Thursday, October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween

 Happy Halloween from Darth Vader.

My sister and I dressed ran in the local Boo Dash 5k fun run last Saturday as Princess Leia and Darth Vader.  

My sister wore an amazing Leia wig and a white robe we cut off at the knee for ease of running.  The costume came with an amazing set of foam boot shoe covers.  My costume consisted of a half Darth Vader mask, light saber (that didn't even light up, what the hey?), a morphsuit, a child sized Batman cape, and homemade duct tape belt and boot shoe covers.

Due to a having a cold and it's limiting of my peripheral vision, I had to take the mask off for most of the run, and mostly wore it during photo opportunities.

This was my first ever trail run, and I'm pretty sure if I had weaker angles I would have broken both of them on the uneven terrain.

My sister and I stopped to get some wine on the way home, and an old man legitimately told my sister he liked her hair-do while were were in the store.

My sissy's husband brought her kids to come watch in costume.  They wore a couple of the older son's old costumes.

Titus also brought Jacque with to proudly watch his mother run.  Jacque feared me when wearing my mask mostly because the mask had a button that spoke Darth Vader phrases (which I would have gladly traded for a light saber that actually lights up any day of the week).

I told my sister that we totally had the best costumes there, which was proven true the next day when we were the top story on the front page of the SUNDAY (ya that's right) paper.

It was amazingly fun and I can't wait until next year's run!

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Liquid Silver

For a while we didn't know if we were actually going to get to this point this year...  but it happened.  The floors are poured and it's a mid October miracle.

Our super busy mason hired some help from the most precious retired mason to get it done, and boy do we appreciate it.  Apparently pouring basements is in high demand up in these here parts.

While they were pouring, our contractor was putting up the garage walls!

So many pine trees.

The excavator filled in the gaps around the house now that the walls have cured.

The garage floor didn't actually get poured because the mason had several other basements to do, and apparently they don't need the garage floor done as early.  I guess I would rather park on dirt than live on dirt.

I miss the leaves, but I guess it makes the lake easier to see.  Yay for progress.  The mason was by far the hardest to come by, so since they have done their duties things are moving along a lot faster.  Our contractor says he may have the exterior walls all up in the next three weeks.  That would be neat.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013


After the walls had been poured and allowed to cure for a day or so, they took the forms off.  They have to wait around three days before filling the dirt back in around the outer walls so they don't tip over, but they did fill in the dirt around the footings, since there is dirt on both sides.

Our contractor painted some sort of special gray paint on the outside where the dirt will be up against the wall for water or something.  I must do something wrong with the focus on our camera because it only focuses on one area and the rest of the picture is super blurry... so sorry about that.

The view from the downstairs bedrooms... except with less dirt mounds and more slope to the lake.  And more walls and windows.

Here is my cement tornado shelter hidden safely in the back of the house.

The view from the road doesn't look too exciting, since it is still just a basement.  You can see that the house will look pretty much like a one story house from the road.  I love that the main level is basically level with the road, so we don't have a giant hill to go up or down to get into the garage like many homes along the lake.

Next up the plumbers add the tubing for the in-floor heat downstairs.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Mystery in the Bathroom

Update:  I would like to make it clear that we will have a shower/tub combo in the second bathroom upstairs, so regardless of what goes on in the master, we will for sure have a tub on our main floor!

I've got myself a predicament.   I can't decide what is the more appropriate choice for the master bathroom.  In our final house plans we had decided to go with a shower/tub combo thinking we would have a deeper than standard soaking type tub with the shower inside.

In our old house we had a separate soaking tub and shower in the bathroom.  The soaking tub was nice, but I only used it about 5 times in 4 years.  Most of the time it just collected dust.  I've considered not having the tub and just having a shower in our master because of this.  However, my lovely mother tells me that if I ever have kids I will need to have my very own bath tub.  Also, sometime in the future we would hope to also add an outdoor hot tub which would mean I would probably never use the master bath tub again.  However, this wouldn't be for at least a few years.

I have gathered a few (realistic) examples of inspiration for both shower/bath combos, and walk-in showers...

A bathtub/shower combinations:




Walk-in shower options:



Now I need to know what you all think (all one million of you readers).  With the layout we have going for us, would you go with a shower tub/combo, or would you forgo the tub and just make a walk-in shower?

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Thursday, October 24, 2013

Faux Walls

After the footings had cured, The Money Pit was ready to get some walls poured.  To do this the mason carried over a bunch of metal wall forms to mold the cement with. 

