Monday, December 22, 2008

Demo - Sleeping Porch

At the top of the stairs there are two doorways. They lead into identical bedrooms side-by-side. Each has a door at the back of the room (pictured above) leading onto the sleeping porch.
For those of you who don't know what a sleeping porch is, it is a room usually upstairs on the back of the house lined with windows. In the summer months when it was hot, the beds would be moved out onto the sleeping porch where they could open all of the windows and hopefully catch a breeze (aren't you glad you live in the days of the A/C?)
This is half of the sleeping porch (view after walking through the door pictured above). The corner you see jutting into the center of the room from the left side is a closet someone built in the last few years (in other words, it's not original to the home). They built this closet and a wall cutting the sleeping porch in half in an attempt to create 2 more bedrooms. Well, this floor plan isn't too practical as you have to walk through the front bedroom to get to the back "bedroom/half sleeping porch").
Our plan is to tear out the wall/doorway leading from the front bedrooms to the sleeping porch and create 2 large, side-by-side rooms. We are also tearing out the closet and new wall mentioned above and we put in a "jack and jill" bathroom (a bathroom with a door on either side to be shared by these two bedrooms.
Here you can see where we tore out the closet. You can also see the wall they built cutting the sleeping porch in half.
After the wall was torn out. Now you can see how this used to be a long room spanning the back of the house lined with windows.

How are they getting all of this torn out sheet rock from the second story down to the trash, you ask? The answer is the handy "trash shoot" Giles built out of plywood that leads to our "beater trailer." We just make trips to the dump whenever it gets full.
Next, it was time to start tearing out the old plaster walls. It would have been nice to save them but as you can see above, they were in pretty bad condition. We are, however, keeping the lath boards in place.
"What is lath?" you may ask. Well lath boards are 2x4s' great to speak. Houses used to be build with thin boards placed side-by-side then covered with plaster rather than sheet rock. We are tearing off the plaster but leaving the lath boards and blowing in insulation behind the lath boards. Then we will put sheet rock on top of the lath.

Here is the other closet that is being torn (on the other "half" of the sleeping porch) to make room for the "jack and jill" bathroom.

Our First Christmas!

This was our first Christmas to be able to decorate our home (at least the exterior....the interior is still to disheveled to even attempt decorating). Next year we are definately going to trim out the second story windows with lights! Purdy aint it?

Backyard Demo!

This was the condition of our fence after the 2007 Ice Storm (the worst ice storm on Tulsa records. Public Service Company of Oklahoma reported 226,000 customers without service in Tulsa, which is about 78% of their Tulsa customers. Most were without power for about a week). Trees fell all over the city due to the weight of the ice. Debris from falling trees is the main cause of damage to our fence.

Back to the demo! We decided to rent a Bobcat to help clear some of the left over debris and to help remove the trees in our fence line. We also rented a large dumpster to get rid of the old fence and other miscelleneous stuff that we needed hauled off (including the concrete chunks from the broken up driveway that used to extend into our backyard which we "bobcatted" out earlier this year).

This is one of the many methods we used in our tree removal adventures.
1) Hook heavy duty tow strap to bobcat.
2) Loop tow strap around tree
3) Put bobcat in FULL BLAST REVERSE!
This worked pretty well for most trees. We had to get a little more creative for some of the others ;)
Needless to say we filled the dumpster TO THE TOP!! We were praying the dumpster company would take it back with no problems since your only supposed to fill it "level" and ours had a little bit of a hill on top :)

Our Money Pit

Just north of Downtown Tulsa, located in Tulsa's "first neighborhood" Brady Heights, sits the Gregory Money Pit. It is surrounded by similar American Four Squares, a few Craftsman Styles and a sprinkling of Victorian Revivals.
From territorial days until the 1920s Brady Heights was an important part of the then fashionable north side of Tulsa. Young professional businessmen and oil men, such as G.Y. Vandever, I.S. Minks and "Diamond Joe" Wilson, owned homes here. The area derives its name from W. Tate Brady, a pioneer Tulsa developer and entrepreneur. He was Oklahoma's first Democratic National committeeman, and he built the Cain's Ballroom and the now extinct Brady Hotel.
On June 27, 1980, the lobbying effort of local residents was rewarded when Brady Heights became the first historic district in Tulsa to be listed on the National Register of Historic Places.