Thursday, June 14, 2012

Look what's 98.5% complete!!!

Last weekend was the big weekend to try and finish this patio!  Keith and I were thinking of maybe pulling an all-nighter Friday night while the boys were in bed.  Then  Keith's parents called and saved the day by coming down for the weekend to help!!!  Good thing they came because this was a lot of work!  

Keith screening the sand - this was challenging because once he did this we had to keep Stella and the boys off of it.  And you know what, there is something fascinating about stepping on sand you aren't supposed to do.  Keith thought this process would go fast - but it didn't!  He did go fast enough to keep ahead of me, so that was good.  

We had about  500 pavers to lay!  It wouldn't have been so bad, but Saturday was REALLY hot!  I was baking on the stones.  I had to sit on a blanket for a majority of the day or else it would have burnt my skin.  

Grandma Susie kept the boys entertained all day on Saturday. They had fun in the pool, they ran in the sprinklers they played on the slip and slide - you name!  She managed to get them down for a long nap by herself too!  Always a challenge.  At one point she was sitting at the top of the stairs waiting for them to fall asleep - until we saw a window opening up!  Dylan was busted!

We were able to get all the pavers down on Saturday, then Sunday Keith and Karl cut all the pieces that  had to connect to the edge.  Based on initial measurements, we thought we would need additional blocks, so Keith and Karl went to Ames and bought half a pallet and poly sand - turns out, we didn't need a single one!  So on Sunday Keith had to make a trip back to return them.  I guess it was nice we didn't need them, but waste of time and energy to get!  

We are still looking for caps for the columns and will add some lighting as well.  Keith will probably put sod around the edge this weekend.  Otherwise this patio is ready for a fire and some beers and some people to come over and relax and enjoy!

Already this week we are really enjoying having this space off the yard.  Our old house was a ranch, so the deck was off the grass - something really nice about being able to sit here and have the boys play in the yard.  So I think we will be spending a lot of time out here!

Certainly a project we are so happy to have pretty much done!  It's been time consuming and  A LOT OF WORK!!!  Not sure that I would recommend tackling one of this size on your own.  Doing the wall / fire pit portion was pretty quick and easy - but there is a lot of sweat equity in the rest.

BIG HUGE THANKS AGAIN to Keith's parents for helping all weekend and to Mark for letting us use his equipment and getting the dirt out and rock in!  Again - we would still be digging!  
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