Our Retro Bungalow

Our Retro Bungalow
The journal of the making of an old house into a lovely new home.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

What's up?

The framing.
That's what.

It's 90% done, not including the garage. 
Dean took Wednesday off from his 9 to 5 and he and Dave knocked out a huge chunk of it.
There are just a few little interior walls and the entry left to frame.
We ran out of studs. 
We have another lumber order being delivered tomorrow.

On Friday we had the garage floor poured and finished.
These guys did a good job. 
I don't have a photo of the finished floor,
 but ya know...it's a garage floor. 
We're pleased to have that done.

Since we ran out of lumber for framing,
Dean, Tannon and Michael got some sheeting put up.

It's been a good week as far a progress goes and we're excited about that,
but we've been sick.
 Last week I think I mentioned that Dean hadn't been feeling well. 
His flu morphed into a mean sinus infection. 
And I picked up a sore throat. 
Both of us have coughed all night long all week long. 
We're pretty worn out. 
Dean went to Instacare today and got a Zpack. 
He should be feeling better soon. 
Thank goodness. 
I worry about the man.

One last thing...
We've come to the conclusion that a bonus room over the garage just isn't going to work out. 
We tried and tried and tried, but every design idea we could come up with
 caused complications that we just weren't willing to deal with. 
Oh well...it was a bonus room after all. 
We'll get along just fine without it.

It's late.
Thanks for stoppin' by.
It's time to go to bed now and get some sleep cough.
G'night, y'all.

Monday, October 21, 2013

WAH-HOOOOO! Walls are goin' up.

Here we go with this past week's day by day progress here at
Our Retro Bungalow...


I ordered our front and back doors.
I was glad to have that decision done and behind me.
I had to order the front door that soon because it'll take
about a month to get it since it's a special order.
My door guy, Tim at BMC, has been so good to me.
I found an image of a door online that had absolutely no leads as to what
company makes it or where to get it.
Tim searched and searched and found it for me.
I love it, but had some anxiety over the fact that it'll be west-facing and it's solid wood,
as opposed to fiber-glass.
Dean told me that if that's the door I wanted, stop worrying and order it already.
He'll probably be cussin' me when we end up sanding and painting it every few years.
Dean got a text from our flat-work guy saying he'd be able to do our garage floor on Wednesday.
We were not expecting him for another week or two.
When he got home from work, he immediately turned on the hose
and began saturating the soil in the garage.
While the water ran, he stripped the footing forms for the piers
and put some more mid-point blocking in the load-bearing basement wall.
Ry and Abigail worked on removing the concrete patio around that last basement window
that needed a new window well installed.
With Dad's help, they got the well installed, bolted and back-filled.
Before going inside and cleaning up for the night, Dean noticed some significant settling
in the garage; as much as eight inches. this, of course, was disconcerting.
I was pretty much useless because I'd hurt my back earlier that afternoon.
It wasn't even anything spectacular that has caused me
constant lower back pain for a week now;
I was just lying on Jo-Tan's front room floor with Madimo.


Dean called first thing in the morning and ordered a truck-full of rock for the garage floor
and canceled the concrete pour and flat-work.
The rock was delivered just a couple of hours later.
The flat-work guy was not happy. 
We felt bad about cancelling his work, but what were we supposed to do?
We weren't willing to take any chances with settling after our garage floor was poured.
Dean got the first stair stringer for the basement stairs measured, cut and installed.
He got close to finishing the mid-point blocking in the basement
 and moved a lot of that delivered rock onto the garage floor area.
Dave got the first few wall plates down.
Shawn, our window guy, came out and measured for the basement windows.


Dean is sick.
He called in to work saying he'd wouldn't be there and then rolled over and slept for three more hours.
If this man sleeps in that long, he's pretty bad off.

I left for classes and when I returned home several hours later Dean and Brother Dave Stroud
were working on the house together. Brother Stroud said he had the day off
and decided to come join in the fun.
Have I mentioned what wonderful neighbors and ward members we have?
Seriously, they're awesome.
The final piece of OSB and rim joist was put down to complete the upstairs floor,

the forms for the piers were built,

the basement stairs were built,
the rest of the window well bottoms were filled with rock.


Dean is still sick. I'm pretty sure it's a flu.
It takes a lot to slow him down and he's really slowed down.
He did, however, finish back-filling the garage with wheelbarrows-full of rock
to bring the level back up to grade.
Dave got more walls built (not up, just put together).

Dean built a little set of temporary stairs up to where the back door will be
to make it easier to get up and into the house.
With the back problems I've had this week, it was really hard to get up there
(and especially to get back down)
to see all the progress.
I don't want to miss any of it.


Dean is sill pretty sick.
He'd brought his work computer home Thursday night and worked from home
all morning and into the early afternoon.
Things still got done on the Bungalow, though.
Dean and Dave raised the South wall.
Dean got all the blocking done in the basement, worked on the framing for the utility room
and framed out the door for the under the stairs storage space.

