|Preparing for cement|
|Patio extension poured|
|Bar moved onto patio|
|Bar with backer board|
|Bar partially tiled|
|Hailey in the backyard doing an Easter Egg hunt|
|7 yards of mulch for the yard|
|Rachel spreading mulch|
|New flowering cherry tree, flower beds, rock path|
We've undertaken a few home projects recently, many of the outdoors. (Yes, January to April is the perfect time to work outside. Be jealous all you cold weather folks!).
We've been working on the back patio with grand plans of a covered suite complete with misting fans, a wet bar, a lounge couch, and an outdoor TV. Turns out that all takes money.... so we're not done, but in the last month we've make some great progress. Scott, John, Kevin, and Bruce worked on it over Thanksgiving, but the project was put on hold due to to poor weather (you know, rainy and cold.... not snow :) ) and the next thing we knew it was "busy season" at work for Bruce.
During busy season Bruce traveled to Jackson, Mississippi for most of the month of January. When he was in town he would leave form work about 7:30 am and return home between 10:00 pm and midnight. He worked weekends, and generally had no time to do anything but sleep and work, so the bar waited.
After his client filled their earning statement he was given a few days off. We celebrated with 800 lbs of concrete. I've become a bit of a softy, so I carried a couple bags, maybe a whole half dozen, but Bruce carried the rest of the concrete from the garage to the patio and then lifted them into the mixer. He was a little sore the next day, but the patio was poured and a week later we bolted down the bar.
Bruce ordered the parts of our latest toy- the carbonator! It's a home carbonation device. Like the commercial product "Soda Stream," but WAY cooler. While visiting for Christmas, Ben Merritt gave us a CO2 tank, so Bruce ordered another $70 in parts and built our very own carbonator. The maiden voyage was homemade lemon lime soda (we couldn't find root beer concentrate at the stores close to home).
With the bar bolted, we started cutting backer board. We've almost cut and attached all the backer board. The next step is tile the bar. We chose a dark slate for the sides and a light marble tile for the counters. Should look pretty cool.
After tile the patio will be on hold until the project fund can be restored, but it will be completely usable and look finished. When we resume work we'll add a roof, fans, misters, furniture, etc.
Pre-busy season we started another project: yard renovations. We love our backyard and chose our house, in part, for the large yard. Last fall, Bruce cut the grass from the perimeter of the yard to create flower beds. We bought a few fruit trees and made room for a garden. Recently, I tilled the beds and planted a garden. We cut out a bush in the front and created a tree bed (like a flower bed, but for trees... maybe I made it up), added a flower bed, and reshaped an existing bed. And last weekend we finished laying landscape fabric and spread mulch. It's nice to look out and see a pretty, finished yard. We need to add some plants, but need to figure out what first.
|Rock path, area for sand box (back right corner near fence), tomato plants (right)|
Those have been the two great sink-holes for our money recently.
Other home projects include a finished living room, a painted master bathroom, and ideas for some of the other rooms.
Bruce built some small side tables which I painted black. I potted some leafy, fern-like palm in a pot that I got off someone's curb because literally, their trash is my treasure, or in this case, my living room decoration. Bruce suggested painting it so if anyone knows if you can paint giant ceramic pots, let us know. And with those final touches, I consider the room complete (don't mind that the curtains need to be hemmed.... ask again in a year or two).
We painted the girls bathroom a grey that we found in the garage and like it, so we decided to do the same to our bathroom. We have grey walls and black cabinets. Someday we'll have all white linens including the shower curtain... maybe even some wall art, and the bathroom will be finished.
Ideas for other Rooms
I finished painting the base coat for some family wall art and finally settled on an image, so Laurel will paint it for us and with art and some more curtains the family room will be finished.
We decided that baby 3 (we are accepting name submissions- real and otherwise since we haven't name the fetus or the baby yet) will share a room with the girls (it's a girl!) and with 3 girls, it's probably time to resign ourselves to girly paint. :) We're thinking we'll paint their room brown and pink.
Bruce is getting antsy, which means it's time for me to start caring, to have the master bedroom decorated. We need nightstands, curtains, a couch cover, paint, and some wall decorations. We'll see what we decide.
Other rooms need curtains to keep the summer sun out, but room design is still unknown.