Moving 10 Tons of Gravel Using 3 Pails, 2 Shovels, 1 Dude and 1 Dudette

I’ve found another favorite place to go besides the dump! It’s the quarry.  This is where Dude and I went about a week ago to order gravel for our garden and drive way. It’s located about 20 minutes from us and has the most beautiful, red, marble rock.

I was completely fascinated the minute we drove into the quarry. They had all sorts of machinery and earth moving vehicles and it was all surrounded by red rocks and stones of all shapes and sizes and also giant mounds of red dirt. I was amazed that just anyone could wander around the area, no hard hat required.

Dude and I found some nice red and white marble rocks to put in the garden area. We aren’t going to be driving in that part of the garden so we wanted something a bit more “chic” than just the average gravel. When it came to the driveway we purchased something less expensive, but with a beautiful reddish tint to it.

The guy in the office set us up straight away for 10 tons to be delivered to our house on Wednesday. That day was also going to be known as “the day of pain”.

Wednesday came around and we were ready for the delivery. The truck showed up around noon but since it was too big to pass through our gate, the driver had to leave the 3 tons of the garden stones in large bags just inside our gate and the 7 tons of gravel he had to dump just outside our gate and onto the street.

Dude and I immediately got to work. We first laid down a barrier in the garden area to help keep the weeds from coming through the rock.

Then it was time to start “the day of pain”. We wanted to finish as much as possible and we only had 3 pails and 2 shovels and just the two of us to get the work done. We didn’t have a wheelbarrow. We went back and forth about buying one, but in the end we decided not to since it would only be used for this one day. We really didn’t want to waste the money on it.

We started with the garden rocks. I shoveled the rocks into the buckets and then handed them off to Dude to throw down in the garden.

We kept this assembly line going and after 3 hours we were finished with the garden! It turned out to be not as bad as we thought! The red color in the rock will show up quite nicely once the powder on them is washed away.

Then it was time for the gravel in the driveway. We proceeded with the same idea as with the stones only this time both Dude and I were filling the buckets and then throwing the gravel down. We began in the very back of the property and worked our way up to the gate. It looked at one point that we might not have ordered enough gravel, but in the end we had plenty. The goal was to not only cover the drive way but also make sure that the coverage was 3 inches thick.

Around 5pm, our neighbor on the left peeked his head over his balcony to see how things were going. He couldn’t believe how far we had gotten with a couple of pails and shovels! After our few minutes of discussion we went in for a break. We hadn’t realized that we had worked for 5 hours straight moving rocks and never stopped for a break or a snack.

At 6pm we were back out there and cracking the whip on ourselves to finish. And guess what??!! We actually did it! By 10pm we were done.  Just me and Dude with our 2 shovels and 3 pails and now we have 10 tons of gravel in our garden and drive way.

The house looks so much better now. I can’t believe what a little stone and gravel can do to spruce up the place and yippey for another job on the house done 🙂

Oh! We were able to get the rest of the delicious cherries off the tree, too. This time we didn’t even need to wait until they ripened up before we could enjoy them!

About backyardprovence

I was finally able to realized my dream of living in France when I moved here in 2010. I love to read,I love history and road trips. I want to be doing anything outside in the fresh air. I want to have an entire room devoted to a personal library.

Posted on June 9, 2012, in The House of the Farmer and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 31 Comments.

  1. Congratulations! I can’t believe you moved 10 tons of gravel with pails! What a lot of work. It looks very good in the pictures!

  2. I agree, that sounds like a ton of work… all joking aside! The results look really nice and I know how it feel to cross one more thing off the home improvement to-do list, congrats!

  3. I ached from head to foot having moved one tonne of gravel, so ten!!! Félicitations!

    • Hi Clare, I really did ache from head to toe. I think I had the worst night sleep that night than I had in a long time! My arms were killing me. The up side is that I got a bit buffer 🙂

  4. Wow – super girl and super Dude! I’m off for a lie down after reading this. Looks superb, well done.

  5. Sam @ Fit for my Fork

    You guys are awesome for doing all that yourself. It looks great!

  6. That’s a lot of work yet very satisfying when you see the end result. Oh, those cherries are just so tempting. Good that you don’t get that much competition over there with birds. 😉

    • This year it was the bees that were giving us the competition, Malou 🙂 Dude was battling them the whole time while up on the ladder trying to get as many as possible. As for the birds, we did leave a few cherries on the tree so they would come visit us and sing us their lovely songs.

  7. It looks as if Mother Nature rewarded your efforts. The cherries look divine.

  8. Hi guys, It looked like an impossible task to get done in one day, especially when you take in to account the lack of tools and man (women) power. I think you deserve a day of rest, a good glass of wine, and a big pat on the back. Well done, it looks great.

    PS. It is great to be back following your progress.

    • Hi Stephen! Glad your back and I hope you weren’t gone due to illness again. Hopefully, it was something more fun like a long vacation! I’m still waiting for that day of rest. I think it will come next year. It is definitely nice to get the yard done. I think our neighbors are glad, too, now they don’t have to look at ugly stuff while eating dinner on their balcony 🙂

  9. I’d rather have the box of cherries than the sacks of gravel!

    And I agree, quarries are really fascinating, although I can’t ever put my finger on quite why.

  10. Aix was the second place in the world I dreamed of living … but i was too young to settle anywhere, so now I have to read about others who’ve settled in Provence, since my sights subsequently settled on other exotic locations …

    • Aix is on of the most wonderful places in Provence. I enjoyed ever day I lived there and it is down as one of the best things I ever did. The time I spend there was the time I knew I had fallen in love with Provence and wanted to make it my home forever. I don’t get back too often now as I live in another department of Provence, but the memories are always there as well as some great friends!

      • Nice to think of you re-imagining your life in such a place:)

      • On the days we have to work on the house, it’s hard to imagine the good life here, but every once in a while when we get to see all the lovely sites, I stop myself and think how wonderful it is and it’s all worth it!

      • Oh yea, I get that, but on the other hand you wouldn’t be renovating an ancient house in Provence, if you weren’t living out this dream:)

      • Right?? 🙂 I try to wake up every morning and tell myself that!

      • Hey, it’s real estate … ya gotta have a long term view of real estate BYP – if always working on the house’s getting you down like that, it’s time to spend more weekends doing something else, I’d say! (I hope you don’t take offence: put it down to being an old busy body who’s done it all before, and know what it feels like to be overwhelmed by the weeks, and months of coming home to chaos as one project after another ran into each other in a seemingly endless list of modifications, improvements and updates that needed to be made to make the house sound again …) lol

      • That pretty much sums it up, the endless list that never goes away. We did decide to take a few months off in spring, but now that it’s summer we need to get back to work on it. There some things that must get done before winter. It was nice to take a break though and we’ve vowed to take more 🙂

      • Good. Remember, other than safety issues, it’s only you who’s setting the timetable:)

  11. Hi, lovely people – I’m contemplating moving about ten tons of fine gravel… to the 4th floor of a warehouse… to build a bocce court! In any event, this gave me some hope that it’s possible; thank you!

  12. They delivered those rocks in bags? I wouldn’t have believed it if you didn’t have pictures.

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