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Nails & Ladders


Three ladders, a step stool, a nail gun and we completed a scary part of outside finish work.

I don’t know about you, but unsecured heights scare me. I’m okay as long as there is a rail or fence or something to keep me from falling. Our upstairs deck is one of those unsecured areas. Jer added one board to temporarily function as some kind of barrier across the back but it’s not much. The deck upstairs is about eleven feet up from the downstairs deck and the floor of the upper deck to the peek of the inside roof line is a good thirteen feet. That’s a long way down.


We had decided to take out the framing for a low flat ceiling, so as to not block out the light. Plus, we wanted to add the same decorative pattern to the end of the roof line we had on the rest of the house. It was scary enough to watch Jer take down the framing and add the end pieces but this weekend we plan to complete the ceiling of the deck, a very steep pitched inverted roof line. Imagine Jer and I out on this eight by twelve foot deck with one six foot, one eight foot, one twelve-foot ladder and one stepping stool… with no railing around the deck. In fact, there is only plywood on the deck that overlaps in an uneven way, causing both of us to trip on a couple times.


Depending on the task we would use different ladders or the foot stool to measure and nail in the boards. These are heavy boards because they are half Hardy Plank (cement boards). We first thought we could cut a little off the eight-foot boards and just nail up four sheets but they were too heavy and cumbersome. We decided on four pieces. When I would measure or hold a board for Jerry to nail, with the ladder inches from the edge, I wouldn’t look down. Instead, I prayed... a lot and God kept us safe. It took a lot longer than we had expected, with multiple cuts and a few miscuts but the job is done.


Phew! That was hard. I feel relieved as more and more of the high stuff is done. Jer still has a lot of high prep work to do in preparation of soon coming painting. Lord, help us.


Each step is a step closer no matter how slowly we get there.

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