Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Progress Report Three

Stairs leading from kitchen to lower level.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Progress Report Two

Continuing right along with our tour through the drywall dust, from the porch we walk into the kitchen. This picture shows the kitchen after you've walked through the kitchen and look back. The door takes you back onto the front porch. That green board is where the sink cabinet is going. An island will be under the wires you see hanging from the ceiling in the middle of the room. Do not let the size of this space fool you into thinking I was really limited to what could be done here. I got myself into plenty of trouble with Theresa, Kitchen and Bath Specialist, at 41 Lumber, in Houghton. Check out some of the kitchen pretties for yourself. For this kitchen, you'll have to wait until the "Big Reveal" and we "move that bus" to see the "startling conclusion".

Progress Report One

I love my new general contractor crew. Hard workers, excellent craftsmen, and very nice. They needed to go back to Ohio for a few days. Meanwhile, I've been working on my To Do List: ordering more paneling, stairs, flooring, lighting, keeping the main level heater going and catching up a little here. So, without further ado, here's a few shots of the front porch interior. We have 6" tongue and groove cedar paneling from Keweenaw Specialty Woods, Mohawk, Michigan on the ceiling (the photo with the wire hanging); 4" tongue and groove cedar paneling on the north, east, and west walls (shown with the corner of the front door), also from Keweenaw Specialty Woods, and cedar shakes (shown with the corner of the window off the front of the kitchen) from 41 Lumber, Laurium, Michigan on the south wall. The original shakes on the south wall were oak (from an oak tree back in the woods near the cabin) but when the front gable end wall needed to be reworked because of the new door, we needed more shakes so the original oak shakes from the front porch were used.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

There are no words

Okay, maybe a couple. Sunset over Lake Superior in the Keweenaw.


just messing around! When a whole lotta snow melts down, you get a whole lotta mud. At least in the driveway, which isn't really a driveway, it's a logging road or a two-track. Or in this case a whole lotta tracks and ruts. It all adds up to a whole lotta stares in town. Then, just when you think people couldn't look more horrified, I slammed the Jeep door and a chunk of mud fell off the Jeep and landed with a "plop" on the pavement. All I need to do is add loud rock music, beer, and howling and we'd be bogging instead of blogging. Ah, the good ole days.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

The Measure of a Man

The tractor gets it's picture in the blog because it worked really hard yesterday and never complained. Well, I have firewood put up in the barn. Things did not go smoothly. Heavy sigh. Shaking head. I, personally, am sick of hearing myself tell what is becoming the same ole story when it comes to dealing with what is becoming too many of a certain type of man. It was a man that recently told me, point blank, that there are a lot of men up here that don't like to take orders from a woman. First of all, I don't order. I ask. I say please and thank you. Yes, I was raised in a barn but I was still taught manners. I work hard and I genuinely appreciate when someone lends a hand and/or works with me in the spirit of getting things done. My temperament, life experience, and especially the last six month's events, doesn't find me in a place where I'm able to tolerate much, if any, disrespectful treatment. The human mind is associative. I want to put a label on this group of men. One that I can use in public. I have plenty of politically incorrect labels that try to work their way up from under my breath and which I do NOT use when I'm standing my ground while some less-than-a-man man talks to me in a way that he would not be talking to me if my 6' beefcake of a husband were standing next to me. Speaking of The Husband, let's talk about the "good man" group. Whenever I hear someone repeat the same situation occurring over and over again for them, I have to consciously work to keep my eyebrows level. So, I'm looking in the mirror and asking, "Why? How is this your fault?" I realized that I have been and am VERY fortunate to be surrounded by really good men - The Husband, my brother, and a couple of men that we have met over the last six months and who we now consider friends. And of course, my dad. My dad is an amazing man. He worked for Ford Motor Company for over 30 years and if you actually went by hours, it was darned near double that with all the over time he worked. Somehow, he must be able to bend time or something, he was also able to keep the yard (we're talking 10 acres) looking like a golf course and all the vehicles we owned maintained (oil changes) and vacuumed, washed and waxed. Then he'd lend a hand with the horses. AND, he ran in and completed the Boston Marathon! While we never wanted for anything because of my father's (and mother's - but that's another blog entry) hard work, we learned to work hard. In thinking about this, I can see my father in my brother. Also, I can see where both my sister and I have compared men to the standard that our father set. With a standard that high, it probably is setting myself up for difficulties in dealing with other men. Eventually, what always happens will happen. I will feel compassion for these less-than-a-man men because they are insecure human beings who have not been as fortunate as I have been and am to be surrounded by the golden standard of a man and I will find my tolerance again so I will be able to deal with "these same ole stories" without high blood pressure. In the meantime, I have some nice firewood put up in the barn. Oh, and, you're welcome, darn it, for pulling you out of the snow and helping you unload the wood while you grumbled about being tired and weren't being paid enough money for all your trouble.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Copper Country Humane Society

I'm so excited for our local humane society. I have been voting every day and watching them move up the state ranks. Well, they were a weekly winner and will be receiving $1000 to help out with their efforts. They have made the national ranks too. You can vote for them here. That will take you right to the page where all you have to do is hit the vote button. I've got a load of firewood coming to the cabin today so I'll catch up with everyone tomorrow.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Break out the 'kinis

