Hello my darlings, how is life treating you? I hope you are all enjoying your summer (or winter, hello there down under) to the fullest. I have only two more weeks of work ahead of me and then I am off for four weeks of summer holidays (and shht don’t tell anyone but I might make that FIVE weeks….). I am working on my project list as we speak because this year we are planning a ‘ staycation’ or as they would say it here ‘ travel to balconia’ .
I am really optimistic about getting a lot done, because left and right we are actually getting things finished up here in the nest.
My Love, with some help, finished the garden works. Look:
We have a pond! A beautiful concrete pond. When I look out from my kitchen this is what I see now, a mirror of water reflecting our garden. But that wasn’t always my view.
For decades this is what you would look at:
A shed, totally blocking the view of the garden. And the shed in this picture actually looks quite nice, but that’s because it is our neighbor’s shed. When we moved in 6 years ago, our old shed looked horrible and as if it was about to collapse.
I didn’t blog then, so I wasn’t in the habit of photographing all things ugly, in fact in all garden photos of that time that I could find, I had carefully cropped the shed out. So I don’t have a decent before picture, but you can get an impression from this picture from the winter of 2004.
Just a little old rundown shed, that made it impossible to look at my garden from my kitchen and that we didn’t use anymore because we had built a nice big one in the back.
I immediately had plans to knock it down. But the floor was a thick slap of concrete, and we had suspicions that underneath was an old oil tank. So tearing all of that out would be a major hassle. So I came up with the idea of a pond. An elevated pond that would stand ‘freely’ in the garden. I felt that might look very cool.
So that next Spring My Love kicked ass, and tore that shed down. And that is how it stayed more or less for several years. In bouts and spurts My Love worked on it, closing up the entrance with the original stones, building a concrete inner wall that would sustain the water pressure and finishing off the edges. But all in all it still was an ugly bit of ‘ work in progress’ .
But last Fall I added some more garden work to the to-do list that actually led to the conclusion of ‘project pond’ too (funny how that works….)
In front of the pond used to be a couple of steps that led to a side door into the back alley besides our house. We didn’t really need that door, because we had another entrance through the big garden shed in the back. And that door was falling apart too. So one evening My Love was worrying that that door wouldn’t last another winter and that he had to fix it and the wall on top of it. And that’s when genius kicked in, my genius….
I had the idea to enlarge our terrace so that it would end at the pond. That meant closing the side entrance, moving the steps and adding at least two meters to our terrace.
My Love, bless his heart, agreed that would be a great plan. And we decided this was too big a job to do alone, so we asked a former family member and friend for help. And together they got the work done.
They started last Fall and then couldn’t continue until there was no more frost, which took ages this year. And then they worked on it in every weekend both of them were free.
With this spectacular result.
Well I think it is spectacular.
We have almost doubled the usable space on our terrace, I have a stunning view of my garden over my pond now, and I love sitting beside the water because that is so relaxing.
We will put some plants in there, but I couldn’t wait for them to grow to show you the result.
To see how big the change is I have experimented with this neat photography thing (thanks Amy for the link). Just hover over the next two photographs for an instant before and after effect (if you are reading this in a reader or on your blogger dashboard you’ll have to come over to the site to enjoy this effect).
And one more for the road. Just hover over the photo until it changes.
So what do you think, spectacular makeover or what? And was this pond idea a stroke of genius or not? And isn’t My Love the best DIY buddy a girl could have?