On Saturday morning, after nervously awaiting news of the weather forecast all week, I went into town to Lisa's house for the coming together of the Backyard Blitz. Lots of prayers for beautiful weather were answered (thanks to Noah as he always turns on the weather perfectly for his Mum) As I rounded the roundabout into Lisa's street, this is what I saw.
I remember when Lisa first mentioned that her cousin Tracey and her daughter Jessi-Rose had come to visit and said they wanted to take care of the yard. And take care of it they did! They had a vision and went with it and the result was a coming together of total strangers, landscapers from near and as far as Boat Harbour to help out Lisa and the boys.
Never in my wildest dreams did I ever envisage the transformation that took place in just one day. None of the workers had met Lisa before except the ones who had come to a few 'garden planning' meetings but they didn't need to know her to know how amazing, courageous and graceful Lisa and the boys are. They felt it all day I'm sure, as they worked a miracle on Aaron and Lisa's little patch of dirt.
There seemed to be so many workers from all different companies that was being headed by Martin who had drawn up something beautiful and inspiring for both the front and backyard.
Of course Aaron's roses for Noah were not going anywhere and the red of the roses is so stunning. The pictures do not do them justice and the way they are blooming and so vivid reminded me all day that Aaron is so proud of Lisa and his boys.
The retaining wall went up super quick and it went all the way around the side of the house too.
The men used string lines and spirit levels to get it just right and we joked about how it all looks so much better when a professional does the job.
Getting the backyard ready to raise the cubby up over the sandpit and lay the instant lawn.
Some of the plants provided, ready for planting.
This is a view from the back of the garage which thankfully had a roller door too so the bobcat could get straight through the garage and into the backyard.
The workers stopped for a quick morning tea and there was some lovely food provided. I heard one of them on the phone to someone saying, "mate, we are getting spoiled here". They didn't stop long before they were back into it again.
Kobe had a great time helping out on the digger. He looked very pleased with himself moving the woodchips into the backyard.
Oliver had a ball, spending all day on Lisa's computer playing Minecraft. I don't even think he took any notice of what was going on outside.
The quickest thing that seemed to happen was the laying of the instant lawn. One moment it was bare dirt then, you blinked and all of a sudden, beautiful green lush grass.
Flynn had a great time watching the comings and goings and particularly loved watching the digger go back and forth past the sliding doors.
When he got sick of that, he went off to help Jared, Lisa's brother, do some inside finishing jobs.
I couldn't resist taking this pic of Jay, curled up on the little table, after which he promptly told me I would have to pay him for his photo. Cheeky - I wonder where he gets that from. :)
At one stage during the day, Southern Cross came to film and also the Examiner to do a story. It was on the news that night at 6pm. Jonty who had been with Simon and the girls at the St Patricks Day Festival at Westbury (the girls were doing a Maypole dance), was SO excited to see Kobe on the news. He kept saying, "Kobe on the TV Mum". "Kobe on the TV".
The front garden looks so beautiful. My photos could never give it justice. In Lisa's words, this is what it represents,
"the Japanese garden in the front has special significance as it was designed to represent our family. The Japanese maple tree was given to us when Noah passed away and has been there since then. The maple therefore represents Noah, and the three rocks under him are the three boys, They are facing the 'cradle rock' which represents me and the tree next to that rock represents Aaron as Aaron and Noah will both be watching over me and the three boys. "
Martin thought of absolutely everything. Just so so thoughtful.
The front garden is now bordered at the front with a fence that Eden, Lisa's brother put in, following Martin's design.
Us girls stayed busy, cleaning windows and other little jobs inside. We had fun with the fly screens and Lisa W and I even were sent on an important job to Bunnings. ;) Who knew the Ford Territory could handle 280 kgs of rapid set cement in the boot. Thanks for the mini roadtrip Woody. :)
I love the transformation that has taken place. I love that Lisa and Jay and Harri and Kobe can look out any window of their house and see this labour of love from people wanting to reach out and ease their pain somehow. I love the tranquility and peacefulness of the garden, which is food for the soul. I love that there is now more time free from worrying about the house, for Lisa to concentrate on her family. Most of all, I would have loved Aaron to be here, to enjoy this beautiful garden with his beautiful family, but I know that he and Noah are looking down with such joy and love and gratitude over what has taken place in one amazing day.