I Got My Fill

On Monday Mike finished filling. We lost a little momentum with his trip to NH last weekend. And this week, we're losing a little more as we head up to NH tonight for a loooong weekend. So, Mike really wanted to get the fill done by Monday - and he did. The front looks fabulous. No more stupid hill - just a nice, graded surface. Well, it's not perfectly graded. And there's still a bunch of concrete and other trashy junk out there from construction. But at least I only need a step stool and a cindar block instead of a ladder to get into the place.

The back and sides still need more grading too, but they're basically done. Maybe a little more and a little less dirt here and there.

The next step is actually to put dirt back IN the basement. Amazed? I guess they have to get the floor up to footing height. Then they put in 3 inches of pea stone. I should say we... we're going to be doing that. Then we'll install radiant heat and... after that they'll pour the floor. That reminds me, that floor guy hasn't called me back yet.

The water department did get my new pipe and meter in - and where we wanted it. Wow! Yay! And they filled in the trench too, which they didn't have to do. So that was nice.

Wooo - I'm pooped. Between long shifts at work, early morning meetings and shoots, late nights digging and getting packed for this weekend, and general stressed-outed-ness, I am truly exhausted. I'm hoping I can sleep on the way up north.

Water You Waiting For?!

I think I discovered WHY originally, our water main was not buried. (If you recall, it just lay in our old crawl space - right on top of the cold dirt instead of under it - for about 25 feet. With wind blowing throught the old fieldstone foundation, it froze right up the winter before last.)

I talked to the North Sagamore Water District on Friday morning, and a nice woman told me she'd try and have the guys go out to the house to have the water hooked back up that day. I was all excited. A few nights previous Mike and I dug a trench for the water main under the front footing of the house, though the basement, to the back wall where we wanted the meter, so all they had to do was lay the pipe back in and hook up a new meter.

Well - about a couple hours after I talked to the nice woman, a man called me to ask where the old meter was. I told him it was in the back of the basement and that there were a couple ladders at the front of the house to get in. He then said, "Can we just hook up the meter at the front wall there? You know, somebody dug a trench through there leading back." He was very rude in tone. I replied, "Our water heater is going to be on the back wall, we'd like it there." He got all huffy and said he'd have to lay down some more pipe (as if it was some sort of big deal) to go the extra 20 feet or so. I asked again if he could do it. He replied, in the same rude, seemingly angry tone, "I'll see what I can do."

I was so amazed! Our plumber friend Brian said they usually dug a trench for the water mains, so that's what we did. It didn't seem like a big deal to lay some extra pipe. I guess we just have a lazy jerk over there at the water department who isn't too happy about doing his job right - and to the homeowners design. I'm guessing it was the same guy who just plopped in the old water main without burying it.

At least he did what I instructed. The water main is in and on!

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I look like I'm in that "Ew, sticky!" pose, don't I? Well, I'm glad I'll never have to tar a foundation again in my life. I've been thinking about writing to Mike Rowe of Discovery's Dirty Jobs and suggesting he tar a foundation. That is dirty!

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Like Buttah

Consistency's good!

It's ME!

This may be the first picture of me ever on this blog. Weird huh? I'm just usually the one taking the pic. But Mike's mom was helping us with the insulation yesterday, so she was happy to snap some shots. Here I am stirring the tar as Mike warms it up with a map gas torch.

Tar'R Us

You can see in the sideview how textured the tar looks. It kinda swishes up on itself as it dries.

Tar and Tar Again

Here we are, filling in the spots we missed on Sunday. The tar dried considerably faster than we thought! Our foam board insulation wouldn't stick! We tried sticky-ing it up a bit, but it wasn't enough. We ended up backfilling a little bit rather than just insulating the entire house to keep the insulation from falling off.

Let's See That Butt Again

Celebrate Good Times Come 'On

And here's Mike, doing the classic celebration dance. (Even though we still have to touch up tar in a few spots this afternoon - as you can see the bottom of the wall right there is completely covered. That's because those parts still needed to dry out.) Our friend JP was helping us out that day and I said to him, you'll be able to see this on the internet! He said, I saw it in person, I don't need to see it again. I had to laugh. But for all you who weren't there - here is the reasonable facimillie.

That new pirate movie about foundations... TARRRR!

Here's the finished product! In all it took us only 3 hours to tar the entire house. I slopped the stuff on with the small broom and Mike spread it and carved it with the scrub brush.

I was pretty worried at first because the bucket said "Do not use if threat of rain within 24 hours." and it was drizzly on Sunday. But we were determined to get this done so we could begin insulation and fill this week. So we braved the weather and did it. Luckily, our carpenter friend called and said he'd seen it done in worse weather before, which made me feel better.

Brought to You by Henry!

The illustrated guy on the bucket of tar made it look sooo easy, one swipe and it's covered. In reality, spreading tar is like spreading molassas mixed with silly putty. It's thick and it wants to stick where you first stick it. We made it easier by heating it up with Sterno and a map gas torch. Let me tell you - that made it a whole lot faster.

But when we were all done, Mike wanted to make it look simple for all you internet lovers, so he took up a pose like the bucket's illustration.

It's Down!

THE HOUSE IS DOWN!!!! Pictures to come!

Bob had a cancellation and sent all his guys to our house instead! Mike told him he hadn't shimmed it level yet, and Bob said he'd have his guys take care of it as a favor. Awesome. Awesome.

Now let's see if I can get the water on...