Monthly Archives: September 2013

foundation approved, time for the slab prep

Thanks to a fantastic job by Eric Riley and his crew from Superior Walls, as well as a termite treatment by Brown Exterminating Company, and of course, George Lewis of C & L Excavation, our new foundation has passed inspection!


Dinwiddie County gives their stamp of approval. Hooray!

Next step, the slab prep…

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a structure arises…

Dave arrived bright and early Friday morning, did a little fishing and awaited the arrival of Eric Riley and his crew from Superior Walls Foundations.  Although overcast, it was a beautiful morning on the lake, the early fall air cool and quiet.  I stayed behind to get Max off to school then headed down, not wanting to miss out in witnessing the first level of our log home being put into place.

The crew arrived at 7:20 to prep the ground before the amazing production began.

The crane and two trucks carrying our foundation walls arrived soon after.

The crane made it safely up the steep drive, but now it was time to get the heavy trucks, weighed down by the heavy concrete walls, up top to the home site.

After several attempts, it was clear that the heavy truck was not going to make it up the hill.  All seemed lost for a moment. But wait…

Todd Hawkes, who had previously put in the ATV trails for us, popped by to watch.  We had yet to meet him in person so we were very happy to finally meet him face to face.  He will be taking over as contractor for the mechanicals so we will be seeing a lot more of him in the coming weeks!  It was much fun having our three trusty contractors all on site at the same time.

Having successfully pulled the trucks to the top of the hill, George takes off and Eric Riley and his team from Superior Walls take over the production.

While Eric and his team were busy putting our foundation in place, we received a call that our port-a-john had arrived.  Hooray, no more potty tent for us!

Meanwhile, Eric’s crew puts in the fireplace foundation.

The last wall in place, we head inside to check out our new basement!

Three hours from start to finish, our foundation is complete and Eric and his crew, take off.

As usual, I couldn’t resist taking a few more photos of the lake before we left for the day. The cloud cover had lifted, leaving a beautiful deep blue sky overhead…

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in which George encounters rock…

It seemed to be fairly smooth sailing for George for the first seven days, (at least from our perspective!) and then, on the eighth day….

Somehow, I had assumed that George had a team of workers helping him with the excavation and didn’t realize till yesterday that he’s been doing this entire project himself.  I didn’t think I could be anymore impressed with him than I was before, but I was mistaken.  George Lewis, you are AWESOME!!!

By Wednesday evening, George had cleared the land, put in the driveway, completed the excavation, and prepped the ground for the foundation and concrete slab.  We are sufficiently impressed!

And tomorrow, the building begins….

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go, George, go!

Sept 16

George wasted no time and by Monday evening had finished clearing the site and begun the foundation dig.

Here’s a little video of George in action digging out the basement and prepping the site for the foundation…

The excavator is resting on the old road with the lake to the right and cabin site to the left.  Notice that the shelf that was along the road to the left is now gone.  Fortunately George didn’t encounter a huge slab of rock, as we had feared, given that the giant rock bluff that we call Waffles Ridge is just to the left of the cabin site!

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it’s official, we can build…

Dave had gone into Dinwiddie, Sept 5th, in order to fill out the necessary paperwork for our building permit appliction, taking with him several sets of engineered plans, property title, site sketch as well as the various other items required by the county. The entire process was only supposed to take a week to ten days and we were really hoping for no hang ups since we had already arranged for the foundation to be put in on the 20th.  Fortunately, we lucked out… there were no issues and our permit was issued yesterday!  We can now legally build AND we have our very own official address for the cabin!!!

Building permit

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before & after

before & aftera few comparison photos….

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on your mark, get set……

Monday, Sept 9

Not expecting excavation to begin till Friday, we were rather surprised when we received word from George Lewis of C & L Excavation, this past Monday that he’d already started clearing the driveway and home site!  Apparently the job he had scheduled ahead of us was delayed because the correct permits hadn’t come in, so he went ahead and started on our place that morning.  WOOHOO…it has finally begun!!!!  Dave left work a little early and as soon as Max got home from school we hopped in the 4Runner and headed down to check out the progress. We were amazed at how much he’d already accomplished in a day….

Tuesday, Sept 10

Having only roughed in the drive and cabin site, George asked us to meet him on site Tuesday, to discuss which of the larger trees he should take down as he refined the clearing and what to do with the fallen timber and debris.  We want to keep the hardwood logs to use for various woodworking projects so he agreed to clean those up and leave them along the old road in front of the cabin site.  The rest, rather than hauling offsite, we decided would just go over on the other side of the property back near the ATV trail as this would save both time and money.

Sunday, Sept 15

By the weeks end, George had finished clearing the site, removed all the debris and had brought in 8 truck loads of crush and run gravel for the driveway.  Can I just say here that we LOVE George Lewis!  He has been such a pleasure to work with, has gone above and beyond what was expected and offered his advice and expertise in areas that we were unsure of.  The entire direction of the driveway and the idea to put in a cul-du-sac turning area down toward the entrance, were all his idea, keeping the view of the cabin private from the road, while making the steep grade as gradual as possible.  We can only hope that every contractor we deal with during this building process will be as wonderful to work with as he has been.

We also had word this week from Todd Hawkes, (the local contractor who’d been referred to us by our neighbors to lay our ATV trails) that he’d finally been back down this week to finish.  He had completed half the trail back in the spring, but due to the frequent rains we had this spring and summer, he hadn’t been able to finish till now. We were totally psyched to not only be able to check out our newly cleared land, but to test out our newly completed trails as well!!!!

George will finish up early next week and the foundation is scheduled to be put in next Friday.  Yep, things are pretty exciting around here…

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one last hurrah before construction begins…

After months of talking about joining us at the lake, the Astroths and the Hunt/Barnums, finally found some free time in their busy social calendars and headed down with us Labor Day weekend for a little end of the summer fun…Steve Duval and his son, Ethan, were waiting for us when we arrived. We spent a full day kayaking, fishing, skeet shooting, riding ATV’s and dirt bikes.  I do believe a good time was had by all!


We three Kings, the Hunt/Barnums and the Astroths

a little fishing and kayaking…

time to head up top…

a little after dinner target practice….

now for some fun on wheels…

We left the lake as we found it, calm and serene…completely unaware of the activity that will descend upon it in the coming weeks.

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