Today was more of the same (digging and shoveling!), but making good progress. We've excavated the area down to 6"(a little more than that in some places). Once you start digging, it's hard to stop precisely at the 6" point. We've leveled that area off, and in our next installment of work, we will grade it more carefully in preparation for the permeable weed tarp, pressure-treated wood border, and begin adding the 3" of base rock.
Oddly, the most time-consuming (or so it seemed) element was the trip to Piersons to pick up the pressure treated wood we ordered and paid for yesterday. They said it would be ready at 9:30 a.m., but when we went in they didn't know what we were talking about. Alas, we were still able to get the materials, it just took over an hour to gather, cut, and load up the 17' pressure-treated boards. We also learned that rebar is crazy expensive - who knew? And guess who forgot her gloves on the trip to the back lot of Piersons!? DOH!! Such an amateur! Oh well, it's just chemical-infused wood splinters and a little tetanus.
Tying down the boards and driving home was a little (ok, a LOT) dicey, but we're no cowards. We picked a route with the least amount of hills so the boards didn't slip off the rack (which seemed entirely possible). We made it (2nd gear the whole way), but it was exciting whenever we hit a pothole, had a car behind us, or saw a pedestrian fleeing our path.
Check out this amazing dirt pile. Some of this is going to fill in areas where we overshot with the excavation, and some will get mixed in with some manure for the raised beds. I think we'll still have some leftover. Anyone need some topsoil?