space. Remember all the posts you did before leaving Texas on tiny houses, etc? I'm so excited for you. The patio is looking fabulous, such gorgeous blooms! I never knew why you put the pine cones in but what a great idea, will have to do that. Planning to start my container garden this week. By the way, I love your new house and nozzle, the colors are delightful.

  11. Everything looks great, Brenda. You are going to be all set for summer! I never heard of the tip of filling pots with other materials until a year or so ago. It doesn't look like my hibiscus are going to make it so I have those two HUGE planters and I will definitely take some of the soil out, add something like the packing stuff and then new soil. The hibiscus did beautifully indoors all winter long and were actually blooming. Then I noticed something the size of a gnat flying around them and I looked under a leaf…yep. Whiteflys. Millions and their larvae on the backs of hundreds of leaves. We threw those plants out on the patio faster than you can say Orkin! And now they look half dead from the cold. The only way to get rid of it is to vacuum the leaves or use some sort of sticky tape to pull them off. This is way too far gone. Have you ever had this with your houseplants? It makes me sick and to be honest…the hibiscus need to be in a year round warm climate. They are like small trees and they take up half my family room all winter long.

    Okay, daylight is burning. Have a great Saturday!


  12. Your plants are lovely. I'm with Judy, not one for digging in the dirt either, but probably because we have such hard, rocky dirt here. I sent you an email asking for some advice. I can't spend much on plants and dirt, but seeing your patio makes me want to perk mine up some. It is already in the 90's where I live, so I need advice on what would survive.

  13. Brenda, I am amazed how fast you decorate, you are creative with your garden and arranging furniture. You come up with so many new and creative idea while decorating your Cozy Home. Like many of your readers, I look forward to seeing your blog each day. I get so many ideas from you and your followers, use many of creative ideas. Hope you realize how encouraging and helpful you are to followers, your comments sound like you are happy with new home and patio. Thank you for sharing your home with us, I am anxious to see what you do in kitchen and bedroom. I can just visualize a pretty colorful rug in living area. I believe you will soon have a pretty gardening bench on patio. Also, think a pretty outdoor rug would add color on patio, maybe a patio table with chairs, outdoor umbrella could add more time to enjoy the patio. I do love, love, love all you have done to your home and garden, look forward to more good decorating ideas. Take care, don't overdo with work, want to see you enjoy your new home.

    1. I'm moving a little slow today. The old body is just tuckered out. But I'm sure enjoying gazing out the window seeing my container garden!

  14. Girl, you are amazing! You have gotten more done in three days than I have in the last six months, lol. I'm about to burst with happiness for you. I can just hear the joy in your voice! You're inspiring me to get my little place back in shape again, I've been in a funk for a while with it, but now I'm inspired!! Big hugs 🙂 so happy for you!! xoxo

  15. Brenda, I am so happy for you. You have created your "home" in just a matter of days. Your patio is so cozy and inviting. I know you will be very happy there and less worries. We downsized last year and I am so happy with less to clean and worry about the outside. Instead of 2 1/2 acreas, I have a small space along the fence to "garden" and already have some wonderful plants. Your puppies will be just as happy as long as you are there with them. Enjoy your new home and don't overdo. LOL
    Connie, IN/FL

    1. Well, I've never been able to not "overdo." I pretty much go like the Energizer Bunny till the batteries wear completely down. The pupsters are next to me snoozing. This couch/chaise was one of the best ideas I've had!

  16. Hi Brenda, your patio is looking great. Love the sitting area with the Mr. Sun on the fence. Perfect spot to relax after a long day.
    Your flowers look wonderful and like they took the move well. You are coming right along in such a short time. I feel like you, the outdoors is just another room to decorate. Love it.
    Have fun decorating and a nice weekend.

    1. I shall work on the bedroom, think more about the kitchen (all kinds of ideas brewing and I haven't landed on one quite yet), and feel the sun on my head as I putter around on the patio.

  17. Brenda your yard is looking fabulous! I am so envious…the Ontario weather here has not been that warm yet. I can't even think of planting anything for at least another month! I do have some daffodils but that's about it so far! I can't wait for the full tour of your new home – I know it's going to be great!

    Cheryl @ The Creative Me and My McG

    1. I may have to slow down some the next few days. My ankle and hands and back (arthritis from surgeries) are calling my name. So I am going to have to pace myself a little better.

  18. Brenda,
    It's beautiful! You've done a LOT of work!
    I love your backyard and fence. It's so nice to see your flowers in bloom!
    I'm glad they made the move so well. I'll keep the pinecone idea in mind, brilliant idea!
    Your living room is cosy and inviting. Thank you for allowing us to visit.
    Enjoy your new home!

