We have a new patio! I've been hoping to have it constructed for the last three years, since our sunroom was finished. It fits in the square between the west wall of the sunroom and the back wall of the house, and it measures 16 ft x 20 ft. It should be said here that my wonderful husband was the brunt of many a joke because with every trailer-load of furniture that he brought from New York state to South Carolina, he loaded a layer of brick beneath the items. About 3,000 bricks made it from there to here over the year he went back and forth.
Now you might wonder why he brought bricks here. Well, it's because he and I had salvaged them from a house that was going to be torn down and relandscaped. These bricks spent their former life as a patio at the place, and they were free to us for the pulling out and carrying away. We worked together for hours doing that job, loading them into the back of his dump truck, and unloading those at our house. Sweat equity, I guess, you might call it. There were many more left behind at that place, but we'd reached the end of our energy.
He'd built our patio at the old house, and now he's laid this one down. The differences between the two areas is great. The old one was 16x16 ft, and was laid in soft, sandy soil. It was much easier to level, as the sandy loam was easier to move. This clay had to be chiseled away with a small pick ax, clods pounded into powder and moved with a hand-trowel, brick by brick. In our NY back yard, there were many huge trees, which shaded him as he worked. Here, there isn't a large tree anywhere in the yard (thank you Mr. Builder!) He worked out there in the hot sun, even though I begged him to work early in the morning, before the sun came around to the work site. (He ended up with a pale X on his back, where the sun had burned through his T-shirt and around his suspenders!)
One more difference that must be mentioned is this: we'll actually get to put our outside furniture on the patio, and sit on it! We didn't get to use our old one, due to the fact that we had a couple of granddaughters living with us and the patio was constantly covered with ride on toys and play equipment!
Since the patio is on the south and west, it'll be too hot to use it in the summertime, unless we go an extra mile (and expense) of building a trellis over it. But, the in the Spring and Fall, it should be perfect. The Spring breezes come up from the southwest, and it will be delightful at that time of year. The Fall sees very little in the way of wind, unless there's a storm brewing, in which case we wouldn't sit out there anyway. I forsee that we will use it a lot during those two seasons, especially if we are desiring a little more privacy than we are afforded on the front porch.
I am pleased as punch about this project being accomplished. I truly do a 'happy dance' every time I go out of the back door. I so appreciate all the work that Mike put into this, from the gathering of the brick to the finished product. He truly is a keeper!!!