In growing up rural, I learned a lot from my mother and father about the great outdoors. They had both been from large farming families and had given me enough advice to maintain the different yards of the homes my husband, Jeff, and I have owned. Jeff, who also has a love of being outdoors, involved with sports, fishing and the like, will pitch in from time to time to help with what is needing to be done.
Now, we have about 6 acres, which we have maintained for the last 20 years. Starting from a blank canvas to a maturing property of a vast lawn, populated by numerous trees and planters and a fence line of trees separating us from actual farm fields has taken many a weekend, for at least 3 seasons each year. (We won’t get into the season of winter snow. Gotta love Wisconsin to understand that.) We’ve noticed that over the years and aging in the process, it was becoming necessary to simplify the time consuming projects a maturing yard can throw at one. I needed a means of transporting everything I needed to given areas of the property without running back and forth to the garage for a forgotten or needed tool(s). Our lawn mowing tractor, which seems to be a constant companion over the years, had to be better utilized for the variety of tasks at hand. So, the Yard Mutt was born!
We wanted something that was able to change into the ideal carrier, instead of cluttering up our garage with multiple pieces of equipment that could only accomplish a given task. Also, it had to be able to keep organized the tools that weren’t needed at a specific moment, rather then dumping them all out on the ground and picking the all up when through. You can loose tools that way.
Some of the ideas for yard mutt stem from my field of Interior Design. When working with clients on a project, I make a point to give them as much flexibility in the end result, to accommodate a variety of situations. Whether it be different events, such as holidays or family gathering, to living with frequent job transfers, I’d rather they spend their money wisely the first time and be able to re-purpose then have to constantly replace. Other ideas came from my husbands research with thoughts from our neighbors and friends on how and what they needed when doing outside projects.
Our son, who’s working on his Masters in Stream Ecology and Fisheries, has always loved the outdoors and is very creative in building things. He has loved the Yard Mutt from its concept. He was able to build our mailbox station (involving 3 homes), on site, with everything he needed using the mutt. Our daughter, on the other hand, has a love of the outdoors, but only if it’s warm and there’s a tan at the end of the day. She’s a writer hiding out in Hawaii. What can I say.
With the Yard Mutt, there have been trials and errors and plenty of good hard laughs but in the end we feel we’ve created an important part of our garage. Hopefully others will think so too.
“Who doesn’t love a mutt.”
“It’s man’s best friend….or woman’s”