Wednesday, August 17, 2016


August 8th-11th

The first thing I did Monday morning was start trying to take down drywall. We had no idea what we would find behind the drywall so I took the biggest hammer we had and started to hammer away at the wall. If you know me at all you know that at the end of every theater production I do I want to destroy one prop or another. It is usually the prop that has given me the most trouble through the run of the show, which also happens to be the one prop that my director or the owner of the theater wants to keep. I never get to destroy anything so this was my chance; my very own #demoday! Of course because of the amount of work needed in the house and the fact that we are doing it all ourselves, it was just the first of many, many demo days. 
My First Demo Day!
So I'm banging away at the wall, and if you've ever hit drywall you know it does't take much to create a hole, but I get nothing. The drywall seems to continue to stand and I've barely made a dent so we begin to think maybe, just maybe we have shiplap behind this drywall. And sure enough, after we manage to scrape away some drywall we see shiplap! It's not in excellent condition but it isn't bad either. We'll have to take it down and hammer nails out of it, sand it down, and then put it back up before we can paint it, but it's shiplap! It's original to the house and it's want we wanted to go with on the walls anyway so all in all it was a huge find and a major plus! We also found wall paper from 1940's under that drywall but over the shiplap. Whoever built the house put the wall paper up using nails instead of glue. We're thinking that may have been because they didn't want to glue to the shiplap so even though I hate all the nails in it I'm more grateful the paper isn't glued and has been mostly easy to remove.
Shiplap, Drywall, 1940's wall paper
No more drywall!

This week I was determined to get rid of all of the vegetation around the house. So when I needed a break from all the drywall dust I went out with my clippers and attacked all the green around the house! Nothing was to be spared! Anything that my clippers couldn't handle I had Olaf come back to with a chainsaw. After an hour of work I was very happy with how things looked! I had been wanting to do that since week 1 but other things were more pressing, remember we could have our sheep escaping! Now we have a huge burn pile of leaves and branches and we have an excellent source of wood for fires and fence post!

No more vegetation around the house!
Can you spot Lacy?


After a few days of internet searching and talking to a contractor we felt fairly confident we could attack the foundation ourselves. We bought a beam and the wood needed to make outside supports and went to work. With this type of thing I basically just do as I'm told and hope I'm doing it right. I helped to dig holes for concrete supports, I measured 2x4's to the right length to fit under the roof, and I held things in place while Olaf screws things together. Once we had the outside support in and raised a bit it was time to go inside and start chipping away at what was left of the foundation. This was the fun part! I've found out I really enjoy destroying things and when you have a fixer upper you get to destroy quite a few things! By the end of the week we had a new foundation beam in! The beam we placed may not be the beam we end up leaving because we have since found out we can order a much longer beam which may actually be better but we have yet to decide what to do.

Outside Support

Old Foundation Out

No Foundation
New Beam In!

Despite reports of rain all week we managed to stay dry. It was like the rain just kept going around us or skipping over us on it's way out of the state! I know we won't continue to be so lucky seeing how we have rain predicted all next week but hopefully we can still get some work done! As usual we don't have a firm plan going into next week but I'd like to finish removing the drywall in the living room and maybe get the floor out in another room and maybe, just maybe more drywall. Until next week.

Where Lacy likes to be while we work!
While our camp stayed dry surrounding cities did
not. Lacy just happened to be in the car while a
thunderstorm rolled in...she did not like that!

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Bug Bites, Sunburns, Muscle Aches, and Two Very Happy Souls!

August 1st - August 4th

Olaf arrived back at the property around 1am the morning of July 30th I came a fews days later on August 1st. This week our focus was outside the house. Removing vegetation, fixing the gate (as in now we actually have a gate), and locating the well. We did remove the plywood subfloor from the living room to reveal the dirt underneath. We got our first good look at the sill issues going on but after a day and a half of intense internet research we're feeling like we can fix it ourselves.

I can't go any further without mentioning that we lost the sheep...yeah when Olaf got to the property he couldn't find them. He went to bed and decided he would looking in the morning. Turns out we missed a hole in the fence and the sheep got out. They were found trying to cross Hwy 77, a neighbor picked them up and kept them safe until Olaf could get them. By the time I arrived the sheep were back and the hole was patched. Really proud of Olaf for how he handled the whole thing!

