Monday, February 22, 2010

DIY - It's NEVER easy!

One Sunny (crisp) Saturday about a month ago, it was perfect timing to finally level the plot that we were to put the critter's play structure on.

You know, the one we purchased in December, that has been sitting in the garage since right after Christmas...waiting to be built while the single digit temps, sleet and snow have kept us inside?

And so, we became sod rippers. We cut the sod with a crescent shaped edger (my job) and pulled it up by hand (his job)...stacking the rolls so that we could lay them again after moving around some dirt. Easy, right?

Except the dirt here is clay. Heavy, dense, iron rich CLAY! He dug out the high side and chucked it over to the low side, and I broke up the clods.

We had to spray it down to get it to break down and spread even.

Look at the muck on the bottom of his shoes! It was slurpy. It grabbed you and didn't want to let go! I felt like I had moon boots on!!

The almost finished product, before the sod was rolled. All told, it took about 8 hours from start to finish. Ughhh. And Chris did most of the heavy lifting!

After this weekend it continued to rain and rain for weeks, so it took a while for the moisture level to return to normal.

Fast forward several weekends...and we have beautiful, sunny, warm and DRY weather!!

Have some hardware!

Inventorying all the boards! This is definitely a 2 person job!!
This is about 1/2 way there!

We heard horror stories about this taking some folks 10-15 hours to construct. We built it in about 6 hours! It's all about teamwork! Chris does really well when he has someone there to talk through the steps. I was the project ahead and pulled out the supplies. I also did some hands-on building. Chris was the man with the drill and the experience. Even though the instructions didn't call for a certain piece, he knew when it was needed, and they actually HAD provided the hardware, but didn't mention it anywhere in the directions!! It's a good thing he's built a lot of things!!

We now have a level, structurally sound play set that our kids can enjoy for years to come!

Not Easy, But Totally Worth It! It is so satisfying to work as a team and accomplish your end goal! (Better than therapy, I tell ya~)

Here is a pic as of this morning (raining again).

In all the excitement (exhaustion) of finishing up and coming in to clean up the house the kids had run free in and out of all day, I forgot to take one the day of. I plan to pick up some sand for the little sandbox under the fort this week. SO nice to have this project checked off!

It was 65 degrees and gorgeous yesterday and the critters played in it all afternoon! They are the happiest I've seen them since the move!


  1. Wow, I can't imagine many people going to the trouble to level the area first...but, Chris ALWAYS does things right!

    Love the pic of Savannah helping. Even cooler than the one they left behind in UT!

  2. Ding, ding, ding! Chris never does ANYTHING half-way.

  3. so...a suggestion, my friend, Carrie, has smooth pea gravel-like pebbles instead of sand. Everything shakes off before her kid makes it into the house, but it is still perfect for scooping, dumping, and loading into the back of plastic trucks.

    Just a thought. Sand gets so nasty in humid sticks to sweaty kid legs, etc.

    Looks great, btw. Look at that green lawn!

  4. Wow, I'm super impressed you guys did that by yourselves!

  5. That's awesome. A husband and wife project that ended in smiles! Love it.
    I found your blog through Angeline's. I'll be a regular lurker of yours. :) It'll be fun to catch up on what you and your critters have been up to!