Back in the end of 2003, we had a studio addition built onto the back of our house. While that job was being completed, my hubby was called to active duty and left for Iraq. I was left to my own devices then to work on big projects, and I did what I could do on my own, and reached out for help when I needed it. (and wouldntchya know, some of the people who told me to call whenever I needed anything, went around telling people that I only ever called when I wanted something! Gah! I still can’t get over it.)
My father in law came to my rescue a couple of days, he helped me dig away the soil against the back of the studio so I could put down a patio.
And that was all great and spiffy for a while. As long as we only needed two chairs and a little side table between them, because that’s about as deep as it was. We have known for a while that it needed to be extended, and we started doodling out plans last fall to get ‘er done before Hubby had to go on active duty – again. So, as I mentioned over the last week, our local home improvement store, Menards, had a sale on patio pavers for A QUARTER. a piece.
I had 250 of them delivered, along with a gadjillion pounds (16 bags) of paving sand.
It doesn’t look like much, does it? I wasn’t that impressed. I thought I’d have had like a whole driveway
full of pallets loaded down with stuff. Hmpf.
So we quickly got to work digging up and scraping off all of the old 18×18 paving blocks. Talk about break your momma’s back! Ouch. I was younger when I did this 4 years ago. Four years younger, to be exact.
It really wasn’t as bad as I make it sound. They popped up pretty easy and it was hilarious watching the earthworms scramble for cover.
So then I left hubby to do the hard stuff, digging away more soil/sod and TREE ROOTS. Man there were some whoppers in there.
You can see how much we’ve extended the patio out here, he’s about halfway done with the digging. And then it rained.
For three days.
SO. The sun was shining over the weekend and we got a lot accomplished. Landscape fabric. Sand. Laying out the first few of the pattern to get it going and figure out the spacing. Then again, hubby took over and with a few more trips for more sand, finished it up.
Then it was my turn, to beautify. I picked up a dozen (or so) bags of pea gravel to fill in the borders, cause I had plans
. Plans that I could see in MY head, but he couldn’t envision at all. That’s how we roll – I tell him what I see and he gets all confused, scratches his head, and just does it. And so we went shopping, and I picked up just a couple more things to finish it off.
Night came all too fast. I obviously have to work all day today so I can only get this kind of stuff done in the late afternoon/evenings – and I didn’t want to wait a day, I wanted to do it and then just enjoy it tonight, kwim? I’m a practical gal. With a brand new bag of marshmallows to roast.
I stayed up late into the night (c’mon, 10pm is late when your regular bedtime is 8pm. I’m old.) and I put things together. And I asked our neighbors son to come over and help because what young man DOESN’T get excited over solar lights? Okay most young men wouldn’t – but this one is a techie. And he’s getting into the whole yard beautification thing. I’m sending him subliminal influential messages in his sleep. Or something. So the solar lights went in, and the petunias went up, and the fire pit came together and we lit the citronella candles and then?
Catybug and I took a seat. And no gnats crawled into our ears and had kids. No mosquitoes buzzed us and sucked our blood. The smell of the neighbor’s doggie doo was replaced by the sweet smell of petunias cascading right behind our heads. We heard crickets. And we saw stars. And we sat back and relaxed. We enjoyed the soft glow of the solar lights, the flickering of the citronella candles, and for a few minutes we didn’t do anything at all except sit back, and breathe in and out.
I’ll try to get a good night photo tonight so you can see how cozy it is. Really? For about $200? I couldn’t be more pleased.
C’mon over, I’m firing up the grill and the fire pit tonight and we’re roasting dogs and marshmallows!