Friday, August 26, 2011
Weekly Word Count – August 15th through August 21st 2011
Actually, I didn’t build it, I just helped. My Dad visited for a couple of days and created a plan out of my vague idea of what I wanted for the kids. The first thing we had to do was “fix-up” phase one of the plan, which was the deck that took me all of last summer to build. A pretty good effort according to my Dad, who is a certified expert in such things, except for the fact that it needed to be reinforced in order to make it safer. Then once he figured out all of the angles for the construction so it would have a sloped roof, we constructed the frame of the house.
So day one of the process consisted of, looking at the deck, figuring out how large the tree house was going to be (5’ by 7’), what design we wanted (doors, windows, type of roof) and then creating a shopping list.
Then it was off to Menard's where we purchased 40 2x4x8’s, 10 sheets of plywood, one roll of roofing material, 3 additional 4x4x8’s to reinforce the deck, some aluminum screen, door hinges and hardware and we were ready to roll. By noon we had everything that we needed and began construction.
As Dad and I reinforced the deck, the boys unloaded the lumber out of the van. One the deck was properly reinforced, we began cutting and constructing the sides of the house on the ground. It is amazing how easy a construction project can be when you have the right tools. With my dad’s saw and nail gun, the sides were assembled and good to go by 7pm on the first day.
On Day 2, we lifted the walls up onto the deck, clamped them together, nailed them in place and then began cutting the plywood sides for the house. While this was going on, I laid the roof beams in place and settled the plywood for the roof in place. This was completed by lunchtime.
After a quick lunch of Nick’s Pizza and sweet corn from Neely’s farm I worked on nailing the plywood for the room in place while Dad and Ben marked and cut out the door for the house. Once I had the first part of the roof in place, I was “trapped” on the roof while screwing the entire roof down tight from on top. While Dad and Leah cut out the windows for the house, I nailed the rolled roofing into place on the roof. A very hot job.
And by 5pm, all that is left to do is painting and putting the screens for the door and windows in place. I am amazed what a difference that 2 days can make.
In addition almost another day was sucked up by taking Addie to Cincinnati for an appointment with a specialist at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital. Figure in the 2 hour drive each way, the 2 hours for the appointment itself, and then (of course) lunch at a Chinese restaurant afterwards and the day is pretty much shot.
What does this have to do with the Weekly Word Count? Not a lot, other than giving me a tale to tell to pad the word count at the end of the week with some nifty pictures to boot, and a couple of lessons about the project that can be translated over from the construction realm to writing. Word Count for the Week: 1,789.
I’m not going to bother breaking it down for you… Next week will be better I promise. Next Week: Lessons I Learned About Writing from Building a Tree House!