The deck is almost finished! It's amusing that we expected to get it done in one or two weekends and it ended up being a few months... Either way all that's left is the railing on the stairs and the fascia on the front of each step (which we can't do yet because we ran out of fascia and need to go to Home Depot and order more) and it's looking so good, and I can't wait until it's a bit cooler so I can sit outside (it's completely under the sun all day-there's no shade on it after about 9:00 a.m.) and not roast.
Here's the beginning of the railing for the staircase:
We've got the posts up...they look crooked because they're not "railed" together yet:
The view from the center of the back yard (notice the siding and flood lights are back around the door):
And from the corner:
This has been a long project, but it looks great and is made of the good stuff, so it's nice and strong and durable and will raise the value of the house quite a bit. Plus now we have a place to put our grill.