Sunday, May 9, 2010

Deckstravaganza: Progress you can see

This weekend, we had some extra hands on hand (ba dum ching!) for our Deckstravaganza. Hub's parents came for a visit, bearing an extreme readiness to help build the outdoor oasis.

Saturday morning, we hit the Farmer's Market and braved freezing temperatures before bundling up and starting work on the deck. Our humble deck-to-be had three of these:

Our first order of business was to rough cut our three posts, the ones that will hold up the east end of the deck. One needed to be a little longer because the cement footing was lower. Hubs and his pa handled the various measuring and leveling work.
Then, we cut the posts for real for real. We needed them to line up with the bottom of the ledger that is attached to the house and then allow space for the saddle (the honking tri-beam that will hold the joists up). Too much deck building lingo for you? Me too. Let's just say we were framing out the deck and basically building a box that will attach to the house and rests on the all-important posts. Here are said posts:

Underwhelming, right? Well, let me tell you - these are three three most secure stumps of posts in town. Anyway. I headed inside around this time to cook up lunch (I served undercooked brats, potato wedges and my pretzel/hot sauce creation. I figure I wouldn't be a good new wife if I didn't cook at least one awful meal for the in-laws, right? They were good sports and I did set the table extra fancy!). Meanwhile, the saddle was built (they attached three 2x8 boards together with a million screws) and attached to the posts. Looks deck-y, yeah?We added two more sides and voila - a square! The deck was framed and the villagers rejoiced by heading to a graduation party and then Cafe di Scala for a plate full of pork belly.Not bad for one day, right? After a Mother's Day brunch in Beaverdale, hubs and I waved goodbye to his folks and then got cracking again. He cut the grass and I moved a few rocks.We are using the smashed up concrete from our patio demo as gravel under the deck. I'm hoping these big jagged chunks will make the underbelly of the deck look a little less ugly, discourage animal nesting and also scare any future ornery children from crawling under the deck and hiding from a future mother who is terrified of centipedes. I plan ahead. Especially when it involves avoiding bugs.Yikes! I wouldn't want to crawl under there. We covered about 2/3 of the under-deck with what we had, but we're getting some more gravel delivered tomorrow to finish it off. Once the grass was cut and the gravel was down, we started putting up joist hangers - the brackets that will hold the cross beams to the square. Not fun, people. Tedious and low and must be perfect. Let's not talk about it.

Anyway, soon we had joist hangers ready and waiting for joists! So, in they went. Here we are sitting technically "on our deck" for the very first time. Whoo hoo!

Forgive my husband for his tall socks and shorts combo. Laundry gets neglected when you're building a deck.

We added a few more joists and then went to the grocery store. Past-prime bananas and a can of corn didn't sound like a good dinner.

Tomorrow, we'll finish off the joists and call our pal the permit guy. Then, it's time for floorboards! Can you believe it? Time flies when you're covered in dirt, hitting your own thumb with the doggone hammer.


  1. Hey Alexson, What a great job on the blog! I subscribed to your feed.....Aunt Laura

  2. Looking good!! I'm impressed with you work in winter wear!


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