    1. Pine cones are practically weightless. Then they break down naturally just like mulch does. And you've done the "green" thing and you can feel good about that!

  19. Brenda…you are a wonder. I didn't comment after seeing the last post…so here I am today. You just roll with the punches and get to work and create beauty where ever you go. I was amazed at how much you had done…it all looks wonderful inside…it has that "Brenda" touch…..and now the outside…how do you do it all so fast? It's going to be beautiful. Many people would be wallowing in self pity…but not you. I really admire you.

    1. Well, distracting yourself from your worries is a good thing. Tiring yourself out is a good thing. It then takes precedence over the things that are bothering you. And it releases serotonin and that further makes you feel good! I don't know. I've always been a person that can't sit still.

  20. I didn't know that about pine cones! Last year I had three large containers filled with potting soil and lots of rain all summer…epic fail container gardening experiment! 🙂 Too big to drag onto a porch to control the watering. This year I just shoveled everything out of the containers onto the raised beds, and got what was left of the children's sand from the sandbox dumped there as well. This was about two weeks ago. I wanted it all to dry out and turn back into normal soil, and then yesterday I had my son pick up a big brick of peat moss for me. We are still getting cold nights here…no planting yet but I wanted to have it ready. There's an adjacent lot next to the library up with road with lots of fallen pinecones…I guess I'll be up there collecting some, Brenda-Master-Super-Ninja-Gardener! 🙂

    1. I had lots of pine cones in TX. Judy has some in her yard that she says she'll bring me. The best thing about using pine cones is that they're natural and break down over time.

  21. Seeing all your pretties out there brought tears to my eyes. I am so dang happy for you~! I can feel the peace and joy of your place all the way to NC..
    I know its terrible to invite myself but one day I'd love to sit out there with you and your pups and just swap life stories..
    I have to get my butt in gear and plant some flowers:)
    wishing you every happiness this life has to offer.

  22. Your patio looks great. I love that sun on the fence! I didn't know anyone could successfully grow callas. How beautiful! I'm also surprised that your irises are about to bloom. You're way ahead of me in VA. I didn't know about using those items in big flower pots. Some of mine are so heavy to move, and I have lots of pine cones. When I repot something, I'll certainly remember that tip. I learn so much from your blog. Thanks.

    1. And I learn so much from your comments! I can't say I will successfully grow callas. They're new right now. I've never grown them before. Will be interesting to see if they're still alive in a month!

  23. Ms Brenda, there is no doubt where your passion and talent is! Your happiness is coming through the screen and it's obviously clear that you are exactly where you should be. I loved visiting you in years past, but now I am in my element… You are such an inspiration (won't go into it here)… your attitude, small space living and great personality and have me looking forward to each and every post you make! Kali.
    p.s. That's great info regarding not filling large pots completely with soil…never knew and can't will to try 🙂
    Your new home and garden are so cosy and have such good bones… and will only get better as time goes by!

    1. Oops! sorry about the typos above. Obviously so excited, got my fingers in a tangle. lol
      Also, was wondering what you use to hang up your quilts?

    2. Well, I'm sure we all have gardening tips and we should share them. There's no reason to have to lug around huge bags of soil and pay for it as well when you can fill the pots up with other things and you don't have to use as much. Saves money, your back, and ease in moving the pots around. A comment above said she even throws aluminum soda cans in!

      I hung these quilts with thumb tacks.

  24. Brenda-
    I'm so proud of you! Making a move to downsize, getting outside to garden…and getting settled in your new home with pupsters…and meeting the neighbors! You must be one happy girl.
    I think I sent you some purple iris a couple of years ago I only have purple and white. I sent it along with some pink phlox…(remember, I kept mispelling it "flox") hahaha!
    I think your garden area is going to be beautiful!
    It is already look pretty. Aren't flowers wonderful?
    Nice to see you getting settled. — Pat

  25. You've done more with your outdoor space in a few days, than I've done with ours in two years! You are so passionate about gardening that it makes me want to plant things too. Looking forward to seeing more of your outdoor oasis!

    1. I think that is the key word: Passion. Gardening has always been a favorite hobby of mine. Nature inspires me. I love the birds. Now I can forget about calling someone to come mow the grass and the repairs and all that that took a big chunk of my money, and concentrate on a cozy little patio. My favorite kind!

  26. Oh Brenda, I love your little patio and the fence is looking great with all your pretties on it. Just wait til you have vines!! What a sweet space to call you own and 'you don't have to pay for repairs!!!' I could not be any happier for you! This is going to be a true rebirth. Makes me want to get home and plant some of my pots full of flowers but I guess that will have to wait until I'm back in June! Sigh…I can do it!! This post makes me so happy!


