Category Archives: The House of the Farmer

When we finally signed the final paper work for our dream home in France, we were told by the original owners that the house was so old that it was originally called “The house of the farmer”. There was no address, no close neighbors, just a farmer and some cows. Now, all these centuries later, my family is the owner of the house of the farmer.

Moving 10 Tons of Gravel Using 3 Pails, 2 Shovels, 1 Dude and 1 Dudette

I’ve found another favorite place to go besides the dump! It’s the quarry.  This is where Dude and I went about a week ago to order gravel for our garden and drive way. It’s located about 20 minutes from us and has the most beautiful, red, marble rock.

I was completely fascinated the minute we drove into the quarry. They had all sorts of machinery and earth moving vehicles and it was all surrounded by red rocks and stones of all shapes and sizes and also giant mounds of red dirt. I was amazed that just anyone could wander around the area, no hard hat required.

Dude and I found some nice red and white marble rocks to put in the garden area. We aren’t going to be driving in that part of the garden so we wanted something a bit more “chic” than just the average gravel. When it came to the driveway we purchased something less expensive, but with a beautiful reddish tint to it.

The guy in the office set us up straight away for 10 tons to be delivered to our house on Wednesday. That day was also going to be known as “the day of pain”.

Wednesday came around and we were ready for the delivery. The truck showed up around noon but since it was too big to pass through our gate, the driver had to leave the 3 tons of the garden stones in large bags just inside our gate and the 7 tons of gravel he had to dump just outside our gate and onto the street.

Dude and I immediately got to work. We first laid down a barrier in the garden area to help keep the weeds from coming through the rock.

Then it was time to start “the day of pain”. We wanted to finish as much as possible and we only had 3 pails and 2 shovels and just the two of us to get the work done. We didn’t have a wheelbarrow. We went back and forth about buying one, but in the end we decided not to since it would only be used for this one day. We really didn’t want to waste the money on it.

We started with the garden rocks. I shoveled the rocks into the buckets and then handed them off to Dude to throw down in the garden.

We kept this assembly line going and after 3 hours we were finished with the garden! It turned out to be not as bad as we thought! The red color in the rock will show up quite nicely once the powder on them is washed away.

Then it was time for the gravel in the driveway. We proceeded with the same idea as with the stones only this time both Dude and I were filling the buckets and then throwing the gravel down. We began in the very back of the property and worked our way up to the gate. It looked at one point that we might not have ordered enough gravel, but in the end we had plenty. The goal was to not only cover the drive way but also make sure that the coverage was 3 inches thick.

Around 5pm, our neighbor on the left peeked his head over his balcony to see how things were going. He couldn’t believe how far we had gotten with a couple of pails and shovels! After our few minutes of discussion we went in for a break. We hadn’t realized that we had worked for 5 hours straight moving rocks and never stopped for a break or a snack.

At 6pm we were back out there and cracking the whip on ourselves to finish. And guess what??!! We actually did it! By 10pm we were done.  Just me and Dude with our 2 shovels and 3 pails and now we have 10 tons of gravel in our garden and drive way.

The house looks so much better now. I can’t believe what a little stone and gravel can do to spruce up the place and yippey for another job on the house done 🙂

Oh! We were able to get the rest of the delicious cherries off the tree, too. This time we didn’t even need to wait until they ripened up before we could enjoy them!

Still Diggin’ Trenches and Laying Pipe

Sunday and Monday was spent finishing the trenches. We needed to dig them a bit deeper so that when the pipe was in the ground and covered, it would be deep enough to go over with the car on a daily basis without risking the pipe cracking.

The trenching wouldn’t have been so bad except that our entire yard (and pretty much all of Provence) is entirely made of rock. We ran into rocks continuously and it really slowed our process. Both Dude and I couldn’t believe the size of rocks that were coming out of the ground. By the time we were done digging, we found enough rock to build a whole new house!

