Lynn and I have come to the decision that we are no longer able to work on the house. His health won’t allow him, and going it alone doesn’t work for me. Our original plan was to build it ourselves and, therefore, be mortgage free when we retired. Best laid plans of mice and men. Now we just readjustment our plans.
There are still things that I will have to do, and it is going to be a long hard summer.
We have started getting bids and I will be speaking to the bank next week.
In the meantime, I will be camping out at Home Depot and various internet sites to get the lighting, plumbing fixtures, flooring, doors and a multitude of other things we will need. I am checking with 2 heating and cooling companies and I have a cabinet estimate that will need revising.
Then there is always the worry that I won’t qualify for the budget that will be needed to complete the house.
Stay tuned, more tomorrow.
Well since I wrote yesterday, Lynn and I spent the better part of 2 hours on Saturday and I went back alone today. I am a bit overwhelmed. Trying to organize and get all the estimates I need together before I go to the bank. I think I will need to spend next week getting more organized. After reviewing the contractor’s estimate, Lynn and I were not on the same page, so I will need to contact the contractor and get some revisions. It is so hard for him to accept that he can’t do it all. Nor can I.
Stay tuned, I will be updating regularly and let you know how it is going.
Lynn went to Spokane this past week for his consultation on getting a pacemaker. He is a candidate for the modified pacemaker, but to satisfy the insurance company they have to monitor him for the next 3 months and then get another heart echo, before he is eligible. Irregardless of the fact, that they have been trying to control his arrhythmia with medications for the last 5 years. The doctor also changed his heart medication and that has really caused him to be extremely tired and lethargic. Hopefully, after the pacemaker is in, and functioning well, he can get off of some of the medications he is on. He feels he is over-medicated, but which one do you get rid of? Alright this is a blog about DIY Building projects, just thought I would let you know that my significant other has not been able to get into this project, too good. I am amazed at what he can do, as he will be turning 74 in a couple months.
We didn’t get the scaffolding moved like we wanted this weekend, so I had to settle for working on the railing. I really wanted to work on the porch by the stairs leading from the side yard, but we have some other things that need to be done first and that involves the scaffolding. Next week we will tackle that.
Our do-it-yourself center that is closest to us, is Home Depot, so that is where we buy all our paint and most other building products. I have found that their paint is good if you use a good foundation primer. I prefer the Kilz Premium Primer as it works the best. It is worth the extra money if you want the finish to match. I had primed the balustrades and the 2×4’s before putting them up, then quickly put on 1 coat of the Behr Semi-Gloss White. It will need one more coat. Hopefully, I can paint the whole porch before bad weather sets in.
I guess I will be in the roofing business one for time before I hang up my hammer. We have decided to put up asphalt shingles to match the rest of the house, if we can match the color. If not, we will get as close as we can. I would have like to put up metal roofing, but that should be done professionally, and that isn’t in the budget.
This particular blog will be short as I am pooped. Gotta fix supper, do sock fairy duties, take a shower and get ready for another week at the salt-minds.
Happy 4th of July America. This holiday gives you pause to count your blessings that we live in a country where we have all the freedoms we enjoy. If you work hard you can achieve your dreams. You know we are not wealthy, but we have our health, a roof over our head, food in our belly, and the right to worship as we choose.
Building our dream home is one our dreams. Granted it has taken a looooong, time but we have worked hard and have enjoyed the fruits of our labor. With a few detours. The present one being our back porch in the little house we live in. So now that I have led into that, here is our progress for today:
A day off work at the office, but a day of work on the back porch. I did take some pictures as I wanted to record this project and have a look at the before and after pictures. Today Lynn put up another trim board and cut away some of the obstacles to it laying flat. Then he cut the deck boards to size, about 10 of them, then went in to get out of the heat and recuperate. That is when my job began. I drilled pilot holes so I wouldn’t split any of the boards then screwed them down with 3″ deck screws. Love to see progress and watching the porch be transformed from something that I was ashamed of to something that I am proud to show off.
My two week project has turned into March, April, May, June & July, maybe August project. Not regretting doing it. Just sometimes get impatient with myself that it takes me and Lynn so long to do any project. We always envision the projects going much faster and smoother. I guess it teaches us patience. I should be about finished with learning patience, and I am ready to graduate.
Lynn managed to mow the weed infested back yard on Tuesday. Looks so much better. It is dried out weeds, but at least they are all the same height, so it doesn’t look so bad. Looking at the back yard and front yard, just lets me know what other areas of this house have been neglected. My wish is that someone stops me the next time I am in Home Depot and offers to do a yard makeover. I want a rich luscious green lawn with underground sprinklers on a timer and well groomed flower beds with beautiful butterfly bushes and humming bird feeders. Weeded and no fox-tails in the lawn as they burrow under Kinzie’s fur. I absolutely hate fox-tails.
