musings, mutterings, and creative muddle. . .

Friday, June 25, 2010

Getting Set in Cement

Or more technically, *ON* cement.  Or concrete.  What's the difference, you ask?

"Concrete should not be confused with cement because the term cement refers only to the dry powder substance used to bind the aggregate materials of concrete. Upon the addition of water and/or additives the cement mixture is referred to as concrete, especially if aggregates have been added."


What a wacked out 'definition' difference. . .  Whatever.  So, I guess I helped carry bags of cement today, in preparation for making concrete tomorrow.

Regardless,of how all that terminology works, we've been working in the backyard - and, right now, making our tiny patio much-much bigger!

We decided to hire contractors to pour the big slab.  I wanted to take the concrete slab from just the width of the back patio, to the edge of the house and curved a little beyond.  Our back yard is narrow behind the house while the expanse of it is to the side.  My thought was to bring the patio on around so a person could actually enjoy the backyard without stepping out into it, if they chose.

I learned quite a bit while the guys were here. . . I learned how to make and set forms. 

How to level out and edge the gravel bed. 

How important 'rebar' is within the slab and how you should attach the new to the old. 

 I learned about pouring concrete 

(from a monstrous truck!)

and leveling the concrete,

and troweling it,

and brooming it,

and edging it. 

 I learned about removing the the forms. 

 I also learned about writing that check to pay the contractors for all their work. . . I think that was the hardest part - ha!

Such a transformation! To feel like you're now 'in' the yard and enjoying the gardens and the trees and the birds. . . instead of just sitting on a slab of concrete (not cement) behind the house and beside the garage.

We're really enjoying the great space and wish we would have done the project quite a few years ago.

Next is a big broad, shallow step -

which we are doing ourselves.  This means no big truck and hefty guys with shovels. . .  Just me, Hubster, and J-boy. . .  I'll keep you posted.

Why don't you come on by in the morning. . . oh, say around 5 a.m.  We'll be here.  turning cement into concrete into a step. . .  And bring me something to cold to drink, would ya?

Have a solid kind of day ~

Robin Z

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