Josh and I have already installed the shade wall of this patio, if you remember from my Patio post – Part 1
So this weekend, Handy Man and myself tackled the dirtier part of this project. Laying the actual patio. I thought, “Oh we will just flatten the ground, (which we had already done,) buy some pavers, space them out and fill with gravel. It shouldn’t take long at all.” But this is why I have Handy Man. Apparently we needed sand. Since I wanted this DONE (I was so tired of mud being tracked through the house every time we let the dogs in) we had to find someone who could deliver 1 1/2 tons of sand that day. We actually found someone, to deliver it at about 11 AM on Saturday,
In the meantime, Josh had found a guy down the street who posted an add on Craigslist, for free river rock, and we spent two hours Saturday morning carting that home. Two full trunkfulls in the Jeep, Loading it up, and loading it out and wheelbarrowing into the backyard.
So now it’s 11 AM, and the sand guy is here but since they had a giant dump truck, and even though we have an RV gate, it is off our narrow alley. So we had to have them dump it in the driveway and we carted it into the backyard wheelbarrow full by wheelbarrow full. GAH.
Once we had carted it all into the backyard, and dumped it in a giant pile in the middle of what would be our patio, we headed up to Home Depot to get our other supplies. We settled on 12″ x 12″ Travertine (white) pavers, that I’ll just say weigh 15 pounds a PIECE…. and also picked up 2 3/4″ x 8′ PVC pipes to help with screening the sand. I wasn’t sure at all how many pavers or how much gravel we would need, so decided to aim low and picked up 17 pavers (all they had on hand without bringing down another pallet) and 6 bags of gravel.
We headed home, and started to screen the sand. How Josh did this was, he would lay the two pipes parallel to each other about three feet apart, on an open strip of the patio. Then working in several foot sections from one end of the pipes, you shovel sand on top until the pipes are just about covered. Then he would drag a flat board across, to create an even flat sand surface. once he got to the end of the pipes, he would slide them down and finish the strip. i would go along where he had already “screened” and fill in the holes where the pipe had been laying, then hand trowel to smooth it over. Once that strip was done, he would pick up the pipes very carefully, and move over to do the next strip along side the first. We were constantly having to go back and hand trowel the section before, because as you screen section number 2, the board would drag along section number 1, and the next time we do this i’m sure we will use a board that is a bit shorter LOL
Here are some photos of the end of this process. Josh Screening, my pavers in the background:
As Josh finished sections, I would go along and lay the pavers. I started with one in the far corner where I wanted it to start. Josh had cut a square of cardboard for me to use as a spacer, so as I laid one paver, i would put the cardboard on the sand above the paver, stand on the paver I just laid, and put down the next paver, always using the cardboard spacer. That was It was a very uniform checkerboard pattern. As I finished a row, I would use one of the PVC pipes laid along the edge of the pavers to square them up so I didn’t end up with any cockeyed pavers. For the next row, I used the cardboard spacer between the two first pavers to have even spacing between the rows. I continued doing this behind Josh who was flattening the sand.
Now I ran out of pavers pretty quickly. I actually only made 2 rows with the pavers I purchased the first time. I had one left to start the third row. We also needed way more gravel. So Josh and I ran back to home depot and bought FIFTY more pavers. That’s a lot of pavers. I’m not going to go into the nightmare we dealt with getting 50 – 15 lb pavers home in a Jeep Patriot, but it was not fun. Looking back we are idiots, very lucky idiots, and will forever rent a home depot truck in the future until we get our own truck. ANYWAY… By the time we got the pallet home (yes a pallet. of pavers. in my jeep) and unloaded it, 2 were broken. So at this point we knew we were going to have to go back to the dreaded home depot yet again.
Just pavers down:
Josh and I screened sand and laid pavers until 9:30 at night. Plus it was raining. And we both pretty much hated life by then but were determined to get this project done. We get to the end and realize that in addition to the 2 broken pavers we would need ONE additional paver to finish the patio. ONE. We both drank like 15 beers and went to bed.
LOL just kidding.
Here are some pictures of the progress of Saturday night:
Sunday Morning –
Wake up and head straight to HD. We buy ONE MORE PAVER, and exchange the two broken ones, as well as an additional 15 bags of gravel. We come home and lay the last three tiles, and start filling in the rest of the gravel. It’s looking pretty good! We finish up with what we have, and place where our table base will go in the center of the patio. The table top is so heavy that we will need help moving it. We still need to lay a bit more river rock before we can finish up the gravel, but need to grab the river rock from the Craigslist fellow another day…
So Josh and I jump in the car and decide to head up north and go play. We NEED a play day after Saturday. So we head up into nature and do some hiking and exploring. We drove the hour and a half up north to Camp Verde. I maneuvered through a hellacious downpour while on hairpin turns, I look over and see Josh sleeping. Thanks bud. Then, In Camp Verde it was partly sunny, partly rainy. in the low 60’s. Walking along a creek in the forest with it babbling alongside of you and the wind and the gentle drizzle coming through the trees…. it was glorious. Then we saw three baby deer. So amazing. Then we found this dope piece of driftwood for our dry riverbed. Even more amazing. So all in all this was a triple score of a little day trip. We jumped back in the car with our driftwood and headed home. Upon arrival Josh sprayed the bejesus out of the driftwood to kill any little creature that could be living in it. I’ve been lucky to never have a scorpion in over 2 years on my property and i’m not about to start.
Here are some photos Josh took Sunday evening. (I REALLY need to get some pics of this bad boy during the day!)
Monday – We buy the rest of the gravel we need to finish the job, and tamp it down, with the exception of a little strip on the west side. I’m going to fill that area in with more smaller river rock, and want to wait to lay the gravel until after I’ve done so. We enlist the help of two dear friends to help us move the ridiculous table top, and the patio is mostly done!!
Today we will go to collect some more river rock from our Craigslist fellow, and fill in the strip missing gravel on the Western side. We also fill in some spots on the dry riverbed (where i stole boulders from to create our river rock border) and add our driftwood accent 🙂
We still need to:
- put up slats for our north facing brace wall
- install the other two posts for the east side of the patio
- put up our shade sails
- install accent lighting on west wall
- put up our patio lights
- make a mister system and install around the perimeter
- Built in seating?
- Built in bar?
Stay tuned for Backyard Patio Project Part III – Finishing touches!