A winter wonderland

Last night, we got our first “real” snowfall. I don’t think that what we got before counted as real, it was more of a “practice” session. We got snow both at our apartment and at the house.

Looking down the driveway towards the house.

Lots of the white stuff.

Looking up at the south face.

A possible future christmas tree.

And then there was a roof…


The last few weeks have just been a flurry of activity on the house. All the walls are up, the roof panels are on, and the interior rough framing will be finished in the next couple days.

Once that’s all done (and inspected) we’re moving on to roofing and siding. We’ve got two different outfits lined up for those and after the work is done, we’ll be completely weather-tight! The can snow, storm and shed water as much as it wants and we can continue to work happily inside.

The inside work will initially consist of electrical, plumbing and planning. Plumbing will be fairly straightforward but we’ll have to figure out a few odd places and how to route pipes so that they’ll have the correct fall with minimal disruption to the structural elements. I’m sure we’ll have to build some soffits to hide things but that’s just part of the project.

Electrical work will be a challenge because we’ve got a lot of exposed ceiling and routing wires will be a challenge. I’ve got a brother who’s a commercial electrician up in Alaska and he’s going to come down and help us out for a week or so this spring. Before he comes though, we need to have everything planned and prepped as much as possible so that he can just work on what he’s good at – running wire and hooking things up correctly. I’m sure that he wouldn’t mind helping out with some construction-esque work to route the wires but there are reasons that he’s a commercial electrician, not a residential electrician.

Once all the walls are up and the space is clean and dry, we can also start planning the kitchen layout, figuring out how our flooring will be arranged and thinking about what sort of railing we’ll using on our numerous edges. The pace of work will slow down considerably but it will be more directly driven and handled just by us – a change we’re definitely looking forward to. It’s been nice (and necessary) to hire some outside help to get us to this point but I’m looking forward to getting back to our original intent of doing it ourselves.


We had our first snowfall that we’ve seen on the property this week! It’s very exciting to be finally living in a place where it snows.

Driving up to the property on Monday morning, it really felt like winter was here as I saw small mounds of snow on the side of the road and the deep green of the evergreens was softened by a little dusting of white.

This shot is from the upstairs master bedroom window looking south.

Oof, what a month…

So, I’m finally back – after a month of focus on the house. As you all read in Amber’s previous post(s) we’ve hired some people to help us put the house up. I had originally intended to start putting the house up just by myself and with family during November…that didn’t happen. We did get a few panels up over the Thanksgiving weekend, but it’s just too big of a job for weekends. We’d be at it for months and I shudder to think what the winter weather would do to it all.

So, since we hired some people, our first story walls are up, interior walls are framed, posts and beams are set (a big job), first story windows are in and work has commenced on the second story floor. I spent a week working with them then I had to go back to work.

Check out the mast and the pictures below to see how we’re progressing.

South Face
The south wall with the sun shining on it. From the right the openings are:

  1. Kitchen window, over the sink
  2. Dining room window
  3. Picture windows flanking a sliding glass door in the open area
  4. Windows on either side of where our woodstove will be in the hearth room

Both Amber and I are fans of wood. We’re going to have a lot of exposed beams and some posts in the house. The GluLam in the foreground running out to the left goes out into the kitchen/dining room area. The GluLam parallel to and behind it delineates the boundary between dining room and open area. The post where the beams join is an 8×8 monster and I’m glad we didn’t go with something smaller. It looks like the perfect size for the area. The staggered windows on the left in the back will follow the stairs up.

Instead of the usual OSB subfloor, we’re going with a tongue and groove 2×6 fir. This will be exposed on the bottom in much of the downstairs and will be our floor upstairs until we put a finish floor down. The big GluLam through the center of the shot separates the kitchen/dining area from a hallway of sorts. The GluLam running out to the left is the same one from before that goes out into the kitchen/dining area. I was standing in our side door when I took the shot. We’re really excited by how the flooring looks and it’s turning out just like we hoped it would.

One of the coolest things about a floor like this is character. We get nice clean pieces, knotty pieces and stuff like this.