Rain, Rain…Go Away…Hello Sunshine!

Well folks, it’s been a very wet and stormy winter here, so much so that we had a “water spout” come up off the ocean and whip up the driveway of the place we are renting sending a small road sign from across the street flying towards the house! Fortunately, the sign got stuck on the mailbox post out near the street, otherwise we might have seen it come flying into the living room! Yikes! We found it funny, though, that this water spout actual made the local news and gained the attention of the National Weather Service (they came knocking on our door asking if we saw it!). Here’s what the local news had to say about this:

“Gusts up to 40 mph churning off the Central Coast on Sunday generated a 85 mph water spout about noon, when it hit West Cliff Drive and punched inland 125 yards, tossing a sign and damaging a tree, according to the National Weather Service. ”

Still, all of this is nothing compared to what the midwest, east coast and other places across the states and globe have seen this winter. I think I speak for us all when I say that we are ready for spring and summer.

With storm after storm hitting us hard here, our project slowed a bit; but our construction crews were real troopers, working diligently between the storms to get our walls up and roof on as quickly as they could. As you’ll see in the pictures below, the first phase of the roof work and exterior construction are now complete, getting us ready to tackle the next phases of work. At this point, we are just thrilled to see the roof on and to find out that the crew passed their first roofing inspection yesterday! Major kudos to Taylor, Brian and the team for making this happen despite the weather conditions.

Also, despite the cold and wet conditions, Mike was able to complete important repairs to our brick castle. Specifically, he had to use an extra strength bonding material, called out by our lead engineer at Mesiti-Miller, Dale Hendsbee, to repair sections along the castle veranda ceiling where chunks of concrete had fallen out exposing rebar and causing it to rust badly. This damage was caused by rain water that would accumulate along the unfinished second floor/roof year after year over the decades, ultimately taking a nasty toll on the concrete and rebar underneath along the veranda. While this looked horrible, Mike discovered that the damage wasn’t extensive and he was able to patch these cracks and holes with relative ease. Mike also did a fantastic job of repairing the front fence/wall sections, which we weren’t sure could happen as they were in a pretty bad state. But, as usual, Mike puzzled the solution out and now they look great! We look forward to giving them a fresh coat of white paint later on in the project. Lastly, Mike designed beautiful caps for the posts of the interior stairwell, which didn’t exist before and now look like they were part of the original design. Such a craftsman and artisan!

With these important repairs and design elements completed Mike is on a slight break, but phase II of his restoration work will begin in a few months. This will entail repairs and clean up of the interior of the temple and final repairs to the front portal, fence/wall, courtyard. We expect much of this to happen later this summer and fall once we are able to shift to interior finish work and landscaping.

We hope you have endured the winter well and are healthy and ready to get outside to enjoy the sunshine. We know we are! Enjoy the pictures and let us know if you’re going to be in the area and want to see the project in person 😉

We begin to see a roof line appear


These huge joists were hauled up by hand because the ground was too wet to use a crane…ugh!!
The veranda of our new home before the roof
inside looking up the the upstairs roof line from the living room
Looking up through the roof from the living room
Another shot of our new veranda without its roof yet
The living room before the roof goes up
Slow but steady progress
Really taking shape now



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Veranda with its roof

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Looking around inside now that the first part of roof is up…this will be my salon…anyone want a haircut? 😉
Looking out from our master bedroom out to where the lap pool will be….there will be no skipping work outs soon!
Looking back towards master bathroom…that’s the interior courtyard off to the left…nice and sunny 🙂
We can really begin to see the shape of our new home…this is the living room looking up to guest rooms upstairs that look down on living room
living room looking out toward our back patio area off the veranda
very strong, steady staircase
Upstairs looking around…
…and down
View of front portal from guest room upstairs
love this staircase!
looking out on back courtyard…that’s the door to my hair salon you saw a minute ago
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Looking out on our backyard from the breezeway to our master bedroom area
Doorway to new brick castle bathroom
A first look inside where the bathroom will be
This was a room ready to be made…all we had to do was knock down the floor from old bathroom (that’s the horizontal line of brick you see there) and we had a ready made room
a shot of where the doorway to the old bathroom above was and where we will now put an opaque window (you’re looking out at the interior stairwell to nowhere)
A weird albino plant that was growing in the dark of the area we are making into the bathroom…so alien looking!
More tiles found in the dirt floor area of what will be the castle bathroom…so cool!! We found even more as we’ve gone back to dig around, so I plan to get dirty digging in there to make sure we get as many as we can find before we seal up the floor!
Cracks and damage to brick castle veranda ceiling


Mike repairing veranda ceiling
Veranda ceiling repairs complete
These are the types of cracks and repairs Mike has been finding and fixing
the lower corner section was missing and now shines complete…mortar will dry to same color as old mortar next to it
More wall repairs
Unbelievable fence repair
Where you see the darker gray was all crumbled with exposed rebar…now beautifully repaired!
more fence repairs
column cracks and cap repairs complete
Completed interior stairwell to nowhere…it was such a mess before Mike got his hands on it!
Beautiful post caps designed and created by Mike
Close up on these beautiful caps
All the amazing abalone locals have been donating to our project
Sentinel crow standing guard
We have a family of Great Pacific Egrets that love our wet property!
Our local rock stacker, Chad, is back at work 🙂
Driftwood beach (Capitola)
Cowell Beach/cove at lowest tide we’ve seen all winter



4 Comments Add yours

  1. Cathy nelson says:

    When is the estimated completion date?


    1. Hello, Cathy. The target is by end of the year.


  2. Thank you, Bev! Let us know when you do and we will give you a tour if we can 😉


  3. Bev Jensen says:

    What an amazing project you’re undertaking! Next time we visit California we’re going to make sure we allow time to visit your incredible restoration.


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