Monday, December 14, 2015

And the Work Goes On!!!

The house is looking great from a distance!  You could almost believe that it is finished!!

As we get a little closer, you notice the trappings of construction and realize there is still more to be done!

The counters in the guest bathroom are looking good and waiting for the polisher to have that finishing touch.  Don is looking forward to pitching in on that part of the project as it is a learning experience for the workers.

In the 1/2 Bathroom the counters are at the same level of completion.This picture looks funny, because the boards you see are not the finished work, they are sporting the curing concrete above.

The toilet in the 1/2 bath, which was sitting so close to the wall that we hit our elbows, has been moved over.  There actually now sits a "comfy toilet."

Our bathroom is also at a similar stage but sanding to round the edges still continues.

The windows and doors are at a bit of a stand still and, although we have heard from the window makers, we do not know when they plan to return and finish the job. Our requests were many and complicated and they've had to put off some of their regular clients.
The French Doors in the Studio from the outside and the inside. The space above

The upstairs Bedroom is in need of some replacement glass where it was cracked when installing.

Our Bedroom Closet is where the Window Guys lived when working on the installing of our windows.  As the house progresses, they need to get back here to finish the job or we will be moved in and they will have NO place to stay while working!

As you can see, they came well prepared with cooking equipment, refrigerator, t.v and a dish for reception.

The Kitchen counters are coming along and, with the help of our friend Yoselin, Don and Max can even communicate about what is needed and wanted.

Just behind Don is were the oven and microwave will be located.  Max is working on the water line to the dishwasher and to the left of Yoselin will be the sink.

Thanks Yoselin!

Here there is more progress!  The counter at the left of the photo will be my "Office", next to the refrigerator!

At one end of the island will be the Cook Top, shown here.  The other end will have a bench and table with 3 chairs.  Coffee anyone?

The Bench will be made from wood--another project for Don.  He is going to be very busy once we get to move in making benches, shelving, inside doors, dish rack, bathroom cabinets and wall, etc. and that doesn't even touch on all the things that need doing outside!

The oven/microwave section of the counter is farther along in this photo.

Jorge is busy working on the railing that goes up the left side of the stairs.

Smile, Jorge!

The stairs started out looking like this, only concrete!

Now the tops are covered with wood and the fronts with tile.  We like the look much better and hope wood will be a softer landing for anyone slipping on the stairs!

Jorge has also been busy in the Laundry room making a stand for the wash sink that will go in next to the washer and dryer.  When it was time to install the sink it was discovered that it was too big to fit where the plumbing and wiring was set for the washer and dryer.  With a little chipping and adjusting all is well.

Outside work is being done on pipes for sewer and plumbing and electric lines.  If you will notice the wooden structure behind Marvin, that is what is currently being used to hold the electrical wiring for construction!  Remember we had to lift it when the large box trucks were backing up to the house to unload all our stuff?

In the foreground, the concrete boxes in the ground are for the propane tank, electric and rainwater clean out!


Wednesday, December 09, 2015

Here Comes the "Stuff"!

A little over two months after packing up our personal goods into a cargo container in North Carolina, they have arrived in Berlin, Costa Rica!  Although they have been unloaded from the truck, the house is NOT ready to move into, so the things are sitting in our Studio and Guest Bedroom.  We have discovered a few damaged items--Dining Room table, mattress and sofa legs--but will not know the full extent until we can unpack!  So, thanks to our friends Jane and Milt Peterson, who are also building a house in Berlin, we have photos to share of the exciting arrival of our personal items after over 3 years in storage!  This sure has been a long, slow journey!!

The two box trucks from Cartago started arriving about 11:00, a bit later than originally scheduled but this is Costa Rica.

Our driveway and the road into our property is a bit steep, but we were not concerned with the arrival of the trucks because the weight of the cargo is a big plus.  Leaving is when a problem would arise, if there was to be one.
Getting closer!!

Currently, there is not a large amount of room for maneuvering in our driveway.  Eventually, when the bodega, etc. is gone, we will have a driveway that you can enter at one end and leave through the other. Today the space available was a challenge!

Work on the house continues as we all watch the truck turning and backing to the place it needs to be for unloading.  With a little help from, Jorge, the low hanging wiring used for construction is saved!

Just a little more wiggling around and the truck is backed up to the Studio where most of the contents will be residing.

Yoselin, who was our keeper of the numbers and a good friend, watched the adjusting along side me.

Finally, the unloading begins!!

Look, stuff is starting to pile up!

 As I mentioned earlier, there were two trucks bringing our things. We had suggested that one wait at the bottom of the driveway because of the limited space!  However, as you can see, truck drivers don't take direction well or there was a problem with translation!!

Roberto, Milt in the yellow shirt, Don and one of the drivers stacking offloaded boxes!  I get to supervise, sorta!

A quick pose so Jane can snap a photo of the happy couple then back to work!! :)

One truck almost finished!

Yoselin!  Yoselin and I have spent many hours walking and working on English, and to a lesser degree, Spanish together.  She was also one of our coffee pickers last year. A beautiful young lady and special friend.

Truck #2 is now ready to be unloaded, except for a small glitch!  The back doesn't want to open!!  A mattress had been loaded on last before closing the door. Due to shifting during the drive from Cartago, the mattress wedged against the door holding it closed.   Our second experience with this type of situation as a similar problem arose in North Carolina when trying to open our storage space door!

Fortunately, we had lots of help and with pushing, shoving, punching and lifting, the door finally opened!

Getting closer!  The result of the stuck door is a pretty damaged mattress!!  Also, our Dining Room table had a leg torn off and the center split down the middle! 

A quick text from our friends, Maryse and Guy, who were going to help us on unloading day!  After 2 trips to the Retieve to get their car inspected, they were back sitting at the mechanic unable to join the fun!  Cars here are such a pain in the butt!

More stuff and it looks like we are seeing the end!

Yahoo, an empty truck!  This is one happy truck driver.  Now all he needs to do is get up our road to the main road and head back home!

We ended up storing everything in the Studio and Guest Bedroom until we are able to take over the house.

Our Studio and Guest Bedroom now look like a storage space or a
cargo container full of boxes and other furniture.

And, this was before we finished unloading the first truck!!

The day ended successfully and we are so grateful to all the wonderful friends who helped on unloading day!  Milt, Jane, Yoselin, Olga, Antony, Roberto, the truck drivers, and even the men working on the house helped out on their lunch break!!  Thank you everyone!!

This was the beautiful scene with the sun glittering on the ocean as we finished working and sat for a break! 

As things came off the truck, I tried to set aside a few items that I thought we might want to use before moving.  One thing was our outdoor table and chairs and a picnic basket which we quickly put to use.  
On Sunday we got together with Maryse and Guy to celebrate the fact their car finally passed the Retieve Inspection and the arrival of our goods!

The view and the company were perfect!  We enjoyed sitting and just being there most of the afternoon and look forward to many more meals on the Terraza with friends.


Don watching Maryse taking photos!

A little wine and a good time had by all!