Monday, July 29, 2013

Phase 6 tearing down the wall

6 is about the stove!

I made the pad. Slate tile and black grout.

I picked up the stove and the neighbor guys came over to help hubby "man-handle" the 400lb stove up the stairs of the deck and onto the pad.  After, we had burgers and beer and relaxation. THANKS GUYS!

view from the back door
I took a day to measure, measure, measure and measure again for the holes in the ceiling and roof. Once those are cut, there is no going back. Had to be absolutely sure everything was plumb and centered and had at least minimal clearance according to the specs. 

view from the front window

Hubby helped to cut the hole in the roof and install the chimney, flashing, collar and flue pipe while I made sure everything lined up and maintained proper code clearance (don't want things burning down).
It seemed pretty easy, but when the instructions are vague and the manufacturer does not supply the right fasteners according to the instructions, things get a bit frustrating. 

Everything (except the attic collar because I don't think it is the appropriate size and want to get a larger one) is in and I just need to get some stove paint for the scratches we put on the pipe and some edging for the pad. I also need to get an inspector out to see if we are ok. Then, we get to wait till a cool day to fire it up, open the windows and cure the finish before the cold sets in.

I was thinking that this is it for home improvement projects for at least 2 years. I want to enjoy next summer and need a break. Luckily, my hubby was thinking the same thing.

I will post a before and after once we get the details done.
But for now, the big stuff is out of the way and I can get back to some sense of "normal".

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

12 weeks old happy chickies - A Farewell

I guess these guys would be called cockerels and pullets now. But, chickies is so much easier.

I have finalized my keepers and the rest have gone off to their new homes.

Lets start with the keepers.

These guys all get along well together. I have been separating them into groups to see how they interact with just each other and the big girls. The following get along well and are not timid of me. This is a very important factor as I do not want to chase chickens around to get them in the coop or tractor when I want.

"BB" (black beak) or "Mr. Crow"

He will be my test run for roos. I still don't really want a roo but, he is sweet and the feathers are beautiful!

I figure he can help me keep an eye out on the girls when I free range them.

If we find his crow too much or he becomes aggressive to the girls or humans he will have to go.

He has a cute little adolescent crow (for now). He practices almost every day.
It has not bothered us so far. I caught him the other day trying out a dance move. I don't think he quite knows yet why he got the urge to dance.

The girls are so cute when he crows. They all stop to look at him. One is super curious and gets up in his face and intently looks at his beak when he crows.

"Eagle" f.k.a. "Trinity"

This is the one with the beak malformed. She is good at the feeder and waterer but has trouble getting good bites of green on the range.

She is also a sweetie and has a pretty voice right now even though it is starting to get deeper.

She is curious and a "talker".

"Hawk" f.k.a "HiLite

I needed another hen in the bunch and she is sweet and gets along with the others I chose. She is starting to "bok bok" too. 

What a cutie! Look at those poofy cheeks!


The neighbor boy  fell in love at first sight with the other buff bird so this one stays with me.

She seems to have adopted me. She will hang out nearby and when she is scared or confused she will run to me. She had barred feathers on her wings but is starting to loose them as she gets her adult feathering in.

 She is also super sweet and will get under foot.


I wanted to keep one of the Young birds so, I let my daughter choose between this one and "Dusty". So far she is the underdog. She is tiny but a sweetie. She will let you pick her up and carry her around without a fuss. She tends to wander from the flock and that worries me a bit. Hopefully Mr. Crow will do his job and keep them together when they are out.

The ones that were adopted:

These 6 went to the neighbor I got the 4 1st hatches from. They will have tons of free range room to roam and other barnyard animals to keep them company. Bear, Ned and Dusty are back "home" to live with their biological "family".

The photo to the right is their temporary pen in their new home. Just look at all that fun chicken playground space they have back there to fly and roam and hide!

Look at them all relaxed in their pen - they love it already!

Bear - roo  - getting used to people and will come right up to you but still hates being picked up.

Ned - little firecracker - she is one bully of a hen - mean. Not keen on people but will get somewhat close with the group.

Dusty - sweet little hen, just doesn't like being picked up.

Ex - new roo suspect or aggressive hen - not too keen on people but will come fairly close

Brindle - wild little hen - flighty, nervous, absolutely wants to be the furthest from people as possible.

Rusty - This is the one the neighbor boy chose. She is a sweet little hen and loves to be near people. She is the first to get in her "big girl" voice. She will tug on your pant leg if she wants a treat.

Splotch - a little roo  - really people friendly, will let you pick him up, alert and full of character. What a fun little guy. So far, I think he would make a great family rooster pet. He went to a home with some nice pre-teen boys and their 16 hens and small group of ducks.

video of rooster play fight

UPDATE 7/28/13
Ex had been caught trying to crow. I suppose my daughter was right on suspecting her to be a he.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Phase 5.2 Tearing down the wall

Phase 5.2 of the ceiling is taping and texture.

I have a new found respect for drywall folks. It takes time time time! If you are doing a hand-done (not a hopper blower texture) it takes a level of an artistic eye and handiwork to get the stuff to to what you want it to do.
I did what is referred to as a "knock-down". I used a homemade hawk (a flat board with a handle under) covered with a scrunchy plastic bag and tapped the mud onto the ceiling. Then, knocked it down at the appropriate dryness level with a scraper. It mimics a stone/slate like texture.

One day on the taping.

The next day for laying on another layer on the tape.

Day 4 was cleaning up the taping
Day 5 was floating.

The 6th, 7th and 8th days were all about texture.

Day 9, 10 and 11 I worked on the wall texture and patching some holes where the thermostat and 3rd front door switch were.

Glad that's over with!

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Phase 5.1 Tearing Down The Wall

Messy time with phase 5.1

Knock down popcorn ceiling.

Still recovering from the illness, it took me a while to get this done, One part at a time.
Day one I did the "dining room". It is taking some extra time soaking the popcorn since it was painted.

Mark took down the lights for me so I could do the kitchen the next day.

Day 2 the kitchen just could not come off. It was an orange peel texture vs the popcorn.Since the paint is a matte finish I will just texture over it. I did remove the burnt texture from where the flush mount lights were.

Day 3 the Fourth of July!
work day :-(  Hubby and I hit the living area and entryway and knocked it out before dinner.

Finally getting more energy but still only half of my normal pace.
And really really sore.