Progress 2004

March 2004

SIPs Panels arrive on site and are protected from the weather with tarps.

April 2004

Ken Porter, contractor and owner of SIPs Home Systems Inc., begins setting foundation bolts in preparation for erecting the walls. The task of raising the walls was delayed by weather, but the first few panels went up before the end of the month. Ken can be reached through the SHS website:

View: Exterior southwest corner, including backdoor opening. Side walls are currently 12 feet tall. Back walls are at 8ft until the loft floor gets framed and set at that height. These panels went up the same week that the Scotch Broom and Lupines were in bloom.

 May 2004

The most dramatic changes to the site will take place this month. The SIP’s “shell” is already going up, and we are waiting for the large beams to arrive before the roof panels can be placed with a crane. Siding and roofing will follow, and then the windows can be set.

June 2004

Bit by Bit, the progress is slow, but it *is* progressing. Here you can see interior framing and the beginnings of the loft.

Front view taken on June 24th.
In four more days, the crane will arrive on site to set the roof panels!

July 2004

After the big “Crane Day” this is what the building looks like as of the Fourth of July!

August 2004

Windows, doors, and siding are almost finished. Skylights are in process too. Cutting holes in the roof is an anxiety producing process, to say the least.

Electrical, plumbing, and other interior activity is in process, too, but it doesn’t photograph well. Whether it “shows” or not, this is an extremely busy phase.

August 2004 (Roofing)


With the roofing completed there is less and less anxiety about possible weather changes. It will take exterior caulking, painting, and a backdoor before the building is fully weather-tight. But even if an early rain came now it wouldn’t be disastrous.

September 2004

It’s nearly wrapped up! That is, the building is just about ready for weather changes. But before it rains something must be done about the slope and the loosened soil all around the place. Although I knew that landscaping would have to wait until next year it is now obvious that at least a little stabilizing “hardscaping” must happen ASAP. is forecasting the first rain of the season to arrive this Sunday, just three days away. So here we are scrambling to put in a retaining wall. I, personally, cannot move one bit of this hard clay soil, but I can use a level! I had also hoped to get the exterior painted. Looks like I won’t make that deadline, but at least it is puttied and caulked. It will survive a rain.

Interior After                                           

Interior After


October 2004

Recent focus has been on grading and drainage, and here you can see the structural preparation for a parking area. Asphalt will arrive on October 8th. We are still waiting for P.G.&E. to hook up power, which is holding up a number of other steps for the time being.

October 2004 (cabinets)

Rain has moved the activity indoors. Here, you can see the kitchen cabinets in progress. Interior painting is almost complete, and we are waiting for scaffolding to finish the highest area.

October 2004 (electricity & heat)


No more power cords reaching from the house, across the driveway, down the dirt hill, through the mud, onto the porch and in through the studio doors. Let there be light! Heat, too, has arrived on this last weekend in October. Cabinets continue to take form, and for the first time the building is fully secured. Doors and windows are locked, and I have keys to the kingdom!

The final countdown begins…