Thursday, November 15, 2007

Yardwork in Progress

Speaking of our yard...I realized that we haven't really taken any pictures of our yard and the slow progress that we are making in taming it. Our yard is very...natural. Some people look at our back yard and see weeds! Well, we see potential! Not that I don't love our yard just the way it is. It's perfect for the kids! It is sort of a jungle just waiting for an adventure.

Our backyard forest has provided hours of entertainment (and shade may I add) for the kids and their energy. But believe me, Wes has big plans. Even in the short time we've lived here he has managed to complete several projects that has improved the space significantly.
The first thing this novice landscaper had to purchase was a lawnmower. As you are starting to learn, this man loves DI (it's almost an obsession - he can't drive by one without going in). He found a lawnmower there for $10.00. And this wasn't just any lawnmower. This lawnmower had a Briggs & Stratton engine. I had no idea what that meant but our neighbors with perfectly manicured lawns were very impressed. He sharpened the blade by hand (????), cleaned it up, and the mower has been top notch ever since.

The second project was cutting down about a dozen dead or dying trees. He bought a chain saw at a pawn shop, sharpened the blade himself (not an easy task for anyone who knows), and took to the trees. On one occasion I spotted him outside where he harnessed himself to a very tall substantial tree using his rock climbing gear, weilding the chain saw to cut off the trunk above him. As I watched him in a mix of terror, shock, and admiration - I realized that he was definitely in his element. He should have been a pioneer. Anyway, the trees came down, some were chopped into fire wood (another task that brought him pure enjoyment), some were hauled off to the dump, and some were used to build this (reliving the old boy scout days):
The large one that he harnessed himself to? He carved it (with the chain saw) into this bench:

Other projects included using the many scattered small boulders in our yard to build a couple of rock walls:

Some railroad ties were salvaged and used to build our sandbox (yet to be filled with sand):
And our garden plot planned for next spring:

We can't forget about the awesome swing!

You will start to notice a trend here. The only things that we have been able to do so far have required little or no cash. We don't have money to invest in our yard right now but there has still been plenty of work to keep us busy. There are plans for the future and I will continue to post about the progress that is made. Spring will hopefully bring sand in the sandbox, planting some vegetables, and possibly a trampoline. Hopes are high!


Anna said...

Hey Emily, I am going to try and start some plants from seeds in my window this winter. I did it one year and it made gardening a lot cheaper, but I had a LOT of extra plants. You interested?

Jenn said...

Can I be a part of your family??!! How coool is your backyard!!!??

I loooove it and wouldn't change a thing!

Looks like fun to me!

Jennette said...

This looks amazing! I'm super impressed with you guys, and you're inspiring me to reinvest myself in the "natural" back yard we have. Can't wait to see the update in the spring.

Diana said...

That is a kids DREAM yard!

Dacia said...

You have ALWAYS impressed us with your projects! Fun to see!!!

Julie said...

Wow! I love your yard. I'm impressed with the thrifty innovations.