Wow, that was a fast 9 days. Of course I didn’t get as much accomplished as I always envision, but inching along still.
Did caulking, painting, assembling vanities, celebrating the hubby’s Birthday, making Thanksgiving dinner, and brushing the dog. The last part was my favorite, but needless to say, not her’s. I try to be gentle, but she just hates to be brushed. She’s sleeping at my feet right now so our struggles wore her out.
Can’t say much for our weather the last few days. Had some snow and some melted and it will be dry probably until Tuesday when rain is predicted. I’ve had enough of winter already, looking forward to spring. It is in the single digits outside. Ugh 😦
Not much in the way of pictures on the house, but I do have some showing the beautiful snow while I was painting.
I have come to the realization that it’s a good thing I am a Paralegal, because I would starve as a painter. There is no end in sight for anytime in the near future. While winter is here I will be spending my weekends painting the interior. When spring comes, I will be renting a lift and finishing the rest of the outside of the house. If I am able to sell the house we are in or get a long-term renter, I hope to have a new lawn. Well here are some more photos.
Well that’s pretty much all for November. Tomorrow is December, and it looks like I won’t be resting until next December. Ho hum.
Not a very exciting day, pulling puncture vine and scraping down posts. But I can do boring, and enjoy it. The weather was beautiful, in the upper 70’s or low 80’s with a 10 mph breeze. Decided to pull puncture vine and try out my new big wheel trimmer. It worked great. I pull the vine and try to clean up as many seeds as I can so it won’t be tracked all over the yard. That is a nasty weed. If anyone knows how to get rid of it, I am open to suggestions. Oh, and the trimmer works great on everything else.
Managed to get two of the posts apart and have one almost glued-up. The other one I will be gluing up tomorrow. One of the things I enjoy doing, but it eats up a lot of productive time, is scrape the paint off the posts. To me that is about as much fun as popping bubbles on bubble wrap, doesn’t take a lot of mental work and allows you a bunch of time to just be cathartic and let your mind wander.
Brandon from O’Conner’s Carpet One came out this morning to get on-site measurements to confirm his estimate which was taken off the plans. There wasn’t much change and we discussed when the flooring would go in. Gabe from S & K Mountain Construction said we would be looking at about mid October for that to happen. I believe the floor will go down then the doors and trim and cabinets. Then electrical fixtures and plumbing fixtures. It is getting a little more real every day. I’m glad I took the week off to work on my part.
We had a couple of runs to the Dr. for Lynn, but the rest I have spent outside doing one thing or another.
Now for some pictures.
I am really excited to get the claw-foot tubs refinished as that will add a lot to the Victorian look of the house.
The bonus room will house Lynn’s pool table (or billiard table) which has been crated up for more than 29 years. I guess he will get his exercise climbing the stairs to play pool. That’s one way to get him to exercise! He thinks he will be spending a lot of time sitting on the back upstairs deck watching the deer and other wildlife in the back acres. To tell you the truth, that is one of the things I am looking forward to. It faces North and really doesn’t get much sun so it is a little shady and comfortable.
Well, I guess I need to go and spend some quality time with Lynn. The crew is working on more of the drywall so I will be posting more pictures this weekend.
Well this is an official vacation day. Had lots of plans today. I always have lots of plans to get lots of stuff done. Spent the last two days pulling weeds and hoped to whip my yard into shape. Slow start with a quick finish. Remember in a previous post when I showed you a picture of my weed whacker aka “big wheel trimmer”. Well, that is what I blew up today. Before you say anything, Lynn put oil in it yesterday. So I escaped the “I told you to check the oil” speech. It leaks oil, but I was hoping to get one more year out of it. I was using it along the parameter of the front pasture when it started making a funny noise and before I could shut it down, the side exploded. Well, it didn’t suffer, it went quick. So I took that as a omen to go in side and sit down with a glass of ice tea. Any excuse is better than none, right?
Now for the update on the house. The carpenters just left and they put the upper redwood deck on. I’m sure the railing will follow later this week.
I also told you I would show you the furnace in the utility room. There is still room for a freezer, so we’re good.
How about an updated picture of the finished utility/mud porch? I really like this. That is what the railing will look like on the upper deck. I’m a southern girl, I gotta have a porch.
This is going to be a short post, because I have to get something done, so I can say I had a productive day.
A status update is in order since I haven’t been blogging lately. The house is ever on my mind. And I can almost see the wee light at the end of the tunnel.
Met with the contractor and the project manager on Thursday. Have an appointment with the banker on Monday. Submitted my application for a building permit to finish what was started almost 20 years ago.
With Lynn’s illness and my full-time job, there isn’t a lot of time to devote to the house. It has been an adventure to say the least. There have been many ups and downs and I wouldn’t have given up the experience for anything.
This past year has humbled Lynn and I, and taught us that sometimes we “can’t” do it all and we need to recognize that. When we selected the plans for this house it was the one I loved. We were 20 years younger. Lynn had a “can-do” attitude and thought he would be able to tackle it with no problem. I on the other hand was mortified by the complexity of the plans. It was Victorian, and it was big, and it was my dream home. But I was not sure that we could do something of that magnitude, but Lynn assured me that he could do it. He said we could save on labor costs if we did most of the work ourselves. And I would have to say that we have saved a lot but it has been a long slow road. If you asked if I had to do it over again, knowing what I know now, would I do it? I would probably say no. I still love the home, and it is my dream home. But the strain it has put on Lynn’s health just knowing that it is out there unfinished, has helped in making the decision to move forward and just get it done.
