Thursday, April 29, 2010

beam me up scotty

We've been waiting for this day for so long. After rain canceled several attempts, we were finally able to raise the beams into place. Salvaged from the Landmark feed store on Stimpson Ave before it was torn down, these beams are one of the most stunning additions to our construction. They are massive! With Piper's careful maneuvering on the forklift (which rear wheel drives makes squeezing through framed doorways a challenge) we were able to set 6 beams into place. It seems as though every weekend has a forecast of rain and this one coming up is no different. We eagerly await a work party with friends to paint and set floors joists and continue framing.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

first day in our woods

With the fear of rain canceling our work party, I spent the day in the woods behind our house pulling garlic mustard from the hillside. The task was an enjoyable way to cover every inch of our wooded lot, and provided a great opportunity to identify what plants are growing there. Besides the garlic mustard there are little invasive species. Clearing out the slope revealed some beautiful varieties of ferns, lady's thumbprint, spring beauties and lots of celandine poppy.

Like many parts of the west side, there is evidence of dumping on our hillside. Though most all of it had been removed I found a beautiful antique glass bottle in great condition. It was later in the afternoon when Piper and I ventured back into the woods beyond our neighbors lot did we really find some treasures. We explored the hundreds of wooded acres that lay to the east of our lot. It was such a beautiful hike and we're really excited to be living inside the city and still have wooded area to explore. We found some of the largest sycamore trees I've ever seen and discovered a great young pawpaw patch. Their beautiful flowers were in bloom and I couldn't resist taking one with me.

Friday, April 23, 2010


A most exciting of days. With the help of muscle, chains, apple cider and good tools, 7 oak beams reclaimed from the old Landmark building, ranging in size from 8-16 feet long were hauled, dragged, lifted and transported to the job site. Two will stand as posts in the open spaces between the kitchen and dining rooms, and the rest will span the ceilings. Although the threat of rain is near, we plan to raise the beams into place with the help of many friends, tentatively planning a work party for Sunday afternoon.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

West Wall Up!

An exciting milestone in the progress, the first wall is framed up on the west side. Prep for the north wall which will secure the joists, we'll raise it in the morning.

Thursday, April 15, 2010


Just slapping the finishing touches on the pad.

6 inches of concrete

2 concrete trucks, 6 guys, and 2 and a half hours later, we have ourselves a concrete pad. The finishers are putting on the final touches and we had some left over crete for a few patio blocks and a concrete pig. Time for a patio party!!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

simply radiant

Another grueling day on all fours, Piper laid down the vapor barrier, white foam insulation, steel reinforcement and most exciting, the pex plumbing for our radiant heat floor. The lines will run a few inches below the concrete, and when fed with hot water, will warm the floor below our feet.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Down the Chute

Getting an early morning start, the concrete truck arrived and with the help of friends, the ICF walls were filled with concrete by 10am. The threat of rain held off and now we're ready to work on the plumbing.