Finally finishing... random projects

Over Spring break we started the deck project. I painted the first coat of the floor at that time. Not really realizing how much time this project would take. Generally I like to paint.  I find it therapeutic and painting outdoors is nice for many reasons, mess worry being primary. Who knew it would take me all summer to work on this project. You make recall older posts about this.

Painting the deck floor was super easy and the first coat went fast. Chris had to reinstall the railing before I could start the rails and the second coat. Due to schedules and such it took us a couple of weeks to get the railing back on. If we had all the money in the world we would of replaced the railing with something a bit more contemporary and perhaps metal. I decided to try and make the railing look a little different from the deck by painting it a slightly different shade. It looks nice but in certain light you can't even tell it's a different color. In hindsight not really worth the extra time and care. It took me a couple of weeks (one to two hours at a time) to finish up the railing.

Kid note: Nicholas helped "paint". My friend Paula had this great tip to give him a paint brush and a cup of water.  He water painted ahead of me most days and enjoyed helping me.

I finished the second coat on the deck floor and the stairs over labor day. It turned out great and should last for a couple of years (longer hopefully).

Dog note: Lucy's claws are annoyingly long and mark up the floor a bit.  I knew this would happen but it's still annoying.  If you can't tell I am a bit dog frustrated lately - guess I'd better get her claws trimmed or learn how to do it.  Good thing we love her.

Since we had to move all of the deck furniture in order to paint the deck I decided to sand and spray paint the furniture too. This was a quick and easy project that only took a couple of hours from start to finish. The grass worked great as a drop cloth. Steel wool and elbow grease removed all the rust and old paint. Three cans of Rustolem black paint and the furniture looks knew again. Love it.

Backyard... phase 1 is 95% complete

Here it is... The most beautiful back yard. We are so pleased with how everything has turned out. Almost all is complete. We took these photos before the huge snow storm hit. We got over 8 inches... Still left (for after the snow clears) are some minor sprinkler fixes and planting of the 6 carpet roses (the color I choose wasn't readily available to they had to be special ordered). I also still need to replant the perennials I dug up and get some blackberries and raspberries. We may even attempt to get some cold weather vegetables in the ground this week.

The grass looks really good and all of the plants seem healthy and larger than I thought we would get. All of the trees are gorgeous. We only ordered 2" profusion crab trees and ended up getting 3-5 inch caliber trees for the same money. The benefit of buying trees early in the year, I guess. Amazing! One tree is almost 15 feet tall.

The sprinkler system is fancy. We have a drip and soak system through out the garden beds and drip system is set to each bush through out the flower beds. I am hoping our huge summer water bills will decrease drastically, and another extra benefit—water conservation.

I spent all of Nicholas' nap time Saturday weeding the front flower beds. Two down, one more to go. We also moved a mystery bush from the backyard (barberry I think) up to the front flower bed.

The front yard work was really needed. For me and the yard. It was so warm and felt great to sit and the grass and dig around in the dirt.

Sorry for all the photos, I should of narrowed it down a bit but couldn't... now you too can see the yard from all angles and perspectives. :)

Major yard update - lots of photos

I have been so busy and have not been able to blog much except for phone entries. For all those looking for a yard update, here you go. These are various photos from the last 4 days (after the weather cleared).

You made it through all of the photos. Whew!

The progress is as follows:
1. liner laid down in garden box area and inside of the trampoline
2. gravel laid onto liner in garden box area
3. Garden boxes filled with top soil
4. finish grade
5. sprinklers continued
6. sod delivered
6. grass edging and defined flower beds
7. trees and shrubs planting begins
8. transplanted shrubs from yard replanted
9. trampoline assembled and tested by kiddos and lawn guys. It works great!

All those plants in the white trash bags are the perennials I am trying to save. Once everything else has been planted I'll go through the yard and decide where to plant the perennials. I tried to save the day lilies, yarrow and other random plants.

Landscape plan (plants)

The yard came to a halt for 5 days due to weather (rain & snow). Work has picked back up yesterday and today but I have been so busy I have been unable to post pictures. I am hoping to have updated photos up tomorrow. Imagine... It's looking awesome!!!

This past weekend I decided to really nail down and understand the plants suggested on the plan. Here is the plan all mapped out and color coded by plant. We will attempt to transplant 12 existing shrubs and acquire 36 new. Bunch o' bushes!!! I changed/eliminated a few bushes and added some lilacs (how could we have forgotten lilacs?). The perennials will come later after I get a feel for how the yard/color looks through the summer.

Stampin' Up! product plug: I colored the plan with my Stampin' write markers. I must say they worked great for this project.