Now we are hopeful and excited all at the same time. There are still things that I will be doing in the painting department and Lynn will be the overseer and adding his 2 cents worth when called upon. Hopefully, he can find time to do some of the things he enjoys.
Yesterday and today I have been sanding priming and painting some of the cedar shingles to finish the second gable. The first plan of action is to get it weather tight. So I believe the exterior will be the first thing on the agenda. I will take pictures of the inside and outside as things progress along. I believe I will be amazed at the speed that things will get done. Lynn has been cutting the shingles on a jig saw and sanding the edges, then I take over. A team effort.
Sitting in the shade on the back porch helps these weary old bones.
I am priming the shingles with, you guessed it, Kilz Premium Primer. They have convinced me that nothing else works better. I’m only painting on the area that will be exposed. Then I put 2 coats of red trim around the edges, and finish it off with two coats of sage green paint. It is a slow process, but when it’s done, it’s done. I am sure that this will be the only time that these shakes will have this detail. Upon repainting in the future, I believe the red trim will not be done. But, whoever knows?
A little red trim
I will let you know the count when it is all done. I just don’t want the craftsmen waiting on me. So I gotta get a good start.
I am really getting excited about this, so I hope you will all stay tune and see us to the end of this journey.
The biggest thing that has helped us get this far, is the desire to build with our own hands and achieve our dream. Everything takes work, sometimes a lot of hard work, but it is worth it. Not just in building your dream home, but in anything and everything you do. Make sure that whatever you do, you are proud to put your name on it. That is my philosophy. What ever I do, work or home, I try to do the best I can. I would rather have someone show me how to do something and teach me how, than to do it for me. There are times when you need to have it done, but my mother taught me that women can do much more than just sewing and cooking. I learn from her example. Um, she wasn’t much with a needle, but she sure could cook.
As we progress, I will name the contractors and follow along with their progress. This will only be done with their permission. We can all learn from these craftsmen. I will keep you updated on some of the features that we pick out and some unique things that we will be doing.
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.
Well my goal for today was accomplished. I got all the sod off the roof and many of the boards. It is ready to have the roof rafters and ceiling rafters taken down. That is Lynn’s part of the project and he has this week to get it done. As next weekend we will be removing floorboards and seeing whether we will be using the joist that are there or whether we will be replacing those also. Got the feeling, they will be replaced.
We are also planning on pouring the cement posts. If we get that far next weekend, I will be a happy girl.
I had planned to wait until the project is done before showing you pictures, but I just can’t wait that long. So I will be posting a few of the ones as we progressed to how it looks today. Really had no way to go but up.
I had my last ride in the lift this morning. I managed to paint a small section of the shop along the side. I would have liked to have gotten more done, but it started to get a little windy and I was just plumb tuckered out anyway.
Took some photos of the house which still has a lot of work to be done. Will work on the outside next spring and summer. Nothing has been done to the inside. It just has framed interior walls. The steps in the entryway going up to the second floor has been done but rough risers and treads are there until we get the walls sheet rocked. Don’t want to ruin new oak stairs. Lynn built those about 2004 around the time he had back surgery. He built them so strong, they will be standing long after the house drops around them. It will be a grand entry when it is done.
We did not get the last stained glass window in. It will have to wait for next spring/summer when we rent the lift again.
Brought all the left-over cans of paint inside so they won’t freeze. Cleaned the lift up so there won’t be a clean-up charge. Sun Rental will come and get it tomorrow.
Each year I make a calendar for the family and this year the theme is ‘The Year of the House.’ I put photos of what we did this year in there to share with the kids and my Aunt Betty in Michigan. She likes to see it pictures of this area and the house. Walgreens had a sale Buy one and get two free. Which only applied to the first 3 but I ordered 8 of them. I couldn’t believe it but they were ready to pick up today. I just put the order in last night! I am amazed at today’s technology.
It has been wonderful sharing our trials and tribulations during these last few months. As this has been a 17 year journey so far, I have lots of reflections that I will post a few time a week. This coming week I am going out of town combining work with pleasure. Going to a seminar, but staying with my Son and Grandkids in the Seattle area for just a couple of nights. Which means it will be a very busy week. Without further a-do, here are the latest pictures.
Well, it’s raining outside and the wind is blowing and expected to be the same tomorrow and Sunday so that pretty much shuts down our home project for a little bit.
I have to give it to Lynn, he has tried to put a little work into it this past week. He put up some of the soffit and fascia in the other gable. I know he wanted to get finish putting up the shakes in the east gable, but not sure if that will happen before Sun Rental comes and gets the lift on Monday. Can’t go up in the lift when there is any wind and we are expecting 15-30 mph winds this weekend.
I am happy about how much we have accomplished in this last 5 weeks. Would have liked to have done more, but we will get some little jobs done this winter and I will post our progress.
Pictures will be posted tomorrow if the rain lets up enough for me to venture out.
It has been fun to do this blog and I plan on reflecting some during the next few months. I think I ended with 1998 but remembered some stuff I missed so I will try to get that in there too. So stay tuned.
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