Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Much to update

Lots to update so here we go!  As you've probably noticed, the windows in our house are ugly, old and completely energy inefficient. This "inefficiency" is actually pretty good for us because we managed to purchase a bunch of our windows before the end of 2010 so we could reap the rewards of the federal tax credit. Bummer that we had to spend so much money on windows but glad that we'll be able to see some  green when we get our tax returns back!   A couple of you have asked for pictures of our backyard (and by a couple, I mean Piper).  So, it's not perfect or finished but here are some photos for ya'll.  Beba LOVES the yard but so does our coyote (yes, we have one living in our backyard)

Unfortunately, we didn't get a great picture of the backyard when we moved in so I pulled this from zillow and it's actually a really terrible picture (outdated) of the house.  Please note that the house was painted white before we moved and the garage was re-roofed so it didn't look quite so terrible but pretty bad nonetheless

This was after we started doing some work.  We really wanted a patio area to eat and hang out in so we came up with this plan.  You can see that we started by leveling off a section up top and using railroad ties to lock it in place.

This picture was taken last summer and you can see how we put a layer of decomposed granite over the top for a nice hard surface that is also a "natural" look.  The granite has already compacted so much more since this photo, which is a lot nicer to walk on.

Also taken last summer.  This picture was taken shortly after we spread the granite over top.  I think this picture also does a fairly decent job of showing the background beyond this patio area...full of weeds, dirt and just

This is a photo taken this week.  You can see the yard in the back and most of all, the pavers that we painstakingly poured ourselves.  I think about 8 bags of concrete went into each of these 3'x3' pavers and man, is it difficult to stir!  It's like stirring chocolate chip cookie dough x 20...with a shovel. 

Taken on 3/9/11.  You can see the fire pit we put in last summer but Russ wants to add some steps down into it hence the mess.

The yard

A better picture of the pavers

Despite living 1.1 miles from downtown L.A., we are constantly in awe of how quiet and serene our neighborhood is. Lately, I feel like we live in an exotic jungle because there are so many birds chirping their little songs every morning.

We have a lot more plans for the backyard that we hope to execute this summer.  Namely, we want to take our garden to the next level, build a trellis and create a horseshoe pit.  For our garden, we're thinking raspberries, corn, artichokes, lots more lettuce, peppers and fruit trees!  All is going great and I'll update you on those new windows as soon as I can.


  1. Great entry! It's inspiring to see the work you two have done... especially now that its finally getting nice enough that Sarah and I can start considering yard work again, up here in Seattle.

  2. Curtis and I just mixed cement for a new bathroom counter top, so we can appreciate exactly how hard it is to mix! And ours cracked so we'll be attempting round 2 soon. Your pavers and entire year look fabulous!

  3. You guys have done an amazing job!! Everything looks beautiful, and I can't wait to see the finished product! :)

  4. Wow Angie, you guys are ambitious! Everything looks great. I hope all is well for you- it's been so long! XO, Anne