When we bought our house two years ago the backyard was over run with weeds. It really was about half weeds, and half grass. The house was rented for a few years before we bought it, and so the yard wasn't kept up like it should have been. Just after we moved in we spent a weekend with Kyle's family just clearing out the junk that had accumulated underneath the deck. The following year we spent a weekend installing a new patio.
|I don't think this picture really does justice to the mess of a yard we inherited.|
Now, two years later we're really getting down to business. The yard has always been so over run with weeds the girls haven't been able to spend much time playing in the backyard. We really haven't ever sat out in our yard and enjoyed it. We want to turn it into a space that we can all enjoy together. To do that, we chose to completely start over. That meant killing all of the vegetation that was growing back there, tilling up the dirt, bringing in new dirt, and leveling out the ground.
To start, we rented an aerator from Home Depot. Kyle wanted to poke the ground to death before bringing in a tiller, in hopes that it would help the tiller break up the dirt better. The aerator was scary. At least I thought so. Kyle had me try it once. I felt like it was pulling me along for the ride and I panicked and drove it right up the side of the fence! Kyle of course thought it was hilarious. I conceded that if he finished up aerating the yard he could go see a movie with a friend later that week. I wasn't about to try it again!
After the aerator we rented a tiller. A BIG tiller. This thing was a beast. It tore through the ground like nobody's business. It was fantastic!
Kyle made a few passes over the whole backyard and then it was time to bring in the dirt. Check out that pile of topsoil in our driveway! Just for future reference: we ordered 13 cu. ft., and then Kyle had another 4 delivered the next weekend, so 17 cu. ft. in total. We needed a lot of dirt. The yard was pretty uneven, with some big sink spots just before the fence line. The dirt was used to make the soil softer for the new grass we'll bring in (our soil is pretty heavily clay), and also to fill in the gaps and smooth out and level the ground.
To move the dirt we brought in the big guns: Kyle's sisters and their significant others. :) This Hill family is so fantastic. They are always so willing to come over and help us with the yard work we need done. It is great. It makes things go so much faster!
Here's a photo dump of the process:
|Our yard is riddled with roots. The trees on the other side of our fence line have been around for years, their roots show it- like this one!|
|Brittany, Clark, and Hailey taking an Otter Pop break.|
|I love the Otter Pop in Chelsie's mouth while she digs.|
|Hailey even got in on the raking. She did pretty well, it was actually helpful!|
All done! So much better, right? Now the ground is level and free of weeds. We just need some grass. That is for another day.
As a side note: Hailey was funny. Cody laid down in the grass and Hailey ran and grabbed the umbrella from her play kitchen to shade the two of them.
She then used her ice powers to freeze the sun.
Oh to be 4 again...