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August 6, 2013

Home Tour: Our progress

As some of you may remember, we started working on our backyard this past spring. I was first inspired by this beauty in the historic district of town -- I loved their outdoor dining area and the privacy that the tall shrubs and fence provided in the backyard, too. 

We always liked the idea of having a patio off our porch made with paver stones, but we quickly realized that would be a crazy intense project -- since the ground is held up by a small retaining wall, (that came with our house), it would be really hard to pave. So, pebbles turned out to be an awesome compromise! We laid ground cover fabric down first, hoping to keep the weeds at bay (it's worked like a charm so far!). Next we emptied several bags of pebbles, spreading them out to cover the space. We really loved the way it looked when we were finished!

Once the pebbles were laid down, we decided we wanted to put a table and chairs there and eat some of our dinners outside. However...the back right side of our yard is very open -- there are hardly any trees or shrubs -- and of course, this is the side of the house that backs up to all of our neighbors' homes. Don't get me wrong -- we love our neighbors! (We really do.) But we really wanted our backyard space to feel cozy, quiet and private, and it didn't always feel that way. We thought, why not build a privacy fence? So we did!

We enlisted the help of my dad -- who is quite handy with a hammer and saw, among other things. We bought planks at Home Depot, several bags of cement, and borrowed a friend's post digger. James and my dad got to work, setting the fence posts in cement. We let those sit for a week, and then came the fun part -- building the actual fence! 

It only took the two of them a couple of hours, and our privacy fence was achieved! Because our back porch sits up pretty high, we chose 8 foot planks. We truly love the way it turned out -- it looks great, and it really makes our backyard feel cozy, quiet and secluded. 

Now we have to make a few decisions -- to stain, or to paint? I want the fence to blend in with the surrounding woods as much as possible, but since it's so tall, I'm not sure that's going to be an easy task! 

I also want to add trellises or raised beds along the inside perimeter of the fence to make it look less tall. I think a few tall plants and flowers will really trick the eye into thinking it's shorter. 

And of course, this fall we really want to add a fire pit area to the back corner!

Thanks for stopping by and taking a peek! I'm glad the rain has stayed away long enough for us to snap a few photos of the progress we've made this summer. We tested out our new backyard at our family cookout a couple of weeks ago, and it was a big hit. We love our new space and can't wait to keep working on it -- I'll be sure to share phase two when it's finished! 

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