Home Improvement Part 2

This weekend Matt and I got out the ladder and did some pruning on the huge Pine in the back and the Red Maple in front. I think it was the most masculine either of us have felt in awhile. Probably since we worked on the first fence back in February. Riding that wave of testosterone we decided to organize a backyard campfire scenario in the near future. After checking on the State’s Burning Ban we found that we had only 2 days left to make it happen legally. Georgia imposes a burning ban during smog season (May-Sep) as a strategy to reduce its criteria pollutants, such as particulate matter and ozone. In any event we squeezed it in on Sunday night. I have to say the location lends itself well to such activities, but I did feel bad about all the smoke going into the air and our lungs. We’ll see if it happens again in the fall and what progress can be made on that stump we want to get out of there.

But I’ve finished more than cutting down trees since my last home update. First, we got some gutters installed, thanks to the generosity of my parents. I can’t think of a much better housewarming gift. I might also mention that we found and bought a grill,even though it didn’t include much work on anybody’s part. Throw in a few places to sit and the deck is nearly all set for summertime. We just need to get it sealed and figure out some way to hang a hammock. But, no worries school is almost out and I have some free time to devote to this project.

The grill is strapped to the deck with an irregularly large chain. The plan is to lock it to the bollard. You may remember me talking about bollards for our bike a while back. Well, we also finished that project. We ended up taking a fence post and the tool developed specifically for driving that fence post into the ground. I had a machine shop drill and hole through both and, voila, we had our bollard. The fence post is pretty easy to cut through with a saw, so we filled it with cement when we set it. Essentially making a bollard the way they’re always made, pouring cement into a mold. It’s just that ours has arms. Works well so far, now we wait for the rains and see what grade changes might be needed.

I don’t know if you can tell from the pictures, but the “grass” has been cut (to a point). On my birthday we bought a lawn mower and since then we’ve had a lawn that is trimmed. We had to pass on the reel mowers on account of our large, hilly, and debris-laden yard. But we did decide to go with the electric mower which has worked very well for us so far. You’ll notice a distinct line where the weeds get tall, that’s the extent of our current extension cord.

Finally, we completed the sealing-off of our yard, keeping the neighborhood strays out and Mali in. We started by finishing the first part under the deck and then tackled the other side of the house. The design is pretty much the same as the fist side of the fence, except it’s higher. I’m still tweaking the design to make it sturdier, but currently it’s serving its intended purpose.

Thanks for letting me ramble about these things we’re doing (which probably mean little to you), and stay tuned for more to come.

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