Ghon and I both took off work on Friday to prepare as much as possible for the big demolition 'party' on Saturday. After taking the kids to daycare, we headed out to Home Depot and Lowes to purchase a few additional supplies, of which included a new mailbox. The old mailbox’s door didn’t like staying closed, and as a result, last weekend we found several pieces of our mail near the creek bed – and it was 2 months old. Not a good thing. That’s probably where the first phone bill that I never saw is buried.
Ghon did the HD shopping while I took a phone call for work. A quick trip to Lowes and we headed back to the house where our friend Tim was going to meet up with us to give us a hand. I headed back out into town to pick up the drinks we needed for Saturday. When I returned, Ghon had the new mailbox post installed (but no mailbox installation) and was getting ready to work inside.
The task of the day was to get as much sistering of the floor joists complete. In the middle of the room, the joist was cracked and completely separated. Here, three of us installed two new beams. This basically acted as a new joist and the broken joists as the sister beams. After securing this section, we hauled out a ton of drywall and lumber and tried to neaten up a bit for the next day.
That evening, the kids helped pick up some of their toys while we started food prep. Three pork shoulders went on the smoker, macaroni and cheese and baked beans were prepared, and two BBQ sauces made. I pulled the pork off the smoker about 1am before going to bed.
Saturday, March 02, 2013
The Jonathan alarm went off at 5; and the Genevieve alarm when off – and never hit snooze – at 6am. Ghon rolled out of bed and to the house about 7, while I got the kids ready and got our sitter Aly oriented to the house and waited for her reinforcements. I baked a coffee cake and started packing the truck. Our friends Larry and Charlotte were the first to arrive, followed by Charlie, Tim, Cassy, Clint, Kevin, Dave & Jen (to our live-in house where Jen helped watch the kids), Travis, and last but not least, Kathryn and Cecil. When I arrived everyone was busy working in multiple areas of the house.
The teamwork was amazing. Husband and wife demoing closets and pulling carpet in the master bedroom, rough hewn lumber being removed from the original logs in the living room and full on demolition of the lower level bathroom – everywhere there was activity. A mallet was swung to knock out a wall while I ripped carpet up off the stairs. We cut a hole in the screen of the upper level porch to toss out carpet, sofa cushions and just general trash – and someone below hauled and sorted to the burn pile or dumpster. It was amazing.
For as much as we were able to finish, we did lose about three hours of time when a big issue was discovered. I had to make a trip to Lowes for additional washers and bolts. When I left, there was work everywhere. When I returned, I walked into the living room with everyone staring into a hole – and saying “we found a body.” Well, while they did not find a body, yet, they did produce a skull. Now, I am petrified of going in the attic because I don’t want to see the snake skins or run into a snake. I can only imagine what I would have done if they showed me a human skull. Thankfully, it was an animal of some sort, but no one is quite sure of what kind of animal. I’ve decided to dub it a unicorn. They guys are thinking a sheep or goat, but yeah, I’m going with unicorn. Ghon just Googled sheep skulls, and is going with sheep. Now why is a sheep skull buried in our house foundation…
Only one side of the floor was able to be resupported and leveled, knowing we could not find a way into left side of the room. After the bathtub was removed, Ghon could see dirt near the plumbing and decided to pull off the plywood to see underneath. Here is where you can either 1 – curse that he did, because he found a new issue. Or 2 – be thankful he did as we found a support log with damage that needs to be corrected. The discovery brought us to a standstill. There wasn’t enough room to get under the floor to jack the floor to support and level it out. There was also a concern regarding putting pressure on the floor to jack up the living room ceiling joists. There could be a plan in place that starts tomorrow – but it took a lot of deliberations and a variety of ideas to come up with a plan.
After this discovery, the damaged beam, not just the skull, a fire was built, a BBQ dinner served and a bit of relaxation followed. We slowly started bidding our friends goodbye, and were able to get a pic with most of our help.
Remember the long list of to-do items? Here’s what we did:
Hang sister joists
Install new joists
Remove drywall from dining room
Remove electric from dining room
Empty/clean out storage room
Finish removing partition from bdrm/storage rm
Frame in two walls, closet, bathroom wall in living room
Empty/clean out attic
What a success!
Larry & Charlotte, Kathryn & Cecil, Kevin, Dave & Jen, Cassy, Tim, Charlie, Clint, Travis & Aly – THANK YOU. Thank you for driving the distances you did to wreak havoc on our house (or watch our kids). You really did take us leaps and bounds further in this project, and we really can’t thank you enough for spending your day with us. What an amazing day. We are nowhere near ‘done’ this project, but are so much further along with the help of great friends. For those of you that didn’t make it and wanted to – let’s pick a day to share the fun. There will be so much more to do.