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!


Not a quiet Winter

wharf in snow

We have not had much snow in Georgetown so far this winter, but last weekend a storm swept through the area and left its mark.  The wharf looks pretty quiet, but there are still a few lobster boats in the harbor, and we have enjoyed some wonderful gatherings with folks from town.   Tomorrow is the monthly community pot luck at the Community Center which is just down the road.   And, the Tuesday night open mic  event has started again at the Robinhood Meeting House.  So, we are not lacking for things to do!

We still go to the beach from time to time – even when it snows…  and so do the crazy surfers!  reid state park winter

It was really cold at the beach –  like  -10  wind chills, but on the way to take this picture, we passed some cars with surfboards laying by them and folks inside trying to warm up.

rsp waves The tide was out, but the surf was pretty whipped up – I bet they had a good time.   We only lasted about 10 minutes before heading back to the car!


And, after dreaming about a house in Maine  since we bought land in Phippsburg back in 2014, we decided to bite the bullet and charge forward.    For the past few years, we have been gradually clearing a spot for a house, but  now the big machines have moved in.  It is amazing how much can be done  quickly with the right tools.


if the weather cooperates,  we may have a foundation in before the town closes the roads to heavy vehicles –  an annual event when the ground starts to thaw and the roads begin to heave.  The truck ban can last a month or so.   We have our fingers crossed.    At some point in the future, I will take a picture of the house which should look something like this

house plan

we will  see!   keep posted.




It’s all related…

ImageThis morning I wrote about my trip to Maine.   After making an offer on a piece of land in Phippsburg and having it rejected and then resubmitting it a couple of weeks later and having it accepted,  we are moving forward in the purchase process.  My fingers are crossed that all will be well and that we will close by the end of May.   So, what about the picture of a house under construction, you might ask.   That is the house that we are currently building.  It has been a 4 year process of working during the summers and vacations and gradually getting to the point where we can enjoy living there when we are on break from school.   And, within a month, around the same time that we close on the property in Maine,  we will be moving to this house after living in a dorm for the last 13 years.   The dorm has it’s highlights, but it will be very nice to be in our own home after so many years!

This brings us to bad habit number one..  ( my bad habits, of course)  I typically begin  new projects before finishing old ones which means that I am constantly drawn in different directions.   I probably should have been working on the exterior of the house this past weekend, instead of traveling to Maine..  but even warmer weather is on the way..  plenty of time for exterior work 🙂

In addition to working on the house, the major adventure for the upcoming summer is supposed to be a boat trip to Lake Champlain.  It has been 6 months in the planning stages..  but reality began to sink in on the long ride home from Maine yesterday.   If our next project will be a small house in Maine, doesn’t it make a lot more sense to have the boat there?    On the way up to Maine on Saturday, I crossed the Hudson River at Newburgh NY and looked down at the water, thinking that in a couple of months I would be cruising at 6 mph under this very bridge…   on the way home yesterday  I confronted the reality that  I probably would not be headed in this direction at all, but instead, would be sailing up the coast..  into NY Harbor and then through Hell’s Gate into long island sound..  and continuing on till reaching the coast of Maine.  

On the bright side,  it means a lot more sailing whereas the trip up the Hudson would have been mostly under power..    And, actually, Maine was the first destination that we considered as we talked about moving the boat last summer.   But,  we may never make it to Champlain and all that it has to offer the cruising sailor.  The big draw of Champlain was that my daughter lives near Burlington, a great town to visit..   so we will miss the opportunity of spending time with her and sailing with her on the lake.   Hopefully, she and her boyfriend will find time to visit us in Maine instead…

So, even life at 6mph can be complicated, and, as often is the case, it is our own desires and dreams that are the sources of the complications.   In the end, I am imagining that we will build a small place in Phippsburg which will become the focus of many summer adventures for us and for our kids and their families.   And if that happens, it will all be worth it.   One way or another, however, this summer will include a trip on Adagio, and that will be a dream fulfilled…   jt