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Brenda has been writing since grade school. She attended journalism school where she majored in professional writing. She loves to decorate, garden, read and spend time with her Yorkies.

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Living The Good Life

Lots of exciting things are going on in my life right now. 
A few months ago, I decided I wanted to move from a house to a patio apartment. Reason: So much upkeep with a house, not to mention a big yard. I wanted more time to do fun things.
I didn't want to have to worry about upkeep and maintenance. Instead I wanted to utilize my time and energy doing things I truly love. 
One of which is gardening. I have a large privacy-fenced patio. Which is the real reason I picked this place. Patio? you ask? Doesn't that mean concrete?
Well yes it surely does! And so I have embarked on a whole new project: A containers-only garden. I wanted to challenge myself to see if I could create just as grand a garden atop the ground as I could down in it. 

And so far the results are fantastic! It's been less than two months, and it's amazing how much I have gotten done out there. It is like a second home, more square footage, a place for me to design and have fun. And no more mowing a yard!
 Also I'm living in less space, and loving it. Less space means less cleaning. It means being more judicious with your furnishings and decor. It meant downsizing stuff I really didn't need or want. 

As I said above, I love a challenge. 

I am lucky enough to have been featured in a national magazine with my former little rental house last month, and this month I'm in another. And while that is a home I'm no longer living in, the magazine features spur me on to see if I can be just as successful with this place.

So life is good. I have my two dogs and they have a yard, albeit a patio yard, with a bit of dirt along the sides. I have someone else to take care of any repairs that should arise. I worry about less bills.

I'm spreading my wings yet again. And flying into a whole new way of living. With less chores and more fun! I'm thriving and blooming where I've been planted, and who can ask for more than that?

My motto in life is to always stop and smell the flowers. And pause while doing so to admire all of nature around you. 
Have you been considering opening a new door in your own life? Read below to find out how you can enter for a chance to win $10,000 to make your dreams come true.
So tell me, how are you spending your retirement years? What doors are you opening to spread your wings and explore life?   It is time to indulge a little, cause we, we’re having a ball.
Merck Consumer Care, the makers of OXYTROL FOR WOMEN – the first and only over-the-counter treatment for overactive bladder – and MORE magazine are launching the “Open A New Door” program to help women 50 and over overcome barriers when pursing their passions.1,857 women 50 and over on MORE’s reader panel were surveyed to reveal what dreams they want to pursue in their second stage of life and what barriers they would face trying to reinvent themselves. In a perfect world, 97% of the women surveyed would choose a variety of ways to reinvent themselves in the near future. However, nearly 9 out of 10 (89%) of these women admit they would face obstacles in their quest for reinvention.

One woman who enters the “Open a New Door” contest will be awarded $10,000 to help her realize her reinvention goals in the areas of professional development, volunteerism or travel, in addition to a personal coaching session with Pamela Mitchell, founder and CEO of The Reinvention Institute. Women 50 and over can visit to enter. NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN IN THE OPEN A NEW DOOR CONTEST. A PURCHASE WILL NOT INCREASE THE CHANCE OF WINNING. Starts 8:00:00 am ET on 5/20/14, ends 11:59:59 pm ET on 6/30/14 (“Promotion Period”). Open to women who are legal residents of 50 United States and District of Columbia and 50+ years. Void where prohibited. Subject to the Official Rules, inclusive of the entry judging criteria, available by visiting during the Promotion Period or by sending a self-addressed stamped envelope for receipt by 8/4/14 to: Open A New Door Contest RULES, P.O. Box 13106, Bridgeport, CT, 06673-3106. Sponsor:  MSD Consumer Care, Inc.

Brenda Kula

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  1. So glad to hear that your life is finally going in a good direction. I think having someone else fix things for you will be a huge asset to living in your new place! If I was a single woman, I would feel more secure knowing I could just call someone and they have the responsibility (and pocketbook) not me!

    1. It is a great relief, Kelly! Because I never knew when they were giving me a good price or not!

  2. I could feel you content and happiness since you moved to your new home. I am so happy for you Brenda, may you peach and contentment continue to grow. Oh, and yes, having someone else do the "maintenance" is a good thing. Have a joyous day, see you later for the party.

    1. Yes, my anxiety has gone way down and I do feel a real sense of contentment.

  3. The initials on your new LG washer/dryer stand for "Life's Good". Which sums up your new life perfectly! And I'm so glad for you, Brenda! Hoping your happiness and contentment grow with each passing day...

    1. I think you're right about that LG, Gayle!

  4. Hi Brenda, thanks for providing this great offer!

  5. Gosh! I love your patio/garden and I hope you win the $10,000!

    1. Is that what it says? Oh, I didn't know!

  6. It seems that every time I head on over here I'm greeted by something new and exciting, and of course, always colourful and today is now exception: when did you get the new favicon, my friend?!! It's adorable, as is your container garden, very creative, indeed! I can feel how much happier you are in your smaller, more practical space, which is looking lovely! Yes, you are finally having fun, sharing it and inspiring us along the way!

