Thursday, July 09, 2009

The Shed Saga and other Stuff

Wow! Can I just say that it is good to be back on the blogging circuit! I have so much to share that it may take a couple of posts- or this might just be one really BIG post! :)

First our new deck. We bought the materials at the same time we bought the shed materials. Thankfully I have a very compassionate father who took pity on me and helped me build it.

Here is the finished product:

I think that it turned out really well. It is nice to have a larger space near the door and wider, safer stairs that even my baby can make it down safely. You may also notice the patio that we finished around the edges of the deck. We have finally completed our patio as well. Later, when we were able to make it out of town again, we purchased edging for the base of the deck and added more gravel. It now looks like this:

We are very please with the finished product.
We finished the deck completely on a Thursday, and the following Monday I started my shed.


Monday, Day 1:

I was able to secure the help of my father and my friend Keith. We got the floor joists laid out and the flooring on. It wasn't too bad, although hammering takes a lot more muscles that I thought and I felt it the next morning!

It was a huge victory to get the floor completed. I was very happy.

Tuesday, Day 2

Not a lot was done on day 2. Due to me having class and my father having to work we met in the late afternoon and he cut all the wood so we could get the walls started. We also built the rear wall before I had to shower and get ready for class. I had spent almost 3 hours before he arrived measuring out and marking the wood so it was ready to cut. After my son's little league game and my class (last one for Tuesday- YIPEE!), I came home and built one of the side walls. Again, hammering can make you very sore.

Wednesday, Day 3With no class to worry about, I made used my 20+ minutes of exercise that morning to complete the second side wall. It was exciting to see it starting to come together. My father came later in the afternoon and we were able to complete the front wall and get the walls in a standing position as well. It seemed that things were really moving along now. Little did I know what was coming my way.

Thursday, Day 4
This was the day that we made a terrible discovery. Keith was able to come over and my wife's brother-in-law was here (my wife finally got the chance to do "pregnant pictures" and her sister was able come and do them for her). The three of us, Justin, Keith, and myself, were following the pattern for the trusses. We built the first of nine trusses and held it up to see if it would work. Well, it wasn't a pretty experience. Come to find out the pattern and directions were wrong. The trusses were 6 inches short on both sides (hence one of the many, many, many, many reasons Sutherland's and landed on the "companies I don't recommend" list).
So the three of us our heads together and after some serious calculating and testing, we finally came up with a pattern. Because I had class, we were only able to make three of the nine. Keith was the one doing all the measuring so I knew he would have to come back and help finish. At least I hoped he would come back and help. That was the end of the day for the shed. Class was class. I was a slacker this week and had to do more skimming than actual reading, but I was able to participate in class and felt like I understood what was being discussed.

Friday, Day 5
Friday morning, I set up the work area, the shade canopy (since it was going to be a long, long day of work) and moved the wood from the pile to the area. My father showed up (what a trooper and a lifesaver) and we started on finishing the trusses. The problem was the Keith was the mastermind behind the design. I marked out what I felt was right and had Keith come and check it to make sure it was right. The good news, I was right. The bad news, the first three trusses we had built were not the same. They were close, but not the same. My father solved the problem by laying this fourth pattern on the shed floor and drawing out a pattern for the rest of them to be laid on. In the middle of the truss building experience, my sister called and asked what I was doing. I told her and she asked why she wasn't invited. I quickly invited her (and her husband) to come and help. They arrived about 2 hours later (they had to make a trip into Price to get more nails so we would run out). I had a huge agenda for the day. I wanted the trusses up, the siding on, and the OSB on the roof. My helpers were doubtful, but worked hard. My mother, bless her heart, supplied us with Gatorade and water. She even paid for the pizza to feed us all.
At the day's end, we had accomplished almost all of the details on my list, including framing out the window I decided to add to the building. It was a great day. Keith and his brother left after we ate (still they put in a 7 hour day- THANKS SO MUCH!!!) and Wayne (my brother-in-law), my father, and myself worked until it was dark finishing the siding. What a blessing good friends and amazing family members are.

Saturday, Day 6
My trooper of a dad returned early Saturday morning to finish the siding. We had the triangles on both ends left to cover and the roof flashing to install. It took almost 5 hours to complete the ends and add the trim. When we finished, we were looking at the trim wood for the corners and doors and noticed that we wouldn't have enough of the wood we wanted to trim the shed. So my father and I made the hour trip to the nearest home improvement store to get the trim and a roll of tar paper for the roof since it didn't come with any. That ended day 6. Of note, it was also the 4th of July. We attended the city celebration and fireworks. It was very nice.

Sunday, Day 7

Sunday is the day of rest, and rest I did. It was nice to be out of the sun for the first time in 6 days straight.

