Sunday, July 19, 2009

Progress on our new back deck

My husband is working hard again this afternoon on our new backyard deck. A few weekends ago, he tore up everything but the joists in the old deck. This first photo shows the pile of old boards in our backyard, which our neighbor is slowly cutting up and using for fires in his backyard firepit.

We were so thankful that despite the wear and tear on the deck boards, railings, and a few of the joist boards, we were able to keep most of the joist boards and build up from there.

Then, another weekend he dug three 42-inch, 12-inch diameter holes for footings. My job, at that time, was to haul away the wheelbarrows full of dirt so that we could use it to build up an area in another part of our yard.

Yet another weekend (when you're doing everything yourself and also work full time, you become a weekend "warrior" for everything related to home improvement), he mixed 23, 60-pound bags of concrete to fill those holes with concrete to support the new deck posts...My job then was to fill in around the big cardboard tubes he used as concrete molds with dirt and then tamp it down to make sure that the concrete posts are really firm and secure.

And now, this weekend, he is finally able to start screwing new deck boards onto the joists. Oh, and I also helped with cleaning and repainting the siding that was behind the original deck (probably built when the house was new more than 30 years ago)...I'll have to post a photo on this project again when enough deck boards are in place to make it look like something again. I'm so thankful for a husband who is such a helpful and handy man!


Heather L. said...

Hi Karen, Nice to meet you. :)

As for washing the wool -- my sister (the expert) recommends taking apart the sweater first. I wind it into a ball as I unravel. Then, we wind the ball into a skein. We have a knitty-knotty to do this with. If you don't have one of those, I've used a piece of ply-wood and just wound the yarn around a piece that was, maybe 2 ft long. Then, you tie off the skein in several places to keep it from getting messed up when you wash it. You also make sure to tie the two ends so you can find them later. I wash the wool in the sink and then hang it outside to dry. My mistake this past week was not "weighting" the skeins to further help the kinks disappear. My sister uses sneakers which she ties together and then hangs at the bottom of the skein -- so only the laces are touching the wool. hope that helps!!! My sister stores the dried wool in the skeins and then rewinds it into balls when ready to use.

Heather L. said...

I forgot -- in case you didn't see this post, I did once post on recycled yarn:

i should do another post sometime with more details and photos.

Trudy Callan said...

Yea for such a hardworking hubby and a new deck.

Karen said...

Thank you so much, Heather! It's nice to meet you, too! And I'm so glad for your help with this question! I'm going to try the method you described here for the wool that I'm planning to thrift from some sweaters in my stash. Thank you for visiting my blog as well. Have a great day! :-)

Karen said...

Thank you for visiting, Trudy, and I'll definitely second the "yea" for my helpful husband! I'm just so thankful to have a new deck after all these years. :-)