Nodded off for a minute in dreamland, but I’m now back awake. Well maybe someday that wish will come true, but I don’t think it will happen this summer. Ho hum. I will just have to settle for a beautiful porch.
Our plan for this weekend is to finish up the deck of the porch and begin the railing. Back to Home Depot to get the railing material and I will then get out my trusty paint brush and begin more painting. Oh, I can’t wait. But for tomorrow I am back to work at being a paralegal and loving that job too.
Ever have one of those days? Yeah, one of those days, when you shouldn’t touch anything electronic or anything that can in any way hurt you. Ugh. I took Saturday off and rested a little and thought I would get lots done today. Well, I don’t usually get all that I envision done, but today was pretty pitiful.
I did finish painting the 42 shakes that we had cut. So I can draw a line through that on my list. It will at least finish the one dormer. Through the winter we should get the others cut and I can start painting in the spring. Only about 200 more.
Now for post #3. You would think after I had done two of these it would get easier. Didn’t happen. This one was a son-of-a-gun. I thought I was being really careful, but I managed to really bungle this one up. Not a total loss as I can fix it, but still not easy. The bad part is, in prying it apart I dropped the one side (the heavy side) right on my baby toe. It is broke. I don’t need a Dr. to tell me that, but there just isn’t anything that you can do, but try not to aggravate it. Needless to say it slowed me down a little.
Lynn was snapping and snarling the whole day too. Got to love it, can’t wait until I retire and we get to enjoy each others’ company 24/7. He did manage to get up in the lift and put some of the metal around the fascia. We are using metal as the wood will not hold a paint finish of any kind on the front which is the weather side. Getting ready to add more siding or work on the other dormer. Next weekend we will try to put the other stain glass window up. Anyway that is the plan.
I am back to work now and won’t be able to keep dogging Lynn, but hopefully he will try to get some more done before we take the lift back a week from Monday. So next weekend with be a busy one. Then it will be clean-up time and take all the paint and glues and all things that can’t freeze into our storage closet, so they can make it through our cold winters.
The plans for next spring are to get started earlier and maybe rent the lift for a couple of months. The bad part about spring is we tend to get more rain and the weather isn’t quite as predictable. We haven’t had any measurable rain for about 3 months now. But it feels like it may be a cold winter.
I did take a few pictures and hope to have a picture of the completed dormer next weekend. With all my grumbling today, I really love working on this dream house and can’t wait to see it completed so I can get started on a potting shed, maybe a chicken coop, paint and clean up the horse paddocks and on and on and on……
Boy my little pinky hurts and it is turning black and blue. Looks like I will be wearing flip-flops a few more weeks.
Last full day of vacation. Lynn and I worked until about 3:30 for Lynn and I put in another hour.
Lynn spent about 4 hours in the lift painstakingly cutting and fitting all the acorn cedar shakes one at a time. I think we are going to run out before we get this one side done. Lynn thought that he would finish that side today but didn’t happen. Ran out of energy before he could finish. I’m sure he will be up there tomorrow while I’m at work.
The last thing we did was remove another post and put the finished one in its place. Oh, it sure is an improvement. Now post #3 is sitting on my back deck waiting for me to take it apart and start working on it.
In the meantime, I have to paint some more cedar shakes. We have 42 cut and ready to paint. I put the primer on the edge then on the top surface. Tomorrow I will add the red which has to be two coats then two coats of the sage green. Looks like I will only have about an hour of work after I get home each day this week. I guess it will be Lynn’s night to cook tomorrow.
I have been taking pictures each step of the way. Every year I take photos that I have taken during the year and make a calendar to send to the kids. This year’s calendar will the be “The Year of the Dream Home.” I am thrilled that we have got done as much as we have. We waited rather late in the year to get out there and get started. We had a wet spring, and I thought we were going to hire some work done as Lynn just wasn’t feeling very well. But in the end, I just made an executive decision. Oh, Lynn hates those. Decided that I had waited long enough, and I went and rented the lift. He thought we should have fixed the “bucket truck.” Oh that is a whole other story. I’ll fill you in on that in another reflection post. Anyway, he thought it would just cost too much. Well, it did cost a lot, but it has been worth every penny. For one thing it has forced he and I both to focus on getting as much as we can get done while we have it. Also, he is doing the work which is always a good thing, because he is a real craftsman and does a wonderful job.
