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I hope you had a great week!

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Random Things Happening Behind the Scenes at Bricks ‘n Blooms

What a week it was!

Family Life

Shana went back to Ohio State, Tori spent her last week of summer vacation at the Jersey Shore, and we spent the weekend in Vermont at the lake.

While we were there we had THE BEST time with one of my blogging besties, Jennifer from Cottage on Bunker Hill.

Jennifer and her husband Chuck came out from New Hampshire to spend some time with us out on the lake.

And it was such a beautiful weekend and we had the best time!

jennifer from cottage on bunker hill with stacy ling bricks 'n blooms

In the Garden

The gardens are still pretty crispy with some trees and shrubs NOT LOVING the dry climate.

We got about an hour’s worth of a good rain, but it’s still really bad.

I’ve got these gorgeous hydrangeas and I’m not sure they’ll survive. They are hanging on though.

Even one of my dogwoods is begging for more rain.

I’ve been trying my best to hydrate what’s here, but as you know the property is quite large and it’s no small task. So I’m doing what I can to keep it going. Fingers crossed these plants survive!

scorched hydrangeas from extreme heat and dry weather in New Jersey garening zone 6a

While I was walking around this weekend checking out what’s doing OK and what’s not, I noticed my my Mexican sunflowers are blooming!

I planted SO MANY seedlings in the pool garden. But the bunny mowed them all down.

When I was planting, I had a few leftover, so I threw them in the stone wall garden in the front yard and a few of them took!


1850 farmhouse at sunset in New Jersey with expansive gardens and a very dry lawn

What’s in My Shopping Cart This Week

As I’m preparing for fall, I’ve been making a few purchases to decorate my home.

Some I bought already and others I’m still thinking about.

Here’s what I’m shopping for:

houseplants in the backyard zen garden with yellow house in gardening zone 6a New Jersey

What’s Happening at Bricks ‘n Blooms

It was a fun week on the blog!

We did a lot of fun things this week.

To start, we stripped the fireplace mantel with oven cleaner. Have you used this method of stripping wood furniture before? It’s been all the rage on Instagram and blogs lately I decided to give it a try.

Wait until you see how it turned out!

Spraying wood furniture with easy off oven cleaner to strip the wood
Spraying oven cleaner on the mantel to strip the wood finish.

As I’m starting to decorate for fall, I shared how to make faux flowers look real. There are some great faux flowers out there, but there are also some not-so-great ones.

Here are 7 easy ways to make faux flowers look real and be sure to see what not to buy when shopping for fake plants.

Speaking of fall, we also started dreaming about decorating the porch this year as I shared some autumn decor ideas for outdoor living spaces.

before and after room makeover

I also shared the highs and lows of my summer garden.

While everything still looks good for the most part, some of the plants and lawn are really in distress.

In addition to highlighting the highs and lows on the garden, we toured the front yard gardens in my latest video where I share some fresh new blooms that are unexpected and some fall garden planning ideas for the stone wall garden and front yard koi pond.

It’s exciting stuff so don’t miss it! You can watch it here.

pink hibiscus flowers

Amazing Inspiration from Around the Web

I love finding cool inspiration from around the web and wanted to share some of what I’m loving right now.

This sunflower decor.

This easy and affordable way to update a light fixture.

These blueberries in Maine.

These college move-in day tips.

This early autumn kitchen.

The best trash to treasure project ever!

zen garden in august with garden sculpture
Home and Garden Blogger Stacy Ling cutting zinnia flowers in her cottage garden with wood picket fence in front of garden shed

Thank you so much for following along.

Enjoy a beautiful day! xo

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  1. I was so excited when I saw that you and Jennifer got to spend some quality time together! How fun. Vermont is definitely on my bucket list. Thank you so much for sharing my post this week Stacy. Wishing you the best week to come.

  2. Oh my goodness. Your lake adventures look so fun! Jennifer is such a hoot. I’m sure you had a fabulous time.

    Thank you for sharing a link to my chandelier makeover. I appreciate it! 😉