The good rocks were transported to the back of our lot and we now have a rock garden. We also found asphalt, dishes, roof tiles, a fossil and some bones. Man, the crazy stuff you find in your yard when you’re digging around!

Once the trench was to the depth that Dude thought was good, 25 centimeters on the down side by the gate, we put the pipe together and checked to see if it was level. We had to check, trench, check, trench and check and trench some more before we finally got the pipe to lie correctly so the water would flow properly. Then we wrapped the pipe is some weed barrier to stop the dirt from getting into the holes and only allow the water in.

Then we proceeded to start covering everything back up.

On Monday, Dude connected the pipes together at the entrance of the gate. Since we have two pipes running parallel the length of the drive way, we needed some way to connect them so that they would eventually hook up in one spot with the pipe the city would put in.

After spending some time on that, and a few runs to the material store, the connection was complete and we proceeded to cover the remaining pipe and start to level out the terrain.

Around 3pm, two men from the building department arrived at our house. I had gone to the building department last week to have someone come out to the house from the service technique so they could see the street leading to our house. I mentioned in my last post that one of our problems was that the water can’t exit our property. There was never any drainage put into the street by the city when they made the street and also, the street is now so old and bad that all the water runs into our property instead of away from it.

We showed all of our pictures to the city workers. The ones of the flooding and the ones of the work we had done. They were very nice and surprisingly said that someone would be out to survey the street and to evaluate what needs to be done for proper drainage and water runoff. They made no promises of when the work would be done, but at least we got the ball rolling with them (that’s what Dude said).

Once they left it was back to fixing the terrain so the water would flow properly (as much as possible) in the correct directions and down the drain pipes. Dude also cemented in the drive over drain box that we put in next to where the rain gutter ends.

Now it looks like we were ready for the 10 tons of gravel to arrive!

Diggin’ Ditches and Pickin’ Cherries

Today was the day we really got down to business digging the trenches in the yard.

First stop was to the local material store to pick up some drainage pipe. Benoit had to tough it out and help us along with getting the stuff home. Our poor car has been through the ringer since we moved to this house. He’s had to do more than Renault ever expected him to do.  As always he was a trooper and we made it home, materials and all and didn’t even get a ticket for illegal use of a car :). Good thing we only needed 4 tubes or we would have had to go back for another pickup.

Once home, Dude and I got to work digging the trenches. We are running two of them down the sides of the yard and they are going to tie into each other and then tie into the drainage pipe that the city comes to put in.

Who knew you could do so much with these three little tools.

Dude’s job was to use the pick to break up the top layer of the drive way, turn the dirt up and get the rocks out. Then my job was taking the trenching shovel and getting all the dirt out.

While Dude was busy doing his part of the job, I went to work picking the delicious cherries off of our tree. We have so many that there is no way I will be able to get them all. Lately the birds have been stopping by to feast so I figured that we should try to get our fair share before they’re gone. I ended up picking almost half of a bucket today and that was only off of 4 branches!

Then it was back to scooping dirt for me.

We were able to get all the trenching done today and tomorrow we just have to fine tune it and then level the driveway out. I’d say we were pretty successful. Let’s hope tomorrow our luck holds out.

Oh, and by the end of the day, Dude was done in.

Gettin’ Back to Work

Dude and I have been taking a bit of a break when it comes to the renovation of our house. We wanted to enjoy the spring weather, save a bit of money and plus, we were just plain sick of working on the house!

It’s been a nice couple of months and we would have taken a few more weeks off but this past weekend we were forced by nature to start up the work again.

Last weekend it decided to rain every evening in our village for four evenings straight. I’m not talking a few raindrops here and there, I’m talking a torrential downpour for about 45 minutes and then it would clear out like it never happened. Then the next morning we would wake to a beautiful blue sky and sunny day. Come 7pm though, look out, the storm would show up again. It was crazy! There would be thunder, lightning and we even had hail one evening!

