Here is the rebirth of my housebuilding blog, originally published on the now defunct Vox platform. It mainly covers the building process from 2006-2007, with some sporadic posts afterwards. I will present each entry as is from when it was first written and add real-time commentary (in italics) when I just cannot help myself.

Hello Mr. Chips

This thing is about as loud as The Who in concert circa 1968

     The chipper finally arrived today. I am not speaking of an overall state of mind that descended on the hillside. Neither am I referring in Anglo-slang to a fish-and-chips van. I am speaking of a beastly machine that can shred a human torso into bite-sized pieces in under ten seconds. That’s right—heavy machinery. As if the backhoe and bulldozer weren’t enough, in comes this monster. We fed it all day, and it still wanted more. Quite the insatiable appetite.
     When you clear a site for building, you have a few options of what to do with the tree limbs and brush. You can either leave it in big piles and let it slowly degrade over fifteen years, pile it to be burned in a series of bonfires at a later date,  truck it out, or shred it to tiny pieces which can be later used for things such as landscape mulch and barbecue seasoning.  Chipping is a cost-efficient way to get rid of it without leaving huge piles all around your new house.
     Four of us worked all day and still did not get it all. The rest will be finished tomorrow, in time for the shipment of our lumber. The hillside is really starting to shape up.
Ya want any vinegar wit those chips?

Amazingly enough I am still using trees that I cut down six years ago for firewood. You gotta love oak. Energy independence rocks.

You Look Radiant, Dahling

     Labor day couldn’t have been more aptly named for us this year. A whole weekend of work was squashed into one day due to the remnants of Ernesto that blew through the northeast.  It was a long day indeed.
     On Saturday, Anne and I laid out the plastic sheeting for a vapor barrier on the basement floor. We then moved all of the blue-board insulation into the hole, and were ready to start cutting it to size. But then a thought struck: if it does pour down rain tomorrow, won’t the floor become a big swimming pool as no water can drain past the plastic? A call to our excavator, a well-timed lunch break, and a return call confirmed we should cease and desist and wait until Monday. So we did, even though our first laborer arrived that afternoon. That would be Bridget, who arrived with three bottles of wine, a plethora of fancy cheeses and chocolates,  and dinner from an Indian restaurant. Hooray for Bridget. She received a swift promotion to “Chief Assistant to the Head Laborer.”