The last couple of weeks have been some serious steps forward and not backwards (although we have had some minor issues). There seems to be a lack of spare hours to put into the restoration/building process when you take out all the other hours that we spend on frivolous things like work and groceries and sports!!! But overall we have accomplished a couple of important steps before winter.
The first picture shows our basement slab who would imagine getting so excited about some concrete!!! Changed the look of the basement though and allowed us to move on. Three days later we had the water tank in place and the windows and doors delivered. That was on the last really awesome fall day that felt like summer. What a lovely day I even took the dogs down for a swim that afternoon.
Three more days later it felt like winter had arrived as we put the windows and doors in. There was snow on the ground and in the air and the wind was howling. I do believe that I froze my fingers holding the doors in place while Ron did the fancy work!! But it was worth it to have a sealed building (well, ok the wind does whistle through a couple of doors but at least now we don’t have huge openings). As you can see from the second picture Ron’s design of the two doors balanced by the window looks good under the bay windows and back door. We are very pleased with the windows and doors (despite the fact that the delivery guy got lost seems to be a theme with delivery people) but it of course brings up the long term question of the other doors and windows as well as inside trim for these. For every question we answer it seems to create 3 more questions.
So with the doors and windows in we commenced with the insulation and vapour barrier. This is relatively easy work except that we need to ensure that all the electrical work is done first see the above comment about more questions than answers. All sorts of possibilities have to be discussed and planned for so then we need more supplies and it takes more time. But as the third picture shows we have most of the wall insulated; just need the speaker wire for the surround sound and the speciality wire for a hot tub and then we can finish up that wall.
Martin was back to do his portion for the gas connection and then it was another waiting game for the meter. They actually arrived on the day that they were slated to this is a first for SEnergy. So the exciting fourth picture is the gas meter. Three days later Martin was back to put in a temporary furnace and the meter was running and heat was warming the basement air. Of course, there were some “technical” issues with the thermostat and a small repair had to be made but really it wasn’t my fault!! Really it wasn’t, I did exactly as I was told to do.
Now being able to secure the entrance as well as have an air tight “envelope” means that we could proceed with the last of the plaster and lathe demolition. The stairwell to the basement was not in particularly good shape but couldn’t come out until the above factors were taken care of. So last week down it went and hauled straight out to the dump in Spencer’s little truck. In the picture it doesn’t really look like that much plaster but it was enough to give me a work out carrying it out by pail full.
More progress was made outside. After doing all the prep work Ron ran out of time to organize the extra help necessary to pour the garage pad ourselves. So via VCM we hired a wonderful concrete finisher named Pierre. He met me at the site on Friday and we put up some additional bracing. Ron and I went back and finished that up in the evening and the following morning the concrete trucks pulled in. It is apparently unusual to get a private concrete pour on a weekend so we owe some thanks to Harry and Bob at Inland Concrete for making that happen. Pierre’s crew was great; in at 8 am and three of them were gone by 10:15 when the pour was complete. That left Pierre and one worker to do the finishing work. They pulled out at 2 and at 4 Ron, Alyssa, Maria and I tarped the pad. It’s a good thing we have so many rocks as they worked as wonderful “tarp” holders. Special thanks to Kirk and the VCM group for the tarps, Spencer for the delivery of them and the girls for helping to wrap it all up.
Freed up doing the concrete pour allowed Ron and I to build walls in the basement. We started with the wall between the mechanical room and the “games” room. This is where Martin will pull all his lines to the boiler. Things progressed nicely; the only issue with this wall is that it blocks the heat from going up the stairwell to heat the main level. Oh well; progress must be made! Then we worked on the bedroom and storage wall that divides with the games room. This resulted in a door inventory as well as decisions about closet doors and other design elements; items like this slow construction when I am anxious to pound nails but one must plan ahead and patience is a virtue.
Even though we have heat and light we haven’t been able to work in the evening as Ron is putting in rather long days on campus due to the CUPE strike and the fact that he is senior management. This will also affect our plans to take vacation time next week to finish up the walls and get a good start on the electrical but I am trying to stay philosophical about the progress. So in the meantime I continue to work on things like prices for kitchen cupboards, bathroom fixtures, radiator refinishing and hardware for pocket doors. There is always something on my construction list and will be for a while. Every once in a while I want to dive into a sewing project or a book but there is always something to research so I am trying to stay focused.
So I believe that pretty much means the blog site is up to date. I know I have a couple of pictures that I would like to post sort of before and now during restoration phases. But it’s late so I won’t get to that tonight. I believe with a total of 8 pictures and some text (*thanks to my cousin Lynette for telling me she enjoys the words as much as the pictures) you get the “picture” so to speak. Keep those comments coming and now that we have heat feel free to visit (call first land line number is 668-1315). Remember goodies are always welcome as are refreshments!!!
Thanks for your time.
PS I only lost 1/8 of it tonight when I failed to save once so that is progress as well. I did find the spell check though so that saved some time reading through for typos.
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