Let There Be Light

Let There Be Light

Since they are “all things basementy,” the Frontier Basement folks were also the ones to install our new basement window.

Brad and Mark appeared on a Wednesday morning, young, lanky, friendly, and full of the ennui so often seen in the folks who are working in physically arduous jobs; ready to see what the job entailed and get it going.

After a few minutes talking about the job and cajoling some laughter out of them, we all relaxed. I imagine they deal with all variety of cranky, friendly, bossy, inconsiderate, helpful, gracious people on every different job. I had clear plans for what needed to happen, but I also valued their work and their expertise. And, of course, we plied them with coffee and baked goods, as always.

Cute picture to start the day.
The house before.

This was a two-day job. It was cold, but once they got settled in it warmed up quickly.

Brief aside here, but this is one of many instances where I am so grateful I grew up in a blue-collar family and have done a fair amount of physical labor. I suggested they drive across the front yard to park their box truck as close as possible to the work area. The note of relief in Brad’s voice when he replied with, “Would that be all right?” They wouldn’t have asked, but the amount of time and effort it saved them, plus the wind the truck helped block on these two crisp days, I hope it lessened their load.

We had front row seats to the action.

I had also been expecting they would have a back hoe, and because I’ve done a fair amount of digging of holes for trees over the years (Remember that freakin’ fence row of evergreens at the house in the country, Mom?!), I was truly appreciative of the effort needed to hand dig a window well.

They had a jackhammer and they would quickly discover it was necessary.

Day 1:

This shows the pre-fab window well insert, and the step at the bottom.
Looking over from our front porch.
The well and the cover in its box.
The pile of rocks grows larger.

I went out to check on them at one point, and they both looked a little defeated. They had come to that famous Nashville bedrock. They had the hole to about half the depth they needed, and they didn’t know if this was simply a rock, or if they had truly hit bedrock.

That’s going to take a jackhammer.

After some fresh brownies, lunch, and a rest, they jumped back on the job, and luckily it was just a rock, not their Waterloo.

By the end of day 1 they had gotten the entire outdoor digging complete and they began the process of cutting into the wall. They were hoping to have a larger saw the next day to be able to do all the cutting from the outside, which greatly lessens the volume of dust inside the house.

That rock didn’t stand a chance.

In the picture above you can see where they’ve begun to cut into the wall.

Mark told me he was going to sleep well that night after the effort it had taken to dig to the necessary depth. Bless their young energetic hearts.

Day 2 greeted us with a light dusting of snow.

A light snow to greet the gentlemen on their second day of work.

The children and I had a date with the symphony so Buds worked from home to be ready to address any issues that might come up.

When we heard the story later we learned the main issue was when the smoke detectors started going off due to the sheer volume of dust. They hadn’t been able to get a larger saw which meant cutting had to be done inside the house, too.

A thin layer of dust covered everything in the kitchen.

They put up plastic to block the door heading to the basement and we turned off the HVAC system to decrease the air flow, but that fine, fine dust still permeated the air. It felt to me like I could feel a thin layer of grit on my lips for the next day until we got the dust truly cleaned up and the air fully settled.

Totally worth it.

By the end of the second day, as projected, the window was in, sealed, functioning, and looking beautiful.

All covered and ready for rain.
It’s a bit of a drop.

An easy open window, and this shows the step in the window well to be able to climb out if needed in an emergency.

As with the other crew from Frontier, these two did a fantastic job cleaning up. I was again grateful to work with a crew I trusted, liked, and respected.

Step 97 of the basement project complete.

The beauty of light