It’s a Jungle Out There
And by out there, I mean in the back yard. Hey life is what you make it – maybe it’s just a simple pile of hardened dirt, but it’s pretty darn exciting to us. The yard is really coming together! And you may even notice a new addition out there…
This task involved a lot of 2×4’s, H₂O and this:
Good ol’ concrete. Joe has a lot of toys with wheels that he constantly brings in and out of the garage, so he decided to make a ramp out the back door. I know he’d love a double-door garage someday so he can move BIG toys in and out, but for now this does the trick. (And the bunnies like lounging on it too.)
First, Joe removed all the rock beds and dirt from the doorway.
He dug a rectangle out and cut the plastic that was holding in the rock.
Then he framed out the area for the concrete.
He also removed the weather strip for this.
He reinforced the concrete by laying down scrap beams (rebar).
This prevents cracks and breakdown over time.
Onto the Mixing
I told you that while I was baking up a storm, Joe was mixing up trouble…
Well this is it!
Amy, we need to get your wheelbarrow back to you.
It might be a little dirtier after this excursion.
Here’s the fun part.
At one point I had to keep raking the mixture while Joe ran to the store because we needed more.
It hardens really quickly and is very heavy.
We added a new mixture to the first batch,
making sure to keep it wet until we had it settled where we wanted it.
I’ll go into some details.
We mixed the concrete as the bag instructed.
And gradually poured it into the box.
Smoothing and leveling it flush with the rake until it was all distributed evenly.
Then Joe was able to level it off with that smooth edge, wiggling his way down.
Remember, you can always add water if it looks too clumpy. We smoothed out the tight corners with a hand trowel.
There will be some inconsistencies with the texture, but that’s just concrete. Once it was looking pretty smooth, we let it set.
After it’s solidified enough, we removed the wooden frame and let it finish. Letting it dry and harden over night, here’s the end result.
It’s got the slow slope we were going for.
At this point, we filled the dirt and rocks back in.
Not a bad little walkway!
I guess we could have extended the concrete a little further so we wouldn’t need this wooden extension.
But maybe we can pack in the dirt a little there?
It’s been handy so far.
And Joe’s done a bit more landscaping with all those rocks from the neighbors.
Funny how we just finished landscaping.
Now winterizing is the name of the game. Joe’s already put his boat in the garage for the season. Before you know it, we’ll be raking/mowing up leaves. Sigh. Concrete is not too spendy. Think of the possibilities – We could pour our own foundation for a garage, make a patio, do a walkway or path, extend a driveway or anything else small-scale.
How’s your fall going?
Bonus question: Did you notice the trampoline?