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October -- Framing

Monday, 1 October --- Video: MPEG
Another month has begun. This is day 85 (that's work days, ignoring weekends & holidays). Here's where we are:

Framing for the most part is complete. This means most of the work will be hidden from the camera for a while. The camera will continue to get pictures because there is still quite a bit of outside work to do : the front deck, stucco, driveway, utilities, etc.

Our public hearing was postponed for two weeks. Last Thursday, the people from Santa Cruz Planning went to the site & could not resolve what I had given them with what they saw. They also asked for more drawings, which is pretty much how I spent my weekend. The new hearing should be 17 October.

Hopefully I'll soon have time to make a framing movie. It should be fairly short. I also want to post some pictures. I didn't realize just how high the property sits. It's visible from all over the place, and the view is simply phenomenal.

Tuesday, 2 October --- Video: MPEG
Wednesday, 3 October --- Video: MPEG
Thursday, 4 October --- Video: MPEG
Friday, 5 October --- Video: MPEG
Monday, 8 October --- Video: MPEG
Last night was the annual Santa Cruz Anniversary fireworks. I looked for a link, but there aren't any of interest. Oh well. We were told by some friends that our lot was the perfect viewing area for the fireworks, so this year we took out a ladder & had some friends up to the second story to watch. There were 6 adults and 5 children ranging from 4 to 12 years old. Since there's a gaping hole where there stairs are going to be, and many of the larger upstairs windows are also just holes, it was, shall we say, highly stressful! But the view was fantastic. That's all it took to remind us just how wonderful this new house is going to be!

It turns out that we can actually see the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk along with the harbor and just about everything else beachside. This means with a small telescope we'll be able to watch the weekly boat races next summer.

Now for house news --- last week the roof framing was completed, and some minor plan modifications were needed:

We also spent part of Saturday looking at fixtures. This is becoming a weekly thing. I don't know how we're going to fill our time when the project ends & we no longer need to spend the weekend at the home center. The tub's been picked, as have the fireplaces. We want plain, boring fixtures for the most part, and of course the supply houses want you to buy the most expensive. We both think a toilet is a toilet. There's really only so much you can say about them, yet there are hundreds of models to choose from.

This week the plumbing gets roughed in.

Tuesday, 9 October --- Video: MPEG
We've stairs!!! Yep, we can finally get to the second floor without going up a ladder. Lynn & then kids are going to be ecstatic!
Wednesday, 10 October --- Video: MPEG
Thursday, 11 October --- Video: MPEG
Friday, 12 October --- Video: MPEG
Monday, 15 October --- Video: MPEG
Tuesday, 16 October --- Video: MPEG
Wednesday, 17 October --- Video: MPEG
The public hearing finally happened! See the results.
Thursday, 18 October --- Video: MPEG
I wandered around today. Work continues (obviously). Inside they've framed in the pocket doors and arches, as well as much of the rough plumbing. I was really happy to see that the drains are cast iron. It looked like they were going to be plastic in the beginning. I don't know that it will make a lot of difference since all of the walls are going to be insulated, but every little bit helps.

The water line is connected at the street, and the sewer trench is dug. It can barely be seen, but the footings for the front deck are also dug. The area under the deck will be a concrete slab and since the deck is to be waterproof, it should provide an area almost like a standard inside room. Things are really taking shape.

Friday, 19 October --- Video: MPEG
Monday, 22 October --- Video: MPEG
Tuesday, 23 October --- Video: MPEG
Wednesday, 24 October --- Video: MPEG
Thursday, 25 October --- Video: MPEG
Friday, 26 October --- Video: MPEG
This week they finished connecting the sewer to the street, did some more rough plumbing, formed & re-barred the area under the deck, and probably other things that I missed. We asked that the indoor plumbing be run separately from the outdoor, so if we ever put in a whole-house water filter we don't end up filtering the water to the grass. This was missed, but I'm sure it will be corrected.

Last weekend Lynn & I walked around to see how the house was coming along. It looks like we're going to change the kitchen a bit -- not a problem since no cabinetry has been done yet. Originally, the kitchen was going to have an island. We drew the island in chalk and found this really doesn't work. We're going to do a peninsula instead. It will start next to the kitchen sink and be about 8' long. This necessitated another change: we were going to do Corian counters with the built-in sink. We're tired of the mildew & problems with our current sink. We were then going to do a granite top over the island. Well, we cannot very well do a granite peninsula, it would look way too funky, so the whole kitchen is going granite. Soon we will be off granite shopping.

We also noticed a problem with the swing on the master bedroom door (which, unfortunately, isn't drawn on the plans I posted. Oops). As drawn, the door is hinged about where the closet starts & swings toward the closet. This manages to block both the closet and master bathroom entrances when the door is open. We're going to have it swing the other way (towards the bedroom) which solves this problem.

We're getting rid of the downstairs fireplace. We've been going back & forth on this for a while and finally decided it simple doesn't make any sense. If we're downstairs, chances are it's to watch TV or shoot pool (usually with some sport or another on the TV). It has gas run to it and is framed for a fireplace, so it will be trivial to add one later. We'll probably also have the flue run down as it's something else that will be easier to do now, but we'll leave the fireplace out.

Finally, the stairs to the deck off of the kitchen. These can be seen in the artist's rendition. I didn't like them, so I redrew them as a platform that comes off of the middle of the deck, with the stairs going down each side to a landing which then turns 90 degrees toward the front yard and down 5 more steps. Since for all intents & purposes this is the front of the house, I thought it made for a grander entrance. The builder called & suggested that maybe this isn't a good idea. His idea was the exact opposite : have two platforms come off of the ends of the deck, with stairs going toward each other meeting at a landing that would then continue to the yard (one less landing, fewer steps, etc.).

I drew this last night. Ick. We're going to propose my original idea without the extra landings (the stairs go all the way to the yard). Assuming it works, it should be exactly the same amount of labour as the original plans called for, but I think it's a better look.

Now for appliances. Looks like we've settled on appliances. A 36'' Viking duel-fuel stove (duel-fuel for the self cleaning oven), a 21ft3 Upper/lower refrigerator/freezer, and we've given up on the drawer-style dishwasher and are going with the quietest model we can find. For major appliances, that leaves only washer & dryer. We're not sure we want to move our 10 year old stackable: how much time can it possibly have left? We're going to wait to see if we've any money to buy new ones.

Saturday, 27 October --- Video: MPEG
Sunday, 28 October --- Video: MPEG
Monday, 29 October --- Video: MPEG
The weekend saw us again at the lot. We met with Steve on Saturday morning. We don't need to know exactly which fixtures (yet), but do need to pick a manufacturer because they need to install the valves.

The plumber re-did some of the lines so the outside faucets are on they're own line. Hooray!

Today we were supposed to have a concrete pour, but it's been postponed due to rain. Looks like they put some roofing felt up today to keep water out of the house. Makes sense.

Tuesday, 30 October --- Video: MPEG
Wednesday, 31 October --- Video: MPEG

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