After the third day of this, guess what??! Our brand new roof that we just had done in February started to leak around the roof window and the leak was running down to the far edge of the house and water was seeping through one of the bedroom walls! We called out the company who did the roof and they came out on Tuesday morning to assess the damage. They are suppose to come back sometime in June to fix the leak. Good thing we didn’t paint the top floor, yet!

Another big surprise was this.

 

Now, I didn’t buy a house with a pool, but voila, I now had one in my yard over the weekend. Dude and I took the photos to the Maire and they are sending someone out to the house because even though part of the problem is that our lot is flat with no proper drainage, the other problem we encountered is that even if we did have proper drainage, all the water would pool high at the front gate because the city never put in a brow ditch or drainage system in the street.

So, sometime next week the service technique of our town is going to show up so they can survey the street and put in a drainage system and fix the street since it is at a higher level than our terrain. This is also a contributing factor in the water pooling. In the meantime, Dude and I are digging some trenches in the yard to put in proper drainage. That’s a job! Confession time-he is doing most of the work, I am only the helper.

Tomorrow we are off to the store to go buy drainage pipe to lie in the trenches and at least start getting the drainage system in place before the service technique shows up. The Maire said we had to show that we were in the process of fixing the area within our property line before the city will do their part.

The other thing we did on Wednesday morning was to go and visit a rock query that is near our village. Once the drainage system is in place we are going to re-gravel the garden and entire entry way to our property. We found some red marble rock and ordered 3 tons of that for the garden area and then ordered some cheaper gravel for the entry way. In all we have 10 tons of gravel coming to our house next Wednesday!

So between trench digging, laying drainage pipe and re-graveling our terrain, it’s going to be a busy week.

This evening we met our new neighbor who bought the house to us on the right. She happened to drive up as we were trench digging and I wanted to let her know that a truck was coming next week to drop the 10 tons of gravel and it was going to block her gate for a day or two. It turns out she speaks English! Apparently she was married to an Englishman so she speaks it very well. Dude and I ended up chatting with her for about an hour. She just got the keys to her house yesterday and came by to drop stuff off. She gave us the tour of the house and guess what??!! She has a crumbling fixer-upper like us! Big surprise!!! We will both be crying on each other’s shoulders throughout all the work 🙂

She also happens to be an artist and showed us a few of her paintings. She has some gorgeous ones of the region with villages off in the distance and surrounded by lavender fields. Dude and I were very impressed.

After show and tell of her house, we showed and telled ours and guess what??!! She said she almost bought our house when it was for sale! Yup! Can you believe it!! Her kids told her it was too big for one person so she declined, but she did say that she had loved it when she first saw it. 🙂

Seeing that she got her own fixer upper (one half the size) with a large garden, she made out and she can see our garden from some of her windows so she seemed happy. We told her she could come and visit any time.

Dude was super happy cuz he kept thinking that some developer would buy that house and make a huge ugly group of apartments and then we would up and die. Seems that our lives have been spared and we now have a nice neighbor, which is always a plus.

Well, time to hit the hay. I have to get to some ditch digging manana!

 

Color Me Lavender

Well another little project chez moi was in the works. Since we have this really old and really messed up French house, our life is full of large and small projects that we try to get to when we can.

This spring has been a bit difficult. Not only do we want to get out and see the countryside during great weather times, we also need to complete some outdoorsy projects that have been put on hold during the winter. So far this spring the weather has not cooperated on most days for either of those things.

One fine day, we actually were able to get a project done that really needed to get done. That project was repairing and painting the garage doors.

Our garage doors are made of wood and they haven’t had any tender loving care for ages (like this rest of this house). The problem we were having is that all the rain was ruining the base of the door and the wood was rotting out in some areas. If we didn’t hurry up and fix and paint the garage, the wood would be no good and the doors would have to be replaced.

