Sunday, November 25, 2007

I love a Parade! A Parade of Homes this is!





Hellooooooooo and welcome to November 25th 2007. I'm hoping that all of you had a wonderful Thanksgiving with bunches of things to be thankful for. David and I sure did.
I've decided to take a new direction with my blog. I'm going to "focus" on the things that I love to talk about the most. They are, in no particular order: houses/construction, textile art and bunnies. I'm very passionate about all three of these things and I'm hoping you find my ramblings entertaining. If not, you can delete and move on with your life...
Seeing as I spend 50+ hours a week as a Project Manager for Stroud Custom Homes, Inc., and since I have been doing this type of work for almost eight years and still find it incredibly energizing, I thought it might be fun to take you on a home building adventure.
Each year we begin a home to be featured in The Parade of Homes. This happens the last two weekends of April every year. People come from all over to tour the homes on the parade and spend a day or two "house gawking." We design, build, decorate, stress over and work our butts off to create a home that will win first place. Since we started entering in 2004, we have won first place in our price category every year. The pressure is truly on every year to keep up with that!!! This year is no exception. Our theme for this year is a Bungalow/Craftsman style home that will be in the price range of $325,000 (I'll know the final price when we finish). This is a moderately priced home for our area here in New Bern, NC. Over the next few months I'll keep you posted on the progress of this home. As Project Manager for a small custom builder, I schedule all the crews, keep up with the details of design, work directly with the homeowners and their changes, do interior decorating, do payroll, accounts receivable, accounts payable, job costing, insurance, taxes, phone answering, dish washing, office cleaning, coffee making, email replying, office supply ordering, etc. etc. etc. (This is why my boss, Gilbert, keeps me around. He says if I quit, he would have to hire three people to do my job). Plus, in eight years, I've only been out sick once. Well actually, I came to work with the flu, threw up and went home. Eewwh! I hope you enjoy the adventure and, if you ever decide to build a home in New Bern, NC, you better come see me!!!!
Our adventure begins with all the boring parts of construction. First we have to get approval for the house design and colors. Check. Gilbert usually gives me free reign to design and pick colors. (love that!). Next we need completed blueprints of the project, which we do in-house. Check. Then we have to pay for water and sewer taps, hello... it cost of $6,000! Check. Then we have to get the Craven County building permit. Check. Then we need a portable toilet, job sign, job location map, builder's risk, insurance, site plans, clearing crew, driveway culvert, water meter spigot, footing guy on schedule, a temporary power pole location and the temporary power pole installation. Check. I handle everything but drawing the blueprints. Gilbert and Steve are the computer drafting experts. I just make design suggestions, Gilbert makes structural decisions and Steve makes it all happen on a blueprint. Go team!
We started clearing the site on November 19th in River Bluffs, which is a subdivision off of the Neuse River. Steve came up with the name of "River Mist" for this years home and Gilbert and I loved it. As you can see from the pictures, we left as many trees as we could. This is a beautiful lot with trees acting as a buffer from the rear neighbors. Gilbert is talking to the clearing guy regarding the site preparation and the portable toilet is on site. We're cook'in now!
Stay tuned as I walk you though each phase. I'm looking forward to sharing this adventure with you. Have a great week!
Hugs,
Shell