Hello lovely fans! And Happy New Year! It has been over a month since I last posted. I reached a point in the building process where I just couldn’t do more until an extension to the barn was built and the trailer was moved out from under the low loft. In the meantime, I applied to some colleges and took a break from everything for the holidays and to visit with some of my friends who were home on break. It was actually a little overwhelming seeing people again since I’d been on my own for the most part for the last couple of months. But overall really really wonderful to reconnect with my friends. I had about two weeks to simply relax and continue to recover from Lyme Disease. Though I’m not sure if I’m 100% yet, I’m feeling great and have more energy every week.
While I was applying to college, my dad took it upon himself to build the 7′ extension to the barn – a HUGE thank you to him. My parents and I all drove to Cummington Supply to buy the materials for it:
We got a bunch of 2x4s, some plywood, and 6mil plastic to cover it. It’s nice to have it sheathed in plastic so that light can come through. One of the storms we had out here blew out the door and half of one of the walls, but it ended up being easier than we thought to repair. Here’s a picture of the extension before it was repaired:
My friend Lilly came to visit for a couple of days and helped me to pull the trailer out from under the loft and into the extension:
After New Years I was able to cut the bottom plates of the walls and drill holes for them to go over the metal rods. It feels great to make progress again!
This is where the bottom plate goes over the wheel wells:
In anticipation for building the walls, I calculated how much lumber I was going to need so I could order it from Cummington Supply. Before I ordered, I called Colin Garland who had said he might be able to get some lumber donated to me. A couple of days later, he came with 30 8 foot 2x4s and 5 12 footers. This was SO wonderful and saved me about $100. He also brought me a window that I’d seen in his barn and expressed an interest in. I am very grateful for his help.
Lliam came over yesterday and we built the first wall together! I built the rough opening of the window before he arrived.
It was a lot of fun and very satisfying, but also frustrating when nails hit knots in the wood and just wouldn’t go through. It’s so cold out there too! It has been below zero for almost two weeks and I’ve had to run inside every ten minutes or so to warm my freezing toes and fingers. Here’s a picture of us looking happy but tired. I’m standing in the doorway and Lliam is looking out what’s going to be the kitchen window.
I’m excited to build the other walls, but I have to plan out a little bit more about where the studs are going to go, how I’m going to insulate, and where the seams of the plywood fall. Its pretty tricky planning just on paper when I don’t have the bottom plates to measure on. Hard to visualize something that’s not 3D yet. But also fun!
In other news, I’ve been hanging out with Lliam a lot and eating more meat because that’s what he eats. So it’s been pretty easy to get my “homeopathic dose” of red meat every week. Last night I had a mini hamburger for dinner. My mom, longtime vegetarian, actually bought Lliam some hamburger and cooked a big one and little one for us:
I’m hoping this will all give me more energy. It hasn’t disagreed with my stomach yet!
I also painted a picture for my mom for her birthday at Walt Cudnohofski’s watercolor class:
It was great to paint again after not making much art for a while.
That’s all for now! It seems like January is going to be a big building month so I should make a lot of progress. Let me know if you want to help build!