First, we rented a sod cutter. I cut about two linear feet of sod, and then let my husband do the remaining 40 feet. I'm a giver like that, you see.
Then, we busted out the tiller, which was my Mother's Day gift this year. I tried to till up the big dirt hole (where we planned to put all of that newly cut sod) but quite frankly, I'm not very good at outdoor chores that involve machinery. I'm much better with a plain old shovel. And with that in mind, my husband also tilled up the big dirt hole.
We briefly entertained the notion of laying the sod ourselves, but then we remembered "Hey! We have ten football players coming over tomorrow morning! Maybe we should let them handle this." And so that's what we decided to do.
While the hubs was breaking his back doing all the sod cutting and tilling in the back yard, I decided to make myself useful and tackle the bushes in the front. Here's the before picture, as in 'before I got totally crazy and wigged out on these bushes':
And here's the after picture:
I cut down and removed all the juniper bushes, as well as the other bushes along the front sidewalk. Those juniper bushes were tough! I hated them to begin with, and I hate them even more now that I fully understand how difficult and scratchy they can be. Damn you, juniper bushes!
I left the roots of all the bushes for the football team to dig out. I also left the lilac bushes there, but only because I wanted to transplant a few of them to the side of the house. The remaining ones will be trashed.
Finally, because I was worried that digging up the roots would leave huge holes in my front yard, I ordered four cubic yards of topsoil to fill them in.
It seems strange that all this work had to be done BEFORE the football team arrived, but honestly, it had to happen. My list of what I want the football team to accomplish is so long that they might not get everything done. And if I added to that list all the stuff the hubs and I did to get ready for them, then nothing would get done. As it is, I'm worried about time and weather. I need everything to go smoothly so that when the team leaves, I'll be ready to put those plants in the ground. Stay tuned!