Saturday, December 29, 2012

Shelter from the storm

So, much to my dismay, my roof was beyond repair. I had been determined to save it, after all, if I wanted a new trailer, I would have bought one. I wanted all the quirks and flaws of her original exterior. I was stubborn about it as I sometimes am about things. But after talking to a few people, I was convinced having a leak proof, safe roof might be a priority (yeah yeah, I know you told me a long time ago). I am already paranoid about the whole thing flying apart like a house of cards the first time I take her on the freeway, so I thought I would give myself a little peace of mind. And I still have all the other beat up metal that will have marvelous random patches...

Thanks to Larry at Canned Ham Trailers for getting back to me so quickly with expert advice and offering assistance (may take him up on that at some point). And to Steve at Hemet Valley RV for humoring me and trying to help me salvage and eventually driving an hour to pick up my roof himself to make sure I got it in time. Even though he did say I was squeaking...;)

So we made the trek to Hemet about an hour and a half away. Never been there before. Beautiful drive, lots of open spaces. Very open spaces.

What happens to metal seams in high winds... :(

My workshop


Steve. Right after I did a little happy dance.

Drive home

My people!

What happens when you rip wood. I wish it was snow.

I am really excited about the roof...

Let it roll

Bob. Right before the roll popped open like a can of biscuits.

Yeah. I guess it was a good idea.

So I was expecting the roof to be almost impossible for the three of us to lift up. It was surprising light and we popped it up there in a minute. Undid the tape and voila! It was freezing up there. Low 40's~high 30's. I don't even understand those temperatures. At least now I don't have to worry about rain damage. And the timing could not have been more perfect. It snowed there the next day :/.

Oh please oh please don't let me muck up this perfect metal

Tiny injuries
I have been waiting all year to get the top back on. And even though it's not all attached and secured down, I feel like a huge weight has been lifted. She finally looks different! Sometimes so much work is done with very little progress to be seen, all it takes is one piece to help you get motivated to see a bit of the big picture.
Oak volunteer. She chose a very inconvenient spot. Named her Little Orphan Annie Oaktree.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Shiny shiny shi ni niny!

Wow. I think I found my favorite new project. Cleaning and polishing metal! It is so utterly satisfying! What an immediate result. Always trying to do what I can at home since I only get to visit Agnes once a week. I thought I would take a stab at working on a few pieces of trim I have at home and seeing if the process worked. Goodness, did it! I found the most perfect tutorial here~ Shine me up!

I was able to do everything exactly except the bench grinder. I instead bought a cotton buffing pad for my drill and it was easy to use and worked fairly well, I think. A few nicks in the metal when I wasn't paying attention to the angle, but not bad for a practice piece. Now I just want to polish everything tomorrow!

All the necessary supplies

Before. Ick!

Gettin ready to buff

I think it looks wonderful! :D

 Oh Agnes, you are going to be so sparkly!

....continued again with the polishing. This time in the rain. Yay! Watching paint bubble and scraping it off is most fun.

Got some work to do. You can see the finished middle piece below.

Bitchin camaro

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

“The question is not what you look at, but what you see.” ― Henry David Thoreau

Two steps back, two steps forward...

So, despite my ridiculously large tarp, Agnes sustained some water damage. Several ceiling panels and the back cupboard-which was fine before!! :/. Feeling a little blue about it. Not just because I have to redo, but because with the rain coming, I don't know how to shelter her better.

You think this would have done the trick

Argh! New damage. But will make her even better.

Fixed her better the second time around. Blessing in disguise.

Watched a few videos about putting the metal back on and deciding I have to kick that into high gear. So we ripped out damaged stuff and replaced. It actually worked out for the better. The old panel had a few issues that had kind of bothered me. The new one fits better and is a nicer piece of wood. We also used some 2 x 4's for added strength on top. I'd like to think that we gave her a little better roof over her head than the one before..

The ceiling isn't warped anymore

Like pieces of a puzzle..

We also put in the insulation and vapor barrier. Why am I so itchy? It looked so soft and harmless...swine deceiving cotton candy. Just because you have a cute picture of the pink panther..

So glad I just had to buy this in February...

Everyone needs a bit of this

That's my girl. Getting her shit together.

I also needed some inspiration for the interior~always a step or two ahead. I have so many ideas!

Agnes will have a diverse array of artwork...

