October’s Projects…Month Two!

This post may contain some affiliate links for your convenience (which means if you make a purchase after clicking a link I will earn a small commission which helps keep my blog up and running but it won’t cost you a penny more)! Click here to read my full Disclosure and Privacy Policy..

One week of October has already passed, but I’m very optimistic about the projects I want to do this month for my School Year Challenge.

The weather is finally cooling off and we want to spend more time outside this fall and winter. So for October, the deck will be my focus.

When we bought the house there wasn’t much to the backyard though it is a pretty good size.

The width of the backyard is 76 feet and the length (from the house to the back fence) is 44 feet. So, it is pretty much a rectangle with a privacy fence on three sides.

2008 – Half of the backyard

The width of the house is approximately 34 feet and there is a sliding glass door on either side of the chimney. Both doors lead into a large living area that runs the width of the house.

We knew we wanted a deck from the time we moved in the house (2008) but dithered for years on what it would actually look like.

I looked for ideas in magazines and we even hired a landscape architect to create plans.

We paid for the plans but after we got the quote for his company to implement the design ideas, we knew we would have to do most of the work ourselves. (The cost was waaaaay more than we could afford to spend!)

Still we hemmed and hawed. Not making a commitment to anything in the backyard.

Fast forward to early 2016. Douglas and I finally decided on what we wanted to do for the deck.

Through a friend’s recommendation, we found a wonderful person, James, who does side jobs on the evenings and weekends.

He helped us design the deck we envisioned, figure out the necessary supplies, and agreed to take Douglas on as his helper so we could save some money and Douglas could learn some new construction skills.

James and Douglas started the deck in April 2016 and finished most of the construction in July of the same year.

We LOVE the deck and know the construction is solid…it was well worth the wait!

It has been a little over a year and the deck still isn’t completely finished. The stair railings aren’t done (Douglas needs to do those) and the entire deck needs to be stained. (We are trying to decide if we want to tackle that or hire someone.)

Oct. 2017 – Right side of the deck
Oct. 2017 – Left side of the deck
Oct. 2017 – Left corner and front of the deck


Adirondack Chairs and Footstools

The Adirondack chairs and footstools belong to my sister. They used to sit on her front porch in her previous house.

When she moved in next door to me she didn’t have anywhere to put them. She let me “borrow” the outdoor furniture and keep them on my front porch. We haven’t actually agreed on if she would ever get them back. 🙂

I moved them to the deck in the summer of 2016 so we would have someplace to sit and relax.

What I want to do:

  • They are wobbly so I need to figure out how to stabilize them.
  • Though I like the weathered look, the paint is flaking off and they are fairly rough to the touch. So I want to sand and repaint them.

Metal Table and Chairs

Douglas and I purchased these from a friend over 10 years ago. They are the original green but the color is faded. So, I just want to repaint them.


  • I want to hang tubed lighting to illuminate the wrap-around steps that are located on the front and right side of the deck as well as on the raised platform that is located in front of the right sliding glass door.

Douglas and I bought the tubed lighting in December 2016 and were going to hang them after we stained the deck. We aren’t planning on staining the deck in the near future, but I want to get the tubed lights up anyway.

  • We would like to get deck post solar lights to put on the posts that support the railing on the left side of the deck.


Just like last month, we have certain financial goals we are trying to meet so we are careful about how much we allocate to my School Year Challenge projects.

With a little research on deck post lighting and knowing we would need paint and supplies, we agreed to limit our spending to $300.00 for October.

We came in under budget last month, and I hope to do the same in October.

BONUS PROJECTS – the Front Porch

I may be a little ambitious since it is October 8 and I haven’t even started any projects, but I have a couple of items on the front porch I want to paint.

I figure if I have all the supplies out to paint the deck furniture, it could be very doable to get front porch items painted, too. Especially since I’m thinking I want to paint them the same color.

The items I want to paint are the green table by the front door and a plant cart.

This table was built by my grandpa and in my grandparents’s garage in Pennsylvania. When they were moved to an assisted living facility, it was one of the items I choose from the home they had built and lived in for over 50 years.

Douglas and I picked up the plant cart over 15 years ago at an antique mall in Missouri when we were visiting his parents.


Twenty-three days left in October and I can’t wait to iccomplish* my deck and front porch projects!

Read the previous post in the School Year Challenge.

Read the next post in the School Year Challenge.

Similar Posts


  1. I remember now that we discussed that our new decks are very similar and they are! I love yours. It looks great. Are adirondacks comfortable? I think that’s what I want out by our firepit, but I’m not totally sure. I’ve never really spent any time in one.
    I love your blog.
    🙂 gwingal

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.