Friday, May 18, 2007

"Concrete Wall in Verdant Field"

The forms have been removed and we now have a foundation! The first photo will give you an idea of what our house would look like following a tornado (I can say that because I am not superstitious!). This is a stunning spring in Iowa, with an ideal mix of light, soaking rain, sunshine, and warm but not hot temperatures. The corn sprouted today, and the fields in the distance will be tinted green in the next week. The second photo is looking to the southeast, where a number of young whitetails were eating foliage and trampling corn sprouts. How cute. The last photo looks directly south to where the basement will "walk out". The concrete slabs to the left will support a load-bearing wall down the center of the basement. This photo is taken from approximately the bottom of the (future) stairs. For those of you in Florida, Tennessee, Georgia, Hawaii, Washington, and other points less chilly than here, these walls (and the footings on which they rest) are at least four feet below grade to avoid heaving in the winter. And while winter can really suck here, we had a gorgeous snow cover here that made a great surface for nordic skiing. And hypothermia.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

A mighty fortress is our basement.

The foundation was poured today. So what you see here are the walls of the basement, mostly. The basement walls will all be as tall as the tallest walls in the pictures, but will be partially wood framed. These are the areas where windows and doors will be placed. Please note the background as these posts progress. The corn that was planted earliest is about 3 to 5 inches high now. Ours was planted on the day the excavation was done, last Friday, and had not yet sprouted as of today.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

This is the goal!

Hey, look at this! We just figured out how to turn this from a .pdf into a .jpg! Who would've imagined!

This is John's (our architect) rendering of the east and west elevations, from the top. So, the bottom picture is what will be visible from the road, and the top picture is the side facing the valley. To orient the house on the site, the photo at the top of the blog is taken from the point where the driveway meets the road, and the house site is just to the right of the white pickup truck.

These are the footings, which were poured today. The lowest part of the footing is the south side of the house, which is where the basement will walk out to the south, underneath the dining porch. Notice that these are quite low, due to the part of the world in which we are located. Hopefully it won't freeze that far down. Next: foundation walls.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

This is really the groundbreaking. Friday, May 11, 2007. The photo on the left is the completed excavation. The view is to the northeast. The photo on the right shows the excavation in process, looking to the south. The bucket is close to where the basement walkout will be located. In our part of the world, winters are quite cold, so the footings need to be quite deep to prevent frost heaving. This looks deep enough, don't you think?
In the beginning...
This is our groundbreaking, complete with golden shovels. May 5, 2007. We have determined that this blog is an easier way for us to share the progress of the Yum Yum Manor with all of you, and to keep your inboxes unclogged. We welcome your questions and comments. No obscenities please. Unless they're celebratory. Then, please abbreviate, or use the old cartoon method: Sufferin' succotash! That house is *#$%^& great!
As this goes on, we'll note our inspirations, cool companies that are making the furniture, appliances, windows, doors, etc. Check back frequently, as progress is happening daily. Anticipated occupation date is some time in September. 2007, we hope.