Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Big Backyard Dreams

Since the weather has been nicer and we’ve been spending more and more time outside, BBQing and puttering, and what not, we’ve been thinking more and more about what we’d like to do with the back yard. Remember back from this post, where I showed a bunch of eye candy, and some rough ideas of what we wanted...well now that it’s hotter, the weeds are attacking us with a vengeance, my love for all things backyard pretty has been renewed. Our driveway (which turns into our “patio”) is bricked; now, not only are the bricks ugly, but they’re being overrun with weeds, and we just can’t keep up with them. I have a few plans kickin’ around inside my head that I wish we could do out back, but we both decided that we’d wait until our second spring/summer here before we do anything too major. That way we have time to figure out exactly everything we want and need, and what a good size will be.
   Then something happened that sort of jump started our plans. We won this!

After winning this bad boy from Mike & Steph's stag & doe (donated by Patio Palace) we legitimately had to start thinking about the back patio. We won a natural gas "Patio Flame" which is basically a fire pit that no one can yell at us for having because it's a controlled flame. Since it's natural gas, we have to run a dedicated line for it, so we need to know exactly where we want it so we can have the line run. Here's what the yard looks like now...

A back yard shot from the side of the house 

Again from the side of the house, this is about where the patio would span.

Overgrown myrtle and can almost see a basement window trying to peek out in the middle of the jungle.

From the other side of the house. You may notice the pile of bricks leaning up against the garage that we still need to stack back out along the front garden boarder...someday.

We need to remove that giant bush...which is pretty much where the fire pit will go. It's a monster, it probably has an almost 5ft diameter. So we're going to have to do some digging, and some pulling with the truck to get it out. Our lawn is already filled with holes, so what's one more gigantic one eh?
I know you're all jealous of our amazing "patio eating" set up, it's pretty pimpin' I'm not gonna lie! You may also be jealous of all the weeds, and this picture doesn't even show how many there really are. 
   So now we've got our thinking caps on, for all the amazing things we could/can do with the back patio. There are a few things that are must have's for us, and the rest is just fun "make it look pretty" 
The things we have to have are pretty simple:
   1. No more brick - we'll keep the bricks on the driveway portion for now, until we figure out what we want to do to the drive.  
   2. An eating area (enough to sit at least 8) - which will probably go roughly where our pathetic one is now
   3. A "conversation" area, or just more of a loungy area - that's where we'll be putting the patio flame
   4. A designated "cooking" area, most likely close to the eating area - because in the future we plan to upgrade to a natural gas BBQ, and it's                   just easier to plan for it now, than try to figure out where to put it in the future.

Those are pretty much our only stipulations at this point, I'm sure as we get the ball rollin' there will be more that crop up. But for now, our goal to spruce things up is to rip out that bohemouth bush & put the patio flame in, and power wash the bricks to clean them up (which will hopefully also help get rid of the weeds). I heard that baking soda is supposed to work well for killing weeds because of it's pH we'll have to give that a try, see how it pans out. 
  Here's my "had-way-too-much-fun-screwing-around" computer rendition of what it'll look like when all is planned, said and done.

Isn't it just so pretty! Hooray, I know it's going to be a while before it actually looks like this, but it's exciting to just look at this, plus it helps me get a good idea of what a good size is. (this is 9ft by 29ft) It looks like maybe 11ft would be a bit better, no?

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