Sunday, October 5, 2014

(Oct 5) Ceiling Sheetrocked

Finished the sheetrock on the ceiling and loft this weekend along with the bathroom walls and part of the East and South walls. I will have to redo one panel in the bathroom as we forgot to leave the electric/switch outlet proud of the wall. We had done the same thing on the breaker box but I was able to move it in place and leave the sheetrock installed. No such luck on the outlet as the anchors are not exposed. We also realized that we had not left any room on the outlets for anything other than sheetrock, ½" at that. Kim had played with the idea of putting up some bead board but that's out now unless we go back and re-seat all of the outlets and switch boxes. We could get by with just adjusting the 2 lower outlets for wainscot, if that's what we finally decide to do. We'll see how we feel about it next week.

I've had pretty good luck with cutting the sheetrock with a reciprocal saw after we mark it up. Nice thin blade and it moves through it pretty quickly. Comes out smoother than cutting with a hand saw. I still don't have the art of marking it up and cutting it perfectly before installation, as we've had to widen or adjust holes we cut for outlets. The hole we cut for the service panel was pretty much dead on and I was pretty happy about that one. About the time we get the hang of it, we'll be done! Another skill achieved and left dormant to fade away. :)

Also got stung by my first scorpion on Saturday. He got squashed by his first human! I've had a fear of being stung by them since my childhood. I remember watching our cat battle one in Flower Mound when I was about 8 years old after I discovered it in my bed. This weekend, I was clearing the deck in the loft so I could crawl up and install sheetrock. He was hiding on the back side of a box and got me on the finger as I picked it up. Luckily he stuck around long enough for me to repay the favor. Kim gave me a Benadryl right away and the burning and throbbing had pretty much stopped about 30 min later. It never did swell and I didn't show any allergic reactions so we went back to work. She pulled out the UV flashlight I gave her to see if the scorpion really glowed under UV light. The light was originally more to ease her fears of the critters.  I was amazed how the scorpion lit up like a Christmas tree under the UV light.  Much like a Grinch Christmas bright green. I picked it up and threw it away before she thought to get a picture of it. I'm sure we will get more chances in the future. I keep reminding her this is a "cabin in the woods". Not a house in the city. We have only seen a few scorpions and usually those are found under any dead and rotting tree I can push over. This might have been our 5th or 6th in the near 2 years since we bought the property. I will be glad to start sealing walls however. At least then the majority of them we'll encounter will be out in the woods. :)

We were worried when a large storm with damaging winds hit DFW this past Thursday. It looked as if most of the storm would pass up East Texas. There was a lot of damage and power outages scattered across Tarrant county. We lost our canopy top in the back yard in Arlington. The frame seems OK, it just shredded the canvas. Kudos to Kim. The shaded drapes she made last year were unscathed! Good job, Honey! No roof damage or fence damage. No trees damaged. All in all, we were lucky there. Not so much in Point where we lost the top ⅔ of a very large tree by the cabin and large branch of another near by. The top of a dead tree broke and fell on the tent, tearing away it's north side and leaving several other holes. It's trash now. We were too involved in getting the sheetrock in place so we emptied out the items that were susceptible to more rain and relocated them to the cabin when we left. We'll remove the tent's remains next week. Timing couldn't have been worse as we brought out the table saw and miter saw and had counted on storing them in the tent to save room in the building. The storm also damaged the Starlight Lounge but it is repairable and we will put a tarp cover on it next week and move some of the building materials out there. True to our intent when building with steel, there was no visible damage to the cabin. I was surprised that we didn't lose a little exposed tar paper or anything else but all was in tact when we arrived. We'll also spend a good amount of time next week clearing all of the ground clutter left by the storm. If the weather's cool enough, we might put the chain saw into action and start cutting up some of the downed trees.

We were reminded how cool 50° is as we only used light bedding. Lots of cuddling helped.  As I often say, "Cold kitties are friendly kitties!" The same goes for my wife. Weather was great. Highs in the 70's and nights in the 50's. Too bad we won't get too many of those. At least any that don't involve rain. We made chicken cacciatore for dinner Saturday night and had oatmeal on Sunday morning. It was so nice, just sitting there in the light breeze, watching the birds. We were surprised to see a hummingbird at the camp on Saturday. We immediately put out fresh necter but didn't see another hummer the rest of the weekend. He must have just been passing thru. I can't imagine what they go through when these major storms hit. All of the animals must take a real beating between the winds and the flooding. Luckily, the water drains quickly here and there's rarely any standing by the 2nd day after a storm. It all either soaks in or runs down to the creek which was surprisingly dry this trip. I really thought after this week's storm the creek would have standing water in it.

Saw a snake hiding out in the large stump in the road on Sunday. He was about as big around as my finger. I couldn't tell how long as he was only hanging out of the stump a little bit. I did manage to catch a shot of his face. He looks harmless enough but has a grumpy brow. I'll take him over the scorpions any day. :)

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