Before the beds could be put in, we removed several decades-old forsythia bushes, an 8' tree of unknown species and the compost piles needed to be moved. The recycled white fence was placed perpendicular to the existing stockade to hide the bins. The composters were emptied out, turned, then moved about 3' to the right. The uncomposted material were put back in with some leaves and soil. The finished compost went right into the garden beds and around the peonies. That stuff is the best.
A neighbor had rented a lawn aerator and was kind enough to bring it down and let us borrow it. Earlier in the week I had put down corn gluten to prevent crabgrass and other annual weeds in addition to giving the grass a boost. It has been about 10 years since I started using only organic amendments to the soil and in the past couple years it has started to pay off with a noticeable reduction in crabgrass. Organic isn't an overnight fix, but with patience and consistency it works well.
I've planted up a couple seed flats for the plants that require an early indoor start and the potatoes are ready to be put in the soil as soon as it is warm enough. I don't expect miracles this year, but figure I'll do a lot of learning as I go along. I'm excited about this new adventure and will be keeping track of the progress with photos and notes so I can refer back in future years.