Who doesn't like a good makeover, amiright?
Well folks, right about now it's me and Cameron (my huz) who don't like a freaking makeover. We naively decided that our first stop in homeowner renovation land is our backyard! Only the biggest area we now own, somehow it sounded so simple when we cooked this all up. Turns out DIY backyard renovation is hellish, but I also have a pretty strong belief that it will be all worth it in the end. Somebody, please, assure me that it will be all worth it in the end!
So why did we embark on this torturous journey? The short answer is Pinterest. The long answer is that the backyard the house came with was definitely not bad, but we weren't using it as much as we would like because it didn't fit our needs. We also found out we had a major gopher and/or mole problem which was messing up the lawn and anything else we tried to plant. Lastly, we wanted a space that is low maintenance, drought friendly and doesn't get muddy so our dog can go outside and come back in without us having to wipe her paws every single time!
We did a lot of online research and finally came up with a plan based on the photos above. Lots of these images are from the siren song that is Almost Makes Perfect's backyard reveal. Boy did they make it look effortless! We are hopefully mid-way (please sweet baby goddess let this be so) through the project. So far we have killed the lawn, jackhammered the cement walk ways, demolished the awkwardly placed raised planter box, built a giant cacti raised bed, excavated a fair amount of dirt (which is now on our front lawn...), re-leveled the space into three tiers, and begun to build forms for the concrete. To be 100% honest the majority of this back breaking work was done by Cameron. I've mainly been obsessively researching, worrying, micromanaging, planning, pretending to lift things and planting. Get you a man that lets you be neurotic and loves you anyways.
We ran in to some significant roadblocks due to several pretty big rainstorms that swept through California during this bizarrely wet winter. We tackled some formidably sized floods in the back corner of our backyard and lost my favorite tree (I'm still not done grieving). We are learning as we go and hopefully we'll be able to adjust our plans to avoid future unwanted backyard lakes. I am currently in the process about learning more than I ever want to know about concrete delivery options and the installation of decomposed granite. I plan on posting before, during, and after photos once our backyard paradise is closer to completion. I think posting them now would break me (only slightly joking). More updates to follow!