Lower Patio Prep!

I can’t even begin to contain my excitement! The lower patio is officially getting poured this week! I don’t have any after photos yet since it won’t be done until Friday or Saturday, but this progress is so satisfying. I almost just wanted to stay home all week and watch everything get done. But you know, apparently I have to go to work. Anyways, check out the progress!

I have to kind of edit my list since there have been a few changes since the beginning of the project. And unfortunately I don’t think we are going to get all of the landscaping accents and decor up by the time this round of the One Room Challenge wraps up. But it will still be about a million times better than we were at the beginning! My list is still for the big picture though. Hopefully we can knock everything out by the end of the year. Or maybe just by early next year…

  • Plan out our yard layout
  • Demo and remove existing concrete
  • Install planter box irrigation
  • Pour patio concrete
  • Grade the lawn area of yard
  • Install new lawn irrigation
  • Install new drain
  • Lay lawn
  • Build planter boxes
  • Plant decorative plants
  • Paint craft room
  • Re-roof craft room
  • Decorate

Side note. The ORC end date has been pushed back a week. Instead of a 6 week challenge it has turned into a 7 week challenge. This is in response to all of the natural disasters that have struck the U.S. lately, which have affected so many lives. Linda, from Calling it Home, put it perfectly. “Never have there been so many natural disasters in so many states leading up to, and during the ORC. Between Texas, Florida and California, many participants have had to endure unusual circumstances. Product shipments, supplies, and previously scheduled work have all been compromised. Extreme circumstances require extreme measures. While there has never been an extension in the six years of this event, the fall ORC calls for some flexibility. Supporting each other during difficult times takes priority. The objective of the event is to cross the finish line as a united team with gorgeous spaces in which we can both enjoy living and sharing with our readers.

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Fall is here! I love our tree.

It feels like we have been hauling concrete for about 100 years. Give or take. That”s why I skipped last week’s update. It was more of the same, with not very much difference in pictures. I honestly can’t even remember how I felt when we were actually done. I think it was some sort of mixture between relief, excitement, and disbelief. Our yard doesn’t have any more concrete that we would ever want to remove, so fingers crossed that the concrete clearing days are over. Forever.

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While my dad and I were clearing out the last of the concrete, the hubby was having the time of his life with a trencher. If you remember our original plan, we are going to have planters along the upper patio, along the house, and down the side of the yard. And since I can’t keep anything alive without some automated watering help, we knew we needed to get irrigation going to all of those spots. We wanted to get everything run under the future lower patio before it got poured. I can’t even imagine trying to run anything under a 30-foot wide section of concrete. Talk about impossible.

When we laid out our irrigation plan, the hubby decided that we would need to install a sleeve for each line, and have a couple of straight lines with exit points outside of the concrete. This way, if anything ever goes wrong with the irrigation, we have access to all of the lines without ripping out our new patio. Genius.

Now, for the actual trenching part. We learned a few key things:

  1. Always rent a trencher. This would’ve taken us about a month to dig out by hand.
  2. Wet the ground for a few days before you use the trencher. Our yard hasn’t seen water since winter, so it was bone dry. They trencher literally bounced off the ground a couple of times.
  3. Know where your utilities are. We found the electrical line that feeds my craft room. The previous owner only buried it about 4 inches into the ground. We saw it right before the trencher tore through it, so we were able to save it. Hallelujah.
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This is the end of the day…doesn’t he just look so happy?

Basically, it was a really fun day… But at least the irrigation pipe install went super quick! I think that is my new favorite project. It’s like a puzzle. With glue. And dirt. Basically a dream come true. We installed all of the irrigation under the patio, and plopped in some temporary stick-ups at the ends so we could continue running everything once the patio was done.

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After we got all that done, we have been able to take a nice break. The contractors came out (Delta Construction and Landscape for those in the area) and started their work right away. We were able to explain how we wanted everything laid out, and to point out where that electrical line was, bright and early. By day one they had already gotten the forms set. By day two they had gotten the ground leveled and laid out all of the base rock. They also laid down the matting that goes between the base rock and the concrete, and put in the rebar along the mow strip, which, by the way, I haven’t taken any photos of yet. I was too excited and forgot. I’m pretty sure that these first two days of work would’ve taken us at least a couple of weeks to do. I can’t believe how fast everything is coming together! Next week I will be able to show you the finished patio pour!

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Grass will go on the left, patio on the right.
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Curvy mow strip!
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I need to go get patio furniture to fill the space, right??

Be sure to check out the rest of the projects going on for the One Room Challenge!

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