TUESDAY, JULY 25, 2006

Grand Opening!

The moment you’ve been waiting for — I’ll let the pictures speak for themselves:

SATURDAY, APRIL 15, 2006

Dawn’s third (and final) to do list

Within the next ten weeks, we should have the mansion ready and (hopefully) the Summer Kitchen as well. Unfortunately, the Paymaster’s Office will take a little longer. Notice I didn’t say “finished,” just “ready.” The stuff that is absolutely required in order for us to get our occupancy permit and open the B&B is highlighted in bold.

Mansion

  • Paint interior
  • Build kitchen island and refrigerator cabinet
  • Sand and refinish all floors
  • Strip stairs
  • Finish plumbing (install sinks and toilets)
  • Finish electrical (switches, outlets, humidistats, exit signs)
  • Finish fire and burglar alarms
  • Install thermostats
  • Buy and install light fixtures for kitchen, upstairs
  • Tile Kathyrn’s bath, our bath
  • Install marble surrounds on fireplaces
  • Buy applicances (refrigerator, stove, dishwasher, washer, dryer)
  • Buy and install range hood, flue liner, chimney cap
  • Run propane line to kitchen
  • Install safety railing in servant’s stairwell
  • Strip and restore all doors
  • Remove and sandblast door and window hardware
  • Make interior storm windows
  • Buy and install interior blinds or drapes
  • Paint exterior
  • Paint front porch (ceiling is sky blue)
  • Hang exterior shutters
  • Install phones, cable TV, wireless Internet
  • Build mechanical room in basement
  • Build new basement stairs
  • Install laundry tub in basement
  • Replace basement door
  • Finish wine rack in basement
  • Cover spring in basement
  • Install storage cabinets in basement
  • Finish down spouts
  • Landscape in front of mansion
  • Get furniture from Mechanicsburg
  • Buy mattresses, linens, etc.
  • Glass tops for furniture

Summer Kitchen

  • Repair and install front door
  • Buy and install new flooring downstairs
  • Refinish flooring upstairs
  • Install ceiling fans
  • Finish plumbing (install sinks and toilets)
  • Finish electrical (switches, outlets)
  • Install air handler and heat pump
  • Build kitchenette
  • Strip and repair all windows
  • Finish repointing
  • Build and install storm windows
  • Install plaster
  • Paint
  • Tile whirlpool bath surround
  • Install propane fireplace

Paymaster’s Office

  • Rough plumbing
  • Rough electrical
  • Install air handler and heat pump
  • Build kitchenette
  • Drywall bathroom
  • Finish plumbing (install shower, sinks, toilet)
  • Finish electrical (switches, outlets)
  • Install light fixtures
  • Install chimney liner
  • Set up gas fireplace
  • Build kitchenette
  • Strip and repair all windows
  • Build and install storm windows
  • Patch woodwork
  • Build whirlpool surround
  • Tile whirlpool surround
  • Install tankless hot water heater
  • Install basement door
  • Refinish floor
  • Paint kitchen and bathroom
  • Pour cement floor in basement

Privy

  • Replace roof
  • Clean out
  • Buy emergency generator
  • Set up manual transfer switch
  • Finish repointing

White House

  • Replace bathroom fixtures
  • Build third bedroom
  • Paint inside and out
  • Rent

Los Angeles

  • Pack everything
  • Sell house
  • Hire movers
  • Drive to Pennsylvania

Other

  • Reseed lawn
  • Finish drain in front of workshop
  • Pour cement floor in workshop
  • Install condensors/heat pump in workshop
  • Install louvres in windows with automatic opener
  • Install outside paths/lighting (solar?)
  • Repair floor joists in workshop (Dawn)
  • Install new stairs to workshop, or railing
  • Resurface driveway
  • Create pull-off; install retaining wall
  • Paint arrows/post signs at end of drive
  • Remove telephone pole and electric panels
  • Clear ivy from trees
  • Install barn doors
  • Move trough
  • Hang sign
  • Determine “open house” weekend
  • Throw a party!

Future

  • Landscape
  • Rebuild back porch
  • Stabilize stallion pen
  • Rebuild chicken coop
  • Clean barn
  • Replace stairs on greenhouse
  • Restore lawn furniture
sunset

The view from the property. Pretty cool, huh?

SATURDAY, MARCH 25, 2006

Dawn sends status…and pictures!

