Welcome to our travels and adventures

Welcome to our travels and adventures

No Days off Now

1408122 Aug 10 Terry Terri Mark Trying To Fit JoistsThis week, we will be up to our back sides with 1408123 Aug 10 Terri Barb Cutting Joistwork. The interior walls are all up now with a just a small area where the vaulted ceiling meets up with the standard 8 foot ceilings to be completed. On Sunday, Aug 11, Barb and I ‘putter’ around by wiring in the dryer outlet and repaired our newly purchased lawn umbrella. Terri & Mark were coming over to help us install the 2x6x13 foot ceiling joists in the bedroom. Barb and I had 1408128 Aug 10 Mark Holding 2x4 While Terry Nailsalready figured out the roof slope that the 2x6 had to be cut on to fit and we built a jig and pre-cut one end of the 2x6. Once Terri & Mark arrived, we made a more accurate measure, Barb & Terri made the cuts and Mark & I manoeuvred each one into place to maximise the amount of the 2x6 to sit on the top plate. Once we got the first few under our belt, it moved along quickly, Barb & Terri cutting and passing the joists up to Mark & I, we would nail them in place and Barb & Terri would 1408132 Aug 10 Putting The Washer In Placehand us another, and so on. We finished early so since we had a couple of strong backs, Mark & I move the washer & dryer into the 1408133 Aug 10 Mark Terri Terry Levelling Washerback room and hooked them up. After all this, it was dinner time and where did we go? Correct, our favourite patio.

1408139 Aug 11 Watching Washer Wash And Dryer DryMonday starts out with Barb & I putting the final touches to the dryer by installing a dryer vent and then doing a load of laundry in our ‘new’ machi1408140 Aug 11 Barb Nailing Closet Doornes. What a treat this is, after 14 years of using a coin laundry! After lunch, we continued our construction with some of the little jobs – closets etc. Barb was excited about seeing the completion and while she was nailing a stud wall section together, nailed the wall section to the floor! Oppssss, the nailing guns 1408141 Aug 11 Barb Nails Wall To Floorget heavy after awhile and sometimes if you don’t get the angle right… well, it wasn’t much to un-nail it and get it upright and in place.
Tuesday was an active day, now that we have the 1408149 Aug 12 Terry Cuts Out Hall Top Plateceiling joists up in the bedroom, we needed to complete the drain venting for inspection. It was a little easier than the actual drains, air can flow uphill. Now with the venting in, we can continue with the walls that a few of the vents go through. The wall separating the bathroom and the furnace was built and the drywall put on before we lifted it into place. There is no room left in the furnace room1408145 Aug 12 Barb Fitting Around Pipes to hang the drywall so it had to go on before. Gooping and painting is another story though. Once this was all done, we called our building inspector for another visit so they could sign off on the total plumbing and interior framing work.1408142 Aug 11 Barb Nails Closet Together

1408158 Aug 13 Terry Wiring A Receptacle

Wednesday, the wiring of the house begins. It doesn’t 1408159 Aug 13 Barb Now Gets All Receptaclesseem to matter how much planning and thought you do, there is always something you forget. We had our design drawings that showed how everything connects, so we thought it should be easily completed by the weekend. Drilling holes and pulling wire is not a daunting task but for us oldies, the hands, arms and backs were very sore by the end of the day. We bought new spade bit drills so we didn’t have to fight the drilling but you had better have a good grip of the drill when the bit gets to the other side of the stud or it catches and tries to spin out of your hand. Now that hurts after awhile!

1408181 Aug 16 Another Day Of Attaching Wires1408165 Aug 13 Terry Wiring Up High

1408175 Aug 15 Barb Installing Switch BoxesThursday was our building inspection day and again, we passed. Another milestone for us and we do not see them again until we are insulated. A lot is going to happen before then though so back to wiring. It’s not a big house but I’m glad 1408182 Aug 16 Barb Pulls Furnace CableI bought a condensed code book to help me through some of the code requirements. When we built our house in 1983, my dad helped me with the wiring then but this time, we’re on  our own and sometimes, trying to figure out the switches was a little confusing. We did not think we would use the amount of wire we did and if I had been neater in laying it in the attic, we would have used more! Enough said about that neatness thing.

