Meanwhile, the spray-in insulation is being installed in the exterior walls. Once all the exterior walls are filled, the contractor comes back with a huge scraper and slices off the excess so the insulation will be flush with the face of the metal studs.
The roof materials have arrived and the white TPO (thermo plastic polyolefin) membrane has started to go on.
Inside, the spiral duct work is being installed. We will have radiant floor heating but we need the ducts for the air conditioning which we intend to use only occasionally. As with the concrete floor, many contractors are not used to having their product be a finished product; concrete usually gets a finished floor over it; ducts are usually hidden in the ceiling. Fortunatley, we have a good team that understands, "what you see is what you get". There is not a lot of redundancy in using additional finish materials to cover up the bones of the house.
Back outside, the furring strips are being put on the back of the house. All of these furring strips are located in line with the metal studs 18" o.c. The furring strips will allow the cedar siding to have an air space behind it reducing the chance of rot or mold.
The fireplace has arrived and is being installed. It is a completely sealed unit so that when it is in use, no air will escape from inside the home.
And the tubs have arrived...
Inside, there will be open cell foam insulation between the studs and then drywall. Select interior walls will have recycled newsprint insulation between the studs for sound insulation.
Gianluca takes a break from working construction for a photo with Mom, who's now 4 months pregnant. We're definitely working under a deadline now!
Then the radiant heating floor tubes get installed.
...And finally the concrete.
Then the roof steel steel starts to go up...
Gianluca in his usual "construction gear". Flipflops and socks.
And the first floor metal stud framing... This will be the playroom/office/exercise room. The opening in the ceiling is where the stair will eventually go.
Gianluca on the other hand takes a break at the Children's Museum at Navy Pier. http://www.chicagochildrensmuseum.org/
We've gotten an early addition to our family, Sandy, the Golden Retriever. She was Alphonso's Grandma's puppy before she passed away. Given that the dog had to stay in the family, my Father-in-Law, Al held onto her. Since we were now going to have a house with a yard instead of a two-bedroom condo in the city, we were going to keep her. We figure, why not get the party started early? She can come live with us at the "Pheasant House" until our "Steel and Glass House" is done. This way Sandy can spend 14 hours a day outside being the site watchdog. (She watches for fallen donuts, bagels, sub sandwiches, fries, popsicles...)
And then that brings us to our cat, Renzo. He has decided he will go on a hunger strike again. He refuses to eat anything more than once and it's only one bite...and then he throws up that one bite. He did this a few years back and we had to have a feeding tube installed in his neck. The chances of having a cat that needs a feeding tube again is slim to none. Unfortunately we got the cat with those slim to none chances. I brought him back to Dr. B at http://www.burnhamparkvet.com/. He saved his life once and we needed it again. So the tube went in. I fed and watered him through the tube and gave him pills through the tube. Then it's just a wait and see game. We waited for about 3 1/2 months before he decided he would eat on his own again.
I, on the other hand have no problem eating. Even though I'm nauseous, I love food.
The house is based on a 30' structural grid and 6' design grid. This also translated into our metal stud wall framing being 18" o.c. (which works with a 6' grid) rather than 16" o.c. Following the module from 30' down to 18" also helped to reduce the materials used as well as decrease the construction waste as we'll see later.
It was exhausting but very exciting. I was born and raised in the city so it was going to take awhile to get adjusted to the quietness. It also turns out that the move was so exhausting because I was pregnant with our second child! (Although I didn't know it.)
This is one of Gianluca's last days at the condo.
Gianluca and I will spend the next week or so going out to the site to water the slab. Try explaining to a three year old why I'm watering concrete and not the grass.