Wednesday, September 30, 2009

More cell phone pics...


I dropped in on the construction site again today over my lunch hour, here's a few cell phone pics...

The backfill within the frost footing walls is nearly complete, and some exterior grading still remains to be done. These next two pics show what the outside view will look like beyond the wall of windows (the wall opposite the side I'm standing) in the family room/library.

The next pic is looking toward the front of the garage; the digger in the background was being used at the time to complete the backfill in the kitchen.

Our general contractor had a new sign put up, which I like because it advertises lots of the high performance features of their preferred method of construction (structural insulated panels, high-performance HVAC systems, green-friendly construction practices, etc.).

Friday, September 25, 2009

9.25.09 Construction Update


Foundation work is highlighted in this update...

Update: A panorama view of the foundation (click to enlarge)...

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Construction Schedule


Now that we've started construction, I thought I'd post the updated construction schedule from our builder. The balance of everything will be done for us to move in at the end of January '10. There are a couple things that are going to have to wait for warmer weather next year: the driveway and exterior painting (May).

I updated the "Construction Schedule" link under "Other Info" in the sidebar so that it points to this post so that anyone can check it easily throughout the construction process.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Quick update pics


Here's a couple pics I took on my cell phone when I went out to the site for a brief look during my lunch hour today. Just as I left they were getting ready to pour the frost footings for the foundation. I'll do a better update this weekend as Molly and I and the kids will visit the site on Friday afternoon and take some video and pictures.

Looking toward the front of the garage

Looking across the South corner of the garage toward the front of the house

It's great to actually see the footprint of the house in place!

Monday, September 21, 2009

A retreat I highly recommend!


The retreat with Miles Christi was absolutely fantastic and I highly recommend it for anyone around the US. Miles Christi priests travel all over the country directing these retreats (for men only and for women only) and so there has to be one reasonably close which you could take advantage of. Here's their upcoming schedule of retreats. Anyone looking for an extremely simple, practical retreat focused on helping you work on holiness, this is the retreat for you.

Plus, anyone looking to work on their Latin would love Miles Christi retreats!

Friday, September 18, 2009

I'll be on retreat this weekend...


I'll be on a retreat this weekend in Buffalo, MN with these guys...

The Miles Christi order of priests specializes in running retreats using the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius of Loyola. We became acquainted with them as they often have a booth at the Minnesota Catholic Home Educator's Conference that we attend yearly at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, MN. This particular retreat is for men only (they also run retreats for women only). Here's the details on the retreat I'm attending.

You know the Miles Christi priests are solid not only by the fact that they wear cassocks (as pictured above), but they also have the following on their homepage :-)

Tuesday, September 15, 2009



Ground breaking (starting with tree clearing) will be tomorrow, Wednesday, September 16 at 8:00am. We won't be able to get there as a family that early due to traffic, etc., but we'll be there later in the morning to take some pics and video!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Loan closing is complete and trees are marked


Well, we successfully completed the loan closing on Friday without any hiccups. Once the mortgage is submitted to the county on Monday morning and is registered, then construction can officially begin at any time! The city building permits have also been approved. Right now the scheduled date to start clearing trees from the lot is on Wednesday in order to work with the schedule of the tree removal subcontractor. We (the whole family) will definitely be there during the daytime on Wednesday at some point to watch the work begin, and we'll definitely be taking lots of pictures. Max, our 2-year old, is already walking around yelling out at random times "Wednesday!... Trees!... TRACTORS!... WEDNESDAY!"

Speaking of which, I also met with the tree removal contractor and our general contractor at the lot on Friday in order to mark the trees that will need to come down (and be sure to save certain ones). It was definitely valuable that I was able to be there to walk the lot with the contractors, as I was able to tell them to remove trees/brush by the wetland border (that they otherwise would not have) so that the view to the wetland is open from the back of the house. We were also able to agree on which large trees by the street would be able to be saved. Here's a few pics from the tree-marking (click on any of them to enlarge):

Lots of cars and trucks parked by our lot probably has the neighbors thinking, "Hmmm... "

Duane Kozitka (right), from the Chuba Company, is our general contractor for the project and is doing a fantastic job. Andy Olberg (left), also from Chuba, will be the day-to-day project manager.

The tree removal subcontractors are in the distance, marking a perimeter of trees to be removed by spraying orange paint on the trunks. You can see some marked trees in the center of the picture.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Praise God!


First, turn on your sound, click play on the following video, and then continue reading...

We just got word today that our loan has finally been approved!!! Our loan closing will be either next Friday (9/11) or Monday 9/14, and right after that we'll break ground!