Finally, at the end of August, it was time to start laying up walls on the second story. This starts out a bit tricky since we have to mortar in between the joists that stick out of the wall and support the deck. We also have to lay the logs up to, but not quite, touching the deck. Looking up from the ground, it looks like this:
Fortunately, we got some more helpers – our friends Gail and Jeff came out for a day of muddin’. They caught on right away:
Another thing that’s tougher about cordwooding on the second story is that we have to bring all the logs and mortar upstairs to use it. After hanging a pulley on a beam that cantilevers out over the deck, we toyed with the idea of using mechanical assistance to bring up the loads, i.e., a winch or truck. Ultimately we realized the fastest way to do it would be to convert food into the energy needed to lift the goods to the deck. Here’s Clare’s view:
And here’s me hoisting up a tray of mortar:
As an aside, see all those buckets of lime putty in the Clare’s-eye view? Here’s what they look like from the side:
Our friend JJ heard we needed lots of 5-gal. buckets to mix and store lime putty in. JJ runs a Chinese restaurant in Houghton and set us up with a stack of empty soy sauce and duck sauce buckets (with lids!) at no cost. Thanks, JJ! This is what cordwood guru Rob Roy calls “cultivating coincidence,” the idea that somebody is probably trying to get rid of what you could use, and by talking about what you are doing to everyone who will listen, your chances of meeting this person greatly increase.
Remember, if you’re around Houghton Michigan and are looking for great Chinese food, stop in at JJ’s Wok & Grill in the Pearl Street Market across from Jim’s Finer Foods. He really does make excellent food. Food that you can then turn into mortar-lifting energy. I’ll bet he won’t use that in his ads, though.
Back to the house, Dave S. asks for more explanation about what we see from various angles in these pictures. Here’s a picture of a wall in what will be the recording studio:
This window will be one of the views from the studio, the view to the west looking at the woods. Nothing more inspiring to the recording artist than the sight of hungry bears massing. Or maybe just chickadees.
It was an incredibly cool summer, but now that it’s September, we’re having a bit of a heat wave! The basil has bolted, the coneflowers are finch-feeders, but the blanketflowers are happy as can be: