Monday, November 29, 2010

Hangin' Out Pt. 2

So sorry to keep you all in suspense for so long (ha!) ;) I'm sure you're all dying to find out how the hammock stand turned out, right?! Well, when I left off last we were waiting out the rain....

and although we tried to keep the holes from filling up with water by placing plastic tarps around the poles and weighting them down to the ground, this unfortunately did not keep them completely water-free. So after dipping the water out of the holes with plastic cups we were back on track!

The next steps consisted of mixing concrete and pouring it into the holes, of which i have no pictures.... Guess i was too busy helping Mark with the concrete to take pictures this time! ;) After we let the concrete cure for a few days we then had to attach the long horizontal piece across the top to begin forming the pergola roof. These next pieces -- the horizontal piece and the small pergola slats -- had previously been cut at angles on the end by Mark and stained a semi-transparent Cedar Nautraltone by me.

Attaching these long horizontal pieces to the top of the 6x6 posts proved to be very difficult as they were quite heavy. So to save both Mark and myself from some typical spousal home improvement bickering ;), Mark asked his friend and co-worker, Greg, to come over and help us get this up. Greg and Mark had to hold the board in place with a level on top to make sure it was level, drill holes, and then screw the bolts in place. After this task was done on all 4 sides (one horizontal board on each side of the post) we then placed the perpendicular slats across the board to determine their spacing (Mark had previously figured how many we would need based on the length and he cut and I stained accordingly).

He fastened the slats to the horizontal board using galvanized L-brackets and screws.

After all of the slats were securely screwed into place and we stained the vertical 6x6 posts and removed the 2x4 supports, we were left with this: 

Not too shabby, eh?! We love's in the perfect shady spot in our yard, right beside our garden. The leaves from the tree on the other side of the fence just barely touch the top of the pergola, creating the perfect relaxing breeze through the trees. Oh - and the blue sock looking thing on our hammock is a hammock cover by the way :) 

Hope y'all enjoyed seeing one of our most recent (notice I didn't say *latest*) projects!

The Indecisive Wife

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Hangin' Out - Pt. 1

This is a project we tackled a while back but i haven't had a chance to post about it yet.  Our backyard is a definitely a marked target for us when it comes to improvement and renovations. The previous owners of the house had 3 dogs that spent a lot of time in the backyard so when we moved in the backyard wasn't in the best of shape...let's just say it had been neglected for some time.... Our first project back there was building our raised bed garden and our second project was this one -- a hammock stand with a pergola roof.

Luckily, my husband is a structural engineer so he was able to design the structure, making sure that it would actually stand up over time. He began with a couple sketches (which i found absolutely adorable)
He doesn't know I took the picture ;)

Then we figured out what kind of wood we needed, including specific sizes and amounts as well as bolts and concrete.  We then hopped in his SUV and took a trip to our neighborhood Lowe's (that is WAY too close to our house to avoid urges and desperately needs a Rewards program!!) and picked up all of our supplies. As always, getting all of the wood home without a pickup truck was interesting...

thank god Mark's back window rolls down in his SUV!

...but we made it!

Next, we decided placement in the yard and marked where the holes would be dug for the footings. We then marked the spaces with spray paint. And then...Mark dug.....and dug.....and dug.... Our yucky clay soil did NOT make it easy on him! 


After getting the holes dug we had to place the 6 x 6 posts into the ground. The trick here was to make sure that they were level. We did this by marking off where they would go in the hole with twine then placing them in the holes and lastly taping a level to the post to make sure it remained level within the hole. Mark then used 2 x 4's to secure the posts until we could pour the concrete in. 


Now it was time for concrete......but started to RAIN!!! And not just rain, but POUR!!!
We got soaked trying to cover up our holes with a plastic dropcloth so that the holes didn't fill with water. And the rain definitely delayed us for a bit!

Stay tuned for the next chapter in building our  hammock stand... :)

The Indecisive Wife