The Trees, The Rot, and Our Poor, Pathetic Deck

Since moving to our current house two years ago we’ve spent the majority of our renovating budget on the exterior.   When we bought the house our lot was heavily treed.   This was the view from the road.
From the deck all that could be seen of the backyard were thick trees on one side and a fenced-in dog pen on the other (with more trees in there!)
While we loved all the dappled shade from mature and majestic trees, many of them were so close to the house that they were causing rot, plus we wanted to actually use our back yard.  We took down over 30 trees, leveled the yard with mountains of loam and created a usable space for the kids that still is surrounded by trees and offers us lots of privacy.
We love all the open space!!  
However, after all our hard work in the yard, one of the biggest eyesores of our exterior still remained:  our deck.  Our woeful, neglected, trashed, pathetic old deck.

This summer I started scraping the deck in order to refinish it, and discovered more rot than we had imagined.  Between the sap from the pine trees,  shade that didn’t allow rain water to dry efficiently, and termites that made their way from the trees onto the deck, there was a lot of damage.  (You can see the damage from the trees on the roof of the house above.)

We considered replacing the whole deck but our builder Ron, who finished our basement last winter, checked it out and discovered that hidden under layers and layers of chipping, filthy paint is actually mahogany decking and that a lot of the deck structure was salvageable (woo hoo!!) 

We thought we’d be able to fix the deck ourselves and then re-stain it, but then Mark got a new job and I wimped out on tackling this project solo.  With a snowy winter approaching, we want to prevent the deck from rotting any further (and truthfully, cannot stand to look at it anymore!).  Yesterday Ron ripped out the rotted wood in no time flat and just like that, our eyesore of a deck is about to get all spiffied up.

This hideous crawlspace under the deck is going to get prettied up with a deck skirt (did you know that’s what a covering on the lower portion of a deck is called?  Me neither.)

The deck skirt will be made out of this heavy square latticeboard that is framed out, and hung on hinges so we can store items like the wheelbarrel under the deck.

Ever since I showed Mark this beautiful outdoor space that Pam shared, we have been chomping at the bit to get our deck repaired and beautified!  Have you seen it???  It’s dreamy.

Tomorrow I’ll show you the plan we’ve come up with {that I am absolutely dying over} to add some desperately needed curb appeal to the front of our house!  We have been envisioning some of these changes since the very first time we looked at this house and it’s so exciting to finally bring the vision to life.

Oh wait – before you go – I have a living room sneak peek for you!

Have a wonderful day lovelies!

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