When DH and I first started living together, we divvied up chores to make things fair. He got to wash bathrooms and I got laundry. When it came to home decorating, the only place he had veto power was in the kitchen because he loves to cook as much as I do. In this house our living space is pretty much all kitchen but I still demand the final say over the decorating. As a compromise DH has veto power outside the house. We do discuss ideas but, ultimately, the exterior decisions are his.
Discussions surrounding our back yard have focussed on how to create a fantasy play land for our boys without using a whole lot of money. We did have a landscape contractor come in a couple of summers ago to give us ideas on what we could do and for us to get an estimate of how much what we wanted would cost if professionals were to do it. The estimate, which only included 2/3 of the work we wanted done was over $70,000. Yes, you read that right. I'm sure it would have been gorgeous but considering that that price was twice what we paid to get 1,000 square feet of our basement finished (including a heated tile floor in the bathroom and custom cabinetry in my craft room), we decided that sweat equity was going to be our only way to go. So backyard development sat for a while.
Once the party deck was completed, DH moved onto projects two and three. We rarely follow the beaten track in most parts of our lives so our our backyard ideas are no different. Instead of a Costco/Walmart special for the boys play area, we have envisioned a play area inspired by traditional Newfoundland and Labrador flakes and stages.
|This is the boardwalk leading up to a small clearing that will eventually|
feature a small playhouse, the "Room". DH hopes to attach a
light house inspired tower on one side. It will be painted bright 'JellyBean Row' colours.
|Considering the plan requires brain food.|
|The boys helped move rocks from around the back yard into these|
piers. They told me it was very hard work. They weren't wrong.
|Looking good. But, wait! DH has been thinking...|
|After much consideration, DH moved the wharf to run alongside|
the bank. This allows more room for the slide that is eventually going to
come down from the corner of the bank (above the bush in the last picture) and better freedom
of movement around the backyard in general. Eventually a wooden boat
will be at anchor next to the wharf. It will be painted in an assortment of
'Jelly Bean Row' colours too.
|The bones of the back yard are starting to become evident. Notice Finn|
supervising (in his red coat)?
|I love this picture because it shows the boys involved in an everyday event|
(a snack) out on the new deck. They have already played in the back yard SO
much more as a result of DH's hard work. That compost has to be moved though.
|Taken just before Finn was walking, he too was enjoying the backyard a|
lot more than earlier in the summer. Mommy enjoys his lack
of access to yummy rocks!