On Christmas Eve of 1895, the public got its first look at America’s Largest Home when owner George Vanderbilt opened the doors for all to see. And still today, many...
P.A.'s Thoughts: Spring Projects
In the old days, they talked about spring cleaning; washing everything from bed linen to baseboards. You don’t hear about people doing spring cleaning so much anymore, but spring projects, especially outside projects, are big. With the recent sunny, warmer days, my husband and I have been thinking a lot about spring projects.
Last year, near the end of the summer, we had several large pine trees taken out, leaving gaping bald spots in the yard. We’re hoping our struggling lawn will fill in, on its own, with help from fertilizer and sufficient watering. But there are several situations that will require hands-on intervention. We’ve already almost completed one. It’s our rock walkway which leads from the driveway onto the back porch. I love how our new walkway turned out. But it still needs some tweaking, maybe more of the larger, flat surface pavers that allow for easier walking. As the walkway is currently laid out, I have to take giant steps to get from one paver to the next.
I’d been lamenting the worn, ragged path, which had developed because we were walking on beaten down grass from our vehicles to enter the house. It was so ugly and I was determined to pretty-up that area. Completing it was labor intensive. My husband has severe back issues, so I knew if I wanted this job done, I’d have to do most of the physical labor myself. So with shovel and pickaxe in hand, I dug out a path about three inches deep, six feet wide and over ten feet long.
My husband swears that without his capable supervision, I would not have gotten the job done. He did tell me to use the pickaxe instead of the shovel on first dig. This was hard work, so be prepared for a sore body for several days afterwards.
So far the walkway has cost us about $310 in materials: $250 for the smaller rocks and $60 for the pavers. We certainly saved money by doing the labor ourselves. Now with “Spring Project One” almost complete, “Spring Project Two” is already in planning stage.