The House has not Changed Much on the Outside

20191127_135740Nope- still looks pretty much the same as it did in my last post as far as the outside is concerned.  Of course, there is a little snow on the ground, but not too much actually.

20200217_141405But, it sure looks different inside!   Sorry for the mess, but welcome to our little cottage.   5 1/2 ”   of rock wool insulation in the walls.   A double layer of  rock wool insulation in the ceiling, along with an inch of foam board.  =  R50 in the ceiling – just what the code officer was looking for!     This is the main room in the house – the sink island will be up against that half wall.  the other side of the half wall is the living /  dining area.

20200217_141419Same room from the opposite direction.   Refrigerator and counter to the right of the hall and  stove and counter to the left.

20200217_141401you can pick out the gas  – looks like wood stove in this pic.   this will be the main source of heat in the house.   we will see how much heat makes it to the bedroom!

20200217_141344soon this will look a little more like the bathroom that it is  🙂    just ordered  a 60 inch shower stall – designed for  living in place.     When i built my last house, I laughed at an older friend who told me not to build a two story house because it would be too hard to maintain when i got older..  now I am older –  this is a one story house with  a wide hallway and a bathroom that is spacious.  We will be able to get into the shower long after stepping into a tub will become problematic!

two shots of the bedroom.   there is just one closet in the bedroom , but there is a second closet in the hallway that will  for clothes as well.

20200217_141337looking down the hall from the bedroom.   the bathroom and a small utility closet is on the left,  the  clothes closet, laundry area and pantry are on the right.

This is a house designed for two people who enjoy having guests for dinner.   The kitchen and adjoining storage spaces will be a great place to cook and bake.   But everyone will have to go home after dinner because we don’t have a guest bedroom!    Actually,  in Phippsburg I guess it is fairly common to have “bunk houses”   In a few years, we will add one to the property so that our family  and friends will have a place to  stay.  In the meantime, we have our RV that we used at the campground which will serve as a “guest house”.

For the astute builders who may be checking this out.. yes,  sheet rock usually goes on the ceiling first  before the walls – but we are installing bead board on most of the ceiling, and that requires a gap between the edge and the walls, so  it will work out fine to finish the walls and then install the ceiling later.  The bathroom and closet spaces already have sheet rock on the ceilings 🙂   Lots more to do, but I am pretty pleased with how things have worked out so far.   Stay tuned for further progress!   jt




Closed in by Winter


The goal was to have the house closed in by winter so that I could work on the interior between now and spring.    Thanks to a lot of nice fall weather,  that has pretty much happened!    In addition,  we made significant progress last Wednesday in terms of outside improvements.   The excavator showed up bright and early, and I was at Lowes at 6:15 am, picking up a few last minute items in order to make the most of the day.   This was the scene when I showed up at the house site.

Jeremy spread out the material that is piled in front of the house, and then he began to dig a trench from the front left corner of the house, across the driveway, to the spot by the road where the electrical service will go underground.    He also dug a trench from the house to the well.

In the first trench we laid in  a run of 2 inch conduit  (used for electrical service)  and two runs of  1 inch conduit  as well as a water line.  I had glued up the sections of conduit the previous day  so that we simply needed to roll it into the trench and cut the final length.   The water line is intended to provide water to our RV which now has a new parking space all of its own just to the right of the driveway.    We will also run 30 amp service through one of the one inch lines to service the RV.    With a one bedroom house, it will be nice to have the RV as a “guest room” .     The second  1 inch line will be reserved for future use.

We drilled through the foundation and laid the water line for the house along with electric line for the pump in the second trench.   This was my first experience of drilling an inch and a half hole through 6 inches of concrete…  it takes a heavy drill to handle that job.



While Jeremy moved material around, I worked inside the house, installing the last of the 20′  ceiling joists.   There will be minimal wiring in the attic, so I should be able to install insulation up there in a short while.   And, I can now build the interior walls.  There aren’t too many, so I am expecting that to happen pretty quickly!



At the end of the day,  things were starting to look like this.    You might note that we moved the shed that we built in the spring around towards the back side of the house.  Jeremy also hooked up the septic line between the house and the septic tank.

It was a very productive day.   It is amazing how much can be accomplished when the right equipment  and an experienced operator shows up!


Progress on the Phippsburg House


At the conclusion of a flurry of activity spurred on by the imminent annual spring closing of roads to heavy vehicles I showed up to the site and saw the foundation of our new house for the first time.   And then we took a quick trip to PA to check on family.  When we returned I got a call from the excavator – only two days left before he would not be able to take his trucks on the road, he wondered if I was ready to install the drain pipes.  I wasn’t, but, of course, that is not the answer that he wanted!  I showed up the next day,  and began installing drains, and, when that was finished, we filled in with stone…


and then backfilled the outside of the wall.  It is amazing how much material one can move in a short time with a machine that large.h2

The next job was to install the mud sills.   This was a cooperative effort on a sunny day – Janet helped with the drilling and bolting of the sills. h4

It is always satisfying to  check off one of the hundreds of items on the list !


Next came the floor joists.. this did not go quite as quickly as i was working solo.   Beautiful sky –  quiet – a wonderful place to work!


One joist at a time….


and then , all of a sudden, another item is checked off the list!

Today I returned with a van full of  subfloor panels.    It pays to be patient and to get the first sheet right….


The shadows sort of indicate that a good number of hours passed between this point…


and this point!   I was a little sore as I packed my tools away in the van,  and I was thinking to myself that I had imagined getting done quicker.   But, when I got home I looked up the weight of  one 4 x 8 sheet of adventech sub floor and found that it was 70 pounds.. and I was carrying and throwing those around all day .. and I am not 35  any more  🙂   So I guess I don’t feel so bad!

I have ten more panels to pick up and install, and then..  well, it seems like our plan of action at this point will be to cover everything up and hold off  for a while before we actually begin to frame the house.

Spring has arrived in Maine, at least along the coast, and there is a long list of items that need attention in order to prepare for the summer season in Georgetown.   It looks like it will be a busy and fun summer, with lots of projects to keep us occupied.  But  still plenty of time to entertain friends, so call us up and let’s make plans 🙂