On Friday, we wired the kitchen. Now, here we used lots of wire. It has more circuits to it than the rest of the house. There has to be separate counter outlets on different circuits, same for the fridge, nuke and dishwasher. Barb was instrumental help with all of this – drilling, wiring outlets, helping pull wire, holding the ladder when I am up in the vaulted ceiling and the ole ‘honey get this and get that’! By the end of the day, we were done and only had the back mudroom and hall to wire.
1408188 Aug 16 Terry Mark Cement Foundation WallSaturday we did some small wiring jobs that we missed but it was Barb’s birthday and Terri & Mark were coming in to help – actually, Terri knew her mom was a hurt’n construction gal and was coming in to take Barb to a spa for a massage and a petie. Mark & I tested a new beer he brought then poured some concrete.
When the ladies returned, the cement was 1408190 Aug 16 Four Of Us At Taco Dinneralmost done and then dinner and a few games of fast track before turning in. It was a nice day, even though I had forgotten that it was Barb’s birthday until I turned on my computer and it told me what day it was but by then, it was too late!
That is it for this week and we hope all is good where you are.

Two Old People

1408038 Aug 03 In Sue Bobs KitchenLast week was exciting, this week was over the top! Now that all the important rules and regs are out of the way, these two old folks are gett’n down with it. Sunday was a little slower paced, we picked up more supplies (plywood, screws, 2x4s and our t1408045 Aug 04 First Row Of Plywood In Centre Of Houseoilet – on sale) for the week – something like JIT inventory, we don’t want to keep moving stuff around. We also replaced the floor planks in the kitchen – we didn’t want to get too involved as we were taking the day off to enjoy some music in the park with friends Bob & Sue in Crystal Beach. We had a great time and lots of laughs with Bob & Sue over dinner, beverages and music on the shores of Lake Erie. Life is good.

1408050 Aug 04 Barb Screwing Down Floor PlywoodMonday, we smoke into laying more sub floors. We had more than 70% of the floor left to do and with Terri & Mark’s help, we got it all done by dinner time1408054 Aug 04 Mark Screwing Down 2x4s on Monday. Wow, such a small place looking so big! But I screwed up and forgot to install the electrical wiring under the floor for the kitchen island outlets. This is not a big deal for homes with basements but for us with such a shallow crawl space and we don’t have a trained ferret to pull the wires in for us, we’ll have to lift a piece of the plywood up.

1408065 Aug 05 Larry Judy At The BarrelTuesday, Judy & Larry (our cousin) came over for a visit, chit chat, a tour of our project and discussion of their newly purchased condo in Kitchener. It was a welcomed day off – sort of. After Judy & Larry left, we took up some plywood, cut some of the old plank flooring to pull in wires for the island outlets. Replaced the plywood and now we’re ready for some interior walls! Yipee!

We took another day off, again sorta. We wanted 1408067 Aug 06 Picking Kitchen Up From Ikeato purchase our kitchen cabinets today to qualify for the 15% savings so off to Ikea. We tried the big box stores as I’m sure I may have already stated but we couldn’t get exactly what we (read Barb) wanted but we could with Ikea. I liked the soft close doors and drawers that are standard with Ikea –1408071 Aug 06 Bringing Home The Lumber I’m sure you pay for it in the end but…. After paying, we had to pick up and bring them home and unload it to the garage – wow, we had our exercise for the day, loading and unloading the cabinets. Still some daylight? Let’s get more 1408073 Aug 06 Barb Bringing In The 2x4asupplies for the walls – 2x4s etc so off to Lowes in Niagara and hand picked 100 sticks and some drywall – we had to put the drywall on a wall while it was on the floor because there is no room once it is up – only inches away from the furnace. Again, only the two of us old folks to unload our supplies!