I did not like the idea of replacing the doors. All the exterior doors and volets on the house are made out of the exact same wood (exotic wood from Africa) and were very well made. Some one really took the time to do a nice job making them and I very much wanted to keep them. Plus, they all matched in style and it would be difficult and very expensive to try and have new ones made to match the others.

So began the project. The doors looked like this when we bought the house. As you can see, they were pretty dull and lifeless and in dire need of some work. In some areas the paint was chipping and cracked.

Dude started out with sanding the garage doors with a power sander. This took a good deal of time and he had to go over the doors several times.

While he was working on the individual boards, I took to using some sand paper to go in between the boards making sure everything was smooth. I also sanded around the nail holes to get rid of any loose or splintered paint.

Once all the sanding was done, Dude went about putting bondo on the doors to smooth out and help cover the nail holes and impurities. He also fixed one of the boards at the base of the door that was in really bad shape and had started to rot. After doing that, he went back and sanded the doors again.

Who knew he was such an artist? I believe it looks like we put a Christmas tree of bondo on the doors!

After all that, he got to work with repainting them. I had chosen a lavender color for the doors a few weeks prior to the work. Any color related to purple is my favorite color so that was a natural choice for me. I knew I didn’t want anything too dark or overpowering. I had known for a while that when it came time to paint the exterior doors and volets on the house, I wanted everything to be a nice Provencal lavender color. I am very pleased with the outcome and I think the doors turned out really well. They almost look like new doors. I really love the color and think that it suits the house nicely.

The doors are actually quite large and each step needed to be done several times in order to have the right outcome. Since it was basically Dude that did the whole job, it did take a while from start to finish.

Lucky for us, the rest of the doors and volets aren’t this big. We do, however, have one door that is in worse shape than the garage doors were and that is the side door to the apartment. The kitchen volet also needs a bit of work. Those will be a project for another day, though. For now, I will be content with my nice lavender garage doors. I really, really like the color.

 

 

Tinki Finally Has A Bed

What started out as just wanting to put a dresser in Tinki’s room today (so she could finally take every article of clothing out of her suitcase after 7 months), actually turned into a bigger production. Dude said that since we were going to take a break from any more major projects for a while (we are trying to save money and also take a breather from working on the house) that means no painting or flooring, we might as well just put up her bed, dresser and book shelf so she wouldn’t have to feel so much like a transient.

So began the project which took us all afternoon. Luckily everything worked out and we had no major issues (that’s a miracle in itself, I tell you!).

Tinki’s bed is a bunk bed set that we bought about 20 years ago for our older two children and it’s been through all of them. Now Tinki has it all to herself. It’s a really nice solid oak set with a dresser and bookshelf and it has actually made it through 4 children, 4 major moves and 2 years in storage. Definitely part of the family heirloom collection 🙂

The set was taken completely apart when we moved here and in the end we had a lot of pieces for it. Putting it together required both Dude and I, and for a while, we even needed Tinki’s help. Some of the pieces are really heavy and the bed has bolts to keep it together.

First off, we had to go down to the first floor apartment to find all the pieces. The apartment is the holding place for pretty much everything we own right now.

After Dude dug out the pieces from the apartment, he then handed them off to me to bring through the garden then through the garage and then I left them at the bottom of the staircase on the ground level and Tinki took them up two flights of stairs to the 3rd story. We actually had to use our furniture dolly so that Dude could pull the dresser up the stairs and Tinki and I helped by pushing the dresser from the bottom. This piece is the heaviest piece of the set and our staircases are curved at both the top and bottom so it was touch and go for a bit, but in the end we got the dresser into her room.

After all pieces were laid out in the bedroom, we got to work on putting it together. Dude was able to find all the bolts, drills and the ratchet necessary (this was a first)to get the job completed. I can’t believe we actually found everything we needed and the job went without a hitch.

Now Tinki has her bed, a dresser for her clothes and shelves for all her knick knacks. There’s still dry wall on the walls, concrete floors and wires sticking out of the dry wall, but at least it’s a start.

