Wednesday, June 3, 2009

The Necessary Chain of Events

It turns out that it was a ‘good thing’ that I had problems with the nail gun this past weekend. I’ll admit that I am impatient to see the cottage form. I get lost in the physical building of it and sometimes I neglect to stop and think about the necessary chain of events. When I went home Sunday night to discuss with Jeff what I’d accomplished over the weekend, I explained my disappointment that I wasn’t as far along as I thought I’d be.

He said that he was actually impressed with my progress and also reminded me we had agreed that the porch should be finished before the loft above it. I will need the loft fully supported before I sit on top of the storage loft in order to screw in the floor boards. Now why didn’t I remember that?

The answer is that I have really wanted to see the sheathing on the bare bones. I wanted to be able to say that I built most of the cottage pretty much alone up to the sheathing and I wanted it to look somewhat like a cottage. (Yes, I had help with the big stuff like flipping the floor framing over, installing the softwood floor, and wall raising but it has felt good to be able to do the other tasks by myself.) Well, the sheathing can’t get attached until the lofts have been added so I’ve been hyper-focused on the lofts.

If you ask Jeff to describe me he’d explain that I put great importance in knowing that I am self-sufficient in many ways, that I’m not usually overwhelmed by any project or dissuaded from doing anything simply because it’s challenging (he’ll give a huge laugh as he says that), that I can sometimes be stubborn, can impose very strict (and sometimes impossible) deadlines on myself and that I’m basically a tomboy though I do have a softer side (I weld but also sew).

Jeff has been really busy finishing up with school. He used to meet me for dinner weeknights at the cottage then he’d study wearing headphones while I’d built but he was getting distracted. He would study less because he wanted to help more with the cottage every other Saturday but then he’d feel really stressed because he’d fallen behind on homework. Sit and do schoolwork or play with tools? He likes to work with tools too so it was a tough choice, but it needed to be done; he began studying elsewhere and made sure to keep up with the schoolwork. He has only another couple of weeks left before he has the summer off and will begin building full-time while I continue to work on it only weeknights and weekends. I really wanted to have the big stuff done by then so that he’d be proud of the work that I’d done though. I know that we need to be ready to move into it in August so I feel a need to keep an eye on the building schedule.

Now, as I temporarily slow down to re-look at the necessary chain of events, I see that other things really need to be done before the sheathing can be attached anyway. We have the redwood siding laid out alongside the cottage. We won’t be able to work on the exterior sheathing without damaging that lumber unless it’s moved first. Of course, that means moving the stack of windows which means moving the worktable which means moving… I’m not looking forward to any of this because then I won’t be doing construction. I like to see progress but things need to get completed in a logical order.

This week so far I have flashed and screwed down the porch, installed the porch support post and finished the loft framing/floor for our storage area. I’ll finish the sleeping loft then will have more room to move some supplies around. I still hope to get the sheathing attached by the 12th though. That’s just how I am

1 comment:

  1. Arlene always forgets that I'm proud of her everyday. What other woman builds a house for her guy?


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