Saturday, May 31, 2008

We insulate the dining room, or, the best laid plans of mice and men.

There is a saying, “The best laid plans of mice and men…” It means you try your best to make life turn out how you want, and sometimes things work out like you intended, and most of the time, not.

So, for the big holiday weekend, the big decision was, do I get work done outside to push the shop along a little further (top priority) or do I work inside because they are predicting thunderstorms and rain. Because they kept predicting rain for Monday, I elected to get some work done in the house. The next step was to install ¾” cabinet grade oak plywood to “bridge” the (old) outside wall framing to the (new) inner wall framing. This will make for nice, sturdy, attractive deep window openings and window seats all through the house eventually.

So, that was a bit of fiddly work, since the old framing is only a very rough approximation of square and straight and level and plumb. The trim will hide all the gaps and look ship-shape when finished.

Getting that done allowed us (That’s me and Joel, my small-group/church homie) to blow cellulose insulation into the exterior walls of the dining room. That is the dustiest job there is I think. It got so cloudy in the room that you could “see” the other person well enough, but I couldn’t really see if he had the insulation nozzle ready for me to turn the blower on again. We had to resort to manual verbal controls with a few gestures.

After a few initial hiccups, the job went pretty smoothly and we packed 24 bales of insulation in the space that a normal house would have used 7 or 8. Mark my words, foot thick walls will become de rigueur before long.

So that’s all great. We made a plan, we got our equipment and supplies, and we accomplished the plan. So why the title? How did our plans go off track? Monday was gorgeous all day. Not a drop of rain. A few clouds, a little breeze, but no thunderstorms at all. I understand chaos theory and why that makes predicting the weather a risky game under the best of circumstances. But they totally struck out this time.

Oh well. If that was the worst thing that happened over the weekend, it was a good weekend.

To reward ourselves for a (dirty) job well done, we had burgers and whatnot at the local exotic game restaurant. Joel had the elk burger and I had the angus burger with olives and mayo. Neither of us could really decide if the sodas and burgers tasted fantastic because we had worked so hard at our manly work, or if they were just that good. We also had an interesting conversation about the nature of life on the New Earth in the afterlife. The basic question was how you could have sinless perfection, without ending up in a static unchanging everlasting existence.

Can you have problems that need solving in a “perfect” world? Will we need to perform work? We concluded that yes, you can have work, and progress in a perfect existence.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

In Local News

In local news, the lines on the roads were freshly painted for the holiday weekend. The roads were looking very celebratory in their bright yellow trimmings. We were lucky it was done considering how behind the state is in their road budget: it was a rough winter. And apparently we can count on roadkill and other litter being left out a little longer this summer; clean up crews are being cut back in favour of spending on bridges and other structural projects.

At least we'll have the pretty yellow lines to distract us from other disturbing messes.

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Garden update...fancy that!

Well the tulips are finishing, the hyacinths have given up and are laying flat on the ground...and then some late varieties show themselves. And what do you know? Not only did I plant fancy daffodils at some point, I also planted fancy hyacinths and tulips. Check them out because they are gorgeous:

Can you believe those are tulips? We had a bunch come up and they lasted a good week. And I'll let you know what's coming next: the first allium opened up yesterday. I'm sure I didn't plant any "fancy" variety of those...but apparently I wouldn't remember even if I did! The lilies have also multiplied like crazy; they are thick as weeds.

Concerning the shop, Troy got a couple loads of gravel on Tuesday to put under the floor. He's been spreading it out with the tractor (woo hoo! more tractor work) but apparently I can look forward to a bunch of hand work to really get it good and level. Somehow even a small tractor like Troy has does not have quite the finesse we're going to need.

All for now...til next time,

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Drywall and forms

The update tonight is that Troy is done the drywall in the dining room. (Yes, a little, Yippee!, would be appropriate.) Next up is the plywood boxes to frame the windows so we can then blow in the insulation. But they may have to wait because...

Troy started working on the shop foundation again this afternoon. (And it was beautiful weather for it.) Although the work from last fall is not going to waste, he needs to add a 2x6 to the top of the forms. Hmm...not that he was doing that today. But he was working on preparing the ground where the floor will be poured. Troy was very excited to start the tractor up for the first time this spring.

That's all for now,

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