Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Sugar on Snow, an annual Vermont tradition.

April 10, 2010. Dad and Doug at Craftsbury Community Care Center at the annual Sugar on Snow Day. Pouring warm maple sugar on snow, and eating pickles to fend of the sweetness is a tradition in Vermont that goes back years! Everyone had a good time. Dad is doing very well.

Dad visiting the building's progress. We are sitting in the door opening to the second floor studio where I can work and still be nearby for my father's needs. My old studio across the road is simply too far away, and has no water or septic, so I only work in that space when the weather is warmer. With the second floor as my studio space, I can be working just upstairs. Dad plans on teaching jewelry classes and is looking forward to working again. I plan on teaching from my space as well.

We used this ex-telephone truck to do a lot of the work on the building, and have been fortunate to have it be on site indefinitely while we work, on loan from a friend. I wanted to see how far up the bucket could go so I asked Doug one day, and then as soon as I saw how far up it went, got nervous and regretted my request! I am sure the view from up there is quite good, I think that Doug took some photo's!

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Roof overhangs and closing it all in.

This view shows the west and south walls. The square windows below are in my father's studio, the second floor is all sculpture, glass, printmaking and mixed media studio for me. Instead of designing the second floor with a conventional pitched roof, we decided to set the roof as a shed design, creating a much larger feeling space with larger windows to bring in as much light as possible. There is a two story porch designed for the south wall between the windows, with screen porches. The long run of a wall in the interior second story is so that I can work very large if needed - this wall is 15 feet long and 17 feet high.

The roof overhangs the walls by four feet, and this west wall is the predominant direction of most of our weather. This double door will have hanging outer barn like storm sliding doors so that the inner doors will be protected in inclement weather from blowing snow or driving rain. The long horizontal window on the second floor in the center of the north wall is at the top of the stairs and is a fixed pane window, as are most.

This is the view of the front south facing living room windows in my father's living space. Standing at these windows is like being outdoors, with the exception of being very warm in winter! The walls are to be insulated with 13 inches of insulation. There is a shelf designed to run under these windows for display. My parents collected many beautiful handmade objects from their travels and from art and craft friends. Underneath the shelf is room for books, near the floor.

Roofing trusses and walls

View of the north wall and roofing trusses.

The west facing wall with Chuck's ex-telephone truck parked. The TSS solar storage tank is underneath this high drive to the left of the second floor wide doors.

First floor looking drom the south entrance towards the north and east - the left window is in the caregiver/guest room, then the wide bathroom window, designed to take in the tall red pine with privacy and this design also echoes my parents second floor space in New York, designed by my mom so that one could see the trees but not any of the houses below. This design allows the windows to be unobstructed by blinds, the wall below to be functional, and the light maximized. The windows on the right are in my father's bedroom designed to be on either side of the bed.

The roof overhangs are 4 feet, so that any water and/or snow on the north side would be carried away from the building siding.

The view coming up our driveway into the dooryard. The lower lawn is to the right and the brook about 50 feet below. The site formally was a tall wall of red planted pine, overdue for harvesting by some 25 years. It was like living next to a tall building and blocked all the eastern morning and mid day light.

Framing dad's studio

A windy and snowy day

We used Chuck's ex-telephone truck to lift the trusses.
Lots of snow accumulated inside the first floor space. My father's big living room windows at the back, they will let in lots of light. They are about 18 inches off the floor, which was hard to see with all the snow in the building. In the end, we fired up the wood boiler so that we could turn on the floor radiant for snow melt!
Lifting the second floor walls with wall jacks. This wall is 16.5 feet tall, a big job for wall jacks!
This is the first floor space, looking from the living room space across the building to my dad's studio windows, that face west, a sunset view. At the back right of the space, along the cement foundation will be a mechanical room for the electrical sub panel, air handlers and heat recovery ventilators, which handle the air to air, some heat and future AC if needed. Also in this room is the floor radiant heat manifolds and solar collection, storage and distribution piping, well tank and domestic hot water preheat and or back up.

Framing the second floor

Framing most days was no problem weather wise - we had a mild winter which was just perfect.
Roof trusses stacked in front of the building, on the porch slab. The floor and roof trusses came from California because of their unique design, a combination of steel and wood.
Nothing like framing the sky for a view!

South facing wall, the brook is below running almost parallel to the front face of the building.
East wall on the second floor. You can see the stair opening in the center.

Well. sorry it has been awhile since I have updated the blog on the project! The walls are up, the roof is on and the interior walls and stairs have been framed. We are waiting for the spray air sealing with a low air permeable coating (which will turn the outside exterior black), and then the insulation, then windows and doors. The windows are from a company Serious Glass out of Colorado, and they make a R11.1 value for the large fixed windows and R7.2 for the awning windows. We chose to make most of the large windows fixed to save money and to up the R value, and add awning windows to the bottoms in places for a bit of air and mostly for sound to hear the sound of the brook below the building. Right now all the windows are plastic sheeting, but it is nice to sit inside on a warm spring day and take in the space. The stairs just were built at the end of this past week, and cool air rises up from the first floor through the stair opening just like air conditioning! The plans for the two story post and beam porch are being finalized and the windows should be installed by mid April. The framing of the first floor walls continues with some adjustments here and there for added storage built within the wall framing in the bedroom and studio.