An Overdue Backyard Update! – Chris LovesJulia

Wow, wow, wow it’s time for a major update in the yard! Now before you light me up and say you like the before better… in this state?–I’m with you. Demo started December 5th and we still have a couple more months of work to go, including hardscaping, landscaping and then years for everything to mature. These projects take so much time and I’m committed to sharing the progress along the way to normalize the amount of time that goes into this work–transforming a home, making it your own. So if you’re thinking, “aren’t you going to _____?” Well, probably. Stand by, grab some popcorn and keep watching it unfold.

Anyways, this is what it looked like before demo.

Metal Chairs | Teak Chairs | String Lights

It was so lush and green and I miss looking out of my windows to this view, but knowing what it will look like (here’s the plans if you forget!) keeps me optimistic. What you don’t realize from these photos is that where the courtyard ended, the pool now begins. The courtyard was always beautiful BUT I felt like we weren’t maximizing our yard as much as we could, and for a family with kids that loves to entertain–we want a yard for them. Planning for some grass-stained clothes in spring, sun-kissed cheeks in summer, and cozy nights around the fire pit in fall. A backyard of dreams for memories to be made.

Brick retaining wall

In memory of the brick in the courtyard I loved so much, I hoped to have a retaining wall from the beginning. Originally they planned to just grade out the slope but they realized with the rain there would be too much dirt runoff into the pool. No thanks. I love a good callback and it feels like it could have been here all this time. Chris and I were on a walk one day and we saw a brick fence and the whole thing was latticed, which gave me the inspiration do make the upper section of ours latticed. It’s topped with bluestone coping which will coordinate with the bluestone pavers on the pool deck.

To give some scale, the back wall is over 6 feet tall!

In front of the latticed wall will be a 3 foot planter bed with some nicely shaped boxwood shrubs to soften the brick.

Now behind the guest house was another large mound of dirt and so they built this shorter brick wall to keep all of that retained. We did want some stairs to lead up to what we’re calling, “hammock paradise” within the trees. There’s going to be lights and lots of magic and some pretty trees on either side of the stairs.

There’s also going to be a more prominent, pebbled pathway to lead behind the guest house.

Pool progress

As for the pool, there hasn’t been much progress at all. They did install the equipment for the automatic hardcover, but other than that they’re kind of at a standstill until more of the hardscaping gets finished. The waterline tile is going to get re-grouted as well as re-tiling the hot tub. We’re not really sure what’s coming next but we do know that it has yet to be plastered!

pool deck progress

After sharing that the pool deck will be bluestone, we got a lot of people suggesting we run some irrigation to keep it cool, so we listened! Apparently bluestone can get pretty hot and there’s nothing worse than hot feet around a pool! The same bluestone coping used atop the red brick will also run along the border of the pool. Can’t wait to see it! I did learn that before laying the bluestone, they’ll pour concrete to make sure no weeds come through the stone. Don’t know exactly what that process will be like I’ll likely share on stories when it happens!

firepit progress

And the firepit! After the gas line got ran, and drainage properly installed, they’ve been hard at work with cinderblocks and brick. Expect to see two steps down and really beautiful brick herringbone at the base, all lined with bluestone pavers. It’s already so incredible to see!

As per our original plans we’re still doing an in-ground trampoline in the corner (with lights!)! I’ve gone back and forth about the play set or just swings. And honestly, I can picture so clearly our girls swimming and jumping on the trampoline but I don’t know that they’ll use the play set as much. It’s something we made add later, but I think that they’ll be plenty of fun to be had with what we have planned as is.

This crew has been MOVING (we’re working with a local company called Agape). They’ve been here Monday thru Saturday and are making so much progress by the hour. Every day the view out the window is changing so we’re nearly there right??

More Backyard Posts!

Pros and Cons of Hiring a Local Landscape Designer Vs. a Flat Fee Online Exterior Design Service

Our Revised Backyard Landscape Plans

How Much is it to Install a Gunite Pool? (And How We Budgeted For it)

Pool Progress + Pool Mood Board

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