Odem, Texas Disaster Rebuilding Nov 9, 2019
Week of November 5
This week we have had a fun, busy, and productive week. On Friday we welcomed Nancy and Dennis Williams to our team. Saturday Sara, Jerry, Dennis, Nancy, Kitty, John, Gene, and Carolyn visited the South Texas Botanical Gardens. They had a special dollar day admission and we saw a variety of birds, flowers, butterflies and cacti. We learned how to tell a male butterfly from a female butterfly (for some species)—there are 2 dots toward the bottom of their wings—one on each—for the male. The orchids were spectacular. Sunday morning we went to church. In the evening we had a potluck and the pastor and his wife joined us. Tuesday evening a few of us had a rousing game of dominoes.
Then Monday came and we were off to work. We took on another house which is located in Rockport. Mrs. Peña is the owner. She and her son live in a trailer in the back yard. Dennis, Nancy, Jerry, Mary, and Randy worked there. This is a new build and a group from California got most of it done. The kitchen and bathroom were the main focus here. In the kitchen Jerry, Randy, and Dennis installed the upper cabinets and the range hood. This was a little more challenging than normal because the base cabinets were already set, but they succeeded and got them in. Then the counter top went in next which Randy and Dennis installed. Jerry installed the range hood. The dishwasher was fastened to the countertop, too. The electrician was supposed to come in last Friday and get the electrical fixed. He came out this week and gave the group instructions as to moving the switches from behind the refrigerator. It would have been very difficult, if not impossible, to access them where they were. Randy and Dennis got this change made. In the bathroom, Mary worked on repairs to the drywall and caulking. She and Nancy painted and also found a piece of dry wall missing in the closet which was installed by this dynamic duo. Part of the wall adjacent to the closet in the bathroom needed some spray texture as did part of a door casing in the hall. The big excitement of the week was the installation of the toilet on Wednesday. There were some plumbing differences with diameters in a couple of connections, so the flushing was done with the aid of a bucket of water. Thursday Mike (from the agency) delivered the correct pieces and the toilet now flushes normally! Randy and Dennis installed the vanity, sink, and faucet. Mary and Nancy also repainted the living room, dining room, and kitchen. They painted doors and door frames throughout the house. They also washed the floors. Randy installed lights, switches, and switch plates. The guys also got in the painting business.
At the house in Aransas Pass—Emma’s and Brad’s—we made progress. John, Carolyn, and Kitty completed installing the floor in bedroom 2. Jerry (who joined us on Wednesday), Gene, and Carolyn installed trim in the bedroom and Sara did the caulking. Jerry installed the closet door and Gene installed the door knob. The window sills were also installed. Kitty and Carolyn painted bedroom 3 and Kitty and John installed the floor and finished it. Because of the way that Emma wants the floor installed, part of the dining room and kitchen floors also had to be laid. John and Kitty did a great job getting the floor to join in the living room and dining room, coming out of the third bedroom. Sara has been the chief cutter of the flooring and trim and does a fantastic job caulking. In the master bedroom, Jerry put in the door to the bathroom. Gene attempted to put in the ceiling fan on Thursday. After it was connected, the fan worked well, but one of the capacitors for the lights made a funny noise. Gene checked it out and found it sparking and was giving off an odor, so he had to take it down. Brad went to Lowe’s to get it replaced. We finished the day by putting in door knobs and also by Jerry and Gene getting the hall bathroom door installed. It needs little work next week.
In the kitchen, Gene and Adam put in the garbage disposal and Gene put in the kitchen light. John and Gene worked on sanding down the floor so that the pocket door will clear the flooring. This door is between the dining room and bedroom 3. Gene and Carolyn put in the range hood on Wednesday. Because of a misunderstanding between Emma and Lowe’s, the countertops had to be redone and were installed on Monday. The installers put the sink too close to the window sill and the sill had to be trimmed down a little and the raw edge repainted.
The living room floor was finished on Monday and Gene and Sara got the rest of the room trimmed. Jerry and Sara worked on trimming doorways. Most of those are done now.
Thursday evening we went out to the local Mexican restaurant to celebrate a week well done. As you can see, things are coming together. Our hope for each of the houses is to complete them on Tuesday. May you have a great week.
Gene & Carolyn Freeman, Team Leaders