As if the Bradburys weren’t doing enough log home construction, we hopped on an airplane headed to Colorado to help friends of ours work on their log home, too.
Because they live in Texas, and the log house is in Colorado, they’ve had to hire out a lot of the construction…but each step still followed what the class taught.
For those of you who are new to this blog (people in 98 countries reading now) and are stumbling across this post, this log home is NOT a kit, and was NOT built by a log home builder. It was hand-built by our friends, just like ours was hand-built by us (see my other posts to see pics of ours). Click on the LHBA link at the very top of your screen to learn more about it.
Jeremy is a school teacher. But he builds log furniture in the evenings. With his furniture building money, he has been able to build the log home with cash along the way. It’ll be mortgage free when they’re done!
Unlike our “free as the wind” building process that had 0 hoops to jump through, no inspectors breathing down our backs, and no need for precise architectural plans or permits of any kind…Jeremy and Candace had ALL of that. In fact, they also have a Home Owners Association in their neighborhood who put additional deadlines for completion over their heads.
So, with both neighborhood and local deadlines hovering over them like a storm cloud, we hopped on a plane to help speed things up a bit.
Jeremy and Candace are new friends of ours (2 years now) that we met through this blog. While we were stripping our logs of bark and starting to build, Jeremy and Candace came. They brought a couple of his students with him, and helped us. That visit was followed by more…bringing more friends with them…and amazing handmade gifts. They are truly outstanding human beings…it’s an honor and privilege to call them friends. Here are thumbnail pics. Click on them to see enlarged slideshow…
We’ve all been great friends ever since. The Lord is SO good.
When we first arrived in Colorado (at the end of May 2015), their log house was very much under active construction. Jeremy and Candace had a “Finish” goal of end of June/mid-July (only a few weeks away, at that time). Just to give you an idea, when we walked in the door there was:
no shower or tub (at all…),
no kitchen (no sink, no oven, no cabinets, no counters… just a fridge),
no stain on the logs (inside),
no interior doors on bath roooms or bedrooms,
no lights hooked up,
no switches or plugs hooked up,
no sinks (and therefore no running water),
no tile in bathrooms,
no flooring down (except in back entry),
and only one toilet that flushed (…but you had to take a 5-gallon bucket outside to the creek across the street, fill it, walk back, pour it into the back tank of the toilet, and THEN you could flush). (lol!!!)
If you had to use the toilet at night, get a flashlight (INdoors), and make sure the 5-gallon bucket had water, in case the tank needed it.
To brush our teeth we went outside with a cup of water.
To shower, you had to drive a few miles away to the nearest camp grounds and use their shower.
I felt like we were right back to our “camping-out” days when we first moved into our own. (Read “Light”.)
Oddly, I was right at home. It’s now on my life-list of FANTASTIC adventures and fond memories.
They had beds set up for us, bottled water to drink, and food. We were golden.
Let me give you the tour…
When you first walk into the front door, you enter the living room. Straight ahead, at the back side of house is the kitchen. (That’s my 6’8″ husband in the green sweater.) If you look straight up, you see the upstairs open loft. It’s a U shaped loft. In this picture, I’m standing right in front of the front door. It’s hard to tell in the first pic, but those logs directly in the middle upstairs is the back wall. The upstairs floor protrudes over the kitchen like a upper deck.
In the next picture, I’m still down by front door, but looking up and to the right…
Here, I’m still standing downstairs, looking up and to the far left…
Now I’m going to walk straight ahead, into the kitchen, turn around and take a picture towards the front door….
In the picture above, the door to the left was the bedroom Steve and I stayed in. Two more bedrooms and a bathroom are upstairs, above our room. There are two windows upstairs that serve as skylights.
Now I”ll go upstairs and take a picture looking down, into the living room…. (there will be railing lining this U-shaped log edge upstairs.) As you look at these pics, remember, they’re wanting to be FINISHED in 3 weeks time….