More framing on Saturday. Dean, Dave, Michael (Dave's son) and Tannon.
THIS is the kind of progress that gets us EXCITED!
Jossi joined in and helped the men raise the east wall...

Like I said...

Sunday, October 13, 2013

This Week's Progress Report

Amazingly, I remembered to record notes every night this week.
So, here's the day by day of what went down.


More OSB went down; the floor was almost complete.
I rented a hammer-drill from Home Depot and when Dean got home we went about
completing the installation of the new window wells. He drilled into the
old foundation wall (did you know old concrete is especially hard to drill or cut? Yep.) and hammered
the bolts half-way down into those holes. I stuck the washers on, then the nuts and tightened
them down as best as I could with a little ratchet. When we were done with all the bolts, nuts
and washers, Ry and I finished back-filling around the wells. There is one more
small basement window that needs the new window well installed, but it's surrounded by
the old concrete patio. Hopefully we'll get to that this coming week.
Remember the photo of the pier footings from last weeks post?
Dean got the re-bar in them suspended. In last week's photo it was just
sitting at the bottom of the hole.

*Sorry. No photos of Monday's work.


Dave got another good chunk of OSB nailed down. He also installed a few more
structural straps and fixed some issues with a few joists, but I can't remember exactly
what those issues were (I need to keep more detailed notes).
While Dave was working up-top that evening, Mr and Me were working down in the
basement installing the tubing for the radiant heating; something we'd never done before.

When the tubing was all laid down, Dean got it pressurized for inspection.


Inspector Mike came to inspect the pier footings and radiant floor system and, of course,
they passed. Dave worked some more on getting my dance floor finished.
And then it rained. A lot.
So, Mr & Me holed up in our little trailer home and reviewed all the details of the floor plan and
made a few changes - mostly on window placement, size and configuration. And the man...he just gives me that "Are you ever gonna not change your mind on the window plan?"
Oh, and he watched more "Green Acres" on Hulu while I went through and edited
all my idea books on Houzz. Truthfully, we were both a little grumpy Wednesday night.
It happens every once in a while to the best of us, right?


Lots more rain - all.night.long.
Jo-Tan invited us over for a pot roast dinner, complete with potatoes, carrots,
onions and gravy. Oh, boy was that wonderful! The company was wonderful too.
I threw a batch of pumpkin muffins together for dessert before we left.
It wasn't a productive evening, but it was cozy and relaxing and I think we needed that.


Friday was awesome.
Dean took the day off from his 9 to 5 and worked here all day.
He and I re-routed both water lines - North Ogden and the well.
That was a big pain in the bucket, I'll tell you what!
Dean and Dave hit it hard and got all the OSB flooring down except for the front entry.
Turn on those party lights, baby and
I got the basement all cleaned up for Saturday's big job. Construction is messy.
Dean went through and checked all the nailing and did some additional nailing here and there.
Mr & Me loaded 3,500 pounds of concrete into the ol' pick-up truck and hauled it off.
I know!
Will it ever end?
we met with the truss maker!
I was so excited about this meeting. I kind of put the poor guy through the wringer, though.
I just had a lot of questions and had him draw up various possibilities on his computer.
He was very patient and I appreciated that.
And why shouldn't he be put through the wringer?
If he only knew what I've put my door guy and window guy through. He got off easy.
We told him we'd be ready for delivery in 3 1/2 weeks!


Saturday was big and, once again, I had underestimated the magnitude of what lie ahead.
So, when I went to rent the bull-float, trowel and 2 long handles, I asked for
only a four hour rental. I didn't return them til nine hours later.
We ordered concrete and filled in the basement floor voids and the pier footings.

We are so thankful for Luke, Terry, Michael and Dan, great brethren from our ward, and our good sons, Justin, Ry and Tannon that all showed up to help out. And I can't forget Tan's brothers, Jaren and Rennan, were there for us too. We couldn't have done it without these guys.

And after the concrete truck was done here at the Bungalow, it headed over to
Jo-Tan's for their back patio...

And here are the finish photos...

The pier footings.

The basement floor.

A few side notes:
We are holding up well in our little trailer.
The early morning temps have gotten down to the high 30's, but we stay nice and cozy with our little oil heater that we dug out of storage. The trailer has a furnace that works well, but the fan make for a lot of dust and is a bit too noisy for my liking. I prefer the oil heater. It's kind of like the old radiator heaters in old houses, but is small enough that it's not too much in the way.

I will tell you, though, that the mud gets to me.

With all the rain, we are surrounded by it and I admit that it's driving me a little nuts. The floor of our little gypsy dwelling is always dirty. I keep my flip-flops in ready position at the end of our bed in case I have to get up in the middle of the night. I can't bring myself to walk on this floor in bare feet or stocking feet, because as hard as I try, I cannot keep it clean.

