[Worldtrippers home] [Mountaintop home]

August 7, 2010
August marathon 3: Upstairs downstairs


Gail offers a dish of water to her new friend, Maynard the lizard

When Russell and Cameron left our mountain home construction site to return to the Bay Area on Wednesday, August 4, Gail got to spend a night alone by herself. During her solo workday-and-a-half, she continued to work on the downstairs ceiling. She installed what drywall she could herself, including covering the plumbing chase that runs along one of the glu-lam beams. She also taped and mudded the drywall that had previously been installed with the help of the guys.


Gail tapes and muds the plumbing chase on the downstairs ceiling

Gail also made a new friend. During one of her trips to the outside wash basin, she noticed a particularly friendly lizard. Before long, she realized it would appear every time she came outside. With patience, Gail was able to get remarkably close to it. She set out a water dish and the lizard was delighted. Gail named the lizard “Maynard” – as in “Good stuff, Maynard” from the old Dobie Gillis television show.


Good stuff, Maynard!

On Thursday, Gail was paid a surprise visit by our local friend Dennis. Although he is no longer officially our building inspector, he took advantage of a one-day substitution because our regular inspector was out. Dennis went ahead and made a progress inspection, signing us off for another six months. (Technically, he signed us off for having finished the roof. Go figure.)

Dennis also commented that we are doing a better job than most other homeowner builders he encounters. He was especially complimentary about the work that Russell was doing on the stairs.

Russell returned as scheduled on Thursday evening, this time without Cameron. With one more full work day on Friday, we decided to devote the entire time to finishing as much of the downstairs ceiling as possible.

The first task was the “hell hole” that had frustrated Cameron so much a few days ago. This time we took a different approach. Russell cut a piece slightly too large. We brought it up into place, then marked the exact points where it should be trimmed to. The process worked like a charm, and we filled the hole almost immediately.


The “hole from hell,” drywalled at last!

The rest of the ceiling went similarly like clockwork. Russell measured a piece and Gail cut it. Together we fit it into the ceiling. While Gail installed it with screws every 12 inches, Russell moved on to the next piece. By the end of the day, the ceiling was done.

    
The downstairs ceiling, drywalled, taped and mudded

Gail enjoys visible progress, so we set one more task for Saturday morning before we departed. We decided to clean up the downstairs as much as possible, then move the upstairs living room arrangement down to the lower floor. This involved relocating all of the tools, moving a huge stack of OSB sheets over to the back door, then dusting and vacuuming everything. We reduced the OSB pile by putting half of it down as subfloor.

Finally, we moved most of the upstairs living room furniture downstairs, including one of the sofas, the coffee and end tables, and the television and VCR. Gail was thrilled at how good everything looks.

    
Upstairs: before and after

    
Downstairs: before and after

It was a fulfilling end to a long week. With Cameron’s and Joss’ bedrooms cleaned out and a new living room downstairs, our mountain home is getting more home-like every time we come up here.

    
August 7, 2010: The current state of our mountain home

 

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