Tuesday, February 24, 2009

The Short Term Plan

Not too much new to report tonight but just felt like getting on. Deb is sawing logs and I will soon join. Been a challenge running around lately. OK, the short term plan is this.... Plumbers will finish rough-in this week. Kevin will line out Don for the "awning roof" that goes over the front door, and then Josh will construct with Don's help. Venting will be done tomorrow. Next will be a mechanical inspection. If all goes well, we will call for framing inspection. If we can get before the weekend we will work on corrections from inspection during the weekend. If not we work on next week after work. Once we get framing inspection we will start installing the radiant heating. After that comes insulation. Then, sheet rocking/taping - that will go with our plastering of interior walls. All of this will take some time since we plan to do some of the interior plastering/stuccoing ourselves..at least 6 weeks. While this is going on we will also begin playing with colors, make a decision on fixtures and kitchen cabinets, and tie it all together with carpeting and floor tile. WOW it sure does not get any easier as we near the finish line.
Here are some misc pics and even one of playing with photoshop to see what some colors might be. Don't get excited with the photo-it was only for fun but it does help a bit to play with ideas......

Sunday, February 22, 2009


Finally back to our apartment after another weekend dominated by work at the house. It feels good to sit down. Things continued to move forward through the week/weekend. Our propane line and venting is done - however we have a major bone to pick with the contractor who did it. Parts were just fine, and other "efforts" are unacceptable. So, tomorrow morning will start some fairly intense "discussion."
On the other hand, we are about 85% complete with the stucco. Wow, it sure looks great. All we have left is the lower half of the west side and some detail/trim. And, another milestone came about today when Kevin came down and helped us install our french doors (master bedroom and screened porch/living area) and guest bedroom sliding door. Other than our front door and a little loft door, we are "dried in." We have waited for this for a long long time... but we have a step or two to go before official dry-in.
Don's Mom, Margaret, seems to be a bit better but her back is really hurting. X-rays and other tests were negative so we can only assume she strained or pulled something. We just hope it stops hurting her. We will keep our fingers crossed on all fronts.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Stucco West

Now that we can get on the internet at our "garage apartment" we can update our new and improved website more often. Mark finished the upper west side of the house today and it looks great. Really crisp look to the windows and the overall look of the house! It is exciting.

On the flipside, we are having a heck of a time "dealing with everything." Most notably is Don's mom-Margaret. She is suffering from some pretty intense depression - it seems it has built up over time since Barney died, trying to live on her own in Cleveland, and now living out here. Major changes on all fronts and it has to be hard for her. So, in addition to working full time and trying to work on the house, we are taking time off and juggling schedules to be with Margaret and taking her to doctor appointments. We feel sorry for her and try our best to keep her in good spirits. It is no picnic. Just today we were both up at 4 am. Don got home at 630 pm after taking Margaret to the doctor, working and then working on the house, and is still on the phone at 900 pm. Deb had a field day for work and won't be home till 10 pm! - maybe later because she still may stop at Margaret's place tonight to see how she is - St. Debbie is her real name. She defines Love.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Sunsets...... again.

Yes, we know it is a sickness but can't resist. This time the sunsets are a little different.... they feature the new view with the recent tree trimming Phil did for us in the fall. One shot is from the screened porch and the other is from the deck. And, get this, we were on the deck and we saw two "cicada"(at least we thought they were cicada?). We found that pretty odd since it is still February. They seemed to have flown in to the side of the house, fell on the deck, and then flew away. Yep all the wonders of nature right here in Bow, WA.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Be My Valentine

Valentine's Day was really different for us.... we stained the new garage doors... and, although they look good, the lighter wood is not the color we want. Therefore, we will darken a bit later -basically we wanted to get a coat of stain on them in the event it rains and drips on the raw wood. So, they look nice but they will look much better later.

Next - our neighbors John and Carol Penny stopped by to check on house progress. Then, Carol hands us a whole plate of handmade Valentine's Day cookies.... just look how cool they look and the work of decorating them is unbelievable.... And, above all, they are delicious! How nice was that?

