Construction Journal Entry Week of 12/26/04

12/28-30/04 Andrew and I went up to the property for 3 days: Tuesday through Thursday.

I came down with a cold the previous Sunday, but I was on cold medicine and didn't feel too bad. We stopped in at Marilyn's on the way, but nobody was home. We arrived at 1:00. There was about 5 inches of snow on the ground, but I was able to drive the pickup all the way to the trailer anyway. A flock of gray jays came around for peanuts as soon as we were parked.

After we moved in and had lunch, we went across the road and talked with the neighbors who were up for the week. Their car was stuck in the snow, but they got it out just as Andrew and I walked up. Lisa told us that they had been having a problem with a squirrel who had gotten into their house. She said they always had mice in their house, and that they had just caught the squirrel. They took the squirrel down the road and let him go on the other side of Sears Creek in the hopes that he won't find his way back. I didn't say anything to her, but I felt pretty good about getting my building rodent proof.

Andrew and I went up and sanded the posts and beam that were due for another coat of varnish. In the process, Gus' vacuum cleaner failed. It sounded like something pretty seriously wrong with the motor. I didn't want to spend any time on it so I rigged a bag over the outside of the output hole on the big shop vac with duct tape. Then I duct taped the two hoses together and duct taped a pipe to the end of the hose so I could use the attachments from Gus' vacuum on it. That vacuum has a lot more suction and with the bag it worked great.

We forgot to bring the chess set or any other game, but we had a deck of cards. So in the evening Andrew and I played a lot of speed. Andrew won most of the time.

On Wednesday morning it was snowing and there was about 3 inches of new snow on the ground. We decided we didn't want the pickup to get snowed in so after breakfast I backed it down to the road and parked it. Andrew did a little sledding before we went to work.

We moved the hanging tarps so I could plane the beam between Grid C2 and D2. Then I planed the beam up to the entry room wall and I planed the D2 post. Then Andrew and I scraped and gouged the post and beam. When they were ready for varnish, I swept up all the chips while Andrew vacuumed the rest of the floor. Then I vacuumed the posts and beam while Andrew scooped up the chips and took them outside. In the evening, we played a lot more speed.

On Thursday morning, Bert and Ernie came by to visit. Then we went up and varnished. Andrew did the posts and I did the beam. They looked real nice when we were done. Andrew did some more sledding and we watched the snow load slowly slide off the roof. We left for home at about 11:00.

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