Monday, April 30, 2012

Day 30 and the real countdown begins!

We made it through the week. Wow, it was a challenge. We decided to keep our Board of Health Inspection date for May 2nd and give it all we had to get the punch list done. With the tremendous help of family, we were able to meet the challenge. They say it takes a village to raise a child, well, it takes a family to build a business and this week was proof of that!

Tuesday morning started out with a beautiful sunrise.

If you look closely, you'll see the pink hues of the sunrise
captured in the BakeHouse building!
 The biggest push was getting the electrical completed. The biggest challenge the electricians had was lifting the 250+ lb Phase Converter up into our Attic/Crawl space. It almost didn't happen, but the guys persevered and they got it in place!

The Phase Converter doesn't look 250lbs on the hand truck

Two fellas got up in to the attic. This all had to all be done before 1pm.
By then the temps in the crawl space were over 100°
Because of this, we've had them add an attic fan that's is on a
thermostat so that the Phase Converter doesn't overheat.

We've had the electrical installed in a manner that will
allow for us to pass inspection and use the BakeHouse building
without having wallboard installed. We'll insulate and put up
wall board once we get up and running and selling bread

Tools and supplies were everywhere!
Friday night . . . Tom was able to get home a bit early and we started to work on the BakeHouse Prep Kitchen. This was the last big, complicated, possible problem project on the punch list. We moved the Washer and Dryer and Tom cut open the wall that would reveal the access to plumbing and water. We held our breath not knowing what this 40 year old home would surprise us with! But all looked good!

So far, so good!

This photo was taken about 10:30pm. Petie, Bradley and I kept Tom
company while he mulled things over. We were beat!

Saturday morning the heavy hitters arrived. Tom's mom and dad and my mom came up along side of us and helped us successfully complete the plumbing job!

Dad Hester and Tom discuss the plan 
Plumbing attachments made with success!

Getting the 3 bay sink ready to install

Las Cruces . . . we have water!

While the guys worked, the mom's worked on dinner.
I was busy painting even though there is no proof in pictures :)
My two amazing heroes
We all enjoyed a turkey dinner. This is one of those photos where
everyone looks . . . well . . . weird! But at least we're all looking at the camera!
Sunday night . . . Tom helped me by painting the Prep Kitchen ceiling. I promise, I really was painting!

The prep kitchen complete! 

As I'm getting this info out on our blog this morning the Electricians are finishing up their work and I'll be turning on the mixer for the first time since Sept. 25, 2009.

So stay tuned folks, this is going to be another fun filled week with today's electrical inspection happening, tomorrow, May 1st, will the the BakeHouse's official business start date for the State of NM & the IRS and Wednesday's Board of Health inspection taking place.

And again, thank you for all the words of encouragement. I've not responded to each and every one of you, but please know that we treasure all of you! Kath

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

The Oven has been fired!

We are thrilled beyond belief and yes . . . I cried. Enjoy - Kath & Tom

I held my breath as I put the flame to the paper.

The Juniper caught fast and smells wonderful! 
The first fire burned about one hour and we spread the coals.
Tomorrow I'll start another fire and move it around the baking chamber.

It's hard to see, but the smoke is coming out!

What a difference a new day makes!

A new day dawned yesterday, and as I was putting our past week's experience in writing to you, good things were taking place! Tom went to the roofing manufacturer and they had the perfect flashing for the chimney. Tom worked until the sun set and got the job done!

As you can see, this flashing was made for this type of roof and just molded itself around the ridges in the roof panels.

Tom and I had a good laugh up on the roof. What is it about caulking, it's like icing a cake, you get it all over your hands and clothes no matter how careful you are!

Chimney is up and ready for firing. We'll give the caulk a chance to set and my next blog should show smoke billowing out the top! We can't wait to share it with you.

The other fantastic thing that happened yesterday was that next to the roofing company was a sheet metal shop! Why is this so exciting? We found someone to make the oven's door! And we should have it today!

This is a photo of our original oven's door. To insulate the door, left over pieces of Foamglas will be used! Having a sheet metal door insulated in this way makes it very light and easy to handle.

We're hoping the electrician will make it today. He was a no show yesterday, but he did call so that's encouraging. I couldn't wait to get you all this good new! Thanks for checking in. Thoughtfully, Kath.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Day 29 . . . Labor Pains!

"Hey Kath, how's it going with the BakeHouse project?"  "Like birthing an Elephant!"

Don't ask me where this response came from. I have absolutely no idea what birthing an elephant would be like! It just popped out of my mouth somewhat like the reaction you get when you pour a glass of milk, take a big gulp and realize - it's sour!

Yes folks, we are in the final stages of the rebirth of the BakeHouse and it's becoming a true labor of love and passion at this point. We take steps forward only to be knocked back a few steps. We're getting really good at giving each other pep talks. And the phrase - "Time out - let's take a deep breath" are now becoming common as we try and get the BakeHouse up and running!

With that said, I will introduce you to the culprit that was the straw that broke Tom's spirit Sunday afternoon.