    1. That it makes you happy makes me happy. Yes, you'll get a bit of a late start. Might have to garden in containers and move them about till they adjust to the heat in June. There are always fall plantings to look forward to as well.

  27. You have such a way with words – I wanted to come right over and join you on your patio and put my feet up on your table in the shade of the afternoon! And now that your sun is on the fence – you've made it a "home"! You inspired me with that Mr. Sun a few years ago when I moved to my little house – I went out and bought a "sun" to put on the fence that I looked at out my kitchen window. Thanks!

    1. Isn't it fun to have it greet you? I have to put the colorful sun up. But I noticed the jute I had it hung with was ruined and I haven't managed to find my jute yet.

    1. I want everyone to realize that it doesn't matter where they live. You can always make it look better with your own unique touches. You don't have to have a big fancy house and granite counter tops and all that jazz.

    1. I'll get on a roll. Then I'll get stumped and have to thumb through old magazines to get a jump start. You can't rush the process. It has to come to you in fits and starts I think. At least it does for me.

  28. I had a feeling it would not take very long for you to get to the garden. It is looking good, and I am glad your plants are thriving. I hope your weather will be good, I heard there are some storms coming but they change the forecast constantly. Be careful moving all those pots around. Glad to see the bird houses up.

    1. Dragging pots is not nearly so bad as picking them up. NOT DOING THAT! My hands are sore and my back and just about every muscle in my body. But my heart is singing because I can look out the window and see my plants and flowers growing.

  29. It's looking really, really good, Brenda. Yeah-those irises can withstand a lot of abuse- you can move them just about any time of the year and they survive. I even use aluminum soda cans for filler in my big pots- They take up a lot of room and there is no weight to them at all…and you can bend them down in easily if you need to put a bigger plant in there. xo Diana

    1. Great idea! I will be using that one. What's so funny is that the pupsters love it when I empty a pot the flower came in and I no more than put it down before they grab it and go running off with it to happily tear it up!

    1. Well, your house is looking fantastic, I'd love to add. I've had others email me to point out features in your more than marvelous kitchen. Word does get around!

  30. Brenda – I am so proud of you!! You have gotten so much accomplished and are now working outdoors where I know you love to be. You sound so happy and I know after a day of working outside you are tired but really happy. It's looking good!! Take care of your foot and don't overdo. Your flowers look wonderful!


    PS I still don't like digging in the dirt altho I've done it two days in a row – it's still not my thing! LOL

    1. It is a good thing. I have few weeds. (And I've already been going out there with teapots full of boiling water and pouring on them, and it kills them pretty quick.) This patio is just for fun and little upkeep.

    1. If you have gardening questions, just email me. Some people buy a lot of plants and don't know exactly where to plant them or if the soil is right and then they die. Shady space is great for hostas, ferns, mints, wild violets (brought some with me because they're just so sweet, though grow wild). And many plants like part sun so they don't burn up.

    1. Manageable is the key word. I am 57 years old and can't get around like I use to. But I am happy to say I can still garden rolling around on my little garden cart and enjoying my plants.

    1. The other one was so big with so much grass it just overwhelmed me. In TX I had no grass on one side and it was a lot of fun. This patio is just the right size.

  31. I can't stop smiling from knowing you are loving your new life! You certainly deserve it, after all you have been through. I look forward to seeing your outdoor space as it evolves into your bit of paradise. Enjoy your gardening, Brenda! My heart simply sings knowing that you are happy. I love seeing your joy…

  32. Brenda, you've done so much so quickly! Your patio looks great. Bet you can't wait to sit out there with a cup of coffee. Thanks for inspiring those of us who are also moving into smaller homes. It'll be fun sharing ideas with others who are making a similar journey.

    1. Oh, I think it will be so much fun to share ideas and help one another! There is no reason to think that just because you live or are going to live in a smaller home means you can't have a beautiful home with all that you need. Granted, I'm a little tired of washing and trying to squeeze water out of towels to hang to dry. But it is worth it to have my patio. I will be doing lots of features on small space living, especially now that I'm doing it!

  33. Your patio is looking great, Brenda! I'm with you, I enjoy being in the garden so much. Spring is a great time for you to be able to design your new space outside. Happy to see all that progress you are making and that you are happy! ♥

    1. I can barely move today, from hauling around all those big sacks of potting soil. But I will get stretched out soon and start in on the bedroom later today. Getting the garden going was so important to me.

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