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With the threat of winter fast approaching, we have felt the undeniable pressure to not only start, but complete a project we have talked about for months. The problem was how to go about it? We spent many an hour just driving around looking for inspiration. Still, how to go about it all? We were venturing into unknown territory here, and at times the trying to plan and figure it all out quite literally became so overwhelming the entire thing just got put on the back burner so to say.

Then came our answers all in the form of one very special man… My Daddy, who in my eyes can make anything happen. In his words, “If you want it bad enough, figure out a way to make it happen, and just do it!”

Daddy came up with all the answers to questions we had for months, and answers to some we had not even thought to ask ourselves.

What is the project you ask? Installing a new skirting around the bottom of the house. Thank goodness the rentals love projects, and helping out! In their view, these are prime opportunities for those most cherished memories and “bonding moments”. We tend to agree wholeheartedly, and welcome the knowledge we try to soak in as Daddy works at his normal non-stop pace.

This is what we began with… A bit tattered and temporary band-aids put in strategic places where the goats ripped the vinyl apart with their horns… Durn goats!

First things first…. DEMOLITION! Now who doesn’t enjoy demolition?

With the old skirting and band-aids removed, we have a nice clean slate to work with.

As with any home improvement project, however, there always seems to be unexpected snags we encounter, however. This was problem number one….

A bit of water damage behind and on the south side of the deck at the base of the siding. Not at all good!

But the answer man was not deterred and quickly came up with a great solution!

With a bit of paint, it will look just beautiful!

Problem number two was that once all the skirting was removed, we discovered a break in the drain line coming from the kitchen sink. I was sent to Orcheln Farm and Home to get a “union” for the pvc pipe I had in tow… Mental note… These are called couplers in today’s society. Once corrected, we were back on track and ready to rock and roll.

Once the stringer board was installed, we were building the framework to hold the metal skirting.

Daddy’s plan to stabilize everything is really quite ingenious. A hole strategically drilled through the bottom of the frame, then level it all up. Once level, drive a piece of re-bar through the hole into the rocky Oklahoma ground. Drill a hole in a block of leftover 2×4, which is then beat onto the re-bar from the top. Nail to the framework and that baby ain’t goin no where!

The deck area was problem number three. I quite literally saw no way to put skirting between the deck and the house. The deck stands independent of the house, and is in effect it’s own structure. Not a problem for Daddy though.

Just remove some of the deck boards closest to the house… Such a simple answer, why didn’t I think of that?

Framing behind the deck was also problem number four. Not impossible, just very tight quarters in there.

We couldn’t wait to hang some metal, so before day one was complete, we put just a few pieces up to get an idea of how great the place was going to look.

Daddy ripped 2×4’s down like a pro to create the trim piece that we placed on top of the installed metal.

For five days straight we worked hard, though Daddy worked the hardest of all of us. Thanksgiving was spent working on the framing and the hanging of the metal.

We made great progress each and every day.

Then we encountered problem number five… Rain rain rain all day Saturday. This stopped all work on the rentals final full day here.

I have to be honest in that I was thankful for that day of rain on the final day of their stay. It allowed for a fun filled afternoon of the girls kickin the boys butts in Marbles… And for the record, three games were played in full with the girls coming out victorious!

The G-Man, Gator and I were able to get a good full day work in and completed all the framework for the backside of the house. Then this morning the G-Man and I leveled it all up, and drove our last three pieces of re-bar in the rain. We will be hanging metal in the cold tomorrow, and ready for the snow they are calling for Monday.

I couldn’t ask for better family than I have been blessed with. The old farm has most definitely become home to me. So I hope it is ready for me to settle in and stay a good long while. I do believe it will take someone chasing me with a stick to drive me away from this place and the happiness I have found here!