No more dead trees!!

I'm way behind on my Simple Joy photos fact, this week I'll do a post to catch up but I know I don't have photos for every day this month.  It's been an odd type of month and there's been a lot of emotional stuff going on - more than I was ready for, and so one of the things that's slipped this month is picture-taking.  But...there are some pictures, and there has definitely been JOY so I will catch up!

In the mean time, let me share this huge joy with you.  I accomplished something this weekend that I've been wanting to do for a long time.  In fact, I thought I'd be needing help with it but I was on a tear this weekend and I got it all done - by myself.  You have no idea how proud I am of the hard work I did :)

Here it is: We had these evergreen trees in our back yard.  They were transplanted from a friend's yard when they removed them due to a conflict with their fence.  They did OK that first summer but they've since all died.  All 8 of them. 

I wanted them out 2 years ago and it just never got done.  Then last summer I wanted help taking them out and it never happened...and it was suggested that I leave them over winter as a snow-break since our backyard backs onto a large church parking lot.  I agreed only on the condition that as soon as the snow was gone, they'd go.  There is something extremely ugly about 8 dead trees as the border to your yard that everyone sees.  Yuck.  

So, this spring, the backyard is still very wet and I thought that maybe the roots would be wet enough that they'd just pull out.  The first few were only about 4 ft. tall - and, just as I suspected, the roots were really wet, and really loose.  They only took about 10 minutes a piece to pull out.

The next few trees were a little harder.  They were taller and the roots were deeper.  I even broke my spade pulling out tree #3 or #4.
Then, my lovely neighbours offered me their big tree-branch-cutting scissor-tool.  I'm not sure what exactly it's called but it cut through the branches up to 2" in diameter like Buttah!  So nice.  If I had more trees to cut, I'd be buying one of those for sure.  I think maybe next weekend I'll borrow it again just to trim up some of my other trees (so I can mow the lawn without getting too scratched up).  
The last 3 trees were at least 7 ft. tall if not 8 or 9.  Having the cutting tool was great b/c I could chop the tops off and get a managable chunk to work with.  Those roots though, took a LONG time to dig out.  I'd put my spade (fortunately I had 2), down into the ground beside the roots and I could hear the water sloshing around in there but I could also feel these roots that were about 3" in diameter going out horizontally from the original root ball.  I think the last 2 stumps that I dug out took me about an hour - just for the last 2 stumps.  Sheesh.  Buy this time, the digging was not just about cleaning up the yard, it was about pushing through to see how strong I was and getting out some of the frustration I'd been feeling that was associated with the trees too.  Jillian Michaels would have been so proud of me LOL.  

Another cool part of this was lighting a bonfire in my fire pit and getting rid of all the wood at the same time b/c I sure didn't want my dead-tree-hedge to become a dead-tree-pile.  This way it's over and done with  (except for a few muddy holes).

And here's the finished picture.  No dead trees.  I think I might look into a nice willow hedge since it's still nice & wet back there every spring, but at least the dead evergreens are gone.  I'm sore and tired, and a little bit sunburned...but so happy, and definitely proud :)