The sun is just blazing through the morning fog and heavy frost. The forecast shows sun all week and temperatures later this week hit 36. I got some sleep last night. I started out a little rough with a lot of coughing and choking but finally fell asleep. I slept for six hours straight. The apartment was super quiet so I was able to sleep another two hours. I think I've been keeping everyone around me awake with all my coughing so when I finally slept, I think they did too. My bad. While I'm not really up to running around all over the place, I'm going to anyway. I've got videos to return. I'm down to one serving of chicken soup so I need to get more groceries. I need to get some contractors garbage bags. Sigh. Stuff that's just not recyclable. Double sigh. I need to check out the driveway at the cabin and make sure it's clear. My plumbing helper is coming out Wednesday evening to help me finish up the plumbing. The wood guy will be here sometime this week. Eric and Jake will be back mid-next week which works out perfect so I can get all my work caught up and done and be ready for them to continue. I have another helper that will come out this weekend to help me finish hauling stuff out that doesn't belong in the cabin. Yes, I'm still cleaning up after our ex (contractor). Correct, nobody picked up after themselves last year. It was strange. On the last bill from our ex, he wrote on the bill that he didn't charge us for the last day when they came out and cleaned and cleared their equipment off the job site. Um, what cleaning? The only thing they really cleaned out was our bank account. There are piles of stuff under the snow where the job site trailer was parked all summer and fall. The cabin was full, and I mean full, of trash and unused and partially used materials. It's true that I saw they were throwing a bunch of stuff in the back of the pickup and taking boxes of nails out of the cabin that I paid for but at that point I just wanted them off my property and out of my life. Still, it's strange what people consider to be doing you a favor. Speaking of favors, I'm really missing The Man and Beasts so today's picture comes from the archives of feLIONs and features Emerald Starr, or Emmie, as we call her, doing me a favor and helping me with my art journal.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Thoughts of Spring

March, everyone, March! Wow. Spring is right around the corner. I know that we can still get lots of snow but we finish moving in 90 days. That is if we finish things. That is if I ever get over this darned cold and get my work done. Right now, I am absolutely burning up. But this is the break through I needed. Apparently, adding more whiskey did help. Between the whiskey and eucalyptus, I drifted off to sleep smelling like a drunken koala bear. I also hit the orange juice a little harder and steamed my sinuses. I was thinking that I could really use a sauna so I put a pot of boiling water in the sink, hung my face over it with a towel draped over the back of my head. It worked like a charm. It took away all that sinus pain. Sometime during the night, I felt all the congestion break up and I'm breathing easier now. I almost feel more exhausted though. I'm supposed to meet the electrician out at the cabin this afternoon. We all know my feelings regarding those guys lately. I did get more of the story from The Husband as to what happened when he was here and how plywood ended up on the wall. Seems these SOB's think they are too good to lend a hand when needed. Our ex (general contractor) did not have the wall that all the electrical is going on ready. So, it fell on Mike. Instead of the electrician giving Mike a hand, he told Mike, "It's not ready for me; I'll be back in a couple of hours." How absolutely lovely. So, Mike put the insulation up and then proceeded to carry a 4 x 8 (or are they 5 x 8; anyway) sheet of drywall down the stairs by himself and hung it by himself while he screwed the thing in by hand with a manual screwdriver by himself. The electrician came back and Mike wasn't finished yet so he helped put a few more screws in. Oh, you're all heart. I wondered why Mike was commenting on his back being sore when he got home from all this. I stopped in to the electrician's on Friday to schedule them for next week which is this week. I said that I needed a couple more wires added to the front porch for a couple more lights. Their response, "oh, yeah, we didn't do that last time because you had all kinds of stuff on the porch." No, I didn't know what I needed out there yet and our ex didn't have the joists doubled up out there yet so we couldn't add the wires yet. I just needed some wires added and yet I had to listen to a bunch of BS. Why do these pain in the butts feel the need to throw it all back in your face? Nothing is ever their fault, they can't do anything to help out, yet I have to clean up after their messy butts. I want to replace these guys but any other electrician doesn't want to touch another electricians rough in work in case there are problems because it will be the other guy's fault and I'll be the one stuck with paying for and fixing the mess. Kind of like right now with this plywood on the wall and the subpanel not mounted the way we wanted it mounted and now the system is all up and running. Needless to say, I haven't felt very motivated to write the check these guys are wanting. Which, by the way, in checking over the bill, there were mistakes. Math errors and the rate wasn't what they quoted us. We brought that to their attention. Oh yeah, they raised their prices in the fall but they'll honor their quote. Then, what we haven't talked about, they have down a certain amount of hours which, of course, is higher than the hours I have. That's right world, I kept track. I wrote it all down. Now what do we do? Not to mention you charged me for each little wire clamp thingie when they were littered all over the floor of the cabin. Several got stuck in the shop vac. Slobs. Wasteful slobs. Wow, I am feeling better. Just better enough to be cranky. Needless to say, I'm going to have to cancel these guys for today. I did not get the porch cleaned off over the weekend and if someone came out and copped an attitude about having to work under those conditions, I'd get so pissed that I think I would single handedly unravel the thread that's holding the Universe together. So, let's turn our thoughts back to Spring. Today's picture is brought to you by Lake Superior. I took it last summer when I needed a break from the construction BS and went for a walk along the shore. Just a couple miles down the road from The Secret Cabin.