[My comments in brackets. -Gregg]

  • Two of the painters, Elmer Stoltzfus and Southern Long, started on Monday in the offices [third floor attic area] of the mansion. They should finish tomorrow and start moving down the stairs to Bill’s room, then the Boys’ room, then the hallway, then maybe to the game room. Jay Bowman started today and is working in Kathryn’s room, finishing what Matt started. The weather is fair but cold, just above 40, so Matt is prepping the exterior wood. Carl Stoltzfus is to start on the first floor in mid-April, if we need him.
  • The electricians will be back on April 3 to finish the rough-in in the Summer Kithchen, then come back to the Mansion for outlets and switches, and whatever else is ready at that time.
  • The alarm guy will be here next week to drill holes in the window sills. [After all the work Dawn did to the windows, drilling holes in them seems a shame, but it’s the only way to hide the alarm sensors.]
  • Brian and Henry have finished repointing the back of the house and have started on the west side, so now we have to install the stove vent so that it can be set while the scaffolding is up.
  • I have to take care of the driveway guy this week.
  • I will see the tile guy next Wednesday to sign a contract and order the tile for the bathrooms and surrounds for the whirlpools.
  • J Miller is checking on the generator. [We are buying a whole-house generator in case power goes out.]
  • Brian will start the drain and floor in the workshop next week, and then the plumbers will be back to finish the air conditioning units. [Funny story below. Well, not really funny.]
  • As soon as the electricians are done in the Summer Kitchen, the plumbers will finish their rough-in in the Summer Kitchen, then we have to do the downstairs floor. I will most likely get the flooring from Sylvan Brandt, in Lititz.
  • I have begun research on the kitchenettes and will let you know what I come up with very soon.
  • I am still working on colors, and hope to buy the paint next week.
  • The roof on the Summer Kitchen is done and the patches have been made to the Paymaster’s Office. The privy roof will be done by June, but we don’t know exactly when yet.
  • The trim on both third floors is done and Darin has completed the moldings on all mansion windows. He has taken measurements of all windows and is pricing interior storms for all three buildings. All sashes have been pulled from the Summer Kitchen and Paymaster’s Office and are over at Village Glass having the glass removed, then they will come back here for me to strip them.
  • I am sure there is more, but I can’t think of it right now. I should be done with the list you gave me by tomorrow and will scan and email it to you.

[* In the workshop, the first floor is below ground level, and there was a water line on the walls about a foot above the floor. However, after six months we did not notice any water seeping in, so Brian went ahead and started painting. No sooner had he finished then the rain started, and it didn’t stop for a week. When it was done, the first floor was flooded — right to the old water line — and all of the new paint peeled right off. Thank goodness we hadn’t installed the air conditioning units yet, as I don’t think the warranty covers standing in two feet of water…]

The Summer Kitchen, with its new slate roof, looks like a smaller version of the mansion.

The Summer Kitchen, with its new slate roof, looks like a smaller version of the mansion.

SUNDAY, MARCH 05, 2006

Update on Dawn’s tasks

On October 15, I published Dawn’s new to-do list. Let’s see what she’s accomplished in the last five months:

Mansion

  • Repoint east side, spot point as needed (Hollenbeck) — repointed entire building!
  • Finish east gable, downspouts, front porch — east gable and front porch finished
  • Insulate between all floors (blown-in blanket) — done!
  • Paint all windows and sashes; hang windows — done!
  • Move basement door — done!
  • Paint front porch — stripped
  • Install whirlpool bath; put air pump in kneewall above (AH Moyer) — done!
  • Install humidistats in all bathrooms — done!
  • Run electric to all fireplaces (need 220V for kitchen stove?) — done!
  • Run electric to cedar closet (need 220V for electric dryer?) — done!
  • Install illuminated exit signs, emergency lighting (Joel Miller Electric) — wired!
  • Install window and door contacts (for burglar alarm) — wired!
  • Install pulls and horns around mansion (for fire alarm) — wired!
  • Run line sets from workshop for air conditioning — done!
  • Finish air conditioning ducts; install remote temperature sensors in return ducts — done!
  • Run new black iron pipe to all radiators — done!
  • Install 75 gal propane water heater and recirculating pump — done!
  • Buy and bury two 1,000 gal propane tanks — done!
  • Strip and re-paint all radiators — done!
  • Run radiant flooring under kitchen, bathrooms (except boys’ room) — done!
  • Tie waste lines to septic system — done!
  • Install chimney caps — east side done!
  • Restore iron firebacks — done!
  • Buy four electric fireplace inserts, one stand-alone fireplace — done!
  • Repair lath and plaster — done!

