This morning the girls went out in the backyard to play as soon as they rolled out of bed. They took their breakfast of Gogurt tubes and homemade popsicles out with them and played until I made them come in to start their chores.
I can't tell you how happy I am that they actually want to go in the backyard! Last summer it was rare for the back door to even get opened, even though we have a fairly nice yard. There was just nothing out there but a jungle of weeds (seriously, our yard must be mowed twice a week to look presentable)(and who has the time for that?)(besides the fact that we didn't even own a lawn mower for the first month or so of summer last year), so nobody used the yard.
This year, we made it our goal to make the backyard fun. We were so blessed to find a house with a nice yard that was also already fenced that it seemed a huge shame not to utilize it fully.
Our first order of business was to buy deck furniture, which we did back in May, as soon as there was no longer any snow on our deck. Immediately, when the weather was nice, we started going out on the deck to eat lunch or read.
So anyway, back to the yard. The next big purchase was for Joel: A grill. Unfortunately, it sat unopened in its box for more than a month because we didn't have a patio back there. Joel was worried about the grill on the wood deck (I must admit, I wouldn't have even thought about the fire hazard), so he built himself a patio out of pavers. It was a huge project, and I was very impressed with how quickly he got it finished!
Our final purchase was a playset for the girls. Joel had to adjudicate a flute recital at a neighboring university in a much larger city where they actually sell playsets. I went with him for the sole purpose of visiting Lowes and picking out a playset. It also sat unopened for a little while until Joel was finished grading all of the finals/papers for his summer session, and then he got to work.
They finally managed to get it (mostly) level. It isn't perfect, but hopefully it will settle. The girls love having it. I love them to have it.
And I love going out into the yard to sit on the deck while they run and play. It's what having a backyard is all about, right?
This is the life.