Thursday, August 5, 2010

The Great Outdoors

In honor of a picnic by the lake that Tim & I will be taking tonight where we will get to enjoy a jazz concert  I decided to blog about the outside & yard of our humble abode.

You've seen this image before but here is a refresher of the front of our house.

And now the back.

The sides. A friend joked the other day that we shouldn't consider the people moving in next door as neighbors but roommates and that we could add a gangplank between our houses to visit each other, isn't that a lovely idea?

Here is what the view from our front door looks like. They are starting to build some houses across the street. I have mixed emotions about this, I'm pretty excited about getting new neighbors but the idea of enduring hammering, sawing and drilling at 7AM, 7 days a week is not my idea of fun. At all.

Here is what the view from our back deck looks like. Our property line goes all the way down to the corner of the white fence and over through the woods a little. We've got a GREAT backyard that I can't wait to fence in and get a little more use out of although our grass is still working hard to grow!

Things we have left to do here:

 1. Get a Fence - This is both for a practical reason as well as aesthetic reason. Practically we need a fence so our curious little one doesn't wander off without us. Aesthetically we can't afford as many trees and bushes as I'd want to make our yard a private little oasis but we are allowed to put up 4 ft of solid fence and 2 ft of lattice and I'll take it. We're planning it putting it about halfway up on the sides of the house and all the way down through the yard to the very end of our lot. This is going to be a ridiculous endeavor to stain but will be completely worth it when its all said and done.

2. Paint the garage door & the vent - We (i.e. I) were pretty specific on the color we wanted our trim to be and the garage door didn't come in that specific color so we've got white. Not a huge deal but at some point I'd like to paint it and the vent way up above the door that is also white the same color as our trim. I don't think it will take that long and I'm pretty sure we still have a good amount of that paint leftover, I just haven't gotten around to it just yet.

3. Landscaping - This is more in regard to the backyard. I'm wanting to add in a ton of trees to give the yard some shade and again more privacy. As much as I'm not a fan of yellows, oranges and reds in my house I love it when trees change so brightly in the fall and want to get a lot of those in there.

4. Flatten out the dip in the yard - You can see it a little in this photo back when the house was still under construction if you look where the line of the shadows is. Its essentially a drainage ditch and I have this feeling that its either very expensive or just not feasible to do but we'd like to put a drainage pipe in and cover it with dirt and sod to make everything a bit more level to install our privacy fence, plus that is the perfect spot for a future firepit.

5. Build a firepit - Cold fall & winter nights (ok maybe not the dead of winter but the beginning & end perhaps) would be made so much better with a firepit to hang around, roast marshmallows in and just relax in front of. I love this one and how its actually almost in the ground. All we'd have to do is place some Adirondack chairs around it, throw some wood in and we'd be ready to go!

6. Get a hammock - I have the perfect shady spot that will be nice and private once our fence is put in. I'm so looking forward to stretching out on a cool summer day and taking a nap while pup plays in the yard...oh bliss. (The water would be a nice addition but that's not happening)

7. Waterproof the upper deck & screen in the bottom - They have these really neat systems that waterproof the area underneath a deck by grabbing the water and funneling through a channel system and to downspouts. You can then add decorative paneling so no one ever knows the difference. Ever since we saw how amazing our porch was going to be I've been dreaming of leveling out the bottom portion of it, cementing the ground and putting up screening. This is a very long-term goal but I'm already super excited about it.

8. Build in steps - This is actually in regard to the side of the house. Its quite the workout to walk up it much less to have to mow it even with one that is self-propelled. I've envisioned something like this but I'm thinking its way above our price range and we'd never get that investment back but I'm sure we can figure out a less expensive fix to make something similar...eventually.