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Nobody is a gardener in my family. When we moved to my husband's Mother's old house, it was indeed in need of some TLC! She grew up there, and then married, and her husband built her a house across the street, so she could be close to her mother. Once her mother had passed away, various family members occupied it. Then it stood vacant for 2 years, nobody lived there...nobody took care of it. It was always in need of something, and now there was nobody who wanted to live in it.One Mother's Day, we told my Mother-in-law that we'd like to move into the house and fix it up. She was so happy somebody was going to finally be living in the house again. She was even more happy to find out that we intended to also include fixing up the yard, which was a very large lot.
There was enough room to have a side courtyard, a side/front yard that faced their house, and a back/backyard vegetable garden, as well as a front & backyard! That's 5 yards of gardens!... "Her health did not permit her to walk across the street, so we'd bring pictures to show her." ...She always smiled and said, “Oooooo, so purty!” I'm sure she was so happy somebody loved her childhood home as much as she did, and was doing so much to improve it. We knew from her smiles that she appreciated it very much. It was a labor of love, indeed.As work on the house continued, the yards began to take on a life of their own. Once, my husband's brother came back into the courtyard to check it out and you could tell he was impressed, he wasn't usually easily excited but even he said, “Wow, it's like another world!” Nobody had ever seen such a beautiful garden at this tiny little house before. We had laid pavers, setup tiki-lights & Malibu lighting, put in a couple of umbrella tables, and some outdoor furniture, and every leftover inch of soil was planted with flowers & bushes. It really was quite impressive, well, for this 'ol house, and this 'ol neighborhood anyway. The wisteria covered arbor was an inviting entrance to many nights spent relaxing and enjoying the ambiance that our little courtyard provided. It was indeed a living extension of the tiny house we now called 'Home'. Thank goodness for HGTV and the internet! We learned everything we needed to plant & care for all our beautiful flowers, vegetables, trees and bushes from sites like DavesGarden.com. The little shade tree we planted in the center of the backyard is now a giant tree, shading the entire backyard. Great in the hot summertime! Great planning, indeed! The red crape myrtle tree we planted provided a seed that I was able to plant and nurture, and now I have an enormous red crape myrtle bush in the front yard at our new house. I think of the little house every time I gaze at it, knowing it came from a seed of a tree at our little house. The old house that needed some love, gave us the ability to now garden with even more understanding. Propagation at it's best. I think living in the tiny house, made us stay outside, so we made 'outside' better. We made our outside gardens a destination spot. We'd sometimes walk from garden to garden planning what's next, looking forward to what was coming, spotting the new blooms, and loving every minute we spent outside.Even though his Mother has since passed away, she got to see her childhood home look better than it ever had. It was the setting of many a gathering. The perfect place to setup tables and invite everyone over for birthdays, showers, and celebrations of every kind. Thank you little house! You didn't have much to offer, but your yards did, once we saw the potential. So we fixed you up, too, and made you purty with your new dual-pane windows, your new doors, and a new roof. We hope you always inspire your dwellers to take care of you, and call you 'Home'. You gave us inspiration to live simply, and enjoy the view. Dictionary.com : Propagate: to transmit characteristics from one generation to the next. Thank you Mom, for the chance to really see how living simply can reap its own rewards.