Goodbye Stairs, Hello Deck
Si nous aimons beaucoup notre maison, il y a une chose qui était sur notre liste de souhaits et que nous n'avions pas: un porche ou une terrasse. On rêvait bien d'en construire un jour mais c’était un peu au dessus de nos moyens. Enfin c’était car un ami d'Hubby nous a fait une offre fort généreuse, difficile a refuser: il nous aiderait a construire la terrasse, tout ce qu'on avait a faire c'est obtenir les matériaux et le nourrir.
Nous avons jette un œil a nos finances et avec le tax return avons réalisé que c’était tout a fait possible. Du coup, juste avant la St Valentin, nous avons vu débarqué un camion charge de bois traite et autre matériaux qui était sur la liste du copain.
While we love our house, there is one thing that was on our wish list that we didn't have: a porch or a deck. We dreamed to build one but it was a little pricey for us. That is until Hubby's friend made us this very generous offer, one hard to resist: he would help us build it as long as we bought the materials and fed him.
We looked into our finances and realized it was feasible with our upcoming tax return. So a few days before Valentine's day, we received a delivered of pre-treated wood and other items that were on his friend's list.
The said friend knows his job. When I first met him he built houses from basement to roof. Before the first official day of work he took measurements, marked the ground and did a few holes in which he poured concrete for the base of the posts. We had to sacrifice part of the apple tree but it wasn't a big deal given how little it produces.
On the day off, the first task was to remove the former stairs. One of our reasons to change them was that they were in bad shape and certainly not up to code.
The back door was temporarily condemned. The beams bare and visible.
Two hours later they were nailing the first beam against the house.
The deck is made out of three parts: the first one on the west side, the second at the angle of the house, the third on the south side. They had to put together the frame of the deck. First of all temporary posts, just there to hold it.
As the work progressed, the temporary posts were replaced by solid ones. Putting the frame together is what took the longest. The measurements have to be dead on, everything needs to be straight, it takes some patience.
En fin de journee, les premières planches trouvaient leur place.
By the end of the day, the first boards were being nailed.
During the first day, Hubby, his uncle and his friend didn't let me do much, except maybe cook and turn the remains of the apple tree into firewood. So I didn't feel a pang of regret the next day when I left them to go run. Only to come back and find the floor of the deck finished.
After a good meal (a warm soup because the temperature was dropping), they got started on the railing. First each stake had to be nailed to the top of the trailing. Then I got to test my muscles since I had to help them hold the railing while it was nailed to the posts. Then each stake was nailed to the deck's beams.
As for his friend, he was getting started on the stairs. I had the less glamorous work: digging the holes where the cement blocks go. All had to be leveled.
The new stairs are on the back of the house, instead of the side. The steps are a lot wider and allow us to sit on them together.
The third day, I was sent inside. Mind you, the temperature was in the low 20's and it was snowing. Hubby's uncle had left the night before so they were two to finish the stairs and railings.
Two days later all the snow had already melted, give way to a pretty sun, which allows me to show you the result. Fromt the backyard:
From the Stairs, looking South.
Il nous reste a remettre en place la protection des murs, trouver du mobilier de jardin et attendre le beau temps...
Looking toward the stairs. There is an alignment of three decks. The third one makes us drool with envy, they were building it as we started ours: covered screened porch. The dream in the South, but a little too much for our budget.As for us we still have the siding to put back, some outdoor furniture to find and the nice weather to look forward to.