Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Our Outdoor Story Begins

 The other day I went to another mom's house.  I was going there to get information on this really cool cooking club she was starting for the home school group.  I left there with more than information about her cooking club.
 Her backyard was GREAT.  It was simple, but very kid friendly and USABLE.  I stood there in her backyard and for a moment felt MAD at myself for choosing the house I did.  You see our house is actually on a pretty small lot.  I choose this lot because it is right beside woods and the woods are really deep. I figured we would would have plenty of room for the kids to explore and make forts right in our own "woods".
 But so far the kids have not been that interested in exploring the woods to deep.  On the first excursion Emily was stung by a bee and the next time they went exploring they saw a snake...add to that the EXTREME heat and they were not leaving the safety of the front driveway which is pretty stickin' hot and BORING!!
 I was increasingly feeling very TRAPPED in this much larger house.  The kids had no space to go burn off energy.  They melted upon leaving the front door and they were not that inclined to venture to far into the woods.  So after going to this other moms house and my little kids played the whole time out in her backyard I started feeling very aggravated at my own outdoor play situation.  I know it is hot but we have got to do something to get us outside.
 (And let me interrupt this story with a "poor Pete")..I left the house last Friday morning in a very good mood.  I came back a she-devil! He was a bit puzzled.  Finally, after I fed us all I began to tell him that I just left a backyard that made me want to start looking for a new place.  He was a bit...worried.  When I start talking like that he knows we are about to do something he may not like.
 I began pacing in the woods trying to figure out how we can make the space more livable and more inviting to play and exploration.  Keeping in mind we do not own the property in the woods we just happen to be the only ones with access to them next to our own house.  People in the neighborhood will mulch and make gardens and other sitting areas in the back of their houses that happen to be next to the woods.
 So after examining different parts of the attached woods we figured there was actually a pretty open space right in the middle if we cleared out the fallen down branches and sticks and trimmed a few branches...we could make a play area!!  WE could put some chairs and a picnic table and make a little backyard park!!
 So...we immediately got to work.  We raked and cut down a weed patch that took over  the whole middle space.  Once we moved the branches and fallen logs we had a pretty large space to play with.  I was so happy!!  We never hurt anything and truly just moved things (sticks and branches) further back into the woods.  We got rid of weeds..that were non-native pests and trimmed 2 low hanging branches .  This TRANSFORMED this little patch of woods.  Pete bought a playhouse yesterday and worked on it all day.  There is great shade back there most of the day and the weather was not to bad so he was able to finish.
We have ordered a truck of mulch to be dumped here this week and we plan on mulching the entire space.  Eventually we are going to plant some flowers and some other little shrubs to really make it look nice.  I love the dedicated space for the kids to play in.  We have no fence and privacy is a high premium around here..but it feels so "Ours" back there and I am so glad we did it.  Once again this shows how amazing Pete is.  I have a ..."We need to do this..PLEASE!!" moment and he makes it happen...in like 3 days!!!


  1. yay! our backyard has been in turmoil for a hyar, it's amazing how *insane* it can make you feel huh?

  2. 1) I love and miss you!
    2) I love the slipcovers too and am getting me some!
    3) I'm coming to see you, love the house, seriously, I need your address, I am coming!
    4) Read my post for today, you may be surprised at what I've done, maybe not.
    5) Call me when you can and give Pete a kiss for building that area!

  3. Wow. You are johnny-on-the-spot! What a good egg Pete is!! I love the new playground for the kids.