Today we cleaned up our yards, moving hoses and toys and such, getting ready for demolition to start next week.
I can't believe this is happening. After 10 years of a bare-bones useless huge yards, where an annual war against Mother Nature was waged every spring, they're going to be peaceful and pretty. I'm panicking about the cost, but when the cost is amortized across over a decade of near-neglect, it's pretty low.
After cleanup today, the boys played catch for a while until I confiscated their baseballs for (surprise) not listening -- they can only throw underhand and only out front where there are fewer windows to break, rules themselves quickly broken.
So they latched onto Katrina playing in the West yard, with her little purple ball. They all had a good time together for a while, both boys trying to "teach" her to catch, when mostly she wanted to run and goof around.
Since landscaping work is supposed to start next week, I took as many "Before" pictures as I could think of today. Good day for it, overcast and cloudy, great light.
Artistic conception of 10-12 weeks from now (after, sort of):
I realize that trees won't always be flowering, and there will always be neighbors' houses in the background, and that an artist's concept drawing always makes things look way better than they will in real life. I know my sights are set too high and that I'm bound for some disappointment. I know I'm going to have many anxious moments about the cost, much stress about the implementation, panic moments about forgotten elements, and the usual buyer's remorse and wondering if you did the right thing. I know I must reconnect with reality.
But do I have to right away? For now, I am really really really happy about the idea of feeling pride instead of cringing every time I round the corner and see our house.