What am I getting myself into???

Our back yard is a mess.  It was a mess when we moved in and now with all the weeds that have sprouted, it's an even bigger mess.

But I have a plan.  I'm going to put it out there in cyber space, for all to see, that I'm going to clean it up.   I will post pictures of my step by step progress so you can see how it will all turn out, and I figure if everyone knows about it, I will have to continue with it, and not quit part way through.  

How embarrassing would that be??

Plus, we have a pretty nice pool that I plan on using a shit load this summer.  

Let's face it, a pool is so much more enjoyable when the yard looks nice.

I'm hoping this bit of amateur psychology I'm using on myself works.

I think the previous tenants attempted a couple of flower beds along the back wall.  But they were not cared for and, well, they suck.  As a border they stacked a hodgepodge of bricks, river rock, concrete and re-bar.

Yeah.  Re-bar.  Not quite sure what they were thinking there.

There is also a 'vegetable garden' in the middle of the yard.  I hate it.  With a passion.  First, it's bordered with railroad ties.  Tacky, predictable, over done, cliche.  Second, it's in the middle of the yard!  Yes, that's where the sun is most of the day.  But, still THE MIDDLE OF THE YARD??!!  Sean wants to leave it, clean it up and grow veggies.  It will probably never happen.

Unless I do it.

And, believe me, I know  how much work goes into a veggie garden and although I love the fresh food, I hate the work.

So, we (and by we, I mean me) will see how it goes.

I first plan on attacking those flower beds along the back wall.  That's what I did this morning.  I pulled weeds, dug up rock and brick, moved railroad ties (not easy by yourself!) and did some general clean up on the one by the tree.  It was a bit of a dumping area for things that should have gone all the way to the alley.  

Like the old board gate they pulled down when they put up a new one.  I saved part of it because Sean wants to use it to put on the north wall by the pool for privacy, since our neighbors window is RIGHT THERE.

I think it will look white trash, but he insists it wont.

We'll see. 

In my quest for the better back yard, I disturbed a few critters.  This little guy was one of them.  

I think he needed to warm up because I was able to pet him & he barely moved.  So I left him on his rock and moved it into the sun.  He scurried off an hour later.

After I worked hard for 2-1/2 hours (and, yes, Mom. I got dirty.  Very dirty.  Even my hands were dirt crusted!!) it began to look so much better.  

I pulled out everything, saved what was good and I can reuse, and tossed the rest in the alley.  

The boulder I left because I didn't feel like moving it.

So, what was good to reuse, I stacked in neat orderly piles so I know what and how much I had.  

This is why I did the clean-up and not Sean.  I'm much more organized.  

Plus I have the time.

These are what I have so far for reusable products.  I'm not sure what I want to use to border the new bed, I don't think there is enough of one item.  I'll know more of what I have when I attack the other flower bed tomorrow, but I don't think there is as much there.  I really want something unique, not your typical 'bricks stacked as a low wall' type border.  So I will think about this for a bit.  I still have a lot of clean up to do before I get to that point.  

One of the things in that area, too, are those pain-in-the-ass rocks that are put on yards to cut down on maintenance.  All they do is create problems.  The tree in that corner drops it's leaves in the fall and raking them off those rocks is a bitch.  So it was never done.  I want to shovel the rocks all up and get rid of them, but that might be a bigger project than I can handle.  I do know in some spots they are pretty thick, but they really need to go. 

So far, I think, I'm off to a pretty good start.  The yard already looks better, so I'll be back at it tomorrow to tackle the other flower bed.  

And the weeds.  

If you have any ideas for a flower bed border, let me know in the comments, I love to get ideas for others.

Now I'm off to remove a splinter.

And take a nap.


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