Monday, Day 8

The day dawned bright and early. A good friend, Dale, showed up to help roof the shed. With only the roof, doors, and trim left, I was on the home stretch and SO, SO, SO ready for the project to be done. I had spent a good deal of time on the internet looking for information on how to roof a shed. I wasn't really wanting to ask anyone else to help as I felt I had exhausted my pool of willing helpers. But after seeing so many conflicting ways to shingle a roof, I knew it was time to call someone who had experience- enter Dale. He willingly came and helped complete the project. Two other friends ended up helping (Jimmy and Burke) before it was all done. What a job. It was SO HOT on the roof by 10am I thought we were all going to pass out. By 1pm we had the entire roof completed and the spinning vent in place. YEA! As Dale was leaving, he mentioned that if I needed help hanging the doors to let him know. Silly man, what was he thinking? Of course I am going to need help! :) My father showed up to help hang the doors, but we hit a snag very quickly. He had heat stroke and was shaking so bad he was scaring me. I called Dale and sent my father home. As Dale and I made the doors and went to hang them we made a very unhappy discovery. The building was far from square. The door opening was way off. Dale, being the amazing carpenter is is, knew how to fix it. It only took cutting the nails in the studs and moving them a little ways to fix it. By the time he completed that not-so-little project it was late and time for him to leave. I knew that meant I would be hanging the doors and doing the trim myself. Scary!

Tuesday, Day 9I knew that this day would be glorious because it was the day the shed would be officially complete. My wife and I got up early and headed out to tackle the doors. After trimming the door frame we were able to get the doors hung. They didn't hang as straight as we had hoped and we had to improvise a little, but it worked out really well. We added the hardware and the doors shut. YEA! Next we trimmed out the edges of the building and the window. It was finally complete. Okay, maybe not COMPLETELY! I still need to caulk the window and a few other places. We had moved in most of what we had in storage on Monday, and had a few more items to move out.

So, in 9 LONG days, we went from this:

to this:

It has been one heck of a ride. I learned a lot and appreciate all the help I received from so many. I hope that you are still awake after reading this incredibly long post.

Now on to other things.

We are going to have our baby on the 20th, well, I guess I should say that that is the day we are heading to the hospital to be induced. I am actually starting to get more and more excited now that the shed is built and out of the way.

I am now a member of the local medical center board of directors. I don't have a lot of say about it right now as I have only attended one meeting. It has the potential to be a good thing. More on this later, I am sure.

Today, July 10th, has been super busy. I had a church meeting this morning at 8am here at the house. From there my entire little family headed to the school to weed the huge flowerbed that for some reason I decided to add. What a job. It took over an hour to complete and we still have several a job to do there as soon as the weeds we missed get big enough to pull.

After pulling weeds, we headed to the city park so the kids could eat their free lunch. Next we came home and relaxed for a moment before heading back to our storage unit to finish cleaning out our remaining items. We gave away our old desk and hutch, a chair, a old rocking chair and our old deck swing chair. Man it feels nice to get rid of "stuff". After bringing the remainder of our items home, we painted the back door and stained the new deck. I also sanded the entire side deck and re-stained and waterproofed it.

With all of that done, we headed to my parents to water their garden and flowers. Next to the store, and the home to clean. I cleaned the bathrooms and vacuumed the h
ouse while my wife made dinner. After dinner we showered and got the kids in bed. I have spent the last 2 hours typing this post, so I am ready to simply be done and relax.

I look forward to having the time to actually do the things I want to for a while. They added the wall in my classroom to turn the hallway into a closet. Now, if they will just get my carpet done I can start moving my junk back into my room and get it arranged. I can't believe that my summer is half over this week. :(

Check back soon for more exciting adventures of Mr. Hughes and his sidekick family!



  1. See turns out you had lots of folks who knew parts and pieces of putting a building together. It looks awesome. Glad it's done as well as classes. Chat soon - E :)

  2. Looks Amazing!!!! Now you know how to do it all you can come help us finish ours!!! :)
    Your deck and patio look awesome too. I can't wait to come see everything. Hope you are all feeling well. Only about a week left! and you will be chasing five kidlets around!!! EEEEE!
    Love you so much. Glad you are able to breath.

  3. Congratulations on being finished! I am so proud of you guys. I hate to admit that I was nerveous for you to start when I saw that enourmous pile of wood on the trailor, but it looks amazing! Way to go, now sit down and breath before your next little adventure is born. Luv you guys!

  4. Looks good... I have a shed quite similar to that in our back yard that Tyler built me when I moved home with all of my "stuff"! Next project, find a friend with a nail gun... it makes things go SO much faster! Can't wait to see pics of the new baby! Wish I was closer to come play! Tell Allisha good luck! ;)

  5. The shed looked awesome as i peeked in it the other day while talking with you. Thanks for helping me out with the watering at Greg's.


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