We realized that basically all summer, we've been moving piles of soil, gravel, sand, brick, rock, and concrete around. From here to there. From there to here. Dig out one thing, put in another thing. Drill a hole, fill it with concrete. Move the pile from the digging. Then backfill later.
This landscaping stuff is tough business, that's for sure. Heavy, difficult, and repetitive. We're really glad to have the patios done, because they are just such a nice reminder that it (seems) worth it to do this stuff. At least it's worth it when there's a chair to flop in after hauling concrete around all day!
So today was big. We finished pouring the last 4 piers for the deck yesterday. Then we shoveled gravel and sand around all morning to get them out of the way and get the backfill & grade right. The 9 piers for the main section of deck were done by the day before. So it's been 48 hours, and we could start putting - drum roll, please - some wood on the deck! Just the 3 beams so far, but who cares? It looks like a deck is going to go there! It doesn't look like a gigantic mess of uneven rubble anymore! The neighbors said, "Looks like a nice start!". The clouds parted, the sun appeared. The beams were perpendicular to the house (YES!) and parallel to each other (YES!), and level with a slight fall, just how it's supposed to be (YES!). This is all a bit of a miracle - when we dug and then set the piers, I was pretty sure the originally carefully measured locations had gotten thrown way off. It's very weird to go from a point on the ground to a giant hole and think you're in the right place!
Life is good. We can do wood - and are glad to have concrete, gravel, sand, dirt, brick, rock, and all that other stuff behind us.
At least, till we pour piers for the fence. Maybe next year on that one. Time to rest the ol' back.