Thursday, November 8, 2012

We’re on the Level!


During the construction (those are new steps, too!)



This is another blast from the past—and by “past”, I mean earlier this year.  In the spring, my Dad came up and we re-leveled the patio.  It was April which meant that it was barely warm enough for us to be outside…but that’s one of the hazards of living in Rochester.
Our patio is Pennsylvania Bluestone.   The stones range from about 18" x 18" to 24" x 24".  The patio stones had become rather un-level (is that a word?) over the years and it was a trip hazard.  The screen porch (which comes off the house from the main level) had no gutter, so the rain from the roof had been pouring onto the patio for 47 years--definitely not good for keeping patios level.  So this project involved also adding a gutter to the screen porch leading to a drainage pipe under the patio leading to the back yard. 

Dad’s original idea was to work on it section by section so that we didn’t lose the layout of the bluestone.  Dad and Dex did most of the labor since the stones were so heavy.  They moved a section of the stones, laid new coarse sand, used the mechanical tamper, then laid paver sand, then laid the stones on top.  Problem with the stone is that the underside was “rough cut”.  So each stone had to be laid by trial and error—scooping out sand in places and adding sand in others.  After about a week of this back breaking work, it was done.  It’s beautiful, it’s level, but pitched away from the house so we don’t have moisture issues.  BeautifulAnd thank goodness for my Dad and husband. 
Stats:
Size of Patio:  800 Square Feet
Yards of Sand:  10 (and 3 trips from the landscape guy)
Feet of new gutters and drainage:  60
Broken backs:  2


Our beautiful finished patio!!  And a gorgeous Rochester spring sky.


Blast from the Past: August 2011--Painting the entire house—warning, do not try this at home

Last summer (2011) we painted the entire house.   I honestly cannot believe that I just wrote that because this was not a project I think I ever want to do again.  Dex and I each took off one week of vacation and Dad came up.  When I say “we painted the entire house”, I mean we:
-stripped, sanded, reglazed, primed and painted 60+ windows (exterior side)
-caulked, primed (where necessary) and painted the entire house (2700 square feet upstairs with cathedral ceilings and a walkout basement.  We needed a 35’ extension ladder to reach the top of the back of the house)
-repaired more rotten wooden siding on the screen porch
-stained huge soffits over 35’ in the air
It took us 9 days working from sun up to sun down (and sometimes past sun down).  We went through 35+ GALLONS OF PAINT!  The good news is that the house looks absolutely beautiful.  Our neighbors said that house hasn’t looked this good in 20 years.  Yay for us!
East Side of the House

South side of house (new stairs, too!)



Close up of South side of house--this side needed the most help