Meet the chimney flashing. Yes it's true, this simple crack that appeared as Tom was shaping it over the roofing and around the first section of chimney is what brought our hero down. Tom was so disappointed that he could not finish the chimney so that we could light a small fire. No matter how I tried to encourage him, he was defeated. It took me several minutes to convince him to come down off the roof, out of the 95°+ heat and take a break. Once he got down, I knew he was done and needed to come inside and leave the project for another day.

It is amazing how something so small can totally make you blind to all that did get accomplished! The photos that we share on the blog help to remind us just how much has gotten done!

The beginning of the week, the proofing room framing was completed so that the electrician could run the needed wires. We also received the refrigeration unit that will be use. Basically Tom has created a custom walk in and we'll use a 3/4 Medium Temperature Single Phase Cooling Unit.

Then we had to get the siding on the side of the BakeHouse building that the refrigeration unit would be on so it would look neat and tidy once the electrician did his work for the unit. 


It was so gratifying getting the siding painted and our first window installed! Isn't it funny how you find yourself standing back, looking at your work with a great sense of satisfaction - ahhhhh :) And then the next day, not even 24 hours later, something happens and it knocks the wind out of your sail. Along with being human, I suspect that fatigue had something to do with it too.

Tom tackling the roof on Saturday. There were some points where I think the roof tackled Tom.

Rolling out the felt.
The chimney opening.

The metal sheets next. 

The end of the week, Sunday. This is where we had to say goodnight. Tom got a good nights rest last night, is off to work and ready to tackle another week. The electrician is suppose to come later today and start all the wiring. It's been this on again off again nature of the last few days that is giving us the biggest challenge. We are getting a really good dose of practicing patience and being creative when our plans don't work out exactly as we want. Our Board of Health Inspection is scheduled for May 2nd, but I feel in my gut that I might have to call and schedule it for a later date and take some of the pressure off!

We can't wait to share with you the results of this coming week, so stay tuned and thanks for all the encouraging emails you've all sent us! We are blessed. Thoughtfully, Kath

Monday, April 16, 2012

Day 28

Tom's week off has come to an end and he headed off to work this morning. Last night we looked over what had taken place this past week and it seems like a blur! We lost the weekend due to tremendous winds and being just plain worn out. We enjoyed a day of rest on Sunday, spending time with our church family and then enjoying our Sunday nap :)

Tom worked on finishing the roof of the BakeHouse
on Thursday and Friday

Once the roof was complete, Tom could start the metal structure that would go around the body of the oven.

Tom contemplating his morning on Friday.

The metal studs seemed flimsy at first, but once they were screwed
together, the structure was extremely strong! 

With the structure around the oven is complete, it's ready for the
cement board and siding to be nailed on.

This week will be packed with things to do and places to go. Today I'll pick up what Tom needs to start framing out the proofing room that is inside the BakeHouse building. The electrician will need that wall up to run wires. Then the metal roof will be put on and then the chimney will go up. Everyone is so excited about when the bread will arrive and this will be the final part of the oven that needs to go up before we can start firing the oven. I'll be ordering firewood at the end of the week. Just a little bit more patience, it's going to happen, we promise!

So until later this week, thanks again for checking in on us - thoughtfully, Kath

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Day 27 . . . The building goes up.

I've lost track of time! Tom has taken the week off from work and each day has so much packed in to it that I forget what day it was. Our focus this week has been getting the BakeHouse building up, and Tom's doing a fantastic job. We've been blessed with extremely nice days, not too hot yet.

Tom decided that he'd assemble a complete wall on the ground first and then we'd lift it in to place.

The heaviest wall, the back wall was assembled first.

The back wall complete.

This is the front wall which includes openings for two windows and the front door.

The side wall was assembled and then put in to place before the
sheathing was nailed on. 
A lovely view of the oven face from one of the windows.
We lost part of the working day on Tuesday since we had to have the power company come out and switch our supply. This meant that the power company crew came out at 9am, took us off the grid and then the electrician came to install a new panel. Once the new panel was in place we had to wait for the inspector to come. Once approved, then the power company was called back in to hook us back into the grid. This pretty much took up the day, so Tom and I got other odd ball stuff done and purchased the rest of the supplies we'd need for the week.

We had fun sharing this photo with Dad Hester, who spent many years
Jersey Central Power & Light  teaching guys how to climb poles!

The new panel going in.

The day's end on Wednesday. The walls were in place and Tom had started
the roof. Today the roof will be done for sure!
In closing it's with a heavy heart that Tom and I think about our friend Dave who lost his battle with cancer at 3:30 this morning. But it's not just Tom and I. Dave touched so many lives, and when he knew that he'd be called home to Heaven sooner than later, he chose to use his final days here on earth to encourage all of us with his faith and with the love and grace of Jesus Christ. Dave ended his journey well. Thank you Dave, you'll be truly missed, but we're looking forward to our reunion in Heaven!

This photo shows Dave, in the red shirt, with all his friends from Mesilla Valley Disposal where Dave worked as a roll off driver along with Tom.