Saturday, October 31, 2015

Warmth Cometh to Bag End!

So, the past few weekends have seen much activity at our home. But, like always, we had to call in experts to assist us with our projects. This time, we'd like to thank:

  • Reeve Basom, expert pick up driver and stove wrangler
  • Ben Cheney, expert pick up owner
  • Kate Stephenson, expert all-around-assistance and stove wrangler
  • Ben Linder, expert lender-of-tools, and telephone advice giver
  • Topher Waring, expert stove wrangler, trim painter, non expanding foam sealer and all around expert
  • Marie Waring, who stacked all our fire wood while we weren't looking! 
We accomplished two projects in one day with the help of this crew. First, now that the walls are in, we were able to install our 4 by 8 foot windows which arrived last week. And second, we picked up and brought home our new steel and soapstone stove too. It's incredible the difference it all makes downstairs!! 

We tried to unload it as the diagrams suggested.

And had to rethink it!

Inside! Assembly!

It is so exciting!

You can see the old stove in the back, and this new one oriented to the whole room.

Our first fire!!

And then here are a few photos of the windows!!


Monday, October 12, 2015

Welcome Friends!
This is our very first blog post. Ever, of all time.  So hold on to your hats, cause it's gonna get wild. First up, after much deliberation and thought, we have decided to name our house Bag End.  Presumptuous? Probably.  Fitting? Definitely.  We love good food, are known to indulge in second breakfast and elevensies, and really, really enjoy being at home.  And like the Hobbits that lived at Bag End, we occasionally go off for adventures, there and back again.  Our adventures tend to feature fewer creatures intent on killing us, but we do incite a similar desire to make three movies out of every little thing we do.  

So, on to the real news.  Bag End is becoming our very own Hobbithole more and more, every day.  These last two weekends have featured heavily Topher and Marie teaching a master class on home improvement, AKA, teach a monkey named Paul how to use tools.  Last weekend, the good elves of Rivendell lent their knowledge and healthy appetite for work to help us build two concrete footers where the garage doors were.  Here are pictures of that process

This is the best BEFORE pic we could find.  But yall know there were garage doors here.  Still are, in fact, in this photo.

Marie finishing the taking down of this door.

Topher demonstrates the wine bottle technique of smoothing the concrete.  Had he not immediately beforehand demonstrated the drink a bottle of wine in 10 seconds technique, the concrete would've been much smoother.

I made concrete! Its was too soupy...

Sarah poking concrete?  Yup, that must be it.

Sarah having a heart to heart with the concrete.  Good talk.

A wall is being built! See, four sticks that haven't fallen over!

This is the beginning of Day 2 - the concrete was poured the week before and now it's time to turn this empty space into a wall and window. Sarah's good at stuff.

End of Day 2! My that went fast.

I wonder if I shouldn't set a mouse/squirrel/moose/bear trap tonight.  Seems we have a few easy openings.

End of day 3! We thought we'd get all of it built and sided by the end of today.  We didn't, so we called in reinforcements!
Our friend, Ben Linder!  He brought in the big guns, litrally.  An oscillating multi-tool, pneumatic nail gun, chalk line and a sweet tool belt.  With his expertise and superior tools, we finished the second wall in like a tenth of the time.  Mostly, I think, cause he had a nail gun. 

Here is a wall. Here is a Paul.  Neither project is yet complete.

Almost there!
Turns out we didn't get an "After" photo yet.  We were too excited to run into town and do a trash run and then see "The Martian," which made everyone cry, including the snarky teenagers.  Awesome flick.  As we were talking about how cool life is, and Planet Earth and all that, we walked outside to the most gorgeous sunset.  The clouds were doing so many things! We had to stop and gawk and point - it was awesome!
Here's a wee bit of them, much later on, from the dam.  Still being great!

And of course, our Precioussss. You can rest assured, I ain't putting him in my pocketses.

More of everything soon if we don't forget that we started a blog!