As you may recall, we were tentatively scheduled to work on the farmer's porch this weekend, garage door next weekend, and possibly backyard grading the weekend after that.
But, as always, nothing goes as planned. Garage door is still scheduled for next weekend. And now the farmer's porch is scheduled for next weekend as well. (Timmy was stuck at work this past Sunday and couldn't make it over.)
So, what were we to do but start on the backyard?
Mike firstly came to the realization that he just couldn't and shouldn't grade the entire backyard. It was too much and our little skid steere would spend the next billion years trying... probably blowing itself up in the process. Mike decided that the best course of action would be to pour more cement and increase the height of the garage addition floor. He'd also grade down the gravel driveway, and angle it towards the pavement driveway so that water would flow in that direction instead of towards the garage.
We spoke about the possibility of getting rid of the gravel entirely and pouring a cement side-driveway. I told Mike if we were going to do that, we should do the entire driveway at the same time... we imagined it would be an expensive proposition and left the idea on the table for the time being. One thing at a time.
Now, this all started when I got out my rake and started raking the rocks. (Yes, the rocks. They were fulla leaves.) And when I got near to the end I thought, "Why should I rake this corner when I want it gone anyway?" So I asked Mike if he would get the skid steere and cut the corner.
He agreed and made a nice circular sweep around, creating a new entrance down into the backyard hole. (Which we'll eventually add gravel to...) Meanwhile I kept on raking the back of the backyard where I had left off a few weekends ago. That led into my next problem - there were all these new, small trees growing sideways that were in my way. So Mike got out his chainsaw and we chopped a bunch of them and piled them on the Trogdor for later burnination. (Next weekend, perhaps?)
Well that helped with the raking, to have all those out of the way. And it looked a heck of a lot better. Except now Mike's CB antenna was in the way. So our neighbors from up the hill came down and gave Mike a hand raising the thing to back on the back of the garage. Mike secured it as I continued raking, now unimpeded.
When that was done, I asked Mike to help me out on the waaaay back of the back. I had him skim the top, (where all the gross old leaves and logs were) with the skid steere. This would make a big difference in ease of raking. But that raised another problem. Mike couldn't effectively smooth out the area due to large, massive old stumps.
So he had to hook up chains and drag out a couple giant stumps, which he then loaded onto the truck for a Monday dump run.
Meanwhile I kept raking. (Never go years and years without raking people. You'll die - like I did at about this point.) I raked the bulk of the leaves and called it a day when my arms were about ready to fall off.
And at about the time Mike finished loading the stumps - he was beat too. We called it a day.
And then not shit. - Today on the Natalie Dee Machine: And then not shit.
15 hours ago