Weekly progress report: getting things done

Earlier this week, Rude Ass supervised me while I finished the wood wall in the living room. He taught me to use his compound miter saw so I could make my own cuts. He did make the one tricky cut around the electrical outlet, but beyond that he just stood back and watched.

I think I did a pretty good job of it, if I do say so myself. 

I really like some of the oddball touches I put in there.

Since Rude Ass left me unsupervised with all his power tools, I put them to use on Sunshine’s mom’s stool.

I used the table saw to cut a piece of plywood for the bottom of the seat since the old one was pretty much rotted. Then I used some of the dropoffs from the cut reclaimed wood, and I made a stool for Sunshine’s side of the closet.

I’ll be hunting down a nice cushion to make sure it’s comfy for him.

I enjoyed unfettered access to Rude Ass’s power tools while it lasted. Mostly, I think everybody out here is horrified at the thought of me running a table saw so it probably won’t happen often. Then again, when they see what I did, all by myself; when they hear how quickly I did it; when they realize I didn’t hurt myself or fuck anything up–maybe they’ll let me use the power tools more often.



Sunday, Sunshine started the fireplace. 

He’s using cinder blocks for the chimney since we’ll be covering it with limestone once it’s finished. 

Of course, Biff helped.

Sunshine will be working on this project as he has spare time between paying jobs. We’re hoping to get the house air and water tight soon, so that he can slow down a bit and save some wear & tear on his back.

He did manage to finish the firebox itself, so that’s progress! 


So yesterday, Rude Ass was ready to get back into the swing of things at our little house. We started the reclaimed wood walls. First, he had to cut the OSB and attach it to the framing.

Actually,  first, he had to move all of the outlets and switches so that they would be flush with the finished walls. Then he put the OSB in place.

Then we got to start putting the reclaimed wood on the walls.

I picked boards and told Rude Ass which ones went where, and he graciously cut and nailed boards until lunch. 

After lunch, we finished the bedroom walls.

Once those were finished, I was ready to move on to the living room wall, but Rude Ass was ready to call it a day. I can’t blame him, he did all the hard stuff all day.

He got the first row up and then he let me have at it. I started nailing boards to the OSB until Sunshine said I was running out of daylight. 

I’m hoping Rude Ass is going to help me finish the living room wall tomorrow,  because I’m so excited to actually see stuff start to come together!

The roof!

The roof went on the house yesterday!

That’s our carpenter’s butt. Because you know you care.

They still have to put the on the edges, but the roof is on.

Sunshine now sees why I requested so many lights in the kitchen. 

The bedroom feels cozier now, and I really like those blue textured glass panels even better than before.

Miss Mollie did not like the sound of them banging around on our roof.

She really didn’t like it at all.

Sunshine says he will start on the fireplace when he gets back from Louisiana later this week.

Mollie thinks the windows are pretty neat.

OK, so really, she doesn’t like being up so high she can’t jump down on her own. But isn’t she cute?

It still seems like it’s never going to be finished, but I’ve already started piling stuff on our couch in storage for the day when I can move it all into our new home. It never hurts to plan ahead, right?

Final note: the carpenter won’t give me a straight answer about when we’re going to be doing the reclaimed wood walls. He is the guy who nicknamed me “change order”…

Weekly progress report: choosing my battles

Lots of stuff going on around here this past week, and I’ve struggled to keep up. It’s that time of year when the heat makes even the healthiest of people feel lethargic, and I am definitely not the healthiest of people. I’m on the couch today, fighting off my second nap of the afternoon, because laundry (which never ever seems to be completely done).

My corn has reached the required height for us to go plant the remaining sisters for our fall crops. I do not have the energy to do that shit today, not in this heat. Maybe one morning this coming week I’ll be up to it.

Sunshine and I had a small battle of wills over the interior walls of our little house. I wanted sheet rock so I could paint it purple. He wanted reclaimed wood because he hates sheet rock. I came to the conclusion that I have to choose my battles, and this was not the one I was choosing. He also agreed to let me paint the outer walls of the storm shelter closet any color(s) my little heart desired to make up for not getting sheet rock walls to paint. I don’t think it was a very big concession to wring from him since he was going to have to do an adobe type treatment on those walls and now he gets out of doing that work.

Side note: tomorrow, we’ll talk more about the reclaimed wood. It truly deserves its own post, as everybody seemed to get into the spirit of it AND some of the wood has an awesome back story.

Today we picked up our electrical engineer and trekked over to the Home Depot to buy all of the supplies to wire the house. I didn’t get to choose any sexy stuff today, this was mostly about getting the stuff that stays unseen inside the walls and ceiling, like conduit and wire and breaker boxes and such. We did get a fart fan while we were out, and the nice employee who helped us find everything we needed was rather amused at how much enjoyment I got out of saying “fart fan”. 

