Saturday, January 19, 2008

I've got concrete!!!

We've finally done the concrete and it looks FANTASTIC! Before I show you how it all turned out I need to back track to Thursday. The weather forcast was for CLOUDY weather... ha ha ha the joke was on us because it was blazing hot with only a couple of little wispy clouds in the sky but the concrete truck was already ordered so we had to keep going.

Dave finished leveling everything off and then we got in the compactor... talk about noisy and there was dust everywhere... my kitchen floor now has a gritty feel to it!

After that was done we had to get the sprinkler on it all to keep the dust down and so that it wouldn't soak up all the moisture from the concrete and dry it out too fast.Seeing it all prepared made me realise what an awesome space I was going to have for 'patio parties' LOL And as you can see from the photos I've created some really good 'indoor/outdoor flow'... obviously I've seen far too many home improvement shows!While Dave was getting that done I managed to get another side of the deck stained! I'm loving how it's all turning out!And then came Friday... again the weather man told us to expect cloudy weather which we were really relieved about... and again the joke was on us!!! I woke up at 5am because I was so excited about the concrete and at 6am I was down at the gym... thank goodness for the great workout because I seriously needed all my energy to get through the day!!! I came home and did some more staining and then it was into the concrete.

Unfortunately we were all so busy that I missed a couple of photo opportunites. You'll have to imagine that you've seen a big yellow concrete truck in my driveway... and I got two of my ex-students to come and help us for the morning... Thanks Vernon and Viv!!! They're brothers and also the son of 'Big Vernon' who did my tattoo... and yes Roo I have a great sense of humour and laughed heaps at your comment!

Vernon is now 13 and I taught him when he was in Year 4 and we've always had a really great relationship. Viv is going to be 11 on Monday and I taught him last year in my role as ICT teacher. They're both great kids and boy did they work hard!!! Thanks heaps for your help guys because we couldn't have done it without you!

When we were done there was some concrete left over so I got Viv to make it all into 'cow pats' so that when it was dry I could pick it up and get rid of it... some of the cow pats look more like buffalo ones they're so big but it sure makes the final clean up more manageable!

While we were pouring the concrete Dave was trying to screed it all and the concrete was drying FAST so I got on a trowel and learnt very quickly how to work with concrete... and even Dave said I did a good job :) I also screeded the step at the top all by myself!!!

Once it was all done (think a couple of hours working fast and hard here!!!) we sprayed the whole surface with retarder to stop the top layer of the concrete from setting so that we could expose it.

Then Dave and I were into it with the hose and brooms trying to brush off the top layer of the concrete. Sounds easy but because of the concrete setting so quickly, and it being really hot it was actually pretty hard work!And here's what the finished result looks like... I really love it and it feels fantastic under your feet!This morning I got up after sleeping for a full 12 hours... yesterday was HARD WORK!... and put the sprinkler on it so that we don't end up with cracked concrete and it really does look amazing!So that's us so far... we're having the rest of the weekend off! My girls are coming home tomorrow from their Dad's so I've got to go to Hamilton to pick them up and today we're going to go out and not even think about concrete and fences LOL We've still got to acid wash the concrete and put on the sealer and then we've got fences to build but for now we're done :)


  1. Oh WOW, it really does look awesome!! You guys have done such an amazing job! Wanna come here and work on my deck? LOL :-)

    ENJOY your weekend off, because my goodness you deserve it!!!

  2. Whew! lol
    Wow it is looking fantastic - loving the concrete - and the indoor/outdoor flow lol

  3. Fantastic!
    Hope you can break up those.. uh... elephant pats.

  4. Wow, check out that concrete! What a fabbo job you guys have done!

  5. Shell, it's looking fantastic! I'm loving following the progress of your 'outdoor makeover'.

  6. Woaa it looks really great! You've done an awesome job, and all in that dreadful heat... Hope you got to relax a bit for the weekend! It's so neat like we are having our own little online show on blog, Shell's backyard make -over 0.o

  7. Shell,.....this is great!! You all did an awesome job here, and I bet you're gonna have some wonderful patio parties here!!!

    Hope you've had a great weekend!

  8. Great Blog here!! Keep up the good work. I have found it to be very informative, Thanks for all the help


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