Tuesday, June 1, 2010

The Backyard and Other Stuff

Finally, I am back! Matt and I have been very busy lately. Matt has been working a lot and school is finally coming to an end for me! I was going to try to talk about Matt's trip to Iowa, my trip to gay bingo, my birthday, Mother's day, the TAKS test, and the parties we've had lately, but that is just too much to cover! So, I'll just talk about this past weekend.
Matt and I decided the flowers in the front were not exactly what we wanted. They were also not doing very well so we replaced them with Purple Queens. We really like them and they seem to go with our TCU purple theme!
Our Purple Queens
Our garden has been doing very well. My corn is super tall already and I am crossing my fingers that it will actually produce. The broccoli is huge but isn't producing anything. I am going to have to look up information about it. I cut my spinach back and harvested many of the really dark green leaves. My Grandpa says that I should be able to keep cutting and growing for a while. My peppers are growing and just started to produce flowers this week so I am hopeful that they will start producing peppers soon! My strawberries have been doing very well. They tend to lay on the ground and ripen too fast but I have been able to pull a few small strawberries off of it. My onions are probably doing the best. They have started popping out of the ground. I pulled three on Monday and cut 'em up for burgers with the family. Everyone says they tasted great.
I actually took this picture this morning. I think next year I'll plant cilantro and tomatoes so I can make salsa!
This picture a week or two old. I think my strawberries are starting to burn...or maybe I forgot to water them for a few days....now the leaves are brown. We shall see if I can bring them back to life!
On to the deck! The temperature is rising rapidly so Matt and I got a move on and finished the deck! As you know, we started digging a few weeks ago but we had a lot more to do before we could actually get started. For the small deck, we dug down, leveled the ground, put down cement blocks, leveled them and then use those to make a beam. We had to be super careful about the height because we wanted the deck boards to slide right under the sliding glass door. This was probably the least fun.
Once the beams were in, we poured concrete into the concrete blocks to secure them. Our friends, Tony and Tracy came over to help us level and pour concrete! The following picture is Tony helping secure the concrete as Matt pours it in.
Once the beams were in we added joists every 12 inches. These joists are what the deck boards will lay on. Doesn't it look nice and pretty? Then the deck boards were added. Screwing down deck boards is not as easy as one would think. Matt and I were very careful to keep them straight and make sure the spaces between them were even. I got pretty good at using the drill and I got a new toy called a jigsaw. :) Matt thought it was for him but I got to use it to carve out areas around the sliding door! Apparently, I have some talent with the jigsaw! As hard as we worked, we finished the small deck last night and there is an area that will still need to be addressed. We are probably going to have to pull up around 8 to 10 boards (at least the bottom part of them) and scoot them over. It is a learning process and we are pretty proud of our deck so far. Hopefully we will be working on the bigger deck soon!
You may be able to see a faint blue chalk line in these pictures. We almost cut off the ends of the deck to square them off but we will wait until we scoot them over before we straighten the ends.
Y'all have a great week!

1 comment:

  1. We have those purple things in our flower bed, too. They are super hearty, grow fast and come back year after year!!