Sunday, October 30, 2011

We got a lot done on the building this weekend. And we're both really tired. I've never looked forward to Mondays so much in my life!

Saturday we sheathed the whole project. This went really quickly.

Then we cut out the doors and windows. It really looks like a building now!

Our next job was to start on the roof. I'd been dreading this, but I guess it's not really a building without a roof. We ran the ridge beam all the way down the length. Boy, was that tough. We did some fancy tightrope walking manuevers, and no one fell off the ladder. Success!

First thing this morning, we finished the porch. Then we began running rafters - this took the rest of the day, the rest of our energy, and the rest of my motivation. I am done ... at least until next Saturday. Here's how the building stands now:

This week, I'll get cedar posts for the porch and strip them. Our plan is to get them put up Saturday and finish running the rafters. I can't wait! Roofing is off my list of possible careers!

Hope you're enjoying the progress!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011


One of the reasons I love not teaching school is that my days are my own. Today I completed these two projects:

This vanity has an old round mirror and some really cute vintage handles that still need to be installed.

Want to buy some furniture?!

Sunday, October 23, 2011


Here's where we stood last Sunday evening:

Here's where we stand tonight:


Here's my commercial kitchen, on the east side of the building:

the studio in the center:

and Big John's workshop on the west side:

He's putting in barn-style doors on this end:

Here's the view of the north side:

And the porch that runs along the front of the kitchen and studio:

It's amazing what two old people can do in two half-days of work! We've had to make a trip into town both weekend mornings - and trips to town take hours around here! The old nail gun nailed its last nail about three minutes into the workday yesterday, and this morning we hauled home another load of lumber. There should be no interruptions next weekend!

I don't know how Big John does it - keeping us safe all week long at work, then building a house on the weekends. I do know I'm ready for him to go back to work - so I can get some rest!!

Look for more progress next weekend.

Friday, October 14, 2011


In case you're keeping up with the project:

We finished the first stage of construction. The decking has been laid (lain?) over the entire project. The open space is where the porch will be. We didn't get those boards put down today, but they won't take a minute.

We had perfect construction weather and are a day ahead of schedule! And we're still speaking to each other ...



The Wagon is home!

Five new tires, four new shocks,

two cool license plates,

and one amazing point job later,

she's happily residing at her new home in the country! And we've already had an offer to buy her - but the Wagon is not for sale!

See you down the road!


We only had 1/2 day to work on the construction project yesterday. The posts have set up beautifully, so while I delivered eggs, Big John filled in the holes with dirt and began securing all the stringers to the posts with 4 inch lag screws. I came home just in time to drill the last 6 holes for him! Great timing on my part!

Then we bagan to cut and attach the floor joists. We only got 1 1/2 sections completed before it was time for evening chores. Here's a look at where we stand now:

Today we'll run the rest of the joists and spacers. Then we'll lay the decking, and should be finished with all the building material on hand. Seems like we're moving along at record speed (knock on wood!)

Stay tuned for an end-of-day look at the progress! Happy Friday!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011


Just thought you'd like a peek at the little construction project. We've gotten the hard part done (says Big John.) I'm sure glad the rest will be easy!!

Holes were dug and posts dropped in - 22 of them.

We ran stringers all the way around and through, and nailed them to the posts. Then we poured concrete in each hole.

We had to take a break (yea!) to let the concrete set up. Tomorrow, we'll be back at it. We'll hang joists and lay the underlayment. I think framing comes next, but I'm not the brains of this operation. I'm not really the brawn, either. My role is yet to be determined! (I'm a pretty good go-fer and change-her-mind-er.)

As a finished project, this builidng will be a 20x36 foot structure. There will be a commercial kitchen at the east end, a workshop on the west end, and a craft room in the middle. A small porch will run along the south side of the kitchen and craft room. It's a good thing Big John's on top of this project. There have been a lot of levels, squares, and other assorted details involved, and I'm more of a "good 'nuff" kind of girl - big picture, not fine details. I'm looking forward to the decorating!

Stay tuned for more updates!

Monday, October 10, 2011


We started a little construction project today!

Big John took a week off, and we'll be adding a little "sum'in-sum'in" in the space between these posts - where 36 feet of fence used to be. Stay tuned. I'll post updates when the boss-man allows a break!

Sunday, October 9, 2011





Beautiful rain.



The fall garden of my dreams just wasn't meant to be this year. The drought has really had an impact, both physically and mentally - we're just too afraid to risk our water well on produce to sell. If the drought magically breaks, we've still got time to get plants in the ground, but time is getting short.

Big John and I decided we'd plant just for ourselves this season. It was a tough decision - we'd had so much fun at the Saturday markets, and people have been asking me when we'd have vegetables again. But we have too many creatures depending on this well, so we made the choice. I bought a few plants a couple of weeks ago, with good intentions to get them popped into the ground ... and two weeks later, we finally did!

We gathered our plants, our supplies, and our helpers.

Blue was the only volunteer.

But he didn't last long! Blue wasn't made for workin' hard.

When you're this beautiful, you shouldn't have to work!

This season, we're testing landscape cloth as a weed barrier. We laid that over the rows and secured it.

Then we cut slits and slid the transplants in.

And viola! Tomatoes, bell peppers, broccoli and cabbage are planted!

Just bring on the rain and the cooler weather - we're all set!

Monday, October 3, 2011


Apparently, to see what was going on in the family room.

I draw the line at chickens in the house. I really do.

(Man, my floors are dirty. Sorry you had to see that.)