Elevation Certificate & Interior Walls Getting Completed

It was a busy weekend, and a busy week.  The carpenters have been working in this 100 degree heat.  At least most of it is inside in the shade.  There is no H-Vac at this time.  I am so excited to see so much progress, so fast.  I have got to be the most patient person on this earth as I have waited almost 20 years to see this dream come true, and NOW I am getting anxious.

This week we are supposed to have the surveyor out to take measurements for an elevation certificate.  This is a flood insurance and bank requirement.  We thought we had taken care of that 20+ years ago.  But I guess they just set the elevation marker, but didn’t issue a certificate.  Too complicated for me.  Now they have to come out and take measurements from the house to see if is built above the 100 year flood plane elevation.  It’s like closing the door after the horse is out.  It’s not as if we could tear it down and rebuild.  They did set a marker when they came out 20 years ago, and we built about a foot above that mark, so I’m sure we are good.  But all prayers and crossed fingers are appreciated.  More on that later.

I anxiously come home each evening so I can see what the progress has been, while I am off basking in my cushie job sitting at a desk in an air-conditioned office filing my fingernails and chewing gum.  At least that is what my husband would lead you to believe.  That coming the retiree sitting home in an air-conditioned house watching Gunsmoke reruns.  Now you know why I am such a dependable employee and never miss work.  🙂  Just kidding, of course.

One of the little items that we changed in the house was to extend the balcony to make a little reading nook with a lot of natural light.  It looks even better than I imagined.  Can’t wait till December to get to use it.

This is our reading nook with temporary rails.  This faces out the front of the house and gets natural light out of the south
This is our reading nook with temporary rails. This faces out the front of the house and gets natural light out of the South
A closer look at the reading nook
A closer look at the reading nook

We also made changes to the laundry room and added 4 feet to the depth so we could have the mechanical’s and freezer in there also.  The plans specified the door at the corner of the room, but to be able to utilize the room more effectively we centered the door.

Laundry Room
Laundry Room

As you can see, it is also the access to the crawl space under the house.  This crawl space is about 4 1/2 feet, so you don’t have to crawl, but can walk almost upright.

I’m sure the plumber and electrician and the heating contractor will appreciate that.

More later this week.  I have taken pictures of the carpet; laminate & tile that will be used.

So stay tuned.

Annie, The blond chewing-gum bimbo twisting her hair around her finger all day.  Why, bless her sweet little heart!


Sunday – I’ll Rest In December

Spent most of the day pulling weeds and raking and rearranging the building material scraps.  Looks a little better, but I think the solution is to spray and kill all the vegetation.  There isn’t a blade of grass to be found.  Oh, my dreams of a lush green lawn, won’t be coming true this year, but maybe early spring next year.

Thought I would share some more pictures of the inside of the house.  It is still pretty rough, but most of the interior walls are up except the bonus room wall.  The reason that wall isn’t up is because initially we were going to have a vaulted ceiling in the living room.  After getting all the interior walls up Lynn decided that he wanted the bonus room.  It was an option on the plans.  And to be truthful, I really like it.

The eves of the family room
The eves of the family room

This is the eves of the gazebo style ceiling in the family room.  This is a feature I was worried about because there were so many angles.  Lynn said he could do it, and he did most of it and the contractor has finished it.  S & K Mountain Construction is doing a fabulous job.  Gabriel, the foreman, quietly fixes our blunders, and I’m sure there were many.  He actually understands mine and Lynn’s vision of how we want it.  I can’t wait to see it sheet-rocked.  There will be a ceiling fan coming down from the point.

The pantry
The pantry

This is my pantry.  It’s small, but its still a pantry.  Women love pantries, especially this woman.  🙂

The master bath is actually larger than the master bedroom.  Who does that!!!  They are in the process of framing in the closets and water closet.  I will take pictures of it before it is covered.  We did do a bump-out with 3 windows where the hydro-tub will be located.  Nothing fancy, but it is 6 foot and will feel good on these poor-old-aching bones.

07-26-2014  The outside front of the dream house.  Kinzie checking this out
07-26-2014 The outside front of the dream house. Kinzie checking this out

I am really pleased with how the stained glass windows look in the dormers.  My sweet friend Sallie with Artisan Glass did a beautiful job.  The electrician is going to install a small light that will come on in the evening and illuminate them.

