Do you remember what our back yard looked like when we bought our house? Let me remind you…
Bamboo for days. So much bamboo, in fact, that we didn’t know it was covering a concrete pad.
We’ve owned our home for four years, and have slowly made temporary updates to the back yard to make it usable, from removing bamboo to adding furniture, to making a stock tank pool.
Let’s not forget that our front porch is another favorite outdoor spot (and was our second One Room Challenge!)
All of these updates made our home more usable for us, friends, family, and Hank, of course, but we always knew we wanted to improve our back yard entertaining space. When we were already tearing up the back yard to build the carriage house, we decided it would be the perfect time to add a better deck. Our deck was tired, and had several boards that needed replacing. It hadn’t been well maintained by the previous owners (to be honest, not much had been), and it was on the brink of becoming a safety hazard.
Speaking of safety hazard, when we decided to do the deck, Jonny cut off part of it temporarily to allow concrete pads to be poured, so we had this to come home to… rusty nails, gaping holes in the railing, and splinters galore, a veritable death trap for kids and pets alike. Not to mention an eyesore. I always appreciate a good before, and this one really did get worse before it got better in the “after”.
The big concrete pad you see below the deck to the left is majorly cracked, so much so that I worry about guests tripping. It would be cost prohibitive and not aesthetically pleasing to fix it, so our better bet was to build a deck right on top of it. The new concrete is where the grill and grill pergola will eventually go.
The new deck will have one section at the same level as the old deck, even with the back door, but it will wrap around to the side door as well. I’m hoping I can find a small enough four-seat table to fit in the nook below the kitchen window for family weeknight dinners.
The deck will then have two sets of stairs (one by the kitchen door, one by the back door) leading down to a lower level that will be flush with the glass garage door on the back of the carriage house. This is a manually operated door, and can be opened to expand our entertaining space/play area into the garage if needed.
The lower level will span from the glass garage door to cover the big concrete pad, and the smaller concrete pad will once more be covered by dirt. Maybe the next homeowners will dig it up for a second time…
More current photos, so you really get a picture of the back yard as it is today (with Hank, who was my shadow all afternoon):
I’m very excited about this new deck, and all the fun we’ll have here with our friends and family this summer.
Oh, and the stock tank pool? We ended up spending more time maintaining it than using it, and though we loved having the hot tub feature Jonny built in, between me being pregnant and not being able to use it, and then having a new baby who can’t use it… it just wasn’t worth it for us. So that sucker and all its accessories will be on sale on Facebook Marketplace soon at a steep discount. Oh well.
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