Monday, June 18, 2012

Project Gift

When clearing to build the house... 2006
Since Hubby and the kids always enjoy time around a fire together, I had planned, for quite a while, to buy him a fire pit for Father's Day.  I thought it would be nice to have little fires, as desired, in a nicely planned area, rather than wait for a burn of yard trimmings in the lesser-groomed part of the yard.  

But I only thought of buying the metal fire pit, and deciding with him later where it should be and how it should be set up.
Would've been a relatively sad gift, just by itself

Princess Sassy and Prince Steadfast thought better of that.  They wisely suggested that it would be a much nicer gift if it didn't become another project to add to his long list.  They were set, right away, on creating a surface for the fire pit, and researched stone, pavers, and all sorts of options.

With Hubby away for most of the weekend as coach/chaperone for the annual cross-country team camp, it was wonderful timing, so the rest of us could do a proper job on this Father's Day gift.  (Prince Go-for-It and Princess Artiste also attended the camp, but in support of what was up at home.)

My initial job was to decide where it should sit.  I not only thought about how we use our yard now, but how it might fit in if we ever get to add our longed-for family room, so we'd be creating an outdoor plan that makes sense.  I wanted a site nice to have guests, and where we could have a good view of the yard where the kids play games and use the pool.

I knew from experience this project would likely be more complex (and costly) than the 3 of us (the newlyweds and I) initially imagined. And since Hubby's "love language" is "acts of service," it seemed the perfect opportunity to rally the troops for a group, family-accomplished gift.  

We decided on pressure-treated 2x8's, landscape fabric,
and crushed (3/4-minus) gravel as our most economical
but durable base - Prince CuddleBunny helped, all
the way through & is sad he missed getting in the pics!

We also decided it wouldn't be great to plop the gift in the midst of an unkempt yard, so we rented a mower again, and got it and the weed-eater working while the pit-prep got underway.  

While some of us visited my parents after church on Sunday, Sassy and Steadfast did more yardwork, spiffed up the house, and even completely cleaned the front porch.  
This project begat a lot of good accomplishments!

Prince Inventive picked up the campers from school, and made Hubby close his eyes when he came into the yard.  We didn't let him near certain windows, and kept him from looking in certain directions.   I'll share more about his special day tomorrow... 

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