More next weekend.  Thank you for reading my blog and sharing in our dream.

Annie, the dreamer

Cleaning up the Appraiser is coming

The appraiser called and will be coming out Monday afternoon to do the appraisal on the house.  This is the dream house that we have been building for almost 20 years.  Needs to appraise it for the bank loan.  He will assess what the value should be when it is finished.  That takes a little imagination and being able to see the potential.  The contractors have been working on the inside and starting to frame in some of the closets and the plumbers and electricians have been working their magic, but it is still really rough.

Unfortunately, the grounds around the house are riddled with weeds and that takes a lot away from the appearance of the home.  I am hoping the appraiser can see the potential.  I have been out there weed eating and pulling up puncture vine which has spread all over.  Our riding mower needs a starter and is hard to start.  The parts have been ordered and I hope they come in today.  In the meantime I have been using the weed-eater.  That little gem was something I bought for Lynn for Father’s day about 15 years ago.  He used it once, but I use it every summer.  It is leaking oil but I manage to start it and use it anyway.  Some day it will need to go in for a spa day and be rejuvenated.  But for right now I hope it hangs in there.  It can rest in December.

Handy dandy weed wacker.  Momma's toy.

Handy dandy weed whacker. Momma’s toy.

Thought I would get out of the sun for a bit and work on the blog, but will be heading out there again in a little bit.  I sure hope all the weed pulling and hauling and moving  shows up when I weigh in on the scale this week.  Being lighter would just be a bonus.

Okay, as much as I am loving this house, the one thing I’m really looking for is a nice lush green lawn and flowers.  It isn’t in the construction budget, but I am hoping that when I sell the house we are in, that I can get it professionally landscaped with a sprinkling system and the maintenance would be much simpler.

I grew us on the streets of Detroit where the sidewalks and alleys were my play ground.  I thought we were rich when my mother was finally able to purchase a house that had a postage-sized yard.  Loved mowing the yard (push mower) and planting flowers.  Then a blight came to the area and we lost all the elms to the “Dutch Elm” disease, then the riots and unrest came and we had to move.  I have longed for a nice green lush yard ever since.  Some day it will happen.

During my weed-eating this morning, I was accompanied by my sweet collie Kinzie.  She is my rock.  She makes me live in the moment.  When I get anxious or down, she lifts me up.  Unconditional love that is what she gives me.

My lovely Kenzie
My lovely Kenzie


More photos of the clean-up and inside of the house, later.

Annie, Master Weed Whacker

Busy – Productive Weekend

I intended to make this a productive weekend.  Yea!! And it was!!  Never get as much done as I want, but that is just my expectations, which don’t always go with my endurance and capabilities.


Got up early and went to Home Depot for siding which will be put on the ceiling of the back porch (in the house we live in) rebuilt last year.  Yep, still haven’t finished that project yet, but I am in the process of remedying that fact.  Lynn cut a whole for the back porch light (that’s progress) I have only been reminding him every weekend for 6 months.  Bought 6 pieces of siding.  One to complete the wall and the other 5 to use for the ceiling.

Bare ceiling.  Going to remedy that.
Bare ceiling. Going to remedy that.

Then we stopped at the Sun Rental Center and rented a sheet-rock lift to help hold up the siding while I nail it on.

First thing was to paint 1 piece of siding white to finish the walls of the back porch.  Then I had to put 2 coats of ceiling paint (kind of a dark greenish gray) on the remaining siding.  Only got 2 of those completed.  After each coat of paint I would do yard work while waiting for them to dry.  Got a lot accomplished.  Exhausted when I finally went inside at 5:30 and made hamburgers for dinner.

Unpainted siding
Unpainted siding


Got up early to go grocery shopping.  While waiting for Lynn to get ready, I was able to put 1 coat on the next piece of siding.  Went shopping, dropped some groceries off at work for lunches next week, got my car washed and finally made it back home.  Quickly put the groceries away, dropped a load in the washer, changed into my painting clothes, and was back at it.  Got the remaining boards painted, again doing yard work while they dried between each coat.  Wow, the yard is actually looking like someone takes a little pride in their home.  I hated all the things left outside when my porch project finished last year.  Due to running out of time and all the back and forth trips to the hospital with Lynn, many things were left unfinished.  But it is looking better now.

