Archive for November, 2005

Bush be gone Friday, November 11th, 2005

The landscape guys removed all the burned shrubs in the front. We’ll put new ones in once more of the rebuild is completed. The framing is pretty much done. Looks great and they really busted through it and got it done.
Yesterday we signed a check for $114,000 that had OUR names on it. Unfortunately, it also had our mortgage company’s name on it and the contractor’s name 🙂 But it’s good to see that insurance is taking care of that so the GC gets paid. He’s really been doing great.
The GC said I can go ahead and start wiring for sound whenever I’m ready.
Tomorrow I’m going racing with some friends. Should be fun. Then on Sunday, my friend Victor is helping me do the brakes on the trucks. Busy weekend. It’s sposed to rain too, which may change it up.

No more bushes!

Closeup. You can see where the bushes were.

The windows are MORE fixed. but not quite done.

New garage.

Side view.

BRAND new garage. Look at the new lumber.

Viva el garaje!!! Wednesday, November 9th, 2005

So I went over there and this is what I saw. They are cruising! Pretty crazy.
Starting to look like a house again!

Coming back to life!

All of this in a DAY!

There’s the new front of the house.

And the side (neighbor’s side)

Blair Witch Construction company

Still not quite done.

Blue skies ahead!

Spooky. I took this the night before.

Still some burned parts.

Rebuild begins! Monday, November 7th, 2005

So I went over at lunch today and this is what I saw….
SWEET! They started the rebuild. And it looks like it’s moving along very nicely.
Garage is starting to take shape and they got the roof started as well.
The electrician was inside, getting set up to start rewiring. He basically just snipped the wires from every receptacle inside and left the receptacles and switches in place. One thing that I remembered, while I was talking to him is to have him wire the fans so there are two wire runs to the fans so that we can have one switch on the wall for the fan, and one for the light. That’s always nice, so that you don’t have to pull the cord to turn one of them on.
He’s also set to wire 5 TV and 5 phone connections and just needs to know where to put them. He’ll also center the ceiling fan in the living room if we want. He has a HUGE drill bit that will go through the beam there very easily.
There were about 5 guys working on the framing and rebuilding. This is moving along great. I’m pretty impressed.

Say cheese!

And the rebuild begins. Pretty sweet!

Strike a pose.

Update Sunday, November 6th, 2005

If you haven’t checked in a few days, I’ve posted a TON of pics. Go back to October 3, and check out between now and today.

Ok, so I thought that I would keep up with this blog day-to-day through the rebuild, but I’ve just not had the time nor the wherewithal to do so. Anyway… what I’ve done is posted a picture or two from each of the days that I took pictures. I may switch this up to just posting pics, and then the occasional update. I dunno yet. Incidentally, hop on over to Andrea’s page to see more pics.
So the BIG update I’ve been meaning to put on here is that the cause of the fire was found NOT to be chemicals… it was ELECTRICAL. We actually found that out the day after the fire when a fire investigator came out. It was really cool getting to watch him work. It was all like a scene out of CSI. He found this pile of wood that had been knocked around the garage and he rebuilt the pile. It had been stacked against the wall in the garage. That wall had an electrical outlet on it and THAT was what caused the fire. We had aluminum wiring in the house. If you have aluminum wiring, I would HIGHLY recommend you convert it to copper. At the very least, hire an electrician to pigtail copper onto the ends of each run. It may just save your home!
Our insurance company has given us exemplary service. Really really top notch.
We’re now in an apartment, after having stayed with Andrea’s brother, Rob for a couple weeks. It was super nice to have family in town, not just for the fact that we had somewhere to stay, but it was nice to stay with family while all of this was going on. BIG thanks to Rob and Alev for letting us stay with them!
We got some of our stuff delivered to the apartment. The first load included EVERY SINGLE THING from our kitchen. I mean EVERYTHING. Probably 30 boxes worth of kitchen stuff. Needless to say, we had to pare it down and get just what we’d need, and what would fit in the apartment kitchen. They also delivered our mattress, but no box spring. Then they delivered the box spring, but it had not been cleaned at all. Smelled like a fireplace! The mattress also was dingy looking, so they took both back. The box spring was better off for the cleaning, but the mattress somehow became even worse and the cleaners are talking to the insurance company about totaling it out. It’s usable, but we JUST bought it when we moved into the house… and now it looks like a 12 year old mattress.
Work has been very busy for me. We hired two folks though. One of them Chris, from my old job. That is really turning things around and the workload is going to become much more bearable in the next few months.
A few weeks ago we went down to help Mom and Dad lay Pergo in their new house. That went pretty smooth. I am a professional, after all.
Hrmmm what else? dunno. I just applied for a credit card that gives cash back since we will be buying so much stuff to replace what we lost. Might as well get a free vacation or something out of it.
Our general contractor has been really good. They have pretty much finished the demolition of the house. The house is essentially down to framing and foundation. The building materials got her on Thursday and Friday and they will start re-framing the burned part on Monday. The final cost (so far) for JUST the rebuild of the house is $150K+! Pretty insane. Especially considering that we paid only $185K for the house AND land. When all is said and done, the house will probably be worth around $270K after the rebuild. There is a bright side in everything. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not all roses and I’m CERTAINLY not saying I would have wished for this for us or for ANYONE. We lost a lot of stuff we can’t replace, and the hassle of having to find everything and rebuy can be pretty grating at times. Not to mention the stress and shock of waking up to a freakin FIRE in our home.
We are actually finishing up the inventory list still. LOTS of stuff got trashed.
We met with the GC (general contractor) and talked about stuff we will want to change and some stuff we had planned on upgrading anyway. We’re probably going to go back with limestone instead of brick, replacing some (if not all) windows – (side note: our electric bill has been nearly $400 for the past 3 months! can someone say inefficient!?), going back with paneled doors instead of flat doors… probably a jet bath tub, new vanity for the hall bath (which we almost bought just a a few weeks before all this happened!), and a few other things.
Oh, and I’m also wiring the entire house for sound while it’s down to the frame. Pretty cool.
Evan says I write novels for my posts. Hopefully y’all still enjoy reading em 😛
OK. some pictures…
(funny note: I just ran spell check on this and the spell checker brought up “foreskin” as a suggested replacement/misspelling of “freakin” HAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!)

113134678273686674 Saturday, November 5th, 2005

These are the engineered trusses for the new roof. 29 feet long!!

Long suckers!

There they are next to my truck for comparison.

This is a house that has some limestone that we kind like.

More building materials. All ready for Monday.