Sunday, May 29, 2016

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Next door & on the porch...

Our next door neighbor Sandra has some beautiful flowers...

...and I couldn't resist taking a morning shot of the roses on our front porch.


Wednesday, May 25, 2016

PART 1: Our RV PATH of Dreams Changes!!

NOTE:  This post is a ongoing chronology of the building of our new home. Unforeseen changes in our life and health have taken us off our previous full-time RV PATH for the foreseeable future. Yes, we are going back to a "sticks & bricks & stone" lifestyle. Thought we never would as we loved the RV lifestyle so much we had planned to do it till we dropped or "checked in at the old folks home." Right now we should be back at Angel Fire RV Resort in New Mexico's Enchanted Circle planning day trips for fellow RVers and Resort guests and blogging about our fun times.

Keep checking for new posts to see how we progress in the building process. Old photos and information will be added from time to time on this post. PART Two is posted on June 18 and there are several more posts that follow.

In late November of last year Evin and I made a spur of a moment decision to make a quick trip back to North Carolina in the car for Thanksgiving. We were still morning the loss of Doodlebug and needed the support of family. We were in Red Bay, Alabama having work done on our motorhome. As fate would have it, after six weeks at the factory repair center, we were unable to find a suitable "fix" for the motorhome.

Had the repairs been successful, we planned once again to join Escapee friends and some Master Photographers in Quartzsite, Arizona in January. We thought of spending Christmas in Payson, Arizona with friends. During this time we were asked to return to New Mexico in May to workamp at Angel Fire RV Resort until September. Something we much wanted to do. After time in western Arizona we planned to see more of Utah and Colorado till we started work in Angel Fire.

So, reluctantly, we started pursuing new options in early December as we felt there was no choice but to rethink our RV lifestyle. When possible we always camped near lakes or the ocean. We had no plans to return to a "sticks & bricks" home. We planned to RV till we died or health changes forced us to the "old folks home". I told Evin, "If we can't RV, let's look for a lot on a lake." So that is what we did and the photo above and those that follow will bring you up to date with OUR PRESENT...

I called a family friend that had a house on lake near where I grew up and told him of our situation. He offered to rent us his lakehouse while we looked around. He even suggested a realtor to work with that had grown up on the lake. Our friend introduced us to some of his neighbors and they took us on their pontoon boat to look at lots from the water in a development the realtor had taken us to by land.

If you look close a little left of center near where the water meets the land you will see a small white "For Sale" sign!! It is just under the small pine tree that is leaning out over the water.

After much soul searching and negotiating, we bought the lot. It is two acres and has 225' of water-frontage. We did this after weeks of visiting many home listings in many areas on and off the water; but, we found nothing to our liking. Having found the lot above, we then searched out building contractors and found several that we liked after meeting with them and viewing many of their current building projects in various stages of construction. Neither Evin nor I have ever been involved in the building of a house. This post will chronicle our journey.

Immediately above and below are views from the lot looking towards the southwest. The Uwharrie Mountains are off in the distance. 

According to Wikipedia "High Rock Lake is a reservoir lake located in the Davidson and Rowan counties of North Carolina, serving as a boundary between them. it is a reservoir for hydroelectric power generation. It is the northernmost of the Uwharrie Lakes and the second largest lake in North Carolina behind Lake Norman. Its water surface covers 15,180 acres and there are 365 miles of shoreline... High Rock Lake has been considered one of the best fishing lakes of North Carolina for a long time. It has been the host of the Bassmaster Classic in 1994, 1995, and 1998 and is the site of frequent other angling competitions. The lake has ample channel, blue, and flathead catfish, plus crappie and several different sunfish such as bluegill, shellcracker and others. Striper and their hybrids as well as white bass are also abundant. The lake is best known for its quantity and quality of largemouth bass, which attracts anglers from all over the United States."

But, back to our current situation. In July 2011 we sold the house shown below. It was, to date, my all-time favorite house. Evin and I had owned several other split bedroom plans with the master bedroom on one side and the guest rooms on the other. I showed a photo of this "favorite house" to our realtor and he suggested that we go look at a house that his daughter and son-in-law had built and had recently sold in the neighborhood, Yatchman's Pointe, that we really liked.

Above is the house that was our home before full-time RVing,

On December 10, 2015 we drove by the house shown below and really liked what we saw from the outside. Our realtor called his daughter and she called the new owners, Cathy & Alan, and they extended a gracious welcome to come see inside their home.

We walked in and we were "SOLD" on building. The house shown above had everything our other "favorite" house had plus most of the changes I would have made if we were to venture out and BUILD a house "from scratch". Our realtor even had a set of house plans which he gave us. I called the designer in St. Louis and within a week or so we had a new set of plans with our own "minor" tweaks and changes.

On December 10, 2015 we saw the house shown above.
On May 25, 2016, this the progress to date.
On June 23, 2016, the house is being bricked.
Later, Evin and I go back and spend more time with Cathy & Alan and they share with us what they would do different from a a design standpoint with their home if they had or were to build from scratch. I make notes and Evin and I then discuss the changes in the house floor-plan and exterior elevations with Dave Cooper, the designer of Cathy & Alan's home.

SO!! What do you think???

Want to see how we got to this point??

Follow along...

Above is the start of our driveway of our new home to be.

Above is our soon to be back porch. You can see the lake through the trees.

 After seeing the upstairs framed we decide to finish an area that was to only be storage.

The new area makes a 14' x 17' fifth bedroom and/or exercise room that originally wasn't planned.

The family room will have a natural stone fireplace and 18.5' ceiling.

View from the family room toward the dining room and front door (downstairs) and of the Juliette balconies (upstairs).

View from the family room through the screened in porch.

The view out the kitchen toward the lake.

The lakeview from the family room and the kitchen.

The stairway landing upstairs will be open with a banister and metal pickets.

The view from the dormer of a large bedroom upstairs. 

This a planned gallery for my photos that is at the top of the steps.
I have never printed a single photo that I have taken.

This looking into the game room that will have a pool table and kitchen.

Inside the garage looking toward the laundry room entrance, under the stairway and the master bedroom closet and bath.

Looking into the master bedroom.

The brick and stone that we are using.

Granite and cabinet colors that we will be using in the kitchens and bathrooms.

Drawing for a planned island bar for the game room upstairs that is similar to the island shown below.

The game room island will have all these colors.

The brick being delivered.

Shingles going on the roof on 5/28/16.

More to come...

Go to June 18 for the next installment!!