Summer Kitchen

  • Clean chimney — done!
  • Replace roof and gutters — done!
  • Buy and install new front door — found one on the property; not installed yet
  • Reinforce flooring upstairs; fix “bump” — done!
  • Install air handler — done!
  • Install electric panel — done!
  • Re-plaster brick wall; repair walls — done!
  • Buy and install stand-alone gas fireplace downstairs — done!
  • Run water and propane from mansion — done!
  • Run electric/telephone/cable/LAN/fire/burglar cables from mansion — done!
  • Run line sets from workshop for heat pump — done!
  • Install propane line to fireplace, hot water heater — done!

Paymaster’s Office

  • Finish cleaning — done!
  • Remove linoleum floor, brick “wallpaper” — done!
  • Clean chimney (flue okay for gas fireplace?) — done!
  • Move cabinet doors; create new wall — done!
  • Install electric panel — done!
  • Install propane line to fireplace, hot water heater — done!
  • Buy gas logs for fireplace — done!
  • Remove electric meter — done!
  • Run water from mansion — done!
  • Run electric/telephone/cable/LAN/fire/burglar cables from mansion — done!

Other

  • Drill well — done!
  • Install well pump — done!
  • (November)Install new roof and gutters on workshop — done!
  • Install new drain along driveway — done!
  • Finish septic system — done!
  • Insulate old well house — done!
  • Build retaining wall on east slope — done!
  • Run telephone line under road into basement — done!
  • Restore bookshelf in basement — done!

In addition, Brian took out the stairs to the workshop, which apparently were not built correctly and ready to collapse. But that also means we have to replace them.

That’s quite a bit of work for five months, but there’s still so much left. Now that the plaster is finished, paint is Dawn’s next priority — and with so much trim and ornamentation, that’s a huge job by itself. Olde York Homes will be looking to finish the cottages, and also build the kitchen island. Village Glass has more than enough windows and storms to stay busy for four months, Henry Hollenbech still has the summer kitchen to repoint, and Brian, poor Brian, gets everything nobody else wants.

THURSDAY, OCTOBER 27, 2005

Before and Current

Dawn just sent me 121 pictures. 🙂 It’s too soon for “Before and After,” but I can do “Before and In Process.”

SUNDAY, OCTOBER 23, 2005

Channel 11 news

Picture this: It’s September 6, the last day of my “vacation”, and I’ve spent the last five hours talking to the plumber, the contractor, and the septic guy, when the channel 11 news van pulls up, ready to do an interview.

Of course I knew they were coming — Dawn specifically scheduled them for my visit so she didn’t have to appear on camera — but that didn’t mean I was ready. Like so many other things on this project, if I knew what was coming, I wouldn’t have done it. Or at least I would have scheduled it early in the morning, so I wasn’t exhausted from talking all day.

Dawn was still dealing with the septic guy so she was in the cornfield during the entire interview, which was probably a good thing because she would have been kicking me throughout. Instead, she had to wait until it was on TV before she kicked me.

The original clip was ninety seconds long, but I’ve abridged it to 45 seconds — partly for bandwidth, but mostly to remove embarrassing clips of me saying the stupidest things. (Such as, “The biggest challenge is the cost, that’s what keeps me up at night.” Way to market the B&B, Gregg!) Rebecca Baer is the anchorwoman and she also did the interview.

Afterwards, I picked up a copy of “Guerrilla Publicity” which devoted an entire chapter devoted to common mistakes people make on camera. I’m pretty sure I hit every one.

Two technical corrections: Rebecca states the mansion was unoccupied for a year (it was 20 years) and that we gutted the entire mansion plus two other buildings (we worked very hard to preserve as much as possible in the mansion and Paymaster’s Office; we did gut the Summer Kitchen because there wasn’t anything worth saving.) Also, the “1902” seen at the end of clip was where the paper hanger had signed the wall; it is crossed out because the next paper hanger (in 1947) was a jerk.