Next, our neighbor Wayne stopped by along with his dog Kodi... next thing you know all three dogs are sitting pretty as Deb hands out her special dog treats that she keeps at the house.... just in case a dog stops by...

On Sunday we worked more on the house. Later on, we headed home and then took my mom out to dinner for Valentine's Day. Good food, followed by a trip to "Big Scoop" for a cone / sundae. Yum!

All for now. Have a good one!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

D2 House Mini-Post

Hey there-been a crazy week. Some good, some not so good news. Main thing has been the two of us working and taking care of my mom with some doc appointments, while juggling a few house things. Again we move ahead. Rough electric inspection went great - not one correction! On the flipside the county wants us to have pressure treated wood against the concrete walls in basement.... we did not and may have to replace or put tar paper between wall and stud..... Since basement is underground everyone thought no need for pressure treated or insulation... oh well. Meantime, here are a couple pics of heater with pre-fire burning.... We are currently trying to do some final planning before we do radiant heat floors, insulation and sheet rock. Boy is it hard to think interior design at this stage...Ignore the mess but it's more tidy than it was.
Time to hit the sack!

Sunday, February 8, 2009


Today was a day we waited for a long time. We lit the first fire in our masonry heater.... well, we actually did not light it. Our mason, Jerry, came over and showed us how to work our heater and lit our first of about 3o small fires. We need to light one to two very small fires every day for about 25-30 days to ensure all the moisture exits the heater. If we were to light a normal size fire right now there would be a good chance we would crack our heater - and that would not be a good thing!

So, we will be patient and do what we need to do. Here are a few pics of the ceremony.... Deb took one of our "chimney.." Looks like we are living there...... not yet but soon.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Loft Porch Railings

One more step complete. We needed to construct the loft porch railings now so Mark could stucco the inside and outside of the railings. Now he can place tar paper and screening on the plywood which will prep the railing for stucco. The loft porch will be one very cool little place to hang out. We were treated to a very neat sunset tonight while we were putting in the last nails!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

How much is that doggy in the window?

Although this may seem way premature, we actually had to build our dog door for our future doggy now. Since our screened porch will have a dog door so our pup can go outside on the south deck, we had to build the opening and finish the wall so Mark can stucco that wall and move around the house. So, there you have it.... its what has to be done.... Next we have to build our loft porch railings and facing so Mark can continue working around up there.... Yikes. Also note our aac channeling for the electrician!

North side stucco

For the past 10 months we have been coming down the driveway and turning a corner to see the house grow every day.... honestly we were getting sick of the "sugar cube" look from the aac block... Now, we have stucco and oh what a difference it makes. The house looks clean, the windows pop, the cedar trim is a great accent and our little window ledges are just so cool. And to think, we cut them from aac block back in july.... planned ahead heh? This was a big "up" for us. We have had many many ups and downs on this adventure - trust us on this one.... so, this was a goodie!


Had to buy and install metal flashing along the deck ledger boards..... not absolutely necesary but Kevin and Mark said do it and you will be glad you did later on - like ten years from now when normally the water would work its way back behind the ledger and begin rotting it... not now, and not later do we want any mtc..... so just do it! We did.

Stucco King

Mark Sager is our man for stucco. Boy are we glad we found him. Here he is doing his thing - it is absolutely perfect. Trim around window is perfect, texture is perfect, and most of all his attitude is perfect. Just a joy to work with. Has great advice, great skills, and works like hell!

More pics and words

Thought it was time for a few new pics. Lots of things going on inside and out. We just continue to plug along - before work, after work, sometimes during work we have to go home and meet with a contractor and then head back.... weekends are a given we work on the house. Just want to get in very bad! But as we say, "ain't no one else gonna do it but us" so we just buck up and go. That includes cleaning which we are finding out is and has been a big part of building our house. There is just so much stuff on the floors, scrap wood, dust, dust, and more dust.... we just have to keep up with it and then start again. Last week Deb carried endless amount of wood to the basement (including a couple sheets of 1/2" plywood down two flights of stairs.- by herself!) Had i seen that one I would have had to kick her ass! That is just too much.
Here are pix of tub box we built....

OK here ya go.... the latest!