So many fabulous things have happened over the past couple of weeks to progress our project along nicely.
Let’s start with the new windows for the Yogi Temple/Red Brick Castle. We all agreed that a fresh coat of Kelly-Moore’s “Stocking White” would set them off nicely from the brick work, so after this was done Taylor’s team began installation of the front windows; Taylor expects that the remaining will be installed next week. After installation is complete, the arched trim around each window that is currently a silver color will be repainted with “Hugh’s Hue” grey. When this is done I will paint in the faux mortar lines of this trim with a darker “Kettleman” grey. Taylor says as I’m always looking for things that I can do that this is a good job for me 🙂 There are 24 of these arched windows in all, but even with just the front nine windows in place thus far, it is making a huge difference. Inside, for the first time in decades, we are seeing the beginnings of what will be a significant amount of natural light and from the exterior these give this unique structure life.
Taylor’s team also finished framing in the roof of the temple and installed all of the Rock Wool insulation; and, as Mike was able to finish the additional brick cornice trim work along the front edge of the roof line and repair the missing abalone elements on the north east corner, we are now ready to install the flashing and gutters. You’ll see in the pictures below a snapshot of the original Kenneth Kitchen abalone work on the south east corner and Mike’s repair work to match it on the north east side. Once again, as you can see, Mike’s work is indistinguishable from Kenneth’s. It is just such a delight to see his craftsmanship alongside the historic work. It’s seamless and beautiful.
Speaking of seamless and beautiful, Mike & Ty completed the repairs of and laid down the new caps for the corner columns of the well house homage, and after agreeing that we needed to take the remaining wall sections down by one more layer of bricks to ensure a comfortable seating height, Mike was able to install the new cement bench tops. It’s truly incredible how something that time, neglect and vandalism had taken such a toll upon has been given a new life we are all thrilled to experience. Mike and I now look forward to designing the well surround that we will create out of the salvaged materials, and while that’s a bit down the road yet, we’re starting to bounce ideas around about how we want to approach that final element of work on this artifact.
Up next was the cleaning and restoration of the Front Portal/Gate of Prophecy, something we’ve all been looking forward to getting around to doing. Before we could tackle this though, my nephew Aidan, down visiting from Oregon, helped me finish cleaning the last two columns of the temple veranda, which all look fantastic now. Unfortunately, Aidan and I couldn’t get too far cleaning the brickwork at the gate before having to call it a day, so Mike & Ty picked up on this and made significant strides on this work over the past couple of days. It’s always remarkable to see what a difference just water and scrub brush cleaning does to brighten the brick and detail work of these artifacts. Areas once black or green with decades of grime are reflecting their true colors. After tackling the majority of the cleaning, Mike & Ty began repairing fissures, missing sandstone elements and chipped bricks. Once again, their talent for mixing the exact right color mortar to make these repairs blend in so perfectly is just phenomenal.
And as before, last but definitely not least, our earth movers were back on site to start digging out the footings for the foundation of our new home and garage/ADU. The first step to this was to chalk out the outline of these structures. It was so fun to be able to do a virtual walk about through our house. It was the first step to making our new home a reality and was very exciting for Doug and me to experience this stage of the process. Next, Eric, our consummate excavator and his team mates began the actual dig work. They made good headway on this over the last couple of days and I have to admit it made me want to do the super geeky “Kermit the Frog flailing his arms around excitedly” dance…Yeaaaaaaaaaa!!!!
All in all progress is steady and satisfying. Seeing each phase of work completed with great care, everyone is able to truly be proud of their accomplishments. Once again, Doug and I have to say that we are so very grateful to have such a terrific team helping us make our Ohana Hygge Ranch a reality, and makes us happy to see how passionate and excited everyone is about working on the project. The love that is being put into the work really shows, and because of this we can all see this historic property coming to life after so many years sitting boarded up and empty.
Until next time, please enjoy these photos and stay tuned for more updates to come….