Off Grid...Chapter 23
Back to the week of 8-25-08.
This morning Mike ordered all of our appliances and our fireplace. Now we are getting close. We went down to the house and started working on the "last" wall for the house.
We haven't been able to build that wall because we had all of our sheet rock boards leaning against it. After we got that wall up Mike started wiring our living room, our last room(yeah), for electrical.
This room is a little tricky because we need the regular wiring in the walls for the outlets and switches, our overhead light, plus an outside receptacle for an outside light. He also put in an outside spicket for water. I would like to get a couple of solar lights for the outside of the house but my experience with those lights has been bad. The last ones we had didn't work very well. Does anyone know of any "good" solar lights? Mike is also putting the outlet for the TV and satellite on their own switch. This way we can turn the switch off and "no" electric will be used. We don't want any phantom/ghost voltage in the house. That is when you turn things off when they are still plugged into the outlet and they "still" draw electric.
Next Mike started working on the wiring nightmare in our main breaker box.
It's dark in here because we are getting much needed rain. This area has all the wires from all of our rooms hanging there waiting to be hooked up. Mike now has to wire each of the rooms into their own circuit breaker. Today he did the office/bedroom.
After lunch we went back down to the house and started working on the doorways "again!". We finally got all 3 of the transoms in.
This is me cutting smaller pieces of sheet rock for the transoms.
Here I am putting the last of the insulation in.
It's been raining all night and most of yesterday. We had to start the generator to charge our batteries for more electric. Because we have no sun our panels aren't producing any power. Mike is already thinking we need more panels so our batteries can store more juice. Our whole solar system will be trial and error until we figure out exactly what we need. Mike likes it this way because when there is a new problem he just learns more about it.
We went down to the house to install the sheet rock in the living room, our final room. Here's Mike starting on the first wall.
We installed 5 pieces of sheet rock.
We were doing really well and then we ran out of sheet rock. We are short about 6 sheets for the whole house. That really stinks because all day today and for the next few days it will be raining which means we can't get anymore sheet rock. We need a dry day to go pick it up. At least the plants and trees are happy. We desperately needed rain and this is a good soaking rain.
We have installed a total of 65 pieces of sheet rock. Can I tell you how sick I am of sheet rock? Keep reminding me how much money we are saving! It gets very boring after so long.
Mike also wired the master bedroom and the dining room into the main breaker box.
Then we installed the door for the bathroom. Now all 3 doors are installed.
I know it only took us about 3 weeks to do 3 doors but hey, we've been busy with other things. At least we accomplish something everyday.
We couldn't get much more done today because we are out of material and it's too damp to spread the sheet rock mud. Tomorrow's another day.
Everything outside is a soggy mess from all of the rain so we made a trip to Lowe's and the tile store. We stopped at the tile store first so I could pick out tile for my kitchen counter top. The store had well over 100 tiles and I couldn't find a single one that I liked. I didn't realize I was so picky. They had all the "trendy" natural stone, travertine, and granite tiles. I don't like any of those because I like symmetry and clean lines. All the natural stones and granites have way too many variations and speckles per tile. It's just not my taste. Oh well.
Then we went to Lowe's and I actually found a special order tile called Byzantine Gold polished porcelain that I like. Amazing. I am going to order that because it is very clean and neat looking. Now I have to work on designing a back splash. Any ideas? I'm thinking about cutting our tile down to 6 inches and using that with a fancy border along the counters. But I don't know what to do by the sink and stove. Do you go all the way up to the cabinets? Help me out here. I've never done a back splash before.
I think we also found a nice interior color for the walls of the house. It's Valspar and it's called Pale Glow. There are way too many color choices out there. It is not fun trying to find one. We might paint the bedrooms a bright white just because we have no windows.
After Lowe's we stopped at a furniture store. We need everything new because we haven't lived in a house for 3 1/2 years. We didn't find anything. Oh this is going to be fun ha, ha. Have you all figured out that Mike and I don't like shopping. We would rather stay home in our own little world. Anyway it looks like we are going to have to make the "big" trip down to Hickory, NC(the furniture capital of the world) for furniture.
I hope it won't be too bad when we go. Wish us luck on that trip.
We got back home and we checked our roads after all that rain. With the last ditch line everything held up well. Our road stayed in place, yeah. We had no washouts so that is a really good sign. Our smaller ditch up top did really well also. We only have a little soft ground on our walkway down to the house.
We went down to the house and did a little more work. Mike worked on more electrical and I did some spackling.
That's all for today. This week we have to make a huge dump run and order our flooring. As always, I hope you are all enjoying the story.
Lisa and Mike