So tonight is our final night in Oklahoma. Hopefully not forever, mind you, but for now anyway. We’ve had a great three weeks – we discovered the Wichita Mountains
we were moved by the OKC National Memorial
and learned a little more about the rich Native American history in this area –
AND we’ve had a great SOWER project too! We came in with a pretty good idea of what Gary would be doing since Brian, the camp director, had called us earlier to ask if it was something that Gary would enjoy tackling. So from that point on, it was just a matter of making it happen. Oh, what was it he was asked to do? Just move a wall. Nothing too major.
It’s the back wall of the chapel – here it is from the inside:
And here it is from the outside.
The plan was to take down the existing wall and move it to the back of the concrete (still under the roof). Where the building ends (where the car port is) is where another building will be built, using the wall Gary will be building as its back (side?) wall. The final product will be an expanded chapel (dropped ceiling in the “new” area)and the new building will be an activity center. Needless to say, we didn’t get quite that far – but all in all, much was accomplished during our time here.
First it was getting the walls down –
“Let’s think about the best way to start this….”
Ok, the insulation is down and the inside paneling has been removed. Now we need to get the wiring out of the way.
This might need a little bit of tidying-up down the road!
Here’s the “big picture” shot. The area behind the building is getting ready for new concrete – the floor of the new building.
Once the inside walls were down it became more evident that that inside back wall was going to need some additional support, so Gary started cutting away the studs above the crossbeam so that a giant header could be installed.
See that long board on the concrete. The REALLY LONG board – that’s the header. Yikes! He knew it wasn’t a job that he could do alone (or even with me – I was just short of useless when he needed me to help turn it over!), and fortunately the concrete guy had that sweet little skid loader that was invaluable for getting the beam up and in place.
It was quite a group effort all around!
Once the beam was up (thanks to every male in the general vicinity), Gary finished off getting the wall down and the concrete guys got busy doing their concrete stuff.
(I know that it is really hard work (doing concrete), but I just kept thinking about all the little boys that would have been having a great time sloshing around in it!)
Ok, concrete done and the interior wall is amply supported and it’s time to move on to the next step.
Getting those new walls up!
And there was always that electric that needed a little work….
He makes it pretty, doesn’t he?
He finished the walls up to the ceiling and installed the door and then moved on to the paneling.
The paneling doesn’t go all the way up because there will be a dropped ceiling and the other building (the one on the new concrete pad) will be higher than that roof line. Does that make any sense?
Here’s the new area – walls up, outlets installed, supports holding up the original section, and one big pile of insulation waiting to be used somewhere else!
Phew. And that pretty much takes us to today! The new building arrives tomorrow (well, the parts to build it anyway) – and Brian has promised to send us pictures as the rest of the project progresses!
And what was I doing these last three weeks? Well, apart from helping to turn that monster beam a couple of times, and holding the level so Gary could make sure his posts were plumb, I kept busy in the office doing data entry.
I was getting pretty good a deciphering handwriting and I am much more familiar with the towns in the area (and their zip codes!)! And I’d like to say right now that folks (in general) have TOO MANY PHONE NUMBERS!!!!! Just sayin’.It was a nice change from our last several projects, and I really enjoyed getting to know the staff. And providentially, I finished up the last name today, just in time to give Gary a hand in cleaning up the work area. I love it when a plan comes together! Thank-you, Lord!
Since we had put in some extra time when we first got here, we were able to wrap things up today, and we’ll be headed to Texas tomorrow! We’re actually taking two days to get to Waco because we’re stopping in Bowie (TX) to meet up with some dear SOWER friends! And that’s always a good thing!
So it’s Farewell (for now) to our friends at Oakridge Camp and this lovely part of the country! I have a feeling we might just come this way again!
Waco (and beautiful daughter Lara), here we come!