House Blueprint, Car In The Carport, Floors Poured, Holes Dug, Big Tree Felled

A lot of odds and ends the past two weeks.

First, I was talking with my brother on the phone and he said he would like to see a current plan of the house. Here you go, Bob. The yellow areas are the containers themselves and the numbers in the circles indicate which container is which:

House Plan as of 27 Jan 2013

In the drawing, I left out a half bath in the front left corner of my shop. It has a toilet and a shower.

And here is a short video explaining the house:

With the piles of sand and gravel dwindling from mixing concrete for the floors, we marked the first time that we could drive the car all the way into the carport. The marching band didn’t show up so we went ahead without it:

We completed all the floors in #3/Space/#4. Here are a couple photos:



Another little task that we completed is to wash all the concrete splatter off of the walls. Now we are just about ready for paint! We are going to choose the floor tile first, then all the paint colors.

I also sanded most of the door frames in the house. They were covered with concrete splashes and hand prints and had nicks and dings from wheelbarrows navigating the doorways. Now they are ready for a new primer coat of paint before painting the finish color coats. No photo.

Conflicting Priorities Department: Our goal has been to get the back part of the house (containers 3 and 4 plus the space between) done so we can move in and camp while we complete the rest of the house. But the dry season is upon us and it will be gone all too soon in April or so. So gritting our teeth, we resigned ourselves and agreed to stay in the rental pit for a couple of extra months so that we could make outdoor hay while the sun shines.

With the big floors poured, I had Armando work outside on the big space between containers #2 and #3 (living room/dining room). Just as we did for the space between #3 and #4, we will construct a floor off the ground and pour a concrete slab. In the next photo Armando has most of the column foundation holes dug, and the resulting dirt moved to the back garden:


After digging the columns, I laid out string lines and had Armando dig a foundation trench for a block wall that will support the east end of this big floor. Here is the trench all dug:


The plastic bottles on the rebars keep Jabo from poking out an eye. These rebars will connect the existing walkway slab to the new slab that will go to the front door.

One afternoon Armando was drooping under the hot sun. So I had him stop digging, sit and have some water, then I moved us into the much cooler house to pour a raised platform for the washer and dryer in the laundry room:


There was a big tree, of no significant note other than being big, just off the master bedroom porch. We actually planned the house around it, but It has been leaning closer and closer to the house and routinely dropping large, heavy, dead branches onto the roof. We could see that there was only bad to come as the next branches to fall were really quite large. So one day I got into my safety harness and removed most of the high branches. It was really exciting to be swinging a machete at the top of a 24-foot ladder that was perched on the roof of container #3. A great view, too. After removing the branches, I hooked up a couple of tow straps and a come along to pull the tree in the right direction. Here is the tree, down. Even Jabo seems sad about it. But the good news is that we can now plant a really pretty tree of our choosing farther away from the house:


Bonus Photos: 

Jabo has been enjoying the coolness of the sand pile and didn’t mind one bit when I buried him:


Reminded me of being a kid on the beach. Yes, this is me, about 60 years ago being buried alive:


And finally, El Valle is located in a volcanic crater. The rim is a mountainous ridge. One of the ridge formations is called La India Dormida (The Sleeping Indian Princess). Legend has it that she said that when she laid down to take a nap that she wouldn’t awaken until her prince returned from war. Apparently he is not back yet. Hint: her head is at the right side of the ridge with her body at the left:


Armando has an orange and mandarin orange grove up and over La India, then up and over the next mountain. It is a long, strenuous hike. When the crops are in, he makes three trips a day on foot, carrying large sacks of produce on his shoulders down to market.

That’s all for now. Thanks for stopping by.