Thursday, October 1, 2009

Home Renovation Post 1

Since the end of July, we have lived in our new house for ONE YEAR. It is in all caps because I find this fact shocking, and well, just plain unacceptable. We have lived here for ONE YEAR, and we have not painted a single wall since moving in. Pitiful.

We only had a few weeks between the closing and the move in date, and during that time, we...

1. Removed the sliding glass doors on the closet in Dylan's room. (Jim)
2. Bought wood doors for the closet, and painted them white. (both of us)
3. Chose knobs, and installed doors. (Jim) (Jim will say "There were many steps you skipped. It was more involved than that! I had to.. blah, blah, blah". You get the picture - new doors).
4. Painted the walls of Dylan's room blue, then painted clouds. (both of us, but I admit, Jim's clouds were better)

Since then, though, not a drop of paint on my clothes or in my hair (I'm a messy painter). Oh sure, we have ideas. It is getting the idea part to the execution part that seems to be the problem.

So for my memory's sake, and hopefully your enjoyment, I'm going to recap what we did manage to complete this past year. I'll start with the biggest endeavor.

When we moved in, the yard came with a pool. Actually, it was more like the backyard WAS a pool. The above ground pool and deck took up almost the entire yard. I don't mind pools. I like to swim. But, I also like to play in the sandbox, slide down the slide, jump in a pile of leaves in the fall, run in the sprinkler in the summer, make a snow angel in the winter, etc. None of that was possible with that pool taking up all the space. Also, we didn't have the time or money to maintain it. I think we swam in it 3 times last summer.

Then, we decided it had to go. Here's what we started with... (Picture taken in March)

After sending out an email to the 50 members of the Mom's Club saying, "Free Pool & Deck to anyone who can come take it down and get it off my yard", the pool was gone by April 4th. Problem was, they didn't want the deck. Then, we had to find some other people to come take the deck. That started on April 9th.

From April 9th-19th, my backyard looked like this...

Nothing says, "Come on over for a playdate" like rusty nails sticking out of wooden beams!

After April 19th, our yard looked like this...

Believe it or not, we actually took Dylan out to play with it like that a few times! We climbed on the rocks, dug in the dirt, and avoided holes in the yard. Desperate times call for desperate measures. And, believe me, we were desperate. I say that because our yard looked like that until... (wait for it)... AUGUST 4th!!! Yes, that's right, it took an entire summer of dealing with idiot landscapers before we finally found someone willing to come out and, oh I don't know, TAKE OUR MONEY!!! Seriously, we would sign a contract with someone, and they would be abducted by aliens, never to be seen again. I kept looking for "Landscapers Abducted By Aliens" stories in the news, but never saw any. Huh.

By August 14th, our yard looked like this...

We got rid of the ugly pine trees, that I'm allergic to, and that were also taking up a lot of space, and plan to replace them with smaller, prettier trees next spring.

By August 19th, the grass started coming in. I never thought I would be so excited about grass, but watering it 3 times a day was a pain! I just knew in a month we would have a gorgeous, lush lawn for Dylan and I to play in. Sometimes I'm so optimistically naive, it's laughable.

As of today, we have patches of dirt, and patches of grass. Where the landscapers put the dirt and topsoil, the grass is a yellowish color.

We are not at all satisfied with the result, so Jim decided he needed to get more seeds to try and fill in the patchy spots. He needed to aerate the soil, so he made the "Aerator 2000".

I knew when he told me the idea that it wouldn't work. I knew when he showed me the finished "Aerator 2000" that it wouldn't work. But, we have been married 7 years and in that time I have learned a few things. I have learned when I hear an idea, to nod enthusiastically. I have learned to let him tinker away in the basement, making who knows what. I have learned it is better not to ask questions. I have learned to say, "Ooh", and "Wow" when I see the finished products, no matter how ridiculous they look. I have learned to just sit back, and watch the funny man tire himself out pushing the "Aerator 2000" into the dirt until his arm just about falls off, and he finally admits defeat, and decides to go buy more topsoil. After all, it's not like I have any ideas myself. He'll figure it out eventually and we'll have a beautiful, lush lawn. I hope.


Lisa @ Boondock Ramblings said...

It's so funny...there you were trying to get rid of your pool and I'd love to have one! Sometimes...other times I worry about the upkeep, etc. Ah, so maybe you did make a good move.

Good luck on getting that grass to grow. I'm sure it will and soon....

Jenn @ Juggling Life said...

I don't know how it works where you are, but here it's almost hopeless to put in a lawn without doing sod.

Good luck with it!

The Girls' Mommy said...

Did it really not work? We have shoes that strap on that look like the Airator 2000 :) Those plus a lot of seed plus a lot of water and we usually get grass, until we kill it again. Which we always do.

Anonymous said...

What is this grass you speak of? We have lots of weeds that grow really close together and if you mow them short enough they kind of look like grass. What? It's grass. I swear. Really. Stop pointing at the weeds.

Burgh Baby said...

Psst . . . grass grows better in mushroom compost. It's basically topsoil, but it has a lot of compost in it so it's lighter and fluffier. You could just sprinkle a few bags of it (they sell it at Home Depot and Lowe's in a bag) and then try the grass seed again. So far it's working in our front yard . . . so far.