Up Chuckin’ Away On…

A canale I put in to drain water off the roof of the addition on Tristan’s house (added on before Tristan bought the house). After the addition settled on the side opposite the canale that is supposed to drain the roof, a lot of water was ponding on the roof when it rained.


After spending most evenings last week partying like it was 1399 with medieval scholars, Estevan and I went back to antiquity and found the roof on the addition of Tristan’s house made a fine vomitoruim “to spew forth” over the shoddy workmanship we encounter every time we work on it. This time we removed a swamp cooler off the roof and covered the hole left in the roof where the cooler was with a skylight. We also replaced a skylight that had not been installed properly. That skylight had cracks in it and gaps around its frame so it leaked.  We also caulked cracks along the bottom of the parapet caused by the addition settling, and finished out the inside of the hole under the new skylight. After that we hung a French door in the entrance to the area where the upstairs part of the addition, bathroom, laundry room and bedrooms are.

The washing machine and dryer were moved into a bedroom closet on the second floor above the garage when the addition was built. It’s a strange place for a washer and dryer, so we are trying to figure out where they were before the addition to see if any of the original hookups are still in the walls. We want to move the washer and dryer so we can make the closet where they are now into a kitchenette, then the area of the house over the garage and the addition across the hall can be used as an apartment. But locating where the washer and dryer were originally is proving to be difficult.

A photo Tristan did of me spewing forth over the parapet.


Estefan found the hole in the roof that was left after we took off the swamp cooler was a perfect vertical vomitorium. Photo by Tristan.


Caulking around the skylight. Photo by Tristan.


The two new skylights on the roof of the addition. Photo by Tristan.


The finished hole in the roof underneath the skylight. Photo by Tristan.


I took photos showing a closer view of the shining new skylights.


This is a frayed caulk.


A view of the French door we installed at the entrance to the bedrooms above the garage and the addition taken from the bathroom. Tristan plans on putting stained glass in the Triangle above the door and applying stick-on stained glass on the lights in the door.

The Project


This was one of those projects that started as a casual discussion, then I started looking at the space, and the materials on hand, and decided I could do it right there and then.

The idea started with wanting to put a shade structure over the weights that we have outdoors, but if I put a shade structure where the weights were, it would block our view of the mountains.  I decided that if I cleaned up the junk on the side of the shed, I could put up the shade structure we had over the deck for years, until I cut down trees and remodeled the deck in 2008.  Between rain showers, and with a little help getting the roof on, the project is complete — not bad for a day and a half worth of hard labor, and zero trips to the hardware store.


From 2003 to 2008, the shade structure now over the weights covered part of our deck, providing filtered light for our bonsai trees in the summertime (Tristan painted the design on the main support). Large crabapple trees provided shade over the rest of the deck, but the crabapple trees were old and dying, so I cut them down, took out the shade structure, and put a canopy over the deck. We put an outdoor kitchen where the bonsai shelf is in the above photo.


I also decided to take down the power pole that was installed in 1963. It had rotted out and about fell over in 2004. The power company told me the pole was my problem, so I propped it up with an old railroad tie.  We got an electrical upgrade in 2013, so the pole has been standing, unused for the past three years, but I hadn’t gotten around to taking it down. I had to cut the top half off first so it wouldn’t smash a couple of rose bushes when it fell over.


After I took out the long bolts I used to secure the power pole to the railroad tie, it started to fall over after a little push.


After a bigger push it lingered at 45 degrees, held up by some other supports I had driven into the ground in 2004. It finally went down, but the railroad tie was difficult to remove because of the creosote, which made it hard and dense.  When I finally got it cut down, the 6 feet of railroad tie weighed as much as the power pole.


View of the frame for the shade structure without the power pole (compare it to the view in the first photo).


We had set the roof to the shade structure along the south side of the property after I took it down in 2008. Many elm trees had grown up through the spaces between the slats. I cut down all the elm trees growing through the roof when I cut out a few hundred trees along that side of the property some weeks ago (you can see where the porcupines have been eating the bark of the elm trees in the background).  The problem was how to get the roof over to the frame, and then up on top of the frame.


I talked a couple of cute, blue haired beauties (Jamie and Tristan) and Laurie into helping me carry the roof over to the frame, but it was too heavy for us to lift with all the slats on it.


I removed all but five of the slats and then Tristan and I were able to lift the roof up and get it in place on top of the frame.


I put all the slats back on the roof after I secured the roof to the frame. It was a lot of screwing as I had to take out 180 screws to remove the 9 slats, and put 180 screws back in to put them back on.


After I got all the slats back on, I leveled the ground and moved the weights and equipment under the rebuilt shade structure.