This post was written for Houseblogs.net as part of a sweepstakes sponsored by True Value.
I just read all the rules for the contest that Houseblogs.net is running in conjunction with True Value Hardware's StartRightStartHere contest. Even though my front porch is only about 98 percent complete, I've decided to enter it anyway. There are roughly 16 perimeter bricks that need to be in place and a new handrail to go up to finish it. If that's held against me, so be it. I've been plagued by rain and dangerously high temps the past week so I've done the best I could. But since it looks like winners are being randomly selected, what do I have to lose? Here goes nothing!
If you've been following the blog, you know the story. I took a standard concrete slab porch and turned it into a brick one. It took almost a month of steady work and several weeks of prep. You see, I started hauling bricks home (100 to 150 at a time) in my car trunk in April. Likewise for the hundreds of pounds of mortar and sand.
I can say that all but 200 of the bricks so far (I'm doing a walkway next after just ripping out the existing concrete one with a sledgehammer, pickax and prybar) came home that way. The 200 were hauled by my handyman Lawrence when we jammed them into his truck with a new water heater.
I have hand-selected EVERY BRICK for this job. I have also done every bit of it myself using info I found online and the advice of a good union man. I think that this is one of my biggest undertakings, especially since I've never done any kind of concrete/mortar work on this scale before. So, forgive me if I'm a bit too proud of it. It's not perfect, but I think it looks d*mn good. It really was a case of throwing body and soul into a project. I'll let the pictures speak for themselves.
Thank you to the many folks in real life and cyber life who have encouraged me along the way. You'll never know what a help that was.