SATURDAY, OCTOBER 15, 2005

Dawn’s new to-do list

Just in case we were getting excited about all the progress made so far…

Mansion

  • Repoint east side, spot point as needed (Hollenbeck)
  • (November, after mason) Finish east gable, downspouts, front porch (Lantz roofing)
  • Insulate between all floors (blown-in blanket)
  • Paint all windows and sashes; hang windows by November 1st (Dawn)
  • Hang exterior shutters (Olde York Homes?)
  • Make interior storm windows (Village Glass)
  • Move basement door (Olde York Homes)
  • Build new basement stairs (Olde York Homes?)
  • Build mechanical room in basement (Olde York Homes)
  • Paint front porch (Dawn; ceiling is sky blue per Gary G.)
  • (February) Build kitchen island and refrigerator cabinet (Olde York Homes)
  • Install whirlpool bath; put air pump in kneewall above (AH Moyer)
  • Install humidistats in all bathrooms (Joel Miller Electric)
  • Run electric to all fireplaces (Joel Miller Electric; need 220V for kitchen stove?)
  • Run electric to cedar closet (Joel Miller Electric; need 220V for electric dryer?)
  • Install illuminated exit signs, emergency lighting (Joel Miller Electric)
  • Install window and door contacts (for burglar alarm)
  • Install pulls and horns around mansion (for fire alarm)
  • Put fire/burglar alarm keypads in kitchen
  • Run line sets from workshop for air conditioning (AH Moyer)
  • Finish air conditioning ducts; install remote temperature sensors in return ducts (AH Moyer)
  • Install thermostats in kitchen (AH Moyer)
  • Run new black iron pipe to all radiators (AH Moyer)
  • Install 75 gal propane water heater and recirculating pump (AH Moyer)
  • Buy and bury two 1,000 gal propane tanks (Dawn, Martindale)
  • Strip and re-paint all radiators (Dawn)
  • Run radiant flooring under kitchen, bathrooms (except boys’ room) (AH Moyer)
  • Set up thermostats on radiators? (AH Moyer)
  • Remove “extra” steam radiator on third floor (Dawn)
  • Tie waste lines to septic system (AH Moyer)
  • Install laundry tub in basement (AH Moyer)
  • Strip stairs (Dawn)
  • Sand and refinish all floors (Olde York Homes)
  • Install toilets and sinks, faucets and shower valves (AH Moyer)
  • Tile Kathyrn’s bath, our bath (Olde York Homes?)
  • Build brick partition between boiler flue and kitchen flue; install chimney cap (Dawn?)
  • Buy and install range hood, remote blower in kitchen chimney (Olde York Homes?)
  • Restore iron firebacks (Dawn)
  • Buy and install four electric fireplace inserts, one stand-alone fireplace (Dawn)
  • Install safety railing in servant’s stairwell (Olde York Homes?)
  • Remediate basement moisture (Olde York Homes? Cover spring?)
  • Replace basement doors (Olde York Homes?)
  • Repair lath and plaster (Jerry Leib)
  • Paint interior (Dawn; need to determine colors!)

 

Summer Kitchen

  • Clean chimney (Dawn)
  • Replace roof and gutters (Lantz roofing)
  • Buy and install new front door (Olde York Homes)
  • Buy and install new flooring downstairs(Olde York Homes)
  • Reinforce flooring upstairs; fix “bump” (Olde York Homes)
  • Refinish flooring upstairs (Olde York Homes)
  • Install plumbing, fixtures (AH Moyer)
  • Buy and install kitchenette (Dawn)
  • Install air handler (AH Moyer)
  • Install electric panel (Joel Miller Electric)
  • Install tankless water heater (AH Moyer)
  • Re-plaster brick wall; repair walls (Jerry Leib)
  • Buy and install stand-alone gas fireplace downstairs (Dawn)
  • Strip and repair all windows (Dawn)
  • Re-glaze all windows (Village Glass)
  • Paint and hang all windows (Dawn)
  • Build and install storm windows (Village Glass)
  • Run water and propane from mansion (AH Moyer)
  • Run electric/telephone/cable/LAN/fire/burglar cables from mansion (Joel Miller Electric)
  • Run line sets from workshop for heat pump (AH Moyer)
  • Install propane line to fireplace, hot water heater (AH Moyer)
  • Paint everything (Dawn)

