Sunday, May 27, 2012

3 weeks into framing

Ah, the smell of cut lumber.  We have plenty of it to enjoy!  I'll let the pictures speak for themselves... here is the progress with pictures in chronological order:

May 14, 2012:  These were taken the same day I posted the last blog.  I have hardly been able keep up with the changes!
Front of the house, showing progress on the second floor,
as well as the sheathing going up on the walls.

View of upstairs

Jim and Robert checking out the view from one of the garage attics,
looking over the back of the house

Looking downstairs into the breakfast area and family room

View from "the spot."
May 17, 2012

Family room chimney
Second floor upstairs in back

view of roof frame over breakfast area

View from front of house, northwest corner

I love summer.  Sometimes we just go through the house and sometimes we walk
the whole property.  Yesterday we saw a great blue heron in the creek.

back of house

garage side 

Here are our shingles:  Stormmaster Slate (They aren't really slate...) and the metal that they will
use on the parts of the roof that have too much curve for the shingles.  It's really a rather crazy roof.
The framers aren't terribly happy about it.  It wasn't our idea... the designer did it!

The driveway will probably go between these two trees.

May 21, 2012:

View from "the spot"

Robert in front of his bedroom window

May 24, 2012:

View from the back

...Here is a picture of the "sample brick."
 It seems that they went to the
wrong house.  It took them three
 tries to get the right stone
sample, but we were hoping
that getting the right brick
wouldn't be that hard.  
Recently, we drove around town looking
at brick that we might like to use
on the back of the house.
Here is a picture of the brick
we want to use.  We gave this
picture and the address to
the "brick people..."

Susie likes to go to the property as much as the rest of us.
She runs all over the house as if she owns the place.  

May 27, 2012

They have been working on the roof!
Here's what the storage room looks like now.

Back view showing all the wall sheathing up as well as a lot of the roof.

View from "the spot"

I had forgotten how much fun it is to watch your ideas go from paper to reality.  It is amazing to see how the rooms translate from the drawings to actual spaces.  The workers may not be able to speak much English but they can sure put this puzzle of a house together!  They are really hard workers.  In fact, they are such hard workers that, much to our neighbor's dismay, they showed up for work on Saturday morning at 6 am.  We got a call from said neighbors at about 6:20 am...  According to city regulations, they are allowed to work from 7 am to 9 pm.  Randy, the foreman, said, "my guys will be melted by 9 pm but if they want us to start later, we'll start later."  Here's hoping they'll be there at 7 am on Tuesday!  

Happy Memorial Day, all.

Monday, May 14, 2012

Rain or Shine

For all the weeks that the property sat quietly... the crew that is working now is making up for lost time with lightning speed!  Hooray!  Last week they almost completely framed the first floor.   

Here's how it looked on Saturday.  (As I said before, unless you know the layout of the house, some of these pictures aren't going to look like much but I will do my best to explain them.)

Here's the view from the "standard spot"  Notice the mud?  This crew even worked in the rain.

This is how much rain we got...  Thankfully, they somehow siphoned all this water out
of the storage room by Sunday night.

This is the view from the front door to the back of the house

Robert heading up the temporary stairs, these would be to your left from the front door.

The view from upstairs

Master bedroom windows

View of the back--master bedroom on right, family room where Jim is standing,
kitchen and dining to the left.

This one shows the entire front

Robert cannot wait for the house to be done.  He has been in on the process from the very 
beginning--pouring over the house plans, giving his input and coming over to check things out 
as often as he can.  Future builder?

I took these pictures on Saturday evening, so when we went over on Sunday evening I figured I didn't need my camera.  Wrong!  I can hardly keep up with how fast the framing guys are working.  I hope their paychecks are nice and fat. They deserve it!

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

The cup runneth over!!

Writing this blog somehow seems to have a positive effect on the building process.  Every time I have posted, there has then been a flurry of activity.  Thanks to the powers that be!  It has been a very busy week and I can hardly keep up with the day to day changes going on at the property.  I'm uploading new pictures every day.  

The main purpose in writing this blog is so that our family far away can see the progress on the house and so that someday if we ever decide to build again we can read this and change our minds we can look back on it and see how it all came together.  I have been posting the updates on Facebook, but I may stop doing that.  If you still want to keep up with what we are doing you can always subscribe.  :-)

Some people wonder why we are building this house in the first place.  We just have two kids at home now, one of which will be gone in a year (sniff.)  It will be a big place for the three of us left.  However, our intention is that eventually those kids will want to come back (wait, are we crazy to want them to come back?) and bring their kids.  Rather than have a vacation house somewhere, we decided that we just wanted to make our home... home.  That and the horse thing.  My dad should have known all those years ago that when I touched that first big velvet nose I was a goner!

So, here's the progress beginning Friday April 27:

The poison ivy is back.  I learned that you can't use a weed-eater on it.  You can't burn it.
You can use brush killer on it but you might hurt the tree.  I can tell that this is
going to be an on-going saga...
This is what the ground looks like below the concrete of a pier and beam foundation system

This is what happens when workers aren't careful with their power equipment.
Yep, those are plumbing lines.

Wednesday May 2:

Here's the repair.  You bet I am keeping track!
Here's Susie checking out the set-up:  Ready for concrete!

On Wednesday May 3, our project manager, who is a very young guy, called me.  When I saw his name on my caller ID I wondered... what now?  But he was just calling ME because Jim was out of town and he had to tell SOMEONE that they were going to pour the concrete the next day.  He was very excited.  I thought it was cute.

On Thursday morning, as Robert and I were watching for the bus from the front window of our current house, we saw a cement truck drive by on the main street by our neighborhood.  I said, "I wonder if that is going to our property."  He hopped on the bus and I hopped in the car.... and sho nuff...

When I got there, there were 8 cement trucks on site.
The foreman told me they had ordered 20 trucks.
What a glorious sight!  The hallelujah chorus was playing in my head.

It really was amazing to watch this team work together.  Everyone had a specific job.

I wasn't quite as close as this picture appears, but when I started to get splattered
by concrete I decided I should probably step back a bit...

These pictures were taken at about 8:20 am.  They told me the concrete would be
completely poured by 10:30 am and hard enough to walk on by 4 pm.

I'll bet you didn't know that it takes about 3 1/2 minutes to empty a cement truck.
I found this online when I googled...
The average capacity of a standard cement mixer truck is around 8-9 cubic yards (216-243) cubic feet. Lots of people think that it is 9 cubic yards, hence the expression "the whole nine yards."

Later that day...

Monday May 7:

The wood is delivered!

Rooms marked off with treated lumber

Today, May 8, 2012... I was very surprised when I drove up and saw how much they had actually framed!  

It is going to be hard to take pictures that actually mean anything to anyone else for awhile since they all look basically the same.  

Tomorrow we meet with the builder to talk about how things are progressing... as in what might be a projected completion date.  Not that we're anxious or anything!