She has already picked out the colors she wants her walls to be but paint is expensive so we’re waiting on that. I’ve already picked out my flooring but since Dude hates it we might just be living with concrete FOREVER.

Oh well, at least Tinki will sleep comfy and cozy in a real bed instead of on the floor where she has been since moving in! Oh, and she does have sheets on the bed now, too 🙂

Starting to Bloom

Today was the first day I saw little buds on one my garden trees! I was so excited that I just had to snap a couple of shots. It’s not much, but it was enough to really get me all smiley about the fact that spring is coming!

I love spring. Out of the four seasons, it is my absolute favorite one. The days become longer, the temperature is perfect (most of the time), windows are open, and all the world comes alive with blooming flowers and the leaves back on the naked trees!

The air seems fresher and people just generally seem to be in a better mood.

When we first saw our house, it was on 4 April 2011 and the garden trees were already in full bloom. I hope this year it will be the same. If so, the month of March will be a rapid change to my garden that I adore so much. I simply can’t wait.

Spring is also the time to get out and explore. I plan on doing just that since I am so found of hiking and sight-seeing.

I have such a happy heart today all because I saw my little buds. Oh spring, how I love thee 🙂

 

2 For 2- The Façade Is Done!

I am totally happy today cuz the façade is all finished and it looks really good! The workers had been here all week busily spraying, cleaning, mixing and applying the stucco to our house. I can’t believe what a difference it has made. The exterior walls look brand new and I believe it has “wow’d” our neighbors. The reason I say that is cuz it’s my neighbors who get to view the new look. While they get to benefit from the aesthetically pleasing wall, Dude and I get to benefit from the protection that our walls will now have. Hopefully, this work will do exactly what we intended for it to do which is to stop the mold and mildew from coming through the porous walls. The supervisor said to double the effort we need to find paint that will let the walls breathe.

Throughout the work I was not able to really take any photos cuz most of the work has been in our neighbor’s yard and also, the work has been significantly messier than the work that was done on the roof.

The workers had to power wash the walls with some special chemical and this created large pools of water and mud everywhere. Also, the mixing of the façade mix was a pretty messy job. It was so bad on Thursday that Dude and I got trapped in the house with cement, water and dirt all pooling in front of our garage and entry way.

One big hang up occurred on Friday morning when Dude went out to survey the work and found that the bottom section of our house on one of our neighbor’s side wasn’t done and the workers had already started to clean up like they were finished.

When the guys showed up, Dude and I hopped up on the wall with the lead worker and talked to him about this. Do you know what he said??! He said that my neighbor didn’t want that part done cuz they wanted to put their plants there! Dude and I were like, “WHAT”!! I’m sorry but this is MY house and it’s MY wall. What the heck are you listening to my neighbors for??!! Are they paying you for the work?! That would be a NO! Are they in charge of this project?! That would be a NO! Are they the ones who are affected by leaky walls?! That would be a NO!

Dude and I were absolutely astounded that our workers would be listening to the neighbor and letting the neighbor tell them what to do. Is there no stopping stupidity in the world! On top of the fact that the workers never even came to us to tell us this. They would have just said okay to the neighbors like they were the boss and went on their merry way! What the heck!

So while all of us were on the scaffolding and wall, I had a little chat with my neighbors and told them that this part had to be done. The reason was that we had mold and mildew in the house do to the porous wall and the humidity and it was bad for your health to be living with that (duh!). We absolutely needed this wall to be done and sealed. After I explained the situation to her, then she was okay with it and our workers were able to proceed. The other thing that was so stupid about this on their part was that the area of wall we were talking about was so ugly and badly maintained and they were getting a new, freshly stucco’d and better looking wall for FREE! Good grief people, how stupid could someone be!

Well, with that almost major fiasco taken care of, Dude and I were of to work.

When we returned that evening, we found pretty much all the tools, machinery and trash out of our yard. Dude went to survey the neighbor’s yard and the work had been done. Apparently there weren’t any more problems with them so that was good.