Side note: Let’s face it, my inner twelve year old boy just refuses to grow up and farts are downright funny as hell.

The electrical engineer did cause me to change my choice for lighting inside the safe room closet. I wasn’t happy about giving up my sexy track lights I had chosen for that room, but I couldn’t argue with his logic about how low the ceiling is in there. I hate it when people come at me with irrefutable logic, because I like logic and don’t argue with it much (which sucks when it’s as emotional as the fucking ceiling fans are for me). I had to choose a very unsexy ceiling-hugging strip light to go in there so we don’t give ourselves concussions trying to get dressed. I also had to change my choice of outlets and switch plates, because the ones I wanted were really spendy. I wanted the brushed nickel finish but they were three times the price of the white or ivory ones. White it is, I guess.

Side note: Sunshine said we could always change the outlets and switch plates and stuff to the sexier ones in the future, and I really do have to choose my battles. He’s already distressed at how many light fixtures I want for the kitchen. Speaking of kitchen, the cabinets are coming up in the future, and there will be some custom (or semi-custom) cabinets involved because I refuse to have any upper cabinets and I refuse to have a microwave on a countertop. The kitchen cabinets are the battle I’m choosing, so I’m trying to earn myself some goodwill in advance of that declaration of war.

I did almost experience a total meltdown in the recessed lighting section. I want LED lighting throughout, which wasn’t a problem. The problem came from the limited amount of choices in wavelength. I don’t want warm lighting, and I don’t want soft lighting. I’m going with a lot of cool colors throughout my house and yellow tinted lights would just be gross on it. Sunshine actually understood why I was upset because he has the soul of an artist and knows about color theory. The employee who helped us did help me find some lights in the “daylight” wavelength, which was about as good as I was going to get without getting into fancy color-changing LED lighting and shit.

Side note: another one of those “choose your battles” situations. I’m absolutely determined that there will be no microwave on my countertop and no upper cabinets to house a microwave, and that’s the battle I have chosen. I’m just glad I didn’t have to put forth any effort to convince Sunshine that the outlets with USB ports built into them were a good investment; he was so excited to see that such a thing existed that he instantly agreed to not one but TWO of them.

I have a meeting tomorrow morning with the electrical engineer and the carpenter to walk through and mark the locations for outlets, fixtures,  switches, ceiling fans, and etcetera. Once I do this walk-through tomorrow, things are going to start happening and any changes get expensive. I’ve already been nicknamed “change order”, for fuck’s sake; but only because people started making decisions while I was out of town.

Once the electrical is done, the roof goes on. Once the roof goes on, the fireplace gets built. After that, things will probably grind to a halt for a while so that Sunshine can quit working himself to death to pay for things. The little house does me no good if I don’t have Sunshine in it with me, and having Sunshine in it is another battle I’m choosing.

the bigger picture

I got a request for pictures of the whole house in progress, so here they are. The exterior walls are almost done; they just need to finish the complex webs of concrete posts and beams inside the foam blocks (that’s a lot of concrete mixing, toting, lifting, and pouring with which I want no personal involvement).

It’s kind of starting to look like something. Once they finish that concrete poured, the electrical cables will get run and then we can put a roof on. Once the roof goes on, Sunshine builds the fireplace, and after that we can put pockets in the exterior doors and start drying out the inside of the house to get it ready for finishing. Then I get to do the fun stuff, the lipstick and mascara, the tile and paint and fixtures. I’m just ready to have a real kitchen again.

Final note: that’s Biff you see in the pics. Biff has a new nickname, bestowed upon him by the Kitchen Magician. Biff is now known as Goldilocks. It’s sticking, whether he likes it or not.

Progress on our little house

Some years ago, Sunshine was presented with the opportunity to go into a defunct tile distribution warehouse and get what he wanted. He took me with him to help choose, and to help carry boxes of tile.

Amongst all the tile, we found quite a bit of this cobalt blue iridescent murano glass mosaic tile. It went in the bathroom of the magic bus. There’s still quite a bit left, so it is going to become my kitchen back splash.

We also found this crate with three large pieces of textured blue glass. Sunshine gave one of them away (without my permission). The remaining two pieces were both the same size and shape, so they are going in the bathroom wall to further filter and diffuse the morning sunlight coming through the windows on the eastern wall of the house in the bathroom.

That’s our carpenter’s butt you see in the background.  The opening centered under the blue glass will be a sliding barn door, and the walls on either side of the door will be covered in reclaimed wood (Sunshine’s choice–I wanted sheet rock so I could paint the walls midnight blue or twilight purple or something).

Even though reclaimed wood on the walls walls wasn’t my choice, I think it’s going to be very pretty when it’s finished.