Vintage texture tapestry wallpaper for the book/wine nook

Welcome to my world

Agnes is lollygagging along. She is starting to take shape and come alive. Find herself. When I started her, it was just a need for a creative outlet. I wanted a project. I wanted to create a space of my own. I didn't think about really traveling with her or the necessary functions of that. I didn't think of much more than taking on a huge endeavor. The year has brought many changes. She has become much more than just a literal project or a "thing". She has been my therapy, my catalyst, my quest for more. She has helped me start my search for myself in the world. It's not just about completing something I started anymore. It is about knowing what I am capable of. Capable of learning and accomplishing. What is important to me. Simple things. Creating and building something. About having an idea that I see come to fruition. About overcoming obstacles, how I deal with things, what is most important to me, to my life. Beauty in simplicity. She is symbolic of so much in my life. Like a phoenix I can relate to. She didn't need a facelift or a bandaid. She needed new life breathed into her. She needed someone to look at every flaw and care enough to fix the ones that needed it and polish the ones that were salvageable. She has a soul, part of me. She has been a catharsis for much of what I've gone through. There are parts of her that mean more to me than anything in the world. I could not have done so much alone. She holds all of my secrets and thoughts. She is just the beginning.... 

Monday, October 22, 2012

Agnes is still Agnus...

Trying to get out of the rut. Guess I have just been procrastinating the electrical issues (still!). Trying to still be productive though. Missed a few trips as was horribly sick. So instead have been spending more time than usual at the Treehouse. It's ok, though. Been having some fun with the local critters.

Here is just some complete randomness. Trying to get some momentum going... ;)

My awesome skills at work...

In case you were wondering, this is NOT an electrical jack. Somehow I failed to notice that..

Spent 10 minutes trying to remove a spider web from this little guy's wing, sorry little one :(

Door, dismantled. Minor injuries. Let's just say I have a disdain for nail screws.

My traveling toolbox :)

Taking apart drawers. About a hundred staples later...

Dennis. He prefers organic, raw pine nuts to almonds.

Needed to do something productive. Made myself a little shelf.

Calm drive

He made me carry him while I shopped for junk.

Zipline for the kids

I love the entrance to my parents' house

Checking to see how drawers fit. Need a few minor adjustments, but not bad!
This may not look like much, but we actually started putting in the wiring! Broke the ice at least :D

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Sunrise to Sunset

Good night sunrise
Minimum day today. Got started a bit late as I was up until 5:45 am the night before and not before spilling my entire piping cup of hot coffee down the front of my legs. As least I got to see the sunrise before taking a little snooze....

Oh, Hitch. You're just brilliant.

Let's just say that today I am glad I do not have ornithophobia. It seemed to be that kind of day. The crows were ominously circling. The hawks seemed to be screaming in warning of something foreboding. The osprey rustled uneasy in their nest. I only found it intriguing. I noticed a a murder of crows hanging out in the dead tree. I went to take a photo of them and then was distracted by some decaying piles of wooden tables. I heard an unusually loud flutter in the tree above me and when I looked up I saw the most majestic white owl tinged with rust staring at me. He took my breath away. I have never seen an owl in daylight. As I tiptoed closer to take a photo, two crows chased him out of the oak and he sailed beautifully across the sky. Instead of scrambling to try to capture him with a photo, I just enjoyed the moment, marveling at his magnificence. Next time, maybe...

Hope I get to meet the owner of this
 I spent the day cleaning and arranging some wood slats for my floor and fighting with aluminum and ridiculous screw nails-the bane of my existence. Only one sliced finger, so I guess I fared well. I am quite excited about the progress of the floors. I think I am going to leave them fairly close to the state in which I found them. Clean them up a bit and smooth a little, but I like the idea of my bare feet sliding across layers of wax and dents and marks of people and stories I have never known. I had considered sanding down to bare and restaining and also using the backside, which I find interesting (will use extra for another project). But I came to the conclusion that it kind of defeats the purpose of getting old, used wood. It would lose its character which I find most appealing.

I decided to take off the door and bring home to work on. I got the third degree at the border check for the first time. Caught me off guard a bit. I actually think they were just bored and wanted some conversation. I ended up explaining all about my little Agnes project after they wondered what the hell I was doing with that thing in my car...

And so the day comes to a glorious close...