Ok…. the next picture shows the rest of the upstairs loft. There are 2 bedrooms and a middle bathroom behind that white wall. On top of the wall, in the void, will be an additional sewing area for Candace. You can stand up there…plenty of headroom (unless you’re 6’8″ Steve)….
That room in the back left corner (below) is Candace’s FABRIC CLOSET for quilting. The huge, open room to the left is her QUILT ROOM. Do I have some extremely envious quilters reading out there??
Here was the room we stayed in…
Here’s their Master bedroom…which was “Building Supplies Storage Central”, at the time…
Our designated tasks were to paint all the walls (in the 3000 square foot house), connect all of the light switches, all of the plugs, install all the lights, stain the logs, and maybe do some chinking…in 2 days. Time to roll up our sleeves!
We started at 7am. Jeremy started using the chainsaw to cut off unwanted protruding knots throughout the house, and cutting down the long ends by the window bucks (trims). The girls then vacuumed ALL of the logs, cleaning off the sawdust prior to staining. You can see in pic that we had already painted that wall and installed the lights…
Steve spent 2 solid days wiring all the switches and plugs, and installing light fixtures. He also hanged 2-3 doors with Jeremy. (hanged? hung? who knows…)
Candace and I painted the upstairs and downstairs (not counting 2 downstairs bedrooms or bathrooms).
With help from the girls, and a few hours of help from our friend Mallory and her boyfriend, Mike, Candace and I got ALL of the upstairs logs stained! That’s me on the 200th floor in the sky…(where’s my parachute?) I’m on a fully extended EXTENSION ladder!
In the next picture, see the paint, new light fixtures, and stained logs, so far?…
Jeremy also sanded the last of a vertical RPSL log while Reiley vacuumed his dust as he went along…
Our friends Mallory and Mike came to help stain logs for a few hours, and helped assemble scaffolding, move trash out, etc. It only took a couple hours per room to stain…if that.
By the end of two full days (and I mean FULLLLLL days), here was our final result:
fully painted upstairs,
mostly painted downstairs (except 2 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms),
all electrical done,
all plugs and switches wired and covers in place (thanks to Reese and her handy screwdriver),
front porch chandelier hung,
a few doors up,
all logs upstairs stained,
and living room logs stained.
Just click on thumbnails to see enlarged slideshow again…..
(UPDATE: As of June 24th, 2015…3 weeks after we left them…Candace said their whole downstairs except Master has been chinked; the upstairs needs to be chinked, except long back wall has been done; the 2nd bathroom downstairs needs grout in the shower, and the sink to be installed; the Master bathroom tiling is almost done, but needs vanities hooked up, and shower fixtures installed. Kitchen cabinets are in. Need counters and island. Need railing. They had a chinking party a couple weeks ago. Otherwise, Jeremy has done almost all of that by himself, as Candace has to work. So…it moves pretty fast!)
They are knocking on their end of June/mid-July finishing goal! They just might do it!!
Our duties were done, and it was time for us to move on and have 2 last days in Colorado seeing some sites and resting.
We headed on towards Breckenridge, Colorado, passing through Leadville.
We finally arrived in Breckenridge…exhausted and eager to relax. We stayed in an incredible log hotel with an amazing view out the windows of our room…
.We suddenly saw a herd of MOUNTAIN GOATS running down the mountain and headed straight to our RENTAL CAR!! (You know that this would only happen to us…right?)
Completely freaked, not knowing if they’d charge our car or us, we apprehensively walked towards the car, trying not to call attention to ourselves. After a while, we realized they were very friendly, and let us take pictures with them. That white car is our rental.
In the midst of our photo session, we suddenly heard a loud noise coming from up the mountain. There was an avalanche! A hiker was coming down the path, getting away from it. We asked if we should be concerned?? Did we need to get in the car and drive away FAST?? He didn’t know.
We remained glued to the avalanche…watching…wondering…(worrying…)…having never seen one in person before, and not knowing if it would end up sliding all the way down to us. They sound like thunder! After many minutes, it finally stopped, and the snow settled. We thought that was pretty darn cool.
