January 24, 2021


Thursday, May 24, 2007
Last weekend we wrapped up the work we are going to do for this phase of the treehouse. Since Neo was still recovering from his sickness, he couldn't help as much. We added a bucket and pulley (along with a swing-out type mechanism to swing the bucket inside and over the railing), a flag, a climbing rope, new stabilization and support boards, and sanded all the rough edges on the handrail. I was really hoping Neo could help with the sanding, but with his cough I didn't want him around the dust.

Neo started playing in it and decided to take one of our older welcome mats up there. He likes to fly paper airplanes from up there. Unfortunately, he left his new camera in his bucket and forgot to get it out after lowering it down. And then it rained.

I managed to get the pictures off the camera, but the camera is dead. Oh well.

Also, Neo graduated from Kindergarten this week and had his last day of school of the year. He had a great year. Congratulations Neo!

He also had a great teacher. Ms. France was a real blessing. She gave him the best introduction to school that I could have ever hoped for. God bless all those teachers who put in the extra effort to teach our children.

The pictures (and a couple of movie clips) from Neo's graduation are in the 2007 Events folder.

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Sunday, May 06, 2007
Finally, some big progress on the treehouse this weekend.

On Saturday, first we had Neo's soccer game. Neo did great. He had two good stops as goalies and is starting to get better on offense.

Afterwards, we worked on the treehouse and Mr. Borland gave us a hand raising the larger pieces need to make the roof frame. After getting things together and bolted down, we put the tarp over and - "tada" - we had a roof.

On Sunday, Neo and I worked really hard to start putting up all of the handrail. We got 99% of it done, but we need a few more boards to finish off the corners. Also, we need some sandpaper so that we can sand everything down smooth. So next weekend, after getting some supplies at Home Depot, I'm sure we can knock out the rest. After that, we will start putting in fun stuff.

Pictures are below:

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Sunday, April 29, 2007
This weekend was not a great one for the treehouse. Last night, I went through about 4 redesigns before finally settling on a new one. The new design is meant to be a compromise so that we can get the treehouse finished sooner and give Neo something he can play in, while still letting me add on and enclose it in the future. It uses four posts to build up a square and then lifts one ridge rafter up which will be used to hold, and keep tight, a tarp canopy. I'm hoping this will give Neo a somewhat enclosed place to play while still leaving open the possibility of closing in the walls later. My doodling of the design.

And today, when trying to implement the design, I made a mistake and cut the main posts too short. The pictures below were taken before we decided to go back and take them down. So, even thought the treehouse looks almost exactly the same as it did last weekend, we got alot accomplished, including the new design, buying all the supplies, and making a few mistakes.

Also, it looks like my cameraman got a bit tired and started taking pictures of his feet, so there isn't too many shots of the treehouse :)

Pictures are below:

Also, Neo had another good soccer game this weekend. He is steadily improving. Thanks again to Mr. Borland for being there.

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Sunday, April 22, 2007
After a crazy day on Friday, we had a great weekend. Neo had a great soccer game Saturday morning. Mr. Borland came by to help support Neo at his game and also to help work on the treehouse. We managed to get the cross bracing installed and the 3/4" plywood installed. Thanks to Mr. Borland for the help.

On Sunday, Neo and I got the design for our handrail put together and bought some more wood at Home Depot. We came back and got started on the main portion of the handrail and also installed the decking in the front portion. Pictures are below.


Sunday, April 15, 2007
This weekend was wonderful. After getting some much needed rest, we got up Saturday morning and had our first garage sale. We did pretty good. We got rid of many things that were taking up room and also sold a few things that I thought no one would ever buy.

We closed up the sale a little early and took off to Neo's first soccer game. Special thanks "Mr. Borland" who came along with us and gave Neo some soccer tips. Neo did well and his team almost won, but the game ended in a tie.

After the game, we got some warmer clothes and headed to the Engineering Spring Festival at JSC. Neo had fun playing with his friend Rosemary. We had BBQ, sampled some gumbo, had sno-cones, ate cookies, and listend to live music.

Today, we had another garage sale day and Neo and I made good progress on the tree house. We cut down the large branch that was in the way and chopped up all the resulting branches. After that was out of the way, we were able to finish putting up the floor joists. Now, we just need a good floor plan to figure out where things will go. Pictures are below:

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Sunday, April 01, 2007
Last weekend, we got a few chores done. One of those was replacing the fluorescent light in the new pantry. I had installed one that I bought from Home Depot when Mr. Troy and I were building it, but it had a crack in it and also got way hotter than I thought a fluorescent light should. So, I went back to Home Depot and returned it, and got a better, name brand, slightly more expensive one. This one had a ballast that was WAY smaller than the other one and also promised "no hum". I installed the new one and it is much better. It doesn't hum at all, and barely gets warm (Mrs. Pam: make sure you tell Mr. Troy I replaced it... I know he was worried about it).

But the other thing we got at home depot was some wood. After climbing in the tree with Neo a couple of weekends ago, Neo and I got to talking about treehouses. I have always wanted to build one, and ya know, life is just too short. I'm sure there is probably more important things I should be doing, but this just feels right.

So, we started building. My initial plan was to design and build an ultimate tree house, but this gave way to wanting it feel more kid designed. So, we got some scrap wood along with our new wood, and I was hoping to just start placing boards one by one with Neo guiding where he wanted them and helping out.

But, once we started this, I immediately wanted to make every board sturdy and safe. And nails weren't going to cut it. So, we anchored one board into the tree with a 10" long x 1" thick carriage bolt and the other side with a huge lag bolt. This made me feel better, but it started bringing me back to a design. So, I gave in, and drew something up. Here is the floor design.

Since that first day, I have done a bit of research about tree houses and also some research about trees. We started building and are having fun so far, but it is obvious that this is going to take a while. Here are some of Neo's pictures for you to follow along with the construction:

We could have gotten more done today, but we decided to quit early since the next step is to cut down that huge branch and I want to think about that some more. Plus, it's going to be quite a bit of work.

I can't believe it... I'm going to have a .... uhh... ahem... I mean Neo... is going to have a treehouse.

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