Thursday, June 04, 2015

The Deck Project - Complete!

When last I posted, I had shown y'all the pictures of the destruction of our former deck. Then life happened, and I basically left you hanging for a week. A little more than a week...whatever. :P
I'm sure it's not that big of a deal to you. But I like to think that it is. Because, at my core, I'm a blogger. And WE THRIVE ON ATTENTION, DONTCHA KNOW?
Anywho, on with the transformation! After the deck was torn off, I didn't take a lot of pictures. It was a mess in the backyard, and it was more important to me that the dogs were able to get out and do their business safely than it was for me to snap pictures. The framing went up relatively quickly, but the material we used for the new decking was temperamental and as it got more and more frigid, it was harder to get it installed. So it went a little slow for a bit in February. This was a shot I got on a relatively nice day, mid-project:

The plan was to have a screened in porch, thanks to the inspiration we got from Leo's parents' screened in porch on their home in South Bend, and from a trip we took to Branson last year with our friends, Lloyd and Alisha, where we spent a lot of time hanging out on the screened in porch at the condo we stayed at.

Unfortunately, with 3 relatively cray puppies, having a screen on the bottom of the framing seemed like a disaster waiting to happen. So we decided to do glass on the bottom, and screen on top.

Installing glass, and even screen, during the winter when it's less than 40 degrees out is difficult. In spite of it being a preferred time of year for our contractor to work (he likes it to be colder rather than hotter out, and I can't blame him!), the framing that holds the screen in kept breaking because it was too damned cold to put screws through. And the glass couldn't be installed until it was consistently over 50 degrees for a while, or some shit. Blah. The fun of a construction project in winter time!
The original design was a little loose when it came to the lower deck. And while Leo and I were away for some reason or another, the contractor took it upon himself to build these giant planter things on either side of the stairs. They were...unexpected. BUT, we had to have something, by code, to frame those stairs in. And the planters grew on us. So we kept them. Initially, they had started running the boards vertically, which looked very dated to me. I asked them to please run everything horizontally, and that worked much better, I think.

This shot, below, shows the path that lead to the lower deck from the side gate. It had been a flagstone path that was uneven and messy, and would no longer work. So we tore it out.
The new stairs were a little trouble to figure out. But once we got the design worked out, they went in very quickly.
From the inside, we replaced the original door on the right (which had been a single French door) with a slider. I also wanted to replace the window on the left with a slider...that was something Leo fought me on, for some reason. But, as we discovered in the demo that the window had been installed incorrectly by the previous owners, and had rotted out the frame underneath it, my door idea became more attractive. Yay!
We installed a storm door/patio door that has a doggy door in it, to make things easier for the dogs to come and go as they please, which is nice. 
And the old flagstone path was replaced with a cement pathway that matches up with the rest of the existing path to the side gate. It's so beautiful and awesome!
We were able to put in a doggy door inside as well! Good thing we have small dogs, because we couldn't go much larger than this due to the door location right next to it!
From the outside, this is the completed project:
A key to the finished deck was having storage access to the area below it. There's a small door on both sides that allows us to get under there to store patio chairs, umbrellas, and pool noodles out of season. So great!
Here's a shot of the finished deck from the inside:
And from the new door that used to be a window:
I took this picture before we got our couch put in out there...I had an old loveseat reupholstered with Sunbrella fabric. It fits perfectly out there!
So there it is! The new deck. You wanna come and see it, I know. I'm thinking July is going to be a fun month around this here house...

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