P1030381.JPGRACHEL STAINS THE BATTENS (and works on her tan)

The promised trusses are going on their second week of tardiness. “End of next week” is the latest forecast from Marson & Marson Lumber, our supplier. I would really like to get the roof on. During the recent rainy spell it was a way to shed water. With 98-degree weather forecasted for this weekend, it’s a way to keep the blistering sun off our backs. Working on the sunny side of the house with the reflection from the Tyvek housewrap it’s hot enough to roast weenies! The most problematic component of the house so far has been the siding. The standard cement board siding used on many suburban houses these days is too white bread. The 4×8 sheets with various exteriors are too cheesy. Stucco is too expensive. We had a hard time finding something that is affordable and likeable. Bear Creek Lumber in Twisp, WA came through with rough-sawed Douglas Fir for $1.30/sq ft. We really like the way Nick’s Virginia house with the green roof and reddish-brown siding looks so we copied him and stained the Fir cedar color. Our board and batten siding has just the “Old West,” cabin look Rachel wanted. The only problem with the siding was its weight. To save $300 we drove to Twisp with the Dodge and my equipment trailer. The load was much heavier than the salesman estimated so we had to leave 1/3 of it in Twisp to be delivered later. Even so, we blew a tire on the trailer on the drive home. The trailer’s spring shackle was plowing up the asphalt after the blowout so I wasn’t able to get the trailer completely out of the road. Luckily, there isn’t much traffic on that road. Lucky too, Rachel had the Les Schwab number on her phone’s contact list. Lucky three, the store in Twisp was still open at that late hour. We sat on the side of the road for an hour plucking grass until the Schwab guy arrived. Cost: $358. Guess we didn’t save any money by trucking the lumber ourselves. I’ve decided to build Rachel’s front door. Tune in next week to see what I’ve come up with. Also topless these days is Sonny the Gladiator, aka Sparctacus. I had to get special permission from Rachel for access to the sword. Sonny has an extensive collection of plastic swords but they bring out the aggressive side of him and they are currently on the NO ACCESS list (buried deep in his toy chest.)