On Saturday morning I went out to check the work and see how everything looked. When we had arrived home the night before it was already dark so I preferred to wait until the sun came up to see what the house looked like and to take some photos.

Without further ado, here are the before and after photos (and some mid-way with the scaffolding up).

Before pics of ugly wall

Here are the during work pictures

The final product pics-ta da!!

I really like the color and we had told the supervisor that we wanted only a slight texture to the walls. I am really pleased with the way it turned out. Unfortunately Dude doesn’t really like the color that much! He says it wasn’t exactly what he had in mind. I love it, though. I think it’s subtle and clean. I don’t particularly care for the really drab color of houses I see here or the really dark and crazy colors that some people have come up with. I wanted something that was a traditional Provencal color and I think it worked out fine. Besides, only my opinion matters in this anyway, I can’t believe Dude still doesn’t know that!

Later that morning, Dude found a big problem. Remember back when we were drilling holes in the house for the rod and cle to be put in to hold the house together due to the large crack that we had? That story is here, just in case you told yourself ‘No”. Well, the cle is located on the garden side and all ready to go, but the other side of the house, where the threaded rod stuck out for the second cle, is gone. Yup-apparently the workers cut the end off of the threaded rod to stucco the house and they filled in the hole. Now we have nowhere to hang the other cle to tie the house together! They didn’t even ask about what that rather large 30mm threaded rod was! They just went and put their 2 Centimes in and cut it. Now Dude has to figure out what to do. We need to have a cle on both sides to hold in and tighten the structure of the house. Guess what?! In order to fix it, we have to cut a large round hole in our new stucco! More stupidity goin’ on here!

Dude has been working since yesterday trying to figure out how to do this without doing a lot of damage to all the work that has already been done. You know, there’s always something that happens that just burns you up. Even if the rest of the things going on are good!

The Roof is Finally Done!

Yippey! Our roof is finally finished! It’s been months in the making (as all of you who are faithful readers of my ramblings know), but now I am happy to report that the workers completed the job today and it looks terrific. Now I am proud to say I have one of the newest and best looking roofs in my village 🙂

This morning the workers came to put on the finishing touches and to do all the clean up. They are in the process of picking up all the junk in my garden and taking all the trash to one of my favorite places, the dump. All the materials are slowly being moved out of the way or taken away.

They moved some of the things to the front part of our garden.

I’m not sure if the mixer will be used for the façade or not, but the other materials should be hauled away in the next day or two. The scaffolding is still up. Sometime this week, hopefully tomorrow, they should be taking it down and repositioning it around the back and east facing side of the house to start the work on the façade.

Thankfully through this whole process, we only had a few small things happen, but nothing too extreme. One was the snow day when the workers showed up for about 30 minutes and then left cuz there was no way they were gonna be able to work in the snow and cold, the second thing was when it was super windy one day and they didn’t get as much work done as they could have and they left early and the third thing was the rain that we had on Monday.

For Monday’s rain, Dude had to go up all by himself at 5:30am in the morning and put a giant tarp on the roof because when the workers left on Friday there was no real threat of rain so they left the water vapor barrier and wood all exposed on the east side. Dude was really worried that we might get a heavy rain after viewing the weather report late Sunday night so we set our alarm and he went up and covered everything. This was also in case the workers didn’t show up due to heavy rain. Then we could feel comfortable knowing that at least we weren’t going to have any leaks.

While he was up there it did start to sprinkle and there was a bit of wind that kicked in so he used the surrounding tuiles to hold the tarp down. Since he was by himself the whole thing took a little over an hour, but he was successful.

About 8:30am the workers showed up. Right about then it really started to rain pretty hard but they decided to keep working and they kept the tarp on in certain areas to protect the roof, too. We took off for work and had hopes that the rain wouldn’t get any worse and happily it only last for a little bit so the workers were able to continue.

