Thursday, December 30, 2010


Don't have to much to write - so here are some pictures of how the house looked on Christmas. Not liveable. Not Christmasy. Not what we had hoped it would look like - but on a positive note, progress continues to be made!!

View of the Kitchen. Drywall has has been taped and mudded. Corner beads in place.

Living area and stairway to basement

Bathroom - shower has been cement boarded and drywall completed. Need to tile the floor and shower.

Corridor towards living area. Firewall on left needs one more layer of drywall!

Chris made a garage door - so the house is now completely enclosed. Url's butt in view!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010


Once the blown insulation was completed by the pro's - Chris and I got to the interior walls with some fiberglass. At the same time the guys got to work with the drywall. By the end of the weekend - good progress had been made. Hopefully by Christmas the whole upstairs will be drywalled, and ready for primer and paint !!!! Thats going to be an exciting day!

Rather them than me. So thankful for these talented guys!

Screwing the drywall in place

Chris and Url watching!!

The last of the free windows - perfect size and shape for the master bedroom - and lovely view of the back garden.

At the front of the house - wheres url ???
Impossible to hide with those ears!

A fiberglass frock. Itchy!
Cutting and stapling the interior insulation!

Drywall in the corridor

Kichen starting to get covered!

Spare bedroom

Bathroom ceiling going up

Corridor ceiling in!

Lots of snow outside the back door!!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010


The framing was complete. Next step - insulation. We decided on blown insulation because three of our exterior walls were only 2 by 4's - so maximum R value would only have been R-15. Not ideal when temperatures outside get pretty darn cold. With the blown - which is made up of chopped newspaper - we could get an R value of 20. For the ceiling it would be R-50!! Plus we wouldn't have to deal with the itchyness of fiber glass -  it was therefore an easy decision! So yesterday and today our insulation guys got to work, and started making the house nice and toasty!

Firewall done.

Exterior walls and ceiling done

New front windows in and walls insulated!

Blown insulation between studs.

Plastic making a good, level base for the R-50 insulation!

Double toastyness !! Blown insulation and the roaring pellet stove!!

Stepping outside

With the new foundation, the back door somehow ended up below ground level. Not a great predicament when the snow starts to melt - draining into the house. It also meant we would have to clamber up a 2 foot ledge to get into the back garden. Luckily Eduardo was on it, and framed some lovely steps, installed a drain, and cemented it in place.

Steps outside back door framed

      Cemented. Drain is covered with duct tape (which will be removed) - on the bottom step. Hopefully it will stop our house from being a pond in april!!

Basement - DONE

Blankets and ground heater pipes - keeping the ground toasty in preparation for the cement.

Eduardo and Manuel finishing the slab after the cement was poured.

The back section was completed and left to dry while the front section was poured!

The basement finished - and already being used for storage.
Last week the basement was completed. The ground heaters did there work - the ground was ready for the cement. It was poured in two sections over two days. Back, then front. It looks awesome

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Ready for the slab

The unfinished basement is almost finished. Plumbing and drains are all in place. Gravel and wire is laid. All that is needed is the cement, which should be arriving on Monday!

As I write the ground heater and blankets are warming everything up, in preparation for pouring! Its looking great down there, and turned out to be a massive space!

Ready for the cement

View from driveway - there will be a one car garage, mud room, laundry room, mechanical room, man cave and storage!

Pellet Stove

In Eagle County, unless you have an existing fireplace, chimney or wood burning stove - you are not allowed to install one, due to concerns with smog and polluting the atmosphere. Understandable - but not great for Chris and Helen, who enjoy a good fire and who would like a cheaper heating option. Fortunately, we discovered one option. A pellet stove. Very efficient, they use old bettle kill wood, which has been reduced to saw dust and re-formed into pellets. Cheaper than gas, and looks cool!!

So on wednesday - our new pellet stove from New Earth Pellets was installed. Last weekend, I had made a fire-resistant base for it to sit on, and had my first tiling experience. Successful to a point. It was too cold to grout the tile - so at present the tiles remain fixed with just mortar !! Pretty pleased with the outcome.

Awaiting grout - we tried to warm the tiles up with space heaters - but when its -10F outside, and probably inside too - it was difficult to bring them up to 45F - which was needed for grouting!!

Pellet stove (needs a dust !!)

The pellets drop out of the little latch on the back wall - and are lighted by a spark. Depending on the air temp, and desired temp on the thermostat - more or less pellets are plopped into the stove!! Super cool !!

Lit and heating away!

Location of pellet stove - corner of living room - kitchen is going to be straight ahead - and you can see new kitchen window in place!

Friday, November 26, 2010

Doors and a few windows!

Unfortunataly the beautiful front door was not up to scratch - after my hard labours of sanding, filling and painting - it turned out the door wasn't quite straight - so when we eventually hung it - it had almost an inch gap, some of the way around! A little bit too drafty for a house in the Rocky Mountains. So despite my disappointment - we purchased a new wooden front door and a new steel back door! With a second new window installed at the front, plus two bathroom windows - the house is starting to become more airtight and secure!

Sanding in September - when the sun was still shining and hot!

After first coat of blue paint!! Wanted blue because it reminds me of front doors in London!

Please mind the gaps!

New back door

New front door!

Second front window in! With a snowy view

Back door in!

Two new bathroom windows in.

Front door in - still need to paint it blue - and put a strip at the bottom to stop the draft.

Precious Url catching some sun! Took the door off to paint today - and found the paint fully frozen in the tin. Instructions for use - temperature needs to be 35F. I think today in Minturn it was 10F! No painting undertaken today - and door went back on! Might be a job for the Spring!

Door back up - awaiting paint!

Sunday, November 14, 2010


November 14th - this is how the house is coming along thus far.
  • All the cement for walls and footers have been poured. Only slab (floor) left to pour. 
  • All walls in the house have been framed, including closets in both bedrooms.
  • Every wall in the house has had drywall and old insulation removed. 
  • Fire wall framed, outside wall finished. Awaiting insulation and drywall inside. 
  • New floors laid throughout except for small section at the front door.
  • Staircase to basement underway. 
  • Plumbing - 'rough in' underway. 
  • Ceilings dropped, leveled and framed thoughout (thanks to Walt, Christian and Chris today)
  • Electrician starting this week (we hope)
  • Kitchen cabinets, appliances and granite counter-tops ordered. 
  • Tiles for the bathroom bought - a super nice, grey limestone. 
  • One of eight windows replaced. 

Lovely blue front door and new window in place. The door is a slightly odd shape and therefore does not fit the door frame well - so unfortunately we will probably have to get a different one.

Staircase into basement being built

View from basement

The very back wall of the new basement finished.

The lowest framing seen is the new level ceiling.

New double shower tray bought and in place! We will tile the walls

Fire wall from outside finished. Just needs the stucco now!

Walt helping with the ceiling today - couldn't have finished it so quickly without him - thanks!!

Walt and Christian measuring.

They were there till dark - but got the whole ceiling framed in a day!!

I pulled down the remaining drywall and insulation from the far corner of the house - I took a picture afterwards. It looks like its snowing inside the house - or I don't have a great camera - but actually this is the dust in the air - captured by my flash. Gross.