Stuff That Makes Me Happy: My Back Yard

I warned you that this would be a recurring theme, and with the ultimate back yard holiday this weekend, I figured today was a good time to highlight mine.

Why does it make me happy? Well, partly because it’s the right size. The kids have room to play, I have room for plants, we all have a spot to sit, and yet, trimmer, mower, and blower total less than twenty minutes. I also like it because it extends the house. Our house isn’t small, but it seems like all our friends have twins, or worse. So when we have people over, things can get crazy. Yet it never feels crowded, because we can toss all the kids into the yard the main living areas flow right into the back yard, giving us tons of easily used space. A third reason: It looks nice. Not Southern Living nice, and it’s obvious we have kids, but everything remains orderly.

The biggest reason my yard makes me happy is that it’s mine. When we moved into our house, the entire yard was an overgrown patch of weeds. I’ve fixed the grass, I’ve laid all the flower beds, I paid for the deck, I built the patio, I built the kids’ sand box, I added all the decor. Still, even with all of this, I haven’t spent a lot of money. The big reason? Nearly everything in the yard is something I’ve reclaimed, or repurposed, or recycled, or whatever word you want to use.

For example: The kid’s swingset. Before tossing it, my neighbor asked if we wanted it. One leg was bent, but we said sure. I went to Lowes, bought a metal fence post about half an inch less in diameter than the leg of the swing set, slid that into the leg, used it as leverage to straighten it, and then banged it all the way in to prevent another bend. Now? Perfect:

Here’s another example. These are ceiling tiles I found in an antique shop. Some primer and paint, and  . . .

I didn’t re-do the next one; a friend found it at a garage sale, though without seats. He added them, giving our kids one of their group’s coolest toys:

Those chairs in the background are another example. You can view their evolution, here.

Anyway, you get the point. Here’s a few more shots of my back yard.

The azaleas provide color in the spring. The hibiscus and cannas make the yard nice all summer.

The lounging and eating area:

My garage, with gutters I added yesterday. Really, the inside of this is what truly makes me happy. All my bikes, sporting goods, tools, lawn equipment, and kid junk are perfectly organized.

And finally, I said everyone had a seat, and I meant it. Even the cats have a perch.

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3 Comments on “Stuff That Makes Me Happy: My Back Yard”

  1. Jim Says:

    Good job Wheeler. Nothing is more relaxing for adults or more fun for kids than a good back yard!

  2. mom Says:

    Wow, the shed looks wonderful! Nice new door.

  3. Steph Says:

    And even with ya’ll plus two kids (three if you count me), four cats, and two dogs it didn’t seem crowded! 🙂

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