Part II of the backyard project is now complete.
Over the May long weekend, Ryan, two friends of ours and I, broke our backs ripping out weeds and digging out the grass in a 186sq ft section of our backyard to build a new patio.
The weekend started with a 9 a.m. trip to Home Depot -- which was probably the busiest store in the city on the Saturday of the first long weekend of the year.
After an hour an a half, Ryan and I had made our purchase -- 85 stones and 20 bags of construction sand. Oh yeah, and some new tools and gear (of course) and a pretty new patio set.
We had to rent a Home Depot van to get everything home and as the guy was loading an entire skid of stones into the van for us, we both suddenly realized 'what the heck are we getting ourselves into'.
But it was too late now.
The rest of that day was spent working away. Hugh and Catherine showed up as we were unloading the van -- or Ryan was, I was keeping Austin away from everything -- and as soon as Austin went down for his nap, we all got to work. Ryan and Hugh started to take the grass up while Catherine and I started ripping the plants and weeds out. The patio was going on top of what was once a garden -- but since I didn't plant the perennials that were there, I felt no love towards keeping them. So everything, except two day lillies (which were transplanted to the other side of the yard), were chucked right into a lawn bag.
After that, the rest of my day was spent keeping Austin out of the way, while they worked. All I know is that it took all day to dig down, pack the dirt and lay the sand beneath the patio.
All day Sunday and all day Monday, Ryan lay patio stones. And every time Austin napped, I pulled weeds from the dirt, from the grass from the trees...wherever I could find. All in all, I filled three lawn bags with weeds.
A lot of cleaning up every night after work followed and by Saturday night the patio set was set up and we had our VERY FIRST backyard party!
Two weeks have gone by now, and we've done nothing but look at the backyard, or lounge in the patio chairs and watch Austin run around the grass or play in the dirt.
So there's still a lot of work to do. There's a large pile of dirt at the end of the patio which needs to be spread out over the yard and there's still the matter of the old patio stones which need to get out of here. And then, finally, we can get grass. By the time we get to it, it may be too late in the season to lay sod -- but that's ok. The point is, whether I grow it or I lay it....there will be grass!