On Tuesday, the main guys said they would most likely be finished that day and they were just going to finish cementing the outer edges and the flashing around the old chimneys and our new window.

I am really happy that we actually had workers show up each and every day and stay the whole day, too! They even only took a 1 hour lunch break!

I really wanted Dude to go up on the roof and take some super duper pictures of it, but he is not too keen on walking on the new tiles. I can understand that given that it cost us an arm and a leg each for the work. So I just peaked my head out of our new roof window and took a couple of shots of the east facing side.

Then Dude decided that he was willing to climb the scaffolding to take some shots of the west facing side. I was ever so happy about this cuz his photos are better than mine. They actually show how nice our tuiles look on a large scale!

Even though my roof looks great and it’s new, Dude and I won’t be totally impressed until we get another really good rain and no leaks happen. That will be the real test!

About 9 and ¾

Well, I don’t have too much on the roof update to report about. We’ve been lucky that every day the workers have actually shown up and put in a full day’s work (maybe Peter Mayle should have contracted with these guys)! The only day this past week that there seemed to be a rough patch was on Wednesday when it got super windy and the guys left about an hour earlier than usual. The funny thing is that I wish they would have left sooner! I was really worried about them working so high up in such strong winds and gusts, especially cuz they don’t wear any safety harnesses. They muddled through, but I think that day set them back a bit cuz they weren’t able to work as fast as usual.

The rest of the week went well, though, and they are now about half way done with the east side of the roof.

We happen to have a window in the roof on the east side and Dude and I very much needed to change the existing one. So after the workers left on Friday, Dude climbed up on the roof and tore out the old window. It was a spaceship looking dome kind of thing and was actually kind of cool cuz it had this bubble hatch that was really easy to open and gave great access to the roof. It had a holder on it and you could prop the hatch open either a little or a lot depending on how much air flow you wanted that day. It was really a neat design, but it was old and leaking and just needed to be taken out.

The roof window happens to be in the bathroom so once it was removed we had to put in the new window right away.  Here is the hole that was left when we removed the old one.

Fortunately for us, we found a window that happened to be the perfect fit at Point P. It isn’t the top of the line or anything, but it is double-paned (the only double-paned window in the house) and since we bought it right off the shelf at the store it was fairly inexpensive. Unfortunately all the other windows in the house are single-paned and were custom made so we are just going to leave them for now.

Dude managed to chisel out a bit of the roof and ceiling, cut some wood to fit around the chassis of the window and screw that into the roof and place the window in pretty quickly. Now when the workers come back on Monday they can just tile around it and we should be all good. This new window actually gives us some really great light. We hadn’t realized how dark the bathroom was when the other window was in. This window makes everything all light and bright. It’s a big improvement!

The other thing Dude did is cut a hole in the ceiling of the closet on the third story so we can put in a whole house ventilation system. We bought the tuile (the one that looks like it has a little house on top) a week ago in anticipation of getting the system set up. It was easier to have the tuile for the ventilation put on at the same time the rest of the tuiles are going in so we took the opportunity to give it to the workers to set it in place.

We decided to put in a ventilation system since we live in an area that has about 78% or higher humidity for at least 8 months of the year. The second and first story of the house has fairly good air circulation, but the third story is awful and that is where the mildew problems are the worst. This is the main reason why the façade is being done, as well. Right now the outside of the house on the back and east facing side has never been stucco’d. It is just rock and it soaks up the water when it rains and it permeates through the walls causing mold and mildew. That along with no proper ventilation has been really bad. When the façade and new ventilation system are both done, it should be a big help to combat this problem.

It seems that the workers have at least two more days before the roof is finished. It could be three, but in any case, if the weather remains good then they should be totally finished before the week is out. Every day gets us a day closer to getting her done.  We might be a little farther away than 9 and 3/4, but I like the way that sounds (being a Harry Potter fan and all). Plus, I figure I should go with the power of positive thinking 🙂

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