Last thing I accomplished this weekend (besides the domestic duties) was to assemble the sheet-rock lift.  The nice guy at the Sun Rental Center showed me how to put the 3 pieces together.  Still had it in my head, so I wanted to get it assembled before I forgot what he showed me.  That little gizmo is heavy and complicated, but I hope it works.

Sheet-rock lift
Sheet-rock lift

What I thought I could accomplish in a weekend, is going to take me a week.  Ugh.

I’ll rest in December 🙂

Annie, the novice ceiling hanger

ps:  More on the dream house later this week.

Happy 4th of July Weekend

A three day weekend.  Don’t we all look forward to those?  Well it has been such a long time since I have just done nothing on the weekend.  It appears it will be a little bit longer.  So let me fill you in on how this 3 day weekend progressed.

Friday, a day off, yeah.  Got up late about 7:30 and went grocer shopping.  First things first.  When we came home about noon I went over to get the shakes finished for the house.  Have one more coat of the red around the edges, then two coats of the sage green.  It’s warm but tolerable.  That took most of the day.  70 shakes are done.  I hope that is enough.

Wanted to get to painting the house, but decided to primer some of the railings on the porch of the house we are living in.  It needs to go on the market as soon as possible.  Which means that I need to get the back porch finished.  Just some painting then we need to put the ceiling in.   Geez, no rest this weekend.

Saturday, the 4th of July.  I may be driven to get these things done on my days off, but Lynn is having cabin fever so we need to take some leisure time.  On the three holidays of the summer; Memorial Day; 4th of July; and Labor Day, we like to go to Sumpter Oregon to a city wide yard/flea market.  It is an old mining town about 27 miles from Baker City.  Lynn still isn’t getting around very well and has lots of pain in his back and legs.  But, if nothing else, he gets to go on a road trip.  About 170 miles from home.  Beautiful day, a little warm but not too bad.  Our treasures weren’t much.  I found a foot stool for $20 and we bought a couple of baseball type caps.  Although we did enjoy a very nice early dinner at the Sumpter Junction Restaurant on the way back.

Sunday.  Got up about 7:30 again, turning into a lazy hillbilly sleeping in that late.  It is going to be in the mid 90’s this afternoon, so not a time for working in the heat.  First things first.  Need to get that post in the paddock reset and the gates hung.  That is the post which was knocked over when we had some work done this winter.  We had a busted pvc irrigation pipe break in our pasture in the same hole.  It was attached to that post.  Fixed the pipe earlier in the spring, but hadn’t gotten back to resetting that post.  It’s a large 10 ft. post (railroad tie).  We did get that set, but Lynn just wasn’t doing well so we didn’t get the gates repaired and hung.  Maybe later.

I decided that I needed to get the back yard of the house that we are going to sell trimmed and watered.  It is Kinzie’s playground.  Our beautiful collie.  The back yard has 1 pear (Bartlett); 1 plum; 5 apple trees; and some champagne grapes.  There are also some elderberry plants too.   This year it appears we are going to have a bumper crop of all of them.  Got them sprayed early for the coddling moths which decimates them, so we may actually get to eat some this year.  We also have two very large black walnut trees back there that need trimming.  Have to build up the courage to use the chain saw again.  But at least I can get the clean-up work done, if I take lots of water breaks and not overdo it.

Then there are the domestic duties.  A bit overwhelmed.  But when I see progress it is all worth it.

And I promised some photos of the inside of the house.  It is all skeleton at the moment but that is part of the transformation that I want to show you.  The plumbers were here working this week and have some hot and cold pex type lines coming from underneath.  The electrician was also there and has started roughing in the electrical.  It’s good that they can work inside some this week as the inside of the house is a little cooler than outside and I do have a fan in there for them to use.

The entryway looking in from the front door
The entryway (foyer) looking in from the front door


Looking down the stairs.
Looking down the stairs.
The kitchen and dining room and the pantry
The kitchen and dining room and the pantry

Annie, Playing the back yard.