It was pretty amazing to me.  They put some sort of oil or something on the forms so the cement doesn't stick.  They have little metal holders in the form to hold the rebar. 

The low spot in the walls below are where doors or windows will go.

The forms still make the house look tiny.  I feel like only a motorcycle will fit in the mini garage.

We even got a tornado shelter which will be below the front entry.  It is the part that juts out toward the bottom of the above picture on the left side of the above picture.  This is pretty much my dream come true.  Well, a tornado shelter and a house on the lake that is.  I am embarrassingly lucky.  I hate fall.


After the hole was dug and we finally obtained a building permit, it was time to start digging footings.  This digging basically consisted of digging so that the whole perimeter of the house was below some level.  Not sure what that level is.

As they dig further they found pure sand.  I mean all of our soil is pretty sandy, but this should be brought down to the lakeshore. 

The paths dug for footings made the house look like it was going to be tiny.

After the footings were dug, they put some wood forms for the actual footings to be poured.

And then we had our first cement.

And the house still looked super tiny.  Not sure how we are going to fit a whole house on that.

Next up, walls. 

The Money Pit's Pit

I'm a little behind on updating you millions of readers on our progress.

We had some drama getting started including, a City Council meeting, moving the build site 10 feet off an easement to get things moving, and excavating a second time due to the moving.  We now have an unfortunate amount of knowledge about easements, set-backs, and city council meetings. 

Regardless of our drama building is progressing.  And here we officially have a money pit...

A view from the south side yard

At the top of this picture is the chunk of land that has the easement.

The right side of the picture is where the basement will be.  Titus is standing in the garage.

A view from the lake side of the hole.  Titus is standing at the level the garage floor and upstairs will be at.

The future basement bedroom view, minus some sand humps.

View from the lake.  The right side is the easement.

Few words make for lovely blog posts.  I miss leaves.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Brue Money Mayweather

Now that The Poison House is no more, I would like to introduce you all to The Money Pit. 

Months ago when Titus and I first purchased The Poison House we started working on the design of what we would be building to replace it.  I spent an embarrassing number of hours working on an ideal layout before we sent our ideas on to our amazing house designer.

We ended on an L-shaped house with a side drive in garage which Titus and I have both always liked the look of.  The side drive garage also works well with the current U-shaped driveway.  Apparently we're really into letter-shaped stuff.

 The back of the house will have a screened in porch that will come off of the dining room.   The deck stairs will actually go down toward the front of the house not toward the lake like this picture shows.  The transom window above the picture window on the left will be a different shape than a rectangle as it is shown.

Onto the inside...

The top of the picture below is the lake side of the house.  The great room, dining area, and kitchen will all be open to one another.  There are two bedrooms on the first floor.  The master will have a small master bath which has a closet on the other end.  We are pretty excited about having a mud room that also has the laundry in it.

The basement will be left unfinished.  The dotted lines represent potential future walls.  Our designer did a rough estimate of what we might want to do down there so the plumbers could do a rough-in of the future plumbing and so we would know where the furnace and other stuff should go.  The potential design also helped decide where our windows should be placed. 

So that is The Money Pit for you... We are pretty excited but also a little scared.  It has been a pretty crazy process getting everything going, but I think we may be on a roll with building now. 

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Poison in the Air

When we first started looking at the poison house we started by considering the potential to build on.  We had a contractor come to the house before we ever put an offer on to see what his thoughts were on the joint.  Turns out its potential was basically non existent.  The house's location on the middle of the hill causes so many issues already, and they would only increase as more square footage was added.  Not to mention that the existing house is tiny and there just isn't much you can do to change that.

I then asked a question I thought was incredibly stupid.  "How much would it cost to tear it down?"

My estimate:  $20,000.  Actual estimate $5,000.  The difference resulted in a purchase and this...

My mom and I went to watch the live show during lunch on tear down day.  It's amazing how fast the demo man was able to tear the upper floor down since it was just wood.

He just loaded all the junk into a truck and drove it away.

I stopped by after work on day one and just the heavily cemented basement was left... and a wall that had accidentally fallen the wrong way.

As I was checking stuff out, I saw some of the newspaper that was used as insulation flying around.  The demo man was nice enough to cut some larger chunks out of the wall for me.  The house was built in 1942 so the papers they used were from 1941 and 1942.  I had always imaged the newspaper to be shredded or torn and balled up, but they just lay it flat in the wall with a piece of tar paper like stuff.

I hope to frame some of the papers that I saved for the new house.

So the poison house is no more....  Up next is our plans for our new blank slate.