From the mouth of Shane:
For Memorial Day weekend I had the 25th and 28th off. Somewhere earlier in the week I started to get the impression that Amy wanted to spend some time doing a yard project in the back yard while we had some extra time. I had no idea what would follow.
Friday was a fun day with the boys and we didn't really get a lot of yard work done, but we did get to roast marshmallows in the back yard and ride the go kart at the church.
Saturday was a rainy day so we didn't do a lot of yard work. However, we did tear out the big round bush that was in our back yard. It was somewhat of an eyesore since it didn't really fit with the other trees along back fence. A friend brought a chainsaw (all my chainsaws are in pieces hoping to become kart motors someday) and made quick work of the bush. I thought maybe I would be done for the weekend with "yard" work and I could move on to more interesting activities.
Saturday we found out that Don and Lori would be coming to visit to help us with our yard work. Again, I wasn't too worried since they came a while ago and built a nice flower bed for us, but it wasn't too bad since Don did most of the work.
Sometime during the weekend I also started having conversations with the gardenator (Jason H.) and he was having visions of pergolas and flower beds. I figured that he would yield to his desires to get the ski boat out and I would again be saved from any big yard projects. Wrong.
Jason decided to come by first thing Monday morning with his truck, trailer and arsenal of yard tools. I had no idea he was such a landscaper. I'm not sure who really made the decision or how they made it, but somehow we decided our highest priority was to gain useable space in the back yard so that it would be more of an extension of our house. The logical solution was to extend our patio with paver bricks. This is a project that I had considered last summer, but backed off due to sticker shock. Somehow with all the troops in the yard and the tools lined up we decided it was now or never.
Jason is a work horse and jumped right in. The rest of the day is pretty much a blur to me. We dug out the sod around the patio, moved the 3 affected sprinkler heads, removed additional dirt, put that dirt back in the hole, compacted the dirt, leveled the dirt, put in a layer of 1" rock, compacted the rock, leveled the rock, added sand, leveled sand and then started to lay pavers. I think we started at about 10:00 am, spent about 2 hours collecting materials, 10 minutes for lunch, and we started laying pavers around 9pm. It was a lot of work, especially since our back yard is not accessible by vehicle (note to self - if we ever buy another house it will have access).
Amy and I continued working on the job throughout the rest of the week and basically finished on Thursday night. We still need to adjust some sprinkler heads and add sod around the edge of the patio. We love it so far and hope that it will be durable. It added a little under 120 square feet to our patio which doubled its size. The crowded patio feeling is gone.
If anyone wants help with a paver project, call Jason, not me. :)
FYI: This is not me sun-bathing, sippin' on juice while watching the men work. I, surprisingly, laid one entire side of pavers. Just don't look too closely to my side!!