I probably will not be doing too much on my blog until next weekend as I have to go to my real job and earn money so I can pay my bill collectors. Ho hum. Now for the photos.
Annie, back to the real world for the working girl
Today was getting all the work done on the ground. Went to Walla Walla to pick up groceries and more supplies. Took my list and got everything on the list, even the Blizzard, yum. I couldn’t believe the bill. The cedar shakes were outrageous at $45 a bundle. We bought 2 bundles. Finish nails for the nail gun. We had been unable to find them until today. More primer and of course a new putty knife. I am a happy girl 🙂
Got home at noon and unloaded the car. Lynn was so tired, but he went out and cut the shingles so I could get them painted so he would have them for tomorrow. We ran out of the first course which are just straight. The others have to be cut in the decorative acorn pattern on the scroll saw. I have a bunch of those, but not sure if we have enough. We will know pretty soon.
I have included pictures from the bundle stage to the finish stage. I also included my I-pod which has my audio books loaded on it. There is nothing I like more than reading from my Kindle or listening to my audio books. I would much rather listen to a good book than music, though I like music too. I am now listening to the third book in the King of Thrones series. Interesting, but my favorite series is the Outlander series. Waiting patiently for her 9th book, I think. Due out next year.
This is going to be a short update as I need to go back out and put a final coat of green paint so they will be ready to put up tomorrow.
Well Lynn and I were moving a wee bit slow this morning. Dilly dallied around and didn’t make it out there until about 9:00. Lynn was exhausted when he work up, but went out anyway and started putting up some of the trim. Before you know it the siren goes off signaling lunch time. Oh, for those that don’t live in a small town with a volunteer fire department, maybe an air-raid siren going off, would give you pause. Well, this little burg has a fire siren that goes off every day at noon. The siren also goes off at other times summoning the volunteer fire department for fires or accidents. It is really comforting to know that the volunteer fire department is on hand for these emergencies. It is truly giving yourself to your community and your way of life. God Bless all our volunteer firefighters and EMT. Can’t say enough good about them all.
My job today was to tape and paint the colors on the post. That was slow and tedious and tomorrow we will put it up and take another one down.
Lynn went back up in the lift after lunch, which I know took all he had, but he wants to make some progress before we take the lift back. He started adding the shake shingles. First he puts up the straight pieces then overlaps the cut pieces. Unfortunately, we ran short on the straight pieces so that hampered our best intentions. Off to Home Depot or Pro Build tomorrow to see if we can get another bundle or two. Then Lynn will cut them to the right width and I will prime with Kilz Premium Exterior Primer, of course. You would think I got paid for plugging their product, but that is not the case, I just want others to learn from my mistakes. Then two coats of Sage Green Behr Acrylic Exterior Semi-Gloss paint. A little detail you don’t see looking straight on, is that each one of the shakes has a red detail on the acorn cut-out that can be seen from the ground. (On the thick bottom of the shake). So it will probably be Sunday before that dormer is finished.
While he was doing that I applied several coats of the decorative paint to the post and primed and caulked more on the porch side of the house. The kitchen side to be more specific. It looks awful, but that will change in the next week or so.
Tomorrow is a shopping day, so Lynn probably will not be working on the house. Have to make my list. Another gallon of primer; cedar shakes; 2″ blue painters tape; a couple more brushes; a new 2″ putty knife; and a Strawberry Cheesequake Blizzard. Now, how did that get in there?
We have been doing the diet thing, but I promise myself a Blizzard once a month. Gotta have something to look forward too.
A couple of photos of our progress. Just 2 more weeks of the lift. Will we meet our goal? Stay tuned.
After yesterday, I didn’t hold much hope that I could get Lynn out there again today. Fooled me. After seeing how good it looked yesterday he was excited about going out there to finish up the trim. He thought it would take about 4 hours and he didn’t even stop for lunch. He said if he stopped he may not want to go back out. What a guy 🙂
I started out sanding and sanding some more on the post and had it ready to paint about 10:30. Put on one coat of primer and waited for that to dry, then two coats of Behr White Semi Gloss Exterior Paint. Letting it dry between coats. Now the post will rest for a couple of days before I can tape and paint the rings. Then on to the 3rd post.
Things went smoother for Lynn as he learned better ways to do things.
I wanted to help, so after he put his time in on the lift, I went back out and tried to face my fears of heights by walking around on the porch roof, hanging onto the lift, of course. That was tough, but I did it a little bit. Put up some of the tar paper, but when I ran out, I couldn’t make myself go back up there. I will try it again later, you can bet your britches on it.