Paymaster’s Office

  • Finish cleaning (Dawn)
  • Remove linoleum floor, brick “wallpaper” (Dawn)
  • Clean chimney (flue okay for gas fireplace?) (Dawn)
  • Move cabinet doors; create new wall (Olde York Homes; no room to create third cabinet)
  • Buy and install kitchenette (Dawn)
  • Remove beaded boards, plywood from bathroom (Dawn?)
  • Install bathroom plumbing, fixtures (AH Moyer; work around stone in basement)
  • Drywall bathroom area? (Jerry Leib?)
  • Install heat pump on slope; put air handler in attic area (AH Moyer)
  • Fix woodwork in corner, other holes (Olde York Homes)
  • Install whirlpool tub (AH Moyer)
  • Install electric panel ( Joel Miller Electric; already done?)
  • Install tankless hot water heater (AH Moyer)
  • Install propane line to fireplace, hot water heater (AH Moyer)
  • Buy and install gas logs for fireplace (AH Moyer)
  • Install basement door (Olde York Homes?)
  • Refinish floor (Olde York Homes?)
  • Strip and repair all windows (Dawn)
  • Re-glaze all windows (Village Glass)
  • Paint and hang all windows (Dawn)
  • Build and install storm windows (Village Glass)
  • Remove electric meter (Dawn, PPL)
  • Repoint walls as needed (Hollenbeck)
  • Paint kitchen and bathroom (Dawn)
  • Run water from mansion (AH Moyer)
  • Run electric/telephone/cable/LAN/fire/burglar cables from mansion (Joel Miller Electric)
  • Buy and install 500 gallon propane tank? (Dawn)
  • Pour cement floor in basement (Dawn)

Other

  • Drill well (Myers)
  • Install well pump (AH Moyer)
  • (November)Install new roof and gutters on workshop (Lantz roofing)
  • Install air compressors/heat pump in workshop (AH Moyer)
  • Install louvres in windows with automatic opener (AH Moyer)
  • Install new drain along driveway (Halderman Excavating)
  • Install outside paths/lighting (solar?)
  • Finish septic system (Halderman Excavating)
  • Pour cement floor in workshop (Dawn)
  • Repair floor joists in workshop (Dawn)
  • Insulate old well house (Dawn)
  • Need to remove and sandblast door and window hardware? (Dawn)
  • Determine if we want to repair electric stove or buy gas stove (Dawn)
  • Buy and install interior blinds (Dawn)
  • Add new parking spot in front (Dawn)
  • Create pull-off; install retaining wall (Dawn)
  • Resurface driveway (Dawn)
  • Paint arrows/post signs at end of drive (Dawn)
  • Build retaining wall on east slope (Hollenbeck)
  • Run telephone line under road into basement (Dawn and D&E Communications)
  • Remove telephone pole (D&E)
  • Replace cable? (Dawn; not sure where this is currently coming from)
  • Clear ivy from trees (Dawn)
  • Set up flower garden, vegetable garden (Dawn)
  • Rebuild garden pond in front (Dawn)
  • Do landscape design (David Christian)

Future

  • Clean out privy; re-roof
  • Restore bookshelf in basement; set up as wine rack
  • Set up backup generator
  • Move trough to water pump (need forklift)
  • Replace back porch
  • Replace roof on tractor shed/ice house
  • Rebuild chicken coop
  • Restore benches and lawn furniture from basement
  • Remove cement on back porch; replace with wood or stone
  • Clean up Stallion Pen (drain basement, stabilize walls, replace roof, gut interior, cover windows)

MONDAY, JULY 11, 2005

Bath fixtures

While I harbor no illusions that anyone is interested in our fixtures list, we’ve spent so much time on it that it would be a shame not to include it. Dawn asked me not to include prices, but I can say it will be about $30,000 total, not including the kitchen. Ouch.

Addendum: After posting this, our plumber contacted Sanijet to get pricing, and they said they not only knew about Speedwell Forge, but had even gotten referrals from this journal! I’m not sure how that is possible, but in any case it didn’t translate to any discount for us, so I’m not going to worry about it.

I will mention (for free) that we’re using Sanijet because they don’t have any pipes, so when you empty and clean the bath, it’s really empty and really clean. If you want to see something disgusting, order their promotional video, which shows what’s in the pipes of a conventional whirlpool tub. Let’s just say I’ll never be using one of those again…

Unfortunately, they don’t make a clawfoot model, which we really wanted for Kathryn’s bath, so we’re getting an “air tub” instead. That also doesn’t have pipes, but it does have a loud air blower, which we’re going to put upstairs in the attic area. During my last visit we taped off Kathryn’s bath, and with a 6′ x 3.5′ clawfoot whirlpool tub, it’s going to be nice.

THURSDAY, JUNE 10, 2004

Cleaning 2

On our last day in PA, our friends at Forgotten Seasons B&B invited us over for breakfast so we could see what that was like. (We would have gladly made breakfast and cleaned the rooms just to see what that was like, too, but don’t tell them that.)

It was a very productive week. We moved all of the junk into a storage unit (although I’m not happy about paying to keep junk in storage) and I cleaned out the paymaster’s office a little. (I stress “I” because Dawn managed to get poison ivy, and so was out of commission the last day.

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