Monday, June 27, 2011

Shed/Sidewalk Removal and Escape Artists

Much of this week was spent working in the garden – the weeds were taking over! Now we have rabbits trying to eat all of our beans – darn rabbits!

My parents came down for the weekend to help us remove the shed and sidewalks. The shed has been a thorn in our side for awhile. The construction was so poor that there are enormous cracks in the block that let all the rain into the sunroom. There were two doors – one to the sunroom and one to the outside. Both of them were “dwarf” doors since they were only about 4 feet tall. The only good part about having this space was that we used it for storage of our many toilets, sinks, and a bathtub from the condo.

The guys started Saturday morning by removing the shed roof. I’m not sure what happened, but I know that we now have a blade for the circular saw that is coated in black tar.

While the boys were working on removing the roof, Mom and I loaded up the truck for our first trip to the dump. We had been collecting a large pile of debris on the side of the house and I think our neighbors were starting to hate us again. We ended up taking 3 truckloads to the dump and have a lot less debris at the house.

When we all got back from the dump, we removed the cinder block walls from the shed. Fortunately, the walls came down pretty quickly.

Once this was done, we got slightly cleaned up to go to our church picnic. We didn’t spend much time there but had a very good, filling lunch.

Once we got back, after a little nap, we started removing the sidewalks. I don’t know how familiar you are with the crazy sidewalks at our house so I’ll try to explain. There are three sidewalks. One goes parallel to the house about 4 feet away from the driveway to the porch steps. Another one goes at a weird angle from the driveway to the porch steps. The third (and weirdest) sidewalk veers off of the angled walk and goes down the hill in front of the house. This third one ends in the middle of nowhere near the bottom of the hill. Apparently they put in this sidewalk when there was a daycare in the scary, moldy basement.

We’ve never been happy with the placement of the sidewalks or the style of them. We started by removing the very weird one that goes to the middle of nowhere. Fortunately this one came out rather painlessly (of course Chris wouldn’t say that since he was the one swinging the sledgehammer!). We were able to pry the sections up from the ground and place bricks under them to make it easier to break.

Having this sidewalk gone is a very big improvement! We started trying to remove the other sidewalks but of course they were nowhere near as easy to remove – they used wire mesh in the other two. This week, we’re now searching for someone to help us dig them up with a Bobcat. Hopefully we can get the help before they have to take the dumpster back in a couple weeks.

On Sunday, before church, I let the dogs out into the yard. I sat down to read my book when I heard yelling in the street "Get away!!" I jumped up and saw the dogs in the street trying to play with another dog that was on a walk. I ran outside with no shoes on to try to get the dogs back inside. Fortunately, Hunter came right away but Tucker was bad and ran the other direction. We got in the cars to get him back and Chris found him trotting along the road in the neighborhood. What a bad dog! We definitely need to work on the security of those gates!

After church, we had a very nice brunch with Steve, Diane, and Jared. The rest of the day was spent cleaning up the area by the other mudroom that we removed back in February.

We also had a few encounters with snakes this weekend – they really like the cinder block piles we’ve had lying around. On one final note, we’ve had a lot of owls in the backyard lately. Maybe they’ll keep away some of the rabbits!

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