    Happy Monday!


    1. I got the favicon off some graphics I purchased on Etsy. Just cropped it out of another.

  7. I think you are doing a pretty good job of reinventing yourself, my friend. xo Laura

  8. Your patio is so pretty and lush. I like container gardening. You can move the pots into different groupings or to a better position if the first wasn't suitable for the plant. And it's nice for the pups to have an enclosed spot to relax and play in.

    You have such a knack with color and arranging things. I loved your Texas house, your little house you just left, and your apartment is so cute. It can be a hassle getting a new place set up but once you are finished, you can really enjoy it. I know that dishwasher is driving you nuts so I hope you soon find a solution for it.

    1. The dishwasher solution has been applied. And at the end of the week, I should be ready for the whole kitchen reveal I think.

  9. Just from your writings, it seems like you are happier and more content in your new little home that you have been in a long time. I'm really glad for you. Your patio area with all the plants and flowers is so pretty. Do the dogs enjoy running around out there? Do you think they miss having a yard space? Or, do you take them on daily walks?

    1. Was wondering the same thing about the dogs. Mine get 2 walks a day even though we live on 5 acres.

  10. Brenda, you sound so happy with your new home and new life!! Your patio garden is just darling and thriving beautifully--you make me want to go out and brighten up our back patio...

  11. What an upbeat, positive post!! I am pleased to read how great this move has turned out for you. I am looking forward to seeing what you have done with your kitchen space. Your container garden is beautiful.

  12. Brenda,
    I am so glad to hear that things are good for you!! I worried for you for a long time but now I may not have to worry as much for you!! LOL!!
    I will be looking for these magazines to see your articles!! How exciting and congrats!! i am back to work after vacation so i have not had much time to visit...
    We are planning for retirement and i was thinking of doing such a post and now i am inspired to do so!!


  13. Hi Brenda, This isn't an entry but wanted to say how much I loved this post and seeing a peek at your patio garden. It looks so nice.


  14. Brenda, I found the Country Sampler at the store the other day, and your magazine spread looks great. I can't wait to see the kitchen reveal. It seems that your new home has made your life much sweeter, as well as easier. Good for you.

  15. I'm sending you a huge cyber high five Brenda! I can't begin to express how happy this post makes me! You are rockin' it and taking no prisoners.

    The yard looks beautiful!

  16. Well, you certainly have succeeded in a big way in creating a grand garden! And the wagon with the gazing balls is so whimsical and fun! Beautiful, Brenda, but the real beauty is the happiness your new home has brought you! The contest sounds like my "about" page! Hmmm...maybe I should enter!

  17. The patio looks great, Brenda. And the beauty of container gardening is that you can move them around!
    I got the Country Sampler magazine the other day and saw your wonderful article. It's fun to show it and say "I know her"! Can't wait to see your newly decorated kitchen.

  18. O, I had no idea you matter where you live, it is always so colorful, happy, warm and beautiful...always full of charm.
    I love your container gardening...I am wanting to do this, too. I'm not sure you knew we sold our big ole house of 40 years and moved into our son's pool house. It's not a whole lot smaller than our olden house..2200 sq feet..2 bedrooms, 1 bath, a nice large closet and dressing room...awesome kitchen and dining...we just love it so much...and no more worries about yard, bills, the whole 9 this is how we have approached retirement and old age.
    I'll be back in the morning to link to your party...:)
    xo bj

  19. Can't wait to see what you have done with your kitchen. Love the patio! Two magazines??? WOW!

  20. Hi Brenda, I am loving your patio garden. Everything looks like it is thriving and so green. Lots less work is always nice too. Life is about making changes as nothing stays the same forever. My hubby and I are approaching a time when we will be making some big life changes too. Looking forward to the next chapter!!
    Loved your Country Sampler feature.

  21. How funny I came over to see what you were up to and saw your gorgeous patio container garden. I just did a post today on growing zucchini in containers.

  22. Your patio looks like it's really thriving and lovely! I just did a post yesterday on my blog (www.sweetjourneyhome) about Summer porch days. I have about a 10 x 10' covered porch and I'm trying to grow a few herbs there along with ferns and flowers. Being covered, it doesn't quite get enough sunshine but I'm enjoying it. Have a great day!

    1. oops...supposed to be:

  23. You just amaze me Brenda...I love to read of the happiness that you are feeling..I would trade my big yard for your private patio any day..and if I could have it look as wonderful as you have..heaven..

  24. Brenda, since moving you have seemed so much happier. I love your patio garden so much. I am finally back home but still running each day working on getting Mom settled. This will end one of these days and I'll be back to working on my little space!
    hugs, Linda


I always enjoy reading your comments and having you join the conversation here at Cozy Little House. It is like having a gathering of friends sitting in my cozy apartment. Enjoying coffee and dessert, chatting and having a good time. I appreciate each and every one of you!

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