Alrighty then.
I'm looking forward to this week's progress.
I'll tell ya all about it next week.
Thanks for stoppin' by.

Sunday, October 6, 2013

More slow-n-steady...

I just happened to be here when the truss guy showed up to measure 
our foundation walls on Monday morning.
How fortuitous that was!
I was so happy to be able to talk to him directly, with the blueprints 
laid out in front of us, about some concerns - 
the biggest being the discovery of that three foot foundation wall under the old front porch.
I showed him what we were dealing with and we discussed the possibility of extending the roof another 18 inches over the south-west section of the porch and relocating the footings and support posts.
 I was concerned about how this change would effect affect (oops! it was late) the roof lines.
I told him that Dean and I would discuss it and let him know our decision
 as soon as possible.
So, on to the next question...

"If I want to have Dutch gables, do we have to let you know? Do the trusses need to be built to accommodate that detail?"
"Yes", he said.
And then he continued...
"And ya know what! If you want Dutch gables on the west side, 
then you DON'T NEED that footing and support post."
"WHAT?!", said I.
"That's right.", he replied.
"Because the trusses will be built approximately two feet shorter to accommodate the hip of the Dutch gable , which puts them under a span that would require support."

This was about the happiest news I could hear from Matt-the-truss-guy and 
not only because we no longer have to worry about
 pouring a footing in a very difficult spot OR moving the footing/post 
and compromising our roof lines...
it's also very happy news because a few weeks ago I asked Mr Mossi 
what he thought of doing Dutch gables on the front of the house. 
He just looked at me from across our little trailer table, shook his head, 
put his face in his hands and didn't say what I know he was thinking, 
which pretty much goes like this...
"WOMAN! Another change?! Seriously?! You make me so tired."
Needless to say, Mr Mossi is now more than happy to indulge my Dutch gable whim.

Now, on to what all went down this past week.

Remember all the back filling we did on top of the rough plumbing?
Well, it seems we over did it and Dean had to take a couple of inches off the top to make room for the under-slab/under coil insulation. I got the awesome job of moving that 12' long by 3' wide by 2' high pile of gravel into the window wells. Dean says that counts for a good, hard workout at Lady Fitness. I guess so. I just makes me feel good to get that floor space cleared up and cleaned up.

Dean, with some help from Tan, got the moisture barrier, insulation and wire grid down for the radiant heating in the basement. Yes. We are installing radiant heating in the basement, but only where we removed portions of the slab to put down the new rough plumbing. 
So, the bathroom and SW bedroom will be heated with the boiler. 

Here are some photos...

More than half the floor joists are down and Dave started laying the OSB flooring.
He called the OSB that he nailed down "Sheri's dance floor" because I told him 
that when I started seeing the floor go down I'd be so happy I'd get up there and do a jig. 
The jig will wait til later this week when the entire floor is nailed down.

It rained poured Wednesday night.
That was hard.
We just wanted to get out and get things done, but we were holed up
in our cozy little trailer and ended up watching 4 or 5 episodes of Green Acres on Hulu.
Actually, I read while Mr watched.
I think he feels a special bond or kinship with Oliver Wendell Douglas.
Or maybe he's just got a crush on Ava Gabor?
Wednesday's rain made for a Thursday evening of playing 'Catch up' and all I could think about was missing out on a dinner date with girlfriends in Salt Lake because Dulsanna was in town.
Such is life, I suppose.

Dean also got all the digging completed and the footings formed for the main front porch and
the roof for the back deck. Tan showed up to help with that too.

On Friday night, Saturday seemed daunting.
Dean had some hard stuff planned that needed to get done.
I got off easy because I'd had a hectic week and we'd run out of everything from bread to t.p.
I desperately needed to do some grocery shopping.
Saturday turned out to be  very successful and satisfying because Rich and Reese,
my brother and his son, and Joe all showed up to help.
This was such a blessing because we really needed more man-power.
First they heaved and ho'd and hoisted that big,old fuel cistern under the
NE basement window up and out of the ground!

This part (above photo) was a crack up! They were doing a 'leg press' maneuver and it was 
working great but Dean ran out of leg before Rich did; Rich's are twice as long.  

After that BIG job was done, Rich, Reese and Joe all stuck around and back-filled
the GIANT hole left by the extricated tank and helped install the window well for that window.
They hadn't had quite enough yet, so they stayed even longer and helped hand shovel the
 big, NE window well. Mr Mossi reports that that was some tough diggin'.
We are so thankful for Rich, Reese and Joe.

One other technicality before I sign off:
the foundation hold downs got installed this week. They hold the house onto the foundation; a concept apparently unknown or undiscovered when the original house was built.
Our Retro Bungalow ain't goin' nowhere.

That's it.
Mr Mossi has given up on me and gone to bed.
I think I'll join him.
Thanks for stoppin' by.