Chapter 14 – Steady progress is a good reason to celebrate June birthdays

Chapter 14 – Steady progress is a good reason to celebrate June birthdays

Working with a company like Blue Ridge Energy Systems is one way to gain another family.  These guys become friends and you celebrate big and little events with them.  In this case, we’re celebrating all the June birthdays for the crew and their family members.  The feast included shrimp cocktail, guacamole and chips, grilled steak and chicken with corn on the cob and a big tossed salad. Homemade ice cream and birthday cake topped it off.  The highlight of the evening was the old time music performed by the Cecil Thompkins band.  You can’t have better music while the fireflies light up the summer meadow!!

Jeff uses the portable roller to form the standing seam roof

Best Buy Metals provided my entertainment one morning.  They brought their portable standing seam roller to the job site and produced the metal roof in front of my eyes!  The Ash Gray Cool Chemistry Energy Efficient painted roof arrived on three large spools. Then the machine cut all the panels according to our specs.  The trim was delivered prefabricated and painted black.  Doing it on the job site was critical because we could not deliver the extremely long panels by truck due to driveway constraints.  I love it when problems are solved this easily!  Read Chapter 13 of my blog for all the energy efficiency benefits of using a Cool Metal Roof.

Jennings Building Supply also delivered the Kolbe Ultra triple pane windows and doors.  I know the price of triple pane is for some a budget buster but the return on investment (ROI) over the life of the home is well worth it when you are building well-insulated and well-sealed to begin with.  Because of this efficiency, you are able to size your heating and air conditioning unit smaller and that saves money as well.  An important factor in my window selection was that casement windows open outward and the sash closes again their frame.  Thus you get a tighter seal than you would with double hung windows and that reduces air infiltration.

An important measurement you need to consider when buying a window is its R-value.  R-value is simply the rate at which heat/cold is transferred through it.  A standard double pane window has an R-value of about 3.3. The triple pane window has an R-value of 8.3.  That’s a significant healing and cooling efficiency!  Using triple pane also creates a quieter interior environment.  The outside noise simply cannot come in.  That means quiet nights and good sleeping!  I encourage you to watch this short YouTube video about the benefits of using triple pane windows.

Interior framing is complete.  I find myself walking through the house and pretending that I am sitting on my sofa or sitting at my desk.  I pretend to lay in bed and look out my windows and imagine my garden-to-be.  Jamie Shelton and I did the electrical walk-through, siting light fixtures, fans, switches and outlets.  I confess that I have been thinking about this for months and Jamie still gave me new ideas and thoughts that I really appreciate.  I also am amazed that the dining room chandelier and two fans that were ordered in March  have not shipped yet.  Late July is the new estimated ship date….thank goodness I started early on this!

Another milestone is the design and materials selections for the kitchen cabinets, bath vanities, and countertops.  It is overwhelming with so many choices and finishes but I am in the good hands of Dennis Crawford, owner of Crawford Custom Cabinets.  We have chosen solid maple kitchen cabinets with a panel style door front, painted Sherwin Williams Alabaster White (SW7008).  Countertops are Cosmos Quartz Summer Rain.  And let me tell you about price variation in quartz and granite!  With the expert help from Jeff Warner, owner of Boulder Creek Stone in Pisgah Forest, NC, I was able to realize an almost $3,000 savings in just the countertop choice!  WOW!!  The glass tile backsplash is AlysEdwards “Dirty Martini Gloss/Matte.”  Thanks to Amanda Meranto at Crossville Tile for expert guidance in tile selections throughout the house.

The Master Bath double vanity is dark cherry with Cosmos Quartz Pebble Beach countertops.  The Guest Bath will have a wall hung vanity in solid maple, painted Behr “Asparagus” (410D-4) also with Pebble Beach quartz countertops.  Having these details finalized, I really do believe that my house is not too far away!!

I know you’re wondering what my quote will be this week?!  Well, it’s from Leonardo da Vinci, a true Renaissance genius with unquenchable curiosity and an inventive imagination.  I think he would whole heartedly endorse Blue Ridge Energy Systems, their methodologies as well as their aesthetics in building this LEED certified, net zero home.  “Knowing is not enough; we must apply.  Willing is not enough; we must do.”  

Mignon Durham is a retired computer consultant, avid art and craft collector, founder of Toe River Project Access, and founder of Toe River Valley Watch. She has always been fascinated with what makes a place feel like home, and she hopes this blog will enlighten your own personal journey home.