Friday, July 21, 2017

Raising Joists

Everyone is so very tired, but they were back out there at 6:30 this morning.  They’ve been working from 6:30 till noon and then breaking from noon till 3:30.  Then, they’ve been working hard until 8:30 or so.  That heat of the day is just brutal. 

              Right now, we are in Floor Joist Mode.  We should be dropping in a bunch of them today.  The trick is that they had to be cut to fit their exact length now that the bents are tightly together… so Jeff is going to have to make the cuts, and one of us will use the Japanese pull saw to get them prepped.  We have 27 more to place.

              The girls have spent the week with Grandmomma, and it’s really worked out perfectly.  Pretty much every day we’ve gone back there mid-day or late at night, so we’re getting in lots of snuggles and talks.  Having them on site would not only be dangerous, but distracting.  So, they get a little vacation! The boys, on the other hand, have been a huge help.  For the most part, we’re having them alternate being out here.  Mainly, they are our runners, which is especially helpful with me on crutches.  A couple friends have generously brought us dinners, and mom has made sure we have breakfast. 

We’ve had a few friends come out and lend a hand, which is a HUGE help. Heck, even just the words of encouragement are awesome for us right now. It takes a village, and we’re very thankful!

Friday, July 14, 2017

Crane Day 8

Jeff is mentally and physically wiped out.  I’m thinking he may need to take a couple hours to force himself to watch a movie or something.  He’s fried…. and we’re only halfway through the crane rental (and his vacation from work).  I’ve seen him like this twice.  Once, after he came back from working on the Disney systems, when he went multiple stress-filled days working on site down there with zero sleep.  The other time was during the insane adoption/legal battle.  I’m hoping he can see the progress he hopes for, so he can take a deep breath soon!
              Bent 4 is now up, which really gives me a clear picture of the size of this house.  For some reason, it seems like the first two girts always have issues, so today has been slow moving.  We’ll need to place 5 more girts and then floor joists before we can start the crazy process of putting together and placing the rafters.  The goal is to get the rafters/trusses up and the roof panels on in the next 8 days.  It’s a tall order, especially when we’re a crew of three.  I’ve been sitting with my foot up, making sure the cooler is stocked with Gatorade and water and keeping my boys on track as they help Jeff.  After Sunday, Mike will be back at work, and we will be down a man.  The sun is hot, the beams are heavy, and tension is high!

Monday, July 10, 2017

Crane Day 4

Over the past 3 days, progress has been difficult, but slowly and surely, it’s coming along.  The girts and some floor joists went up between bents 1 and 2.  At the end of the day, we raised bent 3, which was far less stressful that then first two!  On Tuesday, the guys struggled with the girts between bents 2 and 3.  They needed a lot of adjustments, shaving off here and there, and each one of the first two girts had to be taken off and placed back on 4-6 times.  So far, that was our most frustrating day as far as progress goes.

              On day one, I hopped down off of the low side of the foundation, which is not very high, and hit a dip in the ground.  My ankle snapped…. two torn ligaments.  So, I’ve been in a boot and on crutches (and in pain) ever since.  This was NOT in the plans, and it’s incredibly frustrating for me to be sidelined when there is so much for me to be doing.

All in all, things are going well… the joint work is just gorgeous, and I’m really started to get a good idea for how this house will feel!

Saturday, July 8, 2017

Raising Day

Today was a day that we have been working up to for years and years!  Our crane showed up, and we set to work raising bents one and two.  The bents were braced for the action with temporary bracing, which we removed after the bents were up.  Once they were raised, we had to move them to their spots, and brace them into place.  These first two bents are the trickiest of the four, because they have to stand on their own until they are connected together the the girts.

What is very cool is that Jeff is pulling out all of the tenons that were cut, fitted, and labeled so long ago!  It all seemed so abstract until today.  Now, it's all making sense to me, and I can finally get a true grasp of the woodworking that Jeff and Randy have been doing since 2013.