Tuesday, January 05, 2010

The Vacation That Was Deck

This post is kind of like one of those "What I did on my Christmas Vacation" reports we had to write when we came back to school in January. Remember those? One of the last things we need to finish on our several-years-long home remodel is the deck off our second story bedroom. Up until very recently there was a fabulous set of french doors opening onto....nothing. Or a verrrrry long first step.
But not after this vacation! We didn't go anywhere or do anything more exciting than seeing movies, except get the deck building project underway. The big wood pile was delivered on Christmas Eve morning, bright and early from our local lumber yard.

Any and all visitors to our house during this time were encouraged or bribed or commanded to help move this huge stack of wood from the driveway to the backyard.

Leverage calculations and estimates were bandied about. Different schemes for hoisting a 24' long beam up high enough and stably enough to get into the metal holders at the top of the 10' deck supports were debated. Finally, a method was worked out involving the car floor jack and many interim strips of support wood nailed temporarily in a ladder like fashion up the posts. Quite fascinating how they figured it out. I was absolutely no help whatsoever. My mind doesn't work that way, not 3-d capable enough somehow. My mind is however really good at finding things that are misplaced, so that was how I supported the deck building team. Locating their gloves and hammers and duct tape and receipts from the hardware store so incorrectly purchased items could be successfully exchanged.
Yes, the teenager with prior building experience was a HUGE help. He worked on a house building project with a friend of ours a couple summers ago, so he knows his way around construction stuff more than the average teen.
And our younger teenager was also helpful and enjoyed hanging out working with dad and learning more about the manly mystique surrounding the use of power tools. One of his Christmas presents was a new red tool box with his own screwdrivers, etc. as he has been in trouble frequently this year for using dad's tools and not putting them back in the correct location.
So now when I step out my french doors there is a tiny temporary plywood platform. Which is really something and really cool, because it is a great view from out there. There is enough room for exactly one deck chair.
I have found that I like having my coffee out there in the morning sun. And I'm plotting and planning how to change the garden around to best viewing advantage from the new deck.
The next step of course is the deck boards and railing. Which we are ordering by the end of the month. And it won't be Trex apparently, as that stuff is somewhat more defective than advertised and they aren't supporting their warranties unless they're sued. hmmm. The local lumber yard guy told us all about it and sure enough, we're going with another brand. But it will be a recycled plastic type of "lumber" not wood, because we know how much upkeep wood is, even if it is redwood like our other deck.


Anonymous said...

Very cool Julie Z. We spent the time just before Christmas redoing my sewing are and installing cabinets in the TV/Family room for a gourd carving/other hobbies of choice area for me!

susan in spokane

Laume said...

I have a feeling you'll really get a lot of use out of this new outdoor living space. I'm envious - in a friendly way.

Vince said...

hooray! i can't wait to come see it!

Cat said...

What a great space. Congratulations.

Jaye said...

I am so excited for you! I am especially happy that you enjoy sitting out there. Do I see a bedroom coffee maker in your future?