With the day ending, I had some Domestic Diva stuff to do. My friend Mary has a Birthday tomorrow, and she looooves to celebrate her Birthday. I made my famous cheese-ball, past down through the family. I will share the recipe with you at the end. Then I made German Chocolate Brownies. Her request. Tomorrow we will feast. Guess what I am at the end.
Annie’s Cheese Ball – only 5 ingredients (double batch)
2 – pkgs cream cheese (not low fat)
2 – Tbls dehydrated onions
1 1/2 – tsp. garlic salt
1 – pkg (sm) Budding wafer meats (torn in small pieces) (I use chicken)
2 – Tbls Pace Picante Sauce (secret ingredient – I like medium)
Remove your rings. Put all the above ingredients in a medium mixing bowl so you will have room to get your hands in there and smoosh it altogether. There really isn’t any other way to get it done so it is blended well. It will be tackie so just form it into a ball and put in the frig to firm up. Before serving I roll it in pecan chips, but you can roll in sunflower seeds or parsley if there are pickie eaters who don’t like nuts.
I make sure I bring crackers to serve with it. I like Wheat Thins and/or Triskets. I make sure the crackers are plain, as you want to taste the subtle flavors of the cheese ball.
Put in a full day. Finished putting 2 coats of Cream paint on the shop. Then trimmed the white and put a final coat of white on the garage door. A full day. Not sure what I will start on tomorrow. Need to migrate to the front of the house again, but the weather side of the shop also needs attention. I guess I will wait until tomorrow morning and see what feels right.
I have also been working on the post, will probably do a little more on that in the morning.
Lynn still isn’t feeling up to par, so I am thinking about seeing if he will walk me through the front. I know that I can do it. I did put the cedar shakes on the garage, so I think I would be able to handle the front. We will see.
Too tired to write much tonight, but I did take a couple of pictures.
Going to spend some time proofing the book I have and then some quality time in front of Dancing With the Stars tonight with my hubby.
Up and ready to go by 8:00. Had a bowl of cereal and out the door. On a mission to get lots done on the shop (aka Lynn’s dog house). At least it will be if we ever get moved into the house. Luxury dog house at that.
First thing I did was sand and get the post ready for bondo. Put Bondo on one side so it could be drying while I was painting on the shop. Put another coat of Premium Kilz Primer on all the weathered wood on the shop. I can’t sing the praises of this primer enough. I had put it on the side of the shop last year. That was as high as I would go on the ladder. Then 2 coats of Behr Semi Gloss Exterior Paint. The color is Cream. Which is a creamy yellow. It held up real good through the winter. The siding doesn’t seem to have a problem holding paint. The bare wood is another thing. So two coats of primer on it.
After I put the second coat of primer on the bare wood, I had to caulk all the cracks and joints. It is very important to put caulking on. It is better to put it on before the finish coat of paint because, even if you use clear, it gets dirty. I put on the primer first then the caulking, then two finish coats of paint. Then it look like a job done by a pro, not a sixty-plus (my son’s name for me) grandma.
While I was up there painting, I decided to get some pictures of the view. God I love this place. It is wonderful working for the American Dream, my Dream. Not afraid to work, just wish I could work faster. I am a picky painter, as I am with most things. Not a perfectionist, just picky.
Put the Cream on a big part of the Shop before I had to stop for the evening. It was 5:30 and I was pooped. Went out on the back porch and worked on the post, sanded then put more Bondo on. Oh, the photo I have included in this blog, is what “not to do” to a post. At some point, in the past, when trying to squeeze the posts together, I hit it with a hammer that looked like a meat tenderizer. It was a hammer Steven, my son, sent to Lynn from Japan. What possessed me to do that I don’t know. Now I gotta fix it. No problem, I got Bondo.
For the next 4 days, I will be skipping work, unless it gets to be bad weather. Only have another 3 weeks to get oodles of work done. Lynn may be giving me lessons to fix the front of the house. I have been his apprentice for 24 years now. I have learned a lot and still learning. I am amazed at all the things he can do. The amazing thing is he taught himself as he was raised by a single mom. All you have to do is not be afraid to work. That is truly the key.
One of the pictures is of the garage and the kitchen side of the house. It really looks bad there, but that will be done this year too. The weeds are really high around the house, that darn gardener has been playing in the lift. I guess I am going to have to talk to her.
When I am not working on the house/shop then I am proofing my favorite author’s (Shanna Hatefield’s) books, working on a quilt, hand quilting, or playing on my Facebook page. I have neglected all my flower beds so that is something I am going to need to prepare for winter too. Well for now, I am just going to end this post and see y’all tomorrow.
Annie, the novice shop and post painter.