THEN, about 30 minutes later (I kid you not), we decided to take a hike. We left the car right where it was, and just continued walking up the road. After getting a good 50 yards from the car, we saw a tour bus pull up and park by our car. Lots of people flooded out.
Suddenly, rocks and boulders started rushing down the mountain next to us, between us and the people. It was headed right for our car!
(Again…this would only happen to us.)
The people all looked up, started pointing…and then TURNED AND RAN back to their bus and drove away!
The four of us sat there, jaw-dropped, watching the rocks and boulders tumble and bounce off the mountain, right into the direction of our car.
All you could do was watch…and [try to] breathe.
The goats, of course, had cleared away, too (they were smart).
After my lungs reminded me of the importance of taking in oxygen, the slide stopped, and none of the rocks made it to our car. WHEW!!
That was pretty much the moment we all looked at each other and said, “Uhmm….maybe it’s time to leave?”
The excitement never stops there, though. Not with the Bradburys. Ohhh no.
The next day we got to the airport. While in security, after going through the scanners, they pulled Reese (my 11 year old) aside and said they had to check her bag. My head is, of course, spiraling, wondering WHAT in the world she has in there?!
After the security guard pulled everything out of her bag, while comparing it all to the x-ray, she finds “the hidden missile of concern”. A bottle of Gatorade, and bottle of juice. (sheesh!!!) Whata-criminal. LOCK-R-UP!
Upon entering the plane, none of us could get seats together. We had to find an empty seat wherever we could each find one. Not ideal for an 11-year old on only their 2nd flight. But, oh well.
Now all scattered, the plane took off. Minutes into the flight, the flight attendant comes over the speaker system asking, “Are there any medical professionals on board??”
A lady and my Steve rise up out of their seats. They head back to 2 rows behind me. A woman was passed out, and all the people sitting around her had cleared out of their seats to make room for Steve and the woman…a nurse. Steve is a firefighter and Emergency Medical Technician. The RN nurse said she was glad Steve was there!
The next thing I knew, Steve had on a stethoscope, and asked the flight attendant for a glucometer (to test blood sugar). After much time passed, the woman sat up straight and was doing much better. Steve returned to his seat, and the rest of the flight was [relatively] normal.
Whirlwind construction, charging goats, avalanches, rock slides, a child with “loaded” backpack, and medical problems on flight…can we go back to normality now, please?
Nope. On a more sad note, Dixie (my mother-in-law) had texted us to let us know that a raccoon had torn through the screen on the door to our “Le Maison Du Poulet” (chicken coop), and literally shredded up my 6 birdie-girlies…including my precious Lilly, and manicurist, Marie Grace.
Reese and I were devastated. It took me a whole week after getting back to gather up the mental and emotional ability to sweep and rake up all the feather carnage everywhere in the run and coop. Steve had picked up the body parts for me when we first got home.
The coop is all cleaned up and looking new again, now…all ready for its new shipment of 12-18 assorted baby birdie-girles in August. We’re starting all over again.
Between now and then, Steve will cover the whole run, the windows, and door screen with “hardwire cloth” (or whatever it’s called) to ensure this will NEVER happen again.
Upon arriving home, we babysat our neighbor’s pet rabbit, which the girls loved, and got to gather eggs from their farm. We also got to go with my newly-engaged niece to wedding dress shop!! As if that wasn’t fun enough, she asked my girls to be bridesmaids! The Lord’s MANY blessings…
So much to look forward to…
Since returning from Colorado, Steve has been GLUED to his waterfowl business, catching up on customer birds (www.WaterfowlStudios.com).
If you’d like to keep up with Jeremy and Candace’s build, his blog address is www.ACabinInTheAspens.blogspot.com
If you want to go to next post click here: “Summer 2015″. For those of you who are visitors to this blog, it’s a chronological story. Each post is in order. To start from the beginning, where we bought the land and built a 130-year old Bed and Breakfast out here, click on this link: “Welcome to Cottonwood Creek”. If you want to start from the beginning of our log home build, click on this link: “What do Vegas and logs have in common?”