Friday, June 28, 2013


Because of the massive rainfall on Wednesday night, Phil wasn't going to get an early start on Thursday. He headed up to town and checked on a few supplies, so it wasn't wasted time, but it wasn't an early day, either. In the end, he finished waterproofing where he had previously painted the conditioner; a few sheets around the window and door, but not much visible progress.

Happily, after re-reading the literature on the conditioner, he realized once applied, as long as the block remained clean, he wouldn't have to reapply it (so, not like a fresco). This morning he was out shoveling clay at 6am, trying to dig out some of the foundation that's been gradually refilled by erosion. The foundation was dirty, so he sprayed it down, which meant he would be working in muddy clay, and the block was wet again. Argh!

But after some breakfast, he started with the block conditioner on the walls where he hadn't shoveled and sprayed. All conditioner applied, he was ready to waterproof. And super happy to be done with the single use gloves and the respirator. That block conditioner, besides being extremely caustic, causes birth defects, so Phil made sure I stayed far away.

Phil is always creative about coming up with better ways of doing things. He had been applying the waterproofing top and bottom of one 3' section, then moving on to the next 3' section. He realized that, on the long north wall, it would be better to do all the bottom sheets first, then all the top sheets. Not only would that allow a nice shingle effect for any water, but it would allow him to do all the work without a ladder before he got started with the ladder.

He set up a cutting station, too, so that he could precisely cut the 5'8" sections that he needed. (The literature suggested that no one work with sections longer than 8'. So rather than applying it from top to bottom, in 12' sections, he cuts it in half.)

Since so many of our tasks have taken longer (!) than expected, I had mentally figured maybe half a month, or a month, for the waterproofing. So I was thrilled to see that, with a solid day's work (about 15 hours, from 6am to after 9pm, with just a few short breaks), Phil applied more than 3/4 of the bituthene on the long north wall, and did probably a third on the south wall. Plus digging out and applying all conditioner.

He suspects he will run out of bituthene before the walls are done. Rather than getting stuck without anything to do on a Saturday, he finished a bit more than half on the north wall, and is working parallel on his way down the south wall. This way, he can start framing before he has to run any errands. Brilliant!

So good day for him. As for the rest of us, we have been enjoying the air conditioning. I'm still catching up on schoolwork with the boys, since we didn't do much during my convalescence. It's not a hardship to read in an air conditioned room, though. They all create things and write or draw or play cards. Yesterday I was ready to do school and found Jadon writing in his lengthening story, Isaiah reading a science magazine, Abraham drawing a comic strip, and Joe ... well, Joe was sick, so he was sleeping. So much for school at that time. It maybe wasn't the scheduled curriculum, but they were all diligently working.

The little baby must be growing well. I have been laughing about my belly, which grew two inches in ten days. Most impressive.

And an update I've been meaning to give for some time: remember how Jadon had the horrible histamine reaction some weeks back? Someone recommended nettle and quercetin (oak) supplements. For the next week, every time he started to get a bit itchy, I had him take those tablets and shower off immediately. It worked. No more histamine reaction.

No comments:

Post a Comment