They keep forcasting a deluge of water and gale force winds for this week… Straw? Wood? Maybe we should be building our house out of stone!

This week has been a mad scramble to get the straw for the strawbale construction on site and under wraps, trying to find a straw bale consultant who both returns phone calls and can work on our schedule.  We’re rushing to get the roof on and papered so that we aren’t flooded when what sounds like hurricane Katrina hits (if you believe the hysterical weathermen).  We’ve got plastic on hand to tent the whole house.

Meanwhile we broke a waterpipe (way too exciting), and have been busy cutting down trees, renovating the cottage, and mending fences on the property in every spare moment – a taste of actually living there!

When the weather clears, we’re hoping (really really hoping) for a “bale raising” on October 24th and 25th.  Those of you locally reading the blog will find yourselves with an invitation for bale raising, BBQing and beer drinking (after the bales are up!).  More on that later when we really have a date.

A thing of beauty — the fascia boards match up perfectly!

Osbaldo’s crew started work on the lowering of the roof, and managed to do it in less than two days.  We were afraid that they would have to dismantle much of the roofing work that had been done, but not so!

In the picture at right you can see the forward part of the garage ceiling with a little rim of light all around the top edge where they removed the extra height on the plywood sheathing.  They jacked everything up ever so slightly to take the weight off, then disconnected the joists from the cross beam, shortened those joists, and installed a second dropped beam next to the first.  They then cut out the extra height in the vertical studs, and then using the jacks, gently lowered the entire roof down to it’s intended height and reconnected all the joists to beams and studs to the cap plate… and you can see the square, plumb, solid (and correct height) finished result at right.

The library was even easier, as it doesn’t even have walls yet.  Only the moment posts needed to be shortened, and the whole roof could be lowered, and rebolted on to the posts.

When it was all said and done, the process took about a day plus a little, and the crew went straight back to building, and started installing all of the roof trusses that had arrived.