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Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Growing a Patio

The very first time I saw this house, in late fall of 2004, I knew the area behind the back door would be a mud hole in the spring. So when our son Allen told us that one of his co-workers had some stone and brick to give away, I immediately thought to make a patio out of those materials. So I told Allen Yes! We would love to have the stone and brick. It would be some months before we could pluck those materials from that person's yard because we had to wait till  the weather cooperated. But eventually, we had the wherewithal to go get it, and we brought two truckloads of stone and brick home and dumped it on the yard. By then it was spring (2007), and our lawn was looking pretty good, so I wanted to get that pile out of the yard so it wouldn't kill the grass. So I went to work that very evening.
Bill tilled the area where the new patio would be, then we raked out any turf from the area. Then I started to work . . . . with a hand trowel. @ 10 hours later - a period that straddled two days - we had a new patio. 
I know, I know: The proper way to make such a thing is to dig it down to a certain depth, then add rock, then  add stone, then lay your pavers on top of that. But I didn't do any of that; I just started laying the brick and stone on top of the dirt. A pattern soon emerge as I worked.
Mid-way through this project, when I realized I wouldn't have enough rock and brick to fill the area that we'd prepped for the patio, I hastily changed the plans to include a flower bed area around the perimeter....
We eventually added a planter at the northern edge of the patio, then we added another planter, etc. The patio sort of . . . . grew out of the dirt, then the other things 'grew' around the patio!

I'm almost done now! But before I end this blog entry, I would like to share a story: 
I worked on this patio for about eight hours one day. Meanwhile, my  husband headed to the golf course - he knows better than to mess with me when I'm deep in a project like this, and I said ta ta without a backward glance. By the time Bill got home from the golf course, the patio was almost done, and the sun was setting fast. When Bill suggested I quit for the day, I insisted I get the patio done before I called it quits. So Bill turned on some lights for me, and got me some dinner, and then he turned on his truck radio so I could listen to some tunes while I finished up. The thing is, Bill tuned his radio to a Rock channel, and I am not - gasp! - a big fan of rock music. But I appreciated his efforts to make my job easier, so I left that radio on. But after about 20 minutes of Rock music, I told Bill, 'Please turn off that radio. I'm tired of rock!'
As tired as I was, though, I wouldn't have changed a thing. I was so happy with our new patio, and still am. And I am grateful to the folks who gave us the rock and brick, and grateful to those who helped get it to our property so I could play with it and make a patio. It just doesn't get any better than that . . . .


  1. Indeed, it does not get any better than that! Wonderful. Liked that word 'Rock' in that instance! Hard work had stimulated your 'humour muscle' at the end of 'that day'.

    1. It was either laugh or cry at that point, Dinu! I'm glad I chose laughter....

  2. What a great DIY landscaping project. A gorgeous patio anyone would be jealous off. I sort of 'love' that you were 'short of rocks' because that what brought on that meant-to-be flower bed, which really makes everything fall into place.

  3. I had, oh, 300 hits on my blog before pinterest came along. I used to send notices, via email, to family and friends, encouraging them to read my latest blog entry. Then I started to post pictures from the blog and that turned things around: The hits on my blog are now somewhere over 200,000. I tease that what this means is that, while family and friends are not much interested in my blog, total strangers like it.
    I mention this because. once again, your comments tell me that you 'get it' when it comes to this blog, and when it comes to my sense of humor.
    So . . . thank you sooooo much for your wonderful comments. I appreciate it very much.
    Yes, I definitely wung it in the making of this patio - 'wung' being the past tense of 'wing,' right?! It was a fun project. I think that I enjoy taking a pile of nothing and making it into something most of all.
    Thanks for 'getting' me, and could you please have a talk with my family and friends?! Just kidding.
    Hugs! Susan

    1. I meant to write that I started posting pics ON PINTEREST, and that turned the tide in re to interest in my blog. See 3rd sentence of my remarks, thanks.

  4. Replies
    1. I just re-looked at the pics in this blog entry, and I had so much fun doing that. I almost miss the patio as it was when it was first installed - no plants, no furniture. I guess I'm saying that I enjoy every aspect of a project, from start to finish, and way beyond that. Thanks for your comment. I think we should be friends!!!! Susan

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