Our Retro Bungalow

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

Monday, December 9, 2013

Cussin' and Freezin' (and some framing)

Monday evening I was in the trailer listening to Dean and Tannon 
hammer away as they installed the hurricane ties on the trusses. 
It was dark and very cold. 
It was Dean. 
When I bought the five pound box of 'shorties' at Wheelwright
for securing the hurricane ties, 
I hadn't realized there was an option to get the 1-1/2 inch nails;
 I brought home 1-1/4's, which is just short enough
to make them a lot more difficult to work with. 
A few minutes later..
Dean again. 
And I could tell it had REALLY HURT.
After a long pause, the hammering continued.
I thought to myself how grateful and proud I am that my husband isn't,
 and never has been, the kind of man that uses curse words.
And then just moments later...


We all have our thresholds, don't we.
His thumb was pretty %#@! sore for the next few days.

All the hurricane ties got  nailed in that night.
Tannon is awesome and was here a few times this week to help Dean
work on those ties and the framing in the basement.
Why the framing in the basement, you ask?
Yeah, I know...
the plan was to put that off until after we were closed in.
But framing the basement was just about the only thing that could be worked on.

Other than being really cold, Monday wasn't too bad, but Tuesday...
Tuesday was the the first big snowstorm of the year here along the Wasatch Front.
Dean worked on the framing in the basement that night.
When he'd finished for the night and came in, he mentioned he was concerned
that our pipes might freeze and that we had better
get showers before bed just in case.

Sure enough...
frozen pipes in the morning.
No water was coming into the trailer.
Even our hot water heater wouldn't run.
We had insulated the hoses that are connected to the trailer,
but apparently it hadn't been adequate.
So, Wednesday night we worked on beefing up the insulation and putting
 more heat tape on.
It was so cold working out there that I was nearly in tears.
I'm a wimp when it comes to cold.
I can easily deal with triple digit temperatures, but frigid cold -
no so much.
I thought about the Willie and Martin handcart company as I watched Dean's hands
 working under the beam of the flashlight.
My toes and fingers and nose were hurting just standing there next to him
 in the nearly single digit temperatures.
And I knew he was cold too even though he didn't once shiver, let alone complain.
As I continued on thoughts of the account of the Willie and Martin
 handcart company and what they went through,
that's when the tears threatened to spill over.
Here I was with a heavy coat, a fleece liner under that, gloves. thick socks and
 boots and still shivering and miserable, but just a
few feet away from a warm shelter to retreat to.
So, not only did my fingers and toes ache, but my heart was hurting too for those
 poor souls stranded in such unimaginable conditions so long ago.
The thought also came to me that if there is such a thing as a
 "John Wayne Man-Up Award",
my husband should be the recipient.
Seriously, he always has and always does whatever needs doing
 no matter how difficult, uncomfortable of unpleasant it might be.
I know...my mind is a quirky thing and I can't decide if that's a curse or not.

Let's sum up, shall we?

Two days later (and we figured it'd be at least two days) our Wednesday night efforts
 paid off and the water started flowing again.
We were ecstatic when it finally started drip, drip, dripping
and then FLOWING from the kitchen sink valve that we'd left open.
Saturday, though, it all froze up again.
I've been showering at Jo-Tan's.
He's been showering here.

is how.
He's been putting 2 liter bottles of water from our storage on top of our little oil heater.
"It works great!", he says.
(he's a guy and you cannot make me believe for a minute I'd have the same experience)
It also works great for face and hand washing, brushing our teeth and
keeping Ally and the chickens hydrated.
What's hard and really bothers me most is not being able to easily
mop the floor and clean the trailer bathroom .

I won't be dishonest here and sugar-coat this week's events -
it's been frustrating, for sure.
We had not anticipated this kind of cold until January, which
 is usually the norm here in Northern Utah.
We'd planned on being all closed in by then.

We'll figure this out and get through it, though,  and it'll be
a part of our story that we look back on with not a small degree of satisfaction
remembering how we stuck it out and weathered this storm well.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Thanksgiving Week and So Much To Be Thankful For part II

After the crane did its job of lifting all our trusses up onto the roof,
Dean and Dave and Michael spent the entire rest of the day getting the first ones set.
The next day was Thanksgiving and our hearts were overflowing with gratitude for 
the incredible men from our ward and neighborhood that showed up in the morning
to help us before their families gathered together to celebrate and
feast and enjoy each other's company.
And the next day...
they all showed up again!
And they worked 
And the day after that...
yep, you guessed it;
they showed up again!!
After crawling in bed those nights and turning out the light, 
we talked for a while about how we could possibly thank these 
men enough for their tremendous gift of service to us.
This will forever be a very memorable Thanksgiving weekend.
All the trusses got set, some of the sheathing on the trusses was put on,
and most of the sheathing on the walls was finished.


Without much commentary, here are some more photos...

Our awesome crew from left to right:
Michael VanBallegooie, Clayton Barrett, Dean, Tannon, Dave VanBallegooie,
JayDee, Reed Wood, John Hunt and Doug Hunt.

And finally...

We are so happy and so excited.

one more thing!

Dean got a good jump on some of the framing in the basement.
He got the entire east wall of the basement cut and laid out
(it's really long),
he and Tan put it together, and I got to help stand it up.
He also framed up one of the bathroom walls, but I don't
have a photo at the moment of that or the east wall standing and installed.

These photos are not in proper order.
I know that down the road I'll regret not putting more
effort into these posts, but there are other things that
need my attention.

Thanks so much for dropping by!
We do enjoy and appreciate your comments and support.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Thanksgiving Week and So Much To Be Thankful For

Dean called me from work late Monday morning.
He sounded discouraged.
That worried me because he rarely gets discouraged.
He was feeling overwhelmed by the amount of work needing to be done 
while the weather forecast was favorable.
His plan had been to save some cash and get the trusses up on the house 
with good, old-fashioned manpower.
Without even mentioning my intentions, I started calling around looking for crane services 
as soon as our conversation ended and I'd hung up the phone. 
It took awhile, but I found two potential guys with cranes. 
Todd with "Hang 'Em High" said he could even provide a crew, 
but wouldn't be available until Saturday.
Andrew with "RJP" said he was wide open Tuesday and Wednesday, 
but didn't have any contacts for a crew.
I texted Dean with the information.
Dean started trying to put a crew together.
As soon as we found out on Tuesday that Dave and his son, Michael, would be 
available all day Wednesday,  Dean called Andrew back. 
Andrew was now booked for Wednesday! 
Dean texted me with the bad news as I was about to check out of my 
medical billing and coding class. 
It was all I could do to hold back the tears. 
I walked across campus to my next class, only to check and see if 
some assignments I'd turned in had been posted and then I left. 
I was headed home to do some desperate online searching and calling for 
another crane service and hopefully for Wednesday. 
Crane operators are hard to come by and they stay pretty busy. 
Now I was the one that was discouraged. 
I was almost home when Dean texted me again. 
He'd found a crane in Salt Lake that would be available for Wednesday! 
It'd be more expensive coming from that far away, but I didn't 
even wince as I wrote out that check for $392 for an hour an forty-five minutes of 
crane service before the crane and its operator drove away Wednesday morning
leaving our trusses atop our little bungalow.

And here we go with some photos... 

There are more photos, much more to tell,  
and much gratitude to express for the
wonderful men that came and worked
so hard helping us out over the long
 holiday weekend.
But, I'm done with this for tonight.
I'll post 
Part II
of last week's progress tomorrow.
It's been a long Sunday.
Thanks for stoppin' by.