1408077 Aug 07 Barb Holding Up The WallNow, back to work, enough days off playing 1408083 Aug 07 Its Becoming A Homearound! Today we start erecting the interior walls – this is almost too exciting, to see this progress. So, this is Thursday morning and we start, Barb cuts and I nail it. The nail guns are a bit too heavy for Barb to handle. Once we get the wall standing, Barb measures and cuts the wall blocking and I nail it in. It is like an assembly line. By dinner on Friday, we have all the walls up! Matching the flat ceilings and the 1408090 Aug 08 Barb Nails Up Bathroom Wallvaulted ceiling took some ‘MacGyvering’ but it’s an old house so adding one piece at a time, measuring and cutting as required. Barb & I are a good team and soon it’s mostly done.

1408092 Aug 08 Hey Did You Go For Lunch


1408105 Aug 09 FireOn Saturday, Terri & Mark stopped off for a visit. 1408106 Aug 09 Battle Goes On Soliders DieThe War of 1812 re-enactment was playing out at Old Fort Erie so we walked down to watch the happenings. It was very busy and noisy with the cannons blasting and their muskets roaring. A neat experience and a nice way to end a week of hard work. Hope all is good where you are….

Now It’s Our Turn

We started the week off a little slow, Barb was ill and flat out all day Sunday. I was ok so I got some more small jobs out of the way, like replacing floor boards that we lifted out for the foam spraying and the HVAC, picked up lots of construction or de-construction rubble that had fallen down the open perimeter of the floor and tidied up some.

Monday is a day off sort of, we have doctors appointments all the way on the other side of TO, a 6 hour return trip!

1407267 July 29 Terry Starting The WaterSo, on Tuesday, Barb still not feeling 100%, 1407269 July 29 Barb Cutting Pipewe start laying in the hot and cold water lines. We decided early in the project to use PEX pipe instead of copper. I did the lines in our Stouffville house in copper and if your soldering is not 100%, it is a pain to drain the line to re-solder the joint – need I say more? One has to get the crimp ring on the fitting though. I missed doing that on a fitting on the kitchen line and when we turned the water on, it quickly spit the 1407270 July 29 Laundry Taps Are Readyfitting off and water was shooting all over the 1407273 July 29 Look On Barbs Face When Water Was Turned Onfloor! By the end of the day, we’re all done and I call the town a little after 5 for an inspection of all stuff under the floor (HVAC & plumbing).1407274 July 29 A Pipe Flipped Its Lid

1407272 July 29 Terry Barb Laying Water PipeWednesday we are waiting to hear from the town about an inspection appointment so why not go out for breakfast and pick up some supplies. We get a call and the town will be out tomorrow to look at our progress. In the meantime, we put pipe supports on the hot & cold water lines on any spans over 4 feet. We also sold (basically gave away but they didn’t go to the landfill) a surplus window and the wall furnace that we took out when we did the de-construction.

Thursday is inspection day but we’re not so nervous this time as we’re confident in our plumbing job and this wasn’t the HVAC guys first rodeo. All of our plumbing drains were only dry fit so we wouldn’t waste parts or time if they were no1407289 July 31 Do We Have Enough Gluet correct. The inspector was happy with everything we did and okayed the job for next steps. Yipee, we’re excited now, we are clear to glue up the drains and start laying subfloor! The inspectors parting comment was “you guys will have a cute place here when your done”. Right after a quick bite, we start gluing the drain fittings and get the system cut into the main drain. Barb did most of the gluing – she is good at it and much neater than me, needless to say, I would have had glue everywhere! We have to wait until tomorrow to do a water test so it’s clean up time and then a beverage to celebrate our progress.

1408001 Aug 01 Terry With Sewer PlugAnother milestone day, water test day. Our sewer connection is a ‘Y’ so we just removed the stub on the one side and insert the test plug and started filling the kitchen drain with 1408003Aug 01 The Hose Brokethe garden hose. Seconds later, the water nozzle flies off and we are spraying water all over the floor inside the house – yikes, is this an omen? We’re too busy to fix it now so we kink the hose and carry on, we want to make sure our gluing is good. Barb is watching the toilet flange and the water comes to the top so the plug is working, now we wait. I get the broken hose outside and shut the water off and by the time I get back, Barb says the water has dropped an inch or so. Now this is not good news, do we have a leak or is the test plug not completely plugging the sewer. So we 1408006 Aug 01 Barb Checking For Leakscheck all the fittings to find the leak. We found the culprit – the shower drain trap is leaking! Crap, but after a closer look, we missed gluing this one! That was a relief, an easy fix and we carry on, satisfied that our glue job is good, we 1408004 Aug 01 Missed One Pipe To Glueput pipe wrap on both the hot and cold water lines and are now ready to start laying the sub floor – yahoo!



We already have a few sheets down in the 1408015 Aug 01 Extra Support For Showerbedroom and so we carry on from there but soon realize that this old house is not square 1408012 Aug 01 Screwing Down The Floorand we have to make custom cuts to fit the plywood in. Naturally, our new floor joists are bang on! The bathroom floor was a little tricky with all the pipes coming through but I have a quilter working me and she can figure any puzzle out and soon, we have the plywood cut and in place perfectly.


1408018 Aug 01 Pipes Fit Great1408019 Aug 01 Barb Using JigSaw1408020 Aug 01 Flooring Done In Bedroom & Shower







Saturday, more subfloor up into the main area of the house, more pipes and custom cutting. After a long day, Barb wasn’t tired enough so decided to cut some grass too! I can’t slow her down these days….

That’s it for our week, hope all is good where you are…..

So Many Ducts, Such a Small House

1407212 July 20 Terry Cutting WoodWe are expecting the HVAC installed tomorrow – Monday! But we have to do some things to be ready – like prep the area it is to go. It should have a floor, potential wall locates and some electricity. We also want to have everything out of the house in case the guys need to cut more floor to hang the ducts etc. Before we move all our tools back into the garage, it should have a little house cleaning so ‘things’ have place to go! At the end of the day, a small floor area is down with the finished walls marked on it so the guys know exactly what space they have to work with. The garage is tidied up and the house is empty except for the chop saw and stand. We also have our fingers crossed that tomorrow actually happens and the HVAC is finally installed.1407215 July 21 Bringing In The Furnace

Wow, first thing Monday AM we see a furnace being carried int1407217 July 21 Top Of Furnace Goes Ono the house! Yes, we are dressed and ready and go out to take some pictures and ensure all goes correctly. They set it on the floor and set about assembling the plenum to the furnace and bringing in the duct structures. It’s happening, we’re starting to move forward again! The first estimate on time was they would start Monday and probably be out at the end of the day Tuesday.

1407220 July 21 Working In The CrawlspaceWhile all this excitement was going on, Barb 1407224 July 21 Our New Washer Dryerfound a deal on a washer-dryer pair for sale not too far away so we have an appointment to see and buy them at 2PM. We arrived a bit early but the seller was there and happy to see us. We took one look at the pair and realize they were very well taken care of and immediately pay the asking price. Barb & I carried the dryer out without any problems, not too heavy for us. As we were taking the dryer out, another buyer was approaching and was not happy that the units were sold – I guess he thought he had first dibs on them and made the trip for nothing. The washer was another story. We used a blanket we had with us and got the washer to the front door – thank heavens it was on the main floor. The seller felt sorry for us and helped us carry it down the front walk! As we were nearing the last step, Barb lost her footing – she was on the short side of the walk and was starting to fall. She managed to set the washer down but could not stop her fall and she went down hard into the garden. Why didn’t I have an appliance dolly you say, a good question but we didn’t and Barb was hurting and I felt terrible. After a few minutes of rest, we wrestled the washer into the truck and secured it for the ride back. How in the hell are we going to get it out of the truck & into the garage? Maybe we’ll have to hook it up there and do our laundry in the driveway! By the end of the day, the furnace was in place with the plenum installed with the cooling coil, the cold air returns in and the hot air trunk under the floor. So, good progress today but can’t see them finishing up by Tuesday. We have a ‘new’ washer and dryer and with help of our neighbour, Rob, got them stored in the garage. Then we get Barb settled in to relax and tend to her wounds.

1407227 July 23 So Much Furnace PipingTuesday was another exciting day of action. The HVAC work continued and we went shopping again! Off to HD for some electrical supplies – we want to have stuff on hand so we can have the wiring under the floor for the island kitchen cabinets. We also picked up our shower stall. It has to go in the same time we put the floor down so we can ensure the drain lines up and connects properly. This is a challenge when there is no room under the floor to work on plumbing etc. Normally, most of this type of work is done from underneath after the sub floors are installed but with only 10-12 inches of clearance, it has to be done as we lay the subfloors. It’s kinda like building a house backwards and everything has to be thought of before the subfloors go in. We bought a 3 piece unit but it came as one piece and we have to disassemble it when we install it.

We had a nice surprise soon after we got back, Randy & Norma stopped by for a visit and gave us a ‘house warming’ card and a gift certificate for our favourite eatery. After hugs all around and some chit chat, Randy & I unloaded the shower and stored it in the garage too. Thanks guys for stopping by, your welcome any time even if not bearing gifts!

1407236 July 23 Replacing Our Water MeterOur water meter has not been reading our consumption so we called and the town sent 1407229 July 23 Our New Air Conditionerout a repairman on Wednesday to check it and replace it if necessary. After a short look and see, he replaced it with a more modern RF unit, one meant to be in damp, dark places! Also on Wednesday, the compressor is installed and more ducts are in. The furnace is vented and all is moving forward. There is a small glitch for parts – apparently, they had ordered parts but the other team took them and can’t get to them because the floors were refinished and no one can walk into the house for a few days! So they only worked a part day here but will be back tomorrow!

1407238 July 23 What Is Terry Doing1407240 July 23 Terry Makes A New Doorway










1407231 July 23 Barb Starts Unwrapping Our MummyWe’re too excited on our progress so we unwrap the shower and it is nice and big – 1407234 July 23 Barb Gets In The Shower Firstcompared to what we have been used to for the last 14 years! With little action going on inside the house, today is a good day for an ad-hoc project. Remember we acquired another door for the back of the house? Well, the one we took out was ear marked for the garage so we start that project – it should be a nice afternoon peace of work! While I was doing that, Barb got the power washer out to clean the fridge that was here when we bought the house. It was too disgustingly filthy to even think about using so we were going to sell it in our neighbours garage sale on Saturday. After a lot of scrubbing and power washing, the fridge sparkles, I can’t believe it is the same unit. Maybe if we hadn’t already bought a fridge, but it’s not the right colour!

1407246 July 24 Ann Bill Arrive In Their New Truck1407253 July 24 Bill Ann Barb Terry In Front Of Lake ErieThursday was a day off we were looking forward to, our dear friends Ann & Bill from the Plantation came over for a visit. We gave them the cooks tour of our hobby house and had some chit chat, checked out their new truck – too bad it is a Chevy Bill but nice anyway. We took them down to Erie Beach for a little walk about then off to – yes, you guessed it, the patio overlooking the Niagara River for lunch. We came back here for more chit chat and they bought the fridge for their son – he was in dire need of one. Bill & I loaded it into their new truck without scratching the bed and they were on their way.

1407255 July 24 Having Lunch At Hes Not Here1407256 July 24 Enjoying The Beautiful Day










1407259 July 25 Barb Removing Pipe ClampsThe HVAC guys are done and all is in and it is ready for 1407261 July 25 Terry Working On The Showertown inspection. Now Barb & I can smoke into laying in the plumbing drains then the hot and cold water lines. Too exciting isn’t it?




1407262 July 25 Barb Cutting Wood For Laundry RoomSo, Friday we get at the drains. You would think it 1407264 July 26 Barb Digging Dirt Lower For Seweris pretty straight forward, as long as it has a downward slope – you don’t want anything flowing up hill!. With all the duct work under the floor, we had to plan it out carefully. It certainly was more difficult than I expected and again due to the limited work space, 11-12 inches plus the duct work. When we did the plumbing drains in the house back in ‘83, it was not too difficult since we had a basement to 1407265 July 26 Barb Cutting In Laundry Linework in. This time, we made many trips to Timbrmart and Rona to get the proper fittings to make all the connections and still get a proper slope. They say poop does not flow up hill but ya never know….. We finished up mid day on Saturday.

That’s our week, we hope all is well where you are….