Saturday, August 2, 2014

Stones and Sticks

Finally, the workers are all gone, the contractor paid, the gates are locked at night. Our Barndo now enters the next phase-- interior framing and finishing. We have been blessed with rainfall this summer, something we have not had the past few years of the drought. Well, when it rains, some things have to wait.

One of the things that had to wait was our driveways. We had to wait for most of the big heavy trucks to be done before we started putting down rock, or it would just get smashed to the center of the Earth.
Once all the big trucks were done, here came the rain! Two things. First, you cannot move wet dirt or gravel as your tractor will sink. Second, if it rained at the gravel pit, the gravel is full of water, too, and gravel is sold by the ton--- who wants to pay for water?.  For a while we had a cycle of rain, then, just enough time for things to dry, then rain again before the gravel trucks could make it out.

Finally, we had a clear spot and they brought over 100 tons of crushed limestone.  That's a lot of rock! Using his front-end load on his tractor, Dan 'smoofed' the gravel around and built the beginnings of a driveway to the 14' gable end door, and most of a driveway up to our parking area by the west porch.  Remember what your Kubota dealer tells you--- your front end loader does not make your compact tractor a bulldozer (ahem).

Then, on Sunday, July 20, 2014, the skies cleared and the driveway firmed up. "Secure the camper! We're moving today!"

Old Blue (you've heard me talk about the wonder truck often) squared up his fenders and backed up to the RV, squatted down and drug it down the road to the oil field, turned around and headed uphill to our new Barndo! Big Dan backed the trailer up to the door, with young Dan carefully directing. Right before the trailer entered the doorway, a bump in the driveway caused it to lurch left. Immediate stop!

After two or ten times of straightening and backing, the trailer was finally inside! Wow, what a difference. Although I love my son dearly, living in his backyard had gotten old. Neighborhood dogs had built forts under the RV and stored all manner of dog treasures there; everything from sticks and stones, to paper and bones! Major clean up job ahead! Then we can level the ground and he can have a proper yard.

What an improvement being on concrete makes! We moved our refrigerator out of Danny's house into the Barndo - right outside our door! It's the little things that make life go round. Like being able to get something from the freezer (did someone say BlueBell Ice Cream?) or a gallon of milk, without going into someone else's house!

Last Sunday, the guys began framing up the guest suite and got two walls up. In a Barndo, the metal 'perlins' make the walls really thick when you add wood framing. Our window sills will be at least 8 inches deep!

Once all four walls are up, Lonestar Plumbing of Caldwell will be out to install the on-demand tankless water heater and all the pipes on that end of the barn! Then my work really begins as I install the shower, tub and toilet. A real bathroom is on the horizon!

Hedy does NOT like the pneumatic nail gun sound AT ALL. The first day we started framing, she got into the trailer and climbed up onto the dinette. We could see her through the window. Not sure if she was using the computer to search for help, but anytime we start framing, she either goes in the trailer or runs down the trail to Danny's house.

One of our next projects (in our spare time!), will be to construct a dog/goat alley from Danny's house to our barndo.


Who's lookin'?