The great thing that came out of the missing sheep was how Olaf was able to meet a few of our neighbors. Everyone has been so nice and offering all kinds of help! One such neighbor was Mr. Ken who offered to come over with his tractor and brush-hog to help with some of the vegetation!

After 7 days Olaf was getting tired of hot dogs for dinner every night, I can't really blame him, so I attempted to make a beef stew of sorts in a cast iron pot. Well the fire was too hot and things burned and it wasn't that great. However I refuse to give up and plan to try again the next time around.

By the time we headed back to Houston I had bug bites all over my ankles, Olaf and I both had some sunburn, we were sore, especially Olaf, his hands hand been every much abused, but I have to admit we had never been happier. We know we are doing what's right for us and that makes our souls rejoice!

Stew in the fire
Smelled so good!
Not Exactly What We Wanted
Our Well

Thank you Mr. Ken!

Little Bit of Wildlife
Living Room Subfloor Out!
Dining Room Subfloor and Sill (Well whats left)
Our Gate! We worked so hard for three days getting this working right!
Before Mr. Ken
After Mr. Ken!

Still a Happy Girl!
We are planning to head back tomorrow, August 7th, hopefully the sheep are still in our property! I'm sure we would have heard from a neighbor by now if they had gotten out but who knows. Honestly we were ready to go back after 3 hours of being back in Houston! We have no idea what's in store for us this week but we are really excited to see what happens next!

BTW Lacy LOVES it there! And she's great to have around while I'm working!

Let the Work Begin

July 25th- July 28th

It was with much excitement and enthusiasm we headed back up to Marietta to what would soon be our property to get to work. It took us a little while to actually get to the property because we needed to stop and pay for sheep on our way. We didn't take the sheep with us that day because we didn't have the space or really a way to transport them to the property. I think we got there that first day around 5:30 and we went right to work. I started setting up camp, we are currently camping at the property until the house can be lived in, and Olaf started chopping away at some of the vegetation. Before long we realized we needed a few more things and had to make a run to Home Depot. By the time we made it back to the property it was dark and time for bed.

Honestly the next few days are a blur. I know we removed all the carpet from the house, patched holes in the fence, removed some vegetation, picked up sheep, made two trips to the Mt. Pleasant dump, and who knows what else. When it was time to head back to Houston we were tired and hot but still so excited and so very enthusiastic about the project and all the work we have ahead of us
Front of House
Back of House
Right Side of House

Our Camp
Taking a Break from Work

Living Room

Front Bedroom

Exiting Front Bedroom to Living Room
Back Bedroom (Will be Master)
Let's get this carpet out!
Back of House with Vegetation Removed
Small Town Texas!
Willow and Loki arrive at the property
After a few days on the property
Almost time to head back but still excited!

It was a great first few days! The work is slow but steady and little by little we get things done. I failed to take pictures of the house once the carpet was out but oh well. The house immediately smelled a lot better without the carpet! Trying not to plan too much for our days because we had over estimated what we could get done in this Texas heat!

Friday, August 5, 2016

Love at first sight

Well after first seeing the house and about an acre of land I can admit I completely fell in love. It was seriously love at first sight! The grass was 3ft high, the carpet smelled awful (thanks to years of animals using it), the floors were caved in, we could clearly see the sills under the walls (and see how badly they need replacing), it was full of wasp nest and trash, but still I completely fell in love with the place!

This is what I saw and fell in love with that first day! I know I may be a little crazy but what can I say I loved it. On that first visit I was willing to go into the house but for whatever reason I wasn't willing to take pictures.

The entire 6 hours ride back to Houston was filled with talk of what we could do with the place. How we would fix the house. What kind of floor and walls we would put in. How I would finally have my clawfoot tub. What kind of animals we would raise. What kind of plants we would grow. We were totally and completely in love and wanted that property to be ours.

That fateful day was July 11, 2016 and by July 25, 2016 we had signed a lease agreement allowing us on to the property to start work while waiting for the deal to close and the title to be changed to our name. Closing is set to happen by August 12, 2016 and we will be land owners!

We are so excited and are eager to keep working!