Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Creating a Pea Stone walk

 A pea stone walk fits the country aesthetic~
its welcoming, beautiful yet unassuming and looks right at home 
with all kinds of border plantings like this garden of alliums and peonies.
This very french looking walkway is lined with lavender in full bloom~
at the end of the walk is a huge decorative pot with a standard of some kind.
I love the look, and so when we built our walkway almost ten years ago
 it was this kind of idea I had in mind...
Mr. Maison Decor has a side business of being an excavator. He loves stone and rock and also has lots of equipment.  When this walk got put in we used a mix of some type most often used as an underlayment for other layers to be built on top.  So it kind of had that gravelly look I liked, but it wasn't pea stone.
Pea stone is round and tiny stone and has a light brown and grey mixed together.
In short order I found weeding our walk to be a monthly event.  And when winter passed
and we long to see signs of life in the yard, it was always the walk that sprung to life first.
Little tufts of hardy weeds would begin to appear~
and if you weren't vigilant  overnight you could
 have a real monstrosity on your hands.
It was just awful. Weeding the walk.  At this point I added some tiny 
boxwood spheres along the walkway. I couldn't decide 
between a formal English feel and a full blown cottagey look.
 But that happens a lot.  I like disparity in my decorating both indoors and out.
Well finally after taking up a store to occupy my time, I no longer
have the time for day long weeding sessions.  
Mothers Day rolled around and I got Mr. Maison Decor to agree
to spending the day with me putting in a weed free pea stone walk!!
I was on cloud nine at the thought of it~
 The morning of the project this was the view~
Don't even think I don't know how bad this is...
 Dillon, our big dog, had knee surgery and we built a ramp for him this winter. It was actually two boards and now it has been reduced to one, as he no longer uses it, however Tobey the little dog does as he cannot negotiate the sunken granite steps any longer.  The steps would have to be reset.  I'd like to add some lattice work around the skirt of the porch and fix the missing board as well.
 The view to the front entry. We have a sideways house~our house sits on a bit of a cliff and doesn't face the street, so we have a bit of a country setting. Since our yard is quite small we use every bit as we can, and a table and chairs is set on the lawn, and beyond a small garden and an upper terrace of lawn.
Our cliff~
Anyway,  since Mr. MD has all these wonderful machines I thought it would be a piece of cake! First we try to move the 800 pound granite block out of the way.  Well that was difficult without his excavator, which was at a job site.  I was worried about trashing the lawn with the machine driving across it too.  We thought if we put big wood planks it would save it from trenching and gouging and disaster.
 Well it didn't work. So the boards were heaved to the side by yours truly so we could just get on with it.
And look~there is my beloved glass garden house that tumbled off during a winter wind and snow storm. Just another thing on my list~right?
 Mr. MD pointed out so nicely that these tools were here to be picked up and used!
 Put down the camera and pick up a shovel!!
 And so I did.  Pretty soon I found out how rough shape I currently am in. This was not what I thought was going to happen. I just thought the machine would do it all and I would help a bit with some raking of stone.
And I planned to trim my overgrown boxwoods too.
 However we worked together as a team and got
 the surface all scraped down and the weed barrier put down.
 The Mr. MD brought in bucket loads of pea stone! 
We worked it a section at a time.

If he drove across the weed barrier it would get messed up, so that's why we did it like that.
The steps were going to have to wait till the excavator came back home.
The lawn was getting trashed. What a drag. I am
 hoping it will bounce back with a raking and some watering.
The remaining walk gets covered with the barrier and 
we used shovel loads of pea stone to anchor it down.
 The stone was put in place and started to get
 raked out~I trimmed a few of the boxes too.
But by now it was supper time, we had a baseball game to go to and i had a nice blister on my painting hand. Enough was enough! Tomorrow would come and it would still be there. So we stopped and hung up our rakes.
This was my morning view today~
I was outside with my camera to capture....
 Justin heading to Brimfield Fair!! Its the oldest outdoor antique fair in the country and its only a bit over an hour away.  He is going out to check it out for his first time and see if there are any treasures we want for our Boston store.  No expectations really~its going to be on his blog for sure, so don't miss his adventure.
 Justin and his GF Madison are taking my huge ride in case they need cargo space....
and I am taking Sylvia, their Schnoodle. Sylvia is our store mascot.
She is a great shop dog and is quiet as a mouse.  
Right after they left all the dogs converged under the dining room table.
Try getting three dogs to pose for a photo. Impossible. 
And with that I packed Sylvia up and headed to my shop.
I will be watching Instagram today to see 
how their #Brimfield adventure is going.
You can too @shopmaisondecor
You can follow me @amymaisondecor and see behind the scenes of
everything just about...including me in a very
 ugly gardening hat while I did this walkway.
And be sure to check out Justin's blog 
He wrote a post last week about the highs and lows he has been experiencing
as a shopkeeper~it really is a whole different animal running a shop.
It was a fabulous story I thought~
he is such a good writer, his blog style blows mine out of the water.
Anyway you should see what he said about our wowza of a week! 
One last thing...
did I show off this Green Line dresser Justin did?
We sell unique pieces of furniture in our shop~
and a lot of it is one of a kind things like this subway stop inspired piece.
Just proud of him and his talents..
Now this blog post is officially done.
Sharing this dresser at Nitas Pary

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