Thursday, January 24, 2013

Putting a Lid On It

It took 8 full days of work, about 2,000 brad nails, 3,500 board feet of 1X4 cedar, 18 feet of scaffolding and a hilariously diverse collection of ladders; we called in a couple of favors, and our shoulders are incredibly sore, but.. we have a ceiling!

Within a couple of days we fell into a pretty solid rhythm at a nice pace.  I and one other person alternated between the scaffolding situated in the living room and the jungle-gym of ladders arranged in the lofted bedroom, while Christy manned the chop saw set up in the kitchen.  When we hit a good groove, we could be shouting numbers at Christy three or four sticks down the line, while she handed up the next piece as soon as the previous one was nailed.  We were a well oiled machine, I tell you!  Thanks to Riley and Matt for monkeying  around with us!

This week we begin drywall.  By "begin drywall", I mean we watch the subcontractor we hired start drywall.  Having been offered the advice, unsolicited, by several people, we got a couple of quotes and decided to hire out the job.  The difference in cost after we bought the drywall and all the tools, would have been nominal.  This also frees us up to tackle some other tasks which have been sitting on our to-do list for a while.

To name a few:

1) weld together the kitchen sink
2) paint and cover the soffits
3) salvage some sort of desk and make it into a bathroom counter
4) find a chandelier
5) connect our toilet's liquid overflow hose to the septic line
6) rack the perry

OK, seeing it typed out like that, I realize that our to-do list sounds strange.

I have no further comment on the topic.

Ceiling looks nice though, doesn't it?

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Let's Go Inside

Allow me to take a second to describe the scene of Christy and I walking into our freshly sealed and insulated house after turning on the radiant floors for the first time and heating up the slab overnight:

 It's the morning after the coldest night of the year.  Our muddy boots are lying in a pile by the front door. The ambient temperature is a comfortable 60-something-degrees. We have turned the stereo on and up and are both dancing around in our socks, stopping periodically to strip off layer after layer of clothing and hug each other. I tell Christy that as much as I enjoyed our wedding, this may be the happiest I've ever been.  Christy searches through her phone looking for someone to tell who will understand how exciting this is.  The sun in shining and I'm sure birds are chirping.  For the first time since fall, our feet are warm.

 So yes, radiant floor heating is about the greatest invention since, oh I don't know, dancing. The entire house feels evenly heated. No cold spots or hot spots, and no 10 degree temperature difference between upstairs and down that we get from the wood stove. Of course, the floors are intended as a secondary form of heat, since the system runs on expensive electricity. We've run wiring for a ceiling fan to mitigate that temperature discrepancy, and we're in no way soured on wood stoves. It's just that after two years of living in a yurt, a warm floor and insulated walls, a warm house that we didn't have to start a fire for... it's all pretty magical.

So it was with bubbling good moods that we began working on the interior. Working in a good mood makes things move so easily it seemed like our shower stall framed itself in twenty minutes!

What a great time to start tackling the ceiling. 
As I've mentioned, our vaulted ceiling is getting the same 4" tongue-and-groove cedar that we used on the exterior of the house, because we got such a good deal on it from the mill. Before we put it up, Christy covered two of the three glu-lam beams supporting our roof with a dark stain, hoping to distract from the glu-lam-iness of them. I think they look great. We rented scaffolding, which has made the whole project pretty easy. We're halfway done now, and should finish up the ceiling this week.

 Not being able to resist, we dragged the spare mattress from our airstream into the house and created a little nest for ourselves in one of the closets to sleep in for a night. It proved to be so cozy that we're now thinking of using the "closet" as a bed nook. An area designated just for sleeping, with no clothes, computer, clutter or distractions. A nest in the rafters. The "bedroom" would then become an open, upstairs living room, with some creative clothing storage somewhere. It's not certain yet, but I'm really getting into the idea.

 Tell us your thoughts on the bed nook! Claustrophobic?  Dark?  Feel too much like an art student's studio apartment?  Or is it cozy, enveloping and secluded? Sexy, even?  I'm sure Christy will consult Pinterest on bed nook ideas, and I'm going to remind myself what A Pattern Language has to say on the subject.  It will be interesting to see how this idea progresses.

Maybe we're just so excited to be working inside that we can't help wanting to move into this first finished corner!

Saturday, January 5, 2013

House Building Time Lapse

We thought we would celebrate the new year by reflecting on the accomplishments of 2012,
because listing all of our goals for 2013 would just scare us.

Without further ado: