Sunday, February 22, 2015

The House - Week 17

Week 17 - February 16, 2015

This week was spent in earnest on the exterior of the house.

First step is to wrap the building with a vapor barrier and to get the soffit and fascia installed.

The roof edges from Ada's window.

It was a lovely morning. I decided to take a jaunt up onto the roof.  This is looking along the peak of the roof to the south.

Interesting shingles, eh?

Wrapping the back of the house.  I count seven ladders.

The south wall of the house.

From the front.

The space at the bottom will be filled with rock.

I like that the house has a fairly small profile from the front.

We also started getting the low-voltage cabling installed. This includes CAT6, CAT5e, RG6 (cable TV), twisted pair and speaker wiring throughout the house.

Adding the soffit to the underside of the deck.

The back is wrapped.

Another view.

Low-voltage cabling pulled to Kate's room.

This is looking our of Kate's window towards the south.

From Kate's window looking north.

Low-voltage cabling in the TV room.

Looking at the toy room/bonus room ceiling.

The soffit and fascia is pretty well completed near the garage.

Progress at the front of the room.

The Hardie board siding and board and batten is completed on the side of the garage.

Another view.  Attic vents are also added.

Rough-in for the garage door opener.

Soffit above the deck.

Low-voltage cabling for the family room tv and speakers.

Most of the low-voltage cables for the top two floors comes up near the fireplace. You can see the large bundle of cables between the studs.

We also had the 4-way inspection this week.  A few things that were noted: Adding backing for where the railing mounts to the wall.

More backing for the railing.

The upstairs bathtub. A small buildout was added behind the tub.

The view from the master bedroom window looking south.  Our next-door neighbors are working on compacting the dirt in preparation for footings.  While next to them the house is well underway with framing.

This box is above the entry to the master shower for a heat lamp.  The orange cabling behind the box routed in the attic space is for the solar photovoltaic system.

Hardie board siding going up in the back.

Another view.

The low-voltage cabling is nearly completed.  We have almost 3 miles of cabling in the house.

The electrical service entrance in the house, including the orange solar PV conductors.

We bought a bunch of our light fixtures this week.  We purchased two fixtures to be mounted over the sinks in the master bathroom, but our plans only showed electrical connections for one. This picture was to remind me to have our electrical contractor rough-in for another fixture.

Caution: Solar Circuit.

These are decorative gable elements that will be added near the square windows at the front of the house.

The electrical service. The two boxes to the left are for the solar PV system.

A view from the SE corner.

Another view of the low-voltage cables coming up from the basement.

The building inspector's notes from the 4-way.

Page 2 of 2.

The last two pictures are additional progress on the exterior Hardie board installation. nearly complete on the south side.

Nearly complete as well on the back.

The week I think we'll see the PV panels installed and the insulation installed once the 4-way inspection items have been addressed. Hardie board installation should be completed, then they will caulk and paint.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Washington DC to Yorktown (Day 5)

First thing this morning I took a walk to find some breakfast.  I made my way to a McDonald's and brought food back for the girls.

Once we were ready and had loaded the car, we walked to the metro, passing through George Washington University.  Excuse me, passing through THE George Washington University.

Our first stop today was at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History.  We didn't have much time, so we just hit the highlights.  Here are the girls in front of the Hope Diamond.

We saw lots of spiders, insects and small reptiles.

Unfortunately, the big fossil hall is closed for renovations for 5 years. There are some skeletons in a small exhibit gallery. I think that is some sort of whale above.

Ada and her skeleton friend.

In front of the African Elephant in the Main Rotunda.

Kate doing the hippo.

Ada's version of the hippo.

That concluded our whirlwind tour of the museum.  We had to book it from the museum to make it to the White House, where we had scheduled a tour.

One last picture in front of the Washington Monument.

I was afraid that we would be late, but we made it in plenty of time to wait in line near the William Tecumseh Sherman Monument.  Strollers weren't allowed in the White House, so I took my chances and hid the stroller under a street vendors truck.  That's not suspicious, right?

We couldn't take photographs inside the White House, so here is a virtual tour that you can peruse.  All of our photos were taken after we exited through the front door.

Me and the girls.

Alison, Ada and Kate.

Selfie time.

It started to rain a bit as we were exiting the White House.  Alison and the girls took cover in front of the PNC Bank building (can you find them?), while I ran to see if our stroller was still in place in my special hiding place (ps. it was).

We returned to the Georgetown Westin to pick up the car.  It was pouring rain when we exited the metro, so I ran to pick up the car and then picked up the girls at the Metro Station.

The drive to Yorktown, Virginia was pretty uneventful, except for when Lyla threw up a little bit on herself... It was just a swallow or two of some clearish liquid, the poor girl was a little embarrassed, her first words were "Excuse me."  We got her all cleaned up, grabbed some Subway and kept on our way.

The drive took us about 3 1/2 hours and we made it to Emily's house in Yorktown that evening.  Ivie was about 1 month old and we were all excited to meet her.

Kate with Ivie.

We were excited to spend the next few days with Emily and her kids.  Her husband was deployed overseas a few weeks before the baby came, so she was taking care of the new baby and three other kids on her own.  We thought that we would be there to help out a bit, but that was not the case as she had everything under control.  We probably disrupted her schedule more than anything, but we sure loved being there.