This weekend was dedicated to finishing our backyard patio. This project began many moons ago when Brian demolished our small wooden deck. Since then, the project has made slow progress as he dug through tree roots and moved gravel to the area. In the last month or so, we had to wait for our budget to recoup from the "new" car purchase before we bought the patio stones. Fortunately, Menard's marked the stones down for end of summer and (after 6 carloads) we were finally ready!
Brian recruited helpers, big and small, to give him a hand. His dad, friend Carl, and Carl's son Aaron were here to help.
They moved a truckload of crushed concrete to our hole and then used a powered compactor to mash it down to a cement like surface. This was difficult to make absolutely level, but they did a darn good job.
Following this step, we were supposed to lay sand to help fill in the hills and valleys. We skipped this step simply because sand costs another pretty penny and we think any unlevel spots will adjust with time. Once they got to setting stones down, the patio took shape quickly.
By the end of the night, we were able to set up our patio table, kick back and relax. We still need to lay some sand down as the top layer, which fills in the gaps between stones, but that can wait. Now I'm having visions of landscaping work to make our backyard as nice as the catalogues.