• Josh :) grateful

Love for the dirt... front yard project :)

Good morning!!... happy cold! morning... My phone said out here in Surprise it's 37 degrees.  For me.. that's damn cold.  As I sit here, coffee steaming away, my long pants and hoodie on (covering my head as well)... the slight ambient chill cuts over the tops of my knuckles as I type this... all the while, the sun is beaming a glare on my middle screen in a way that I wish was just in my face at the moment... dramatic right?!!! hahah.....  ALL of that reminds me of this past summer working on my front yard.. while at 114 degrees... which is a 77 degree difference from today.  Boy I sure know how to choose when to work and when not too! hahah!.. I blame Grampa!  With the chill in the air... slightly wishing for a sudden blast of heat.. like sitting in a parked car in the dead of summer.. sitting in it, windows up, for 10-12 minutes... lord knows how hot?!?! BUT... you can hear a tone in your head as the blood rushes but swells the brain... the sweat beads off your arms to your wrist line... as it passes down it grabs the remnants of metal dust from shop activity before and appears orange.  As a bead twists it's way down to your sock line you can clearly see that it's rusting already... you're taking short breaths but they're deep.. you can feel your heart beat with every thud.... damn it's warm in here... but it feels sooooo good... >D Yeah! that kind of heat right now would be awesome!! ... and you may think I just made that up.. but part of you, but more likely the whole of you really thinks I'd do something like that... HAHHA! definitely a true story! :) I digress!  Back in July I made a post about "lots'o projects" and that was literally my last project post.  Recently I've had some friends reach out asking about how my front yard project ever fared out.... additionally, these past few weeks, posting wise, has been detailed and some wrought with emotion.   That being said I'd like to share with you something exciting and easy on the reading eyes...  I have here for you a number of awesome pics from the front yard build.  I had taken north of 500 pictures over the build time, so this morning's choice of pictures was incredibly hard to choose from.  Chas and I have waited for years on end to do our front yard.  The pics below will hopefully paint a picture to the patience we endured as we waited for a yard we could enjoy.   OH!! Before I can start, I need to give credit to Tim Robles, owner of Big League Landscaping LLC, 602-502-0260.


I am a very capable dude, but there are some things that I am not the best at... I hired Tim to help with the yard.  He let me design it and do as much work as I wanted to on this project.  Tim and his guys are responsible for 98% of the pavers and all of the turf. The other details such as lighting, elevation changes, prep/demo, design & layout, irrigation, pots, elevation wall, all that other fine detail and bigger picture stuff, the universe gifted me the ability to do so on my own. :)  It's important to me that you know I couldn't have made this as awesome as we did with out Tim and his guys. :)





btw... that big ass rock there on the left... His name is Dwayne.. Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson >D care of my brother Caleb.

Chas called this our rental front yard! hahah...  There have been times working here in my office (the larger middle window) where walking passer-buyer's would pause, point, shake their head in gestural belittlement and then wonder off.. Chas has also been witness to this as she was trying to back up while in her car.. our yard needed some love.  I'm thankful she tolerated my lack of desire to update the bushes when the HOA asked us to... 



you'd almost think I planned that kind of before and after pic... not really until crafting this post for you did I realize how consistent I was in my picture taking. 








Nothing is better than action pics though! :)


Tristan enjoyed himself! 

severe clear!! 


this is in the shade in my shop... 


I had soaked my clothes to the bone with sweat!.. sometimes I had to change mid day. I had to air them out and let the 105 shop temps dry them out before I could wash them.. they were like dehydrated tortillas when picked up! haha! Chas would hate how our closet would smell after that kind of action! haha


I loved every. single. minute. of this! way better than a gym ALL day! 

Tim actually wasn't sure I knew what I was doing when we first met... I guess a lot of people say they can do this but end up not being able to.  He told me later he needed to see how I was going to pull off the sprinkler/irrigation before he knew I wasn't full of shit! haha


There's just something about dirt, design, and a tape measure that brings joy to me in a way that chief must feel with a good recipe :)  damn I miss it!  






I think it was 112 or 113 that day.. Tristan worked outside with me, on his own no less, for about 3 hours.  He was my paver go guy! 

Thanks to my water features and cabinet lighting installs, I know my way around a soldering iron and some fine paver work.  I was really dreading this lighting part.. digging small holes around a 520lb pot where water can make a sinkhole and kill the final look. all the while I had to pull up the paver guy's work.. stressful in the details... but man! the it look so awesome when lit up! man! 


You may not know this... if you want more palm tree for the dollar, and you're ok waiting a little more than a month to open it... ask to buy a palm tree from Moon Valley's tree lot instead.  For the same $$ amount you can pick up a palm tree almost 3' taller than you could in a box. ;)

BLIZAM! as designed ;)  I think there was like a 4% deviation from my initial design... ok, maybe 6%..  my smart ass neighbor this year asked if I was going to design/draw my Christmas light install! >D I have no clue what gave him that idea?! >D That was fun! I hadn't seen all the pics in this light before... maybe a little time away from the completion was all I needed.  One of the biggest struggles I have is knowing what I want to be when I grow up..  Till then, I think, I'm just gonna try it all :)  I truly, deeply enjoyed this grueling project and would likely do it all over again had I had the chance to.  Grampa was there every step of the way letting me know he was there.  Lots of mental quiet time.. no music, quiet outside (too hot I guess), just thoughts going through my head.  It was therapy for sure and I really needed it. In the spirit of construction! Please enjoy this Friday's pic! ... came from a buddy of mine from my construction design life before real estate... he's got a heck of an eye. :)


Thanks for checking out the progress to one of my favorite projects to date. :)  I love design and I love that I how to do these kinds of things.  Having done this now has allowed me to serve our clients with a unique perspective on what's possible should they want to DIY fix or build something... I'm grateful for that.  If you ever need your yard designed! I know a guy who'd love to do it! ... and if you ever need it installed, my buddy Tim does a great job!  Have a grateful Friday friend :)

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