This year's landscape project included the addition of a second patio, a raised gardening bed and a firepit on the terrace closer to the garage (the concept of which was feverishly conceived on a flight from Grand Prairie). We have new neighbours who are positively lovely (the wife, who is Lebanese, brings over Lebanese dishes at least a few times a week - so. spoiled.), but they have three girls who love our kids and our backyard. So we have six sets of eyes peering at us on the patio through the cracks in the in fence at all times. Plus, as it turns out, the lower patio is a pretty bad ass tricycle roadway.
We spent loads of time last and this year just observing how the girls were using the backyard. And we quickly discovered that play is focused on the hill, the lower patio and the sandbox. So this vast area of grass by the garage was not being utilized really by anyone.
Like our other project last summer, most everything was built using upcycled materials (Kijiji and used building material stores, leftovers from last year's project) and almost primarily hand dug/laid/built by Jay. I took care of the landscaping. We brought the stepped design elements of the patio and sandbox into this design, stepping the garden, the firepit and the patio away from each other. Jay also built a narrow garden box right at the fence for some tall grasses. My dad helped build the compost in the back corner.
|BEFORE: Raised gardening area at the far right. Random kid in snowboots in May - centre.|
|Planting of the new trees. Man am I ever glad we elected to have them planted for us. We would have had to roll that mo fo in there. Mayday on bobcar, Double Flowering Plum in the foreground.|
|Digging out and laying the patio stones. I think Jay paid about $150 for all of the patio stones (second hand). He framed out the firepit as well (where he's sitting).|
|Sweeping the sand in the cracks. I think I'm in a lawnchair on Pinterest here.|
|AFTER: The patio has the same stepped design as the lower patio. The fire drum is actually an old rusty tire rim. I love rusted elements.|
So major 2012 Exterior Project #1 is complete. Now just a simple paint job left for this summer. Or.. not so simple...
|Prepping for painting - day 55. Ever wondered where fly babies live? Under aluminum shutters. There were hundreds. Ewwww.|