Hebel not so structural after all

Well the big news, and to some extent blow, of the month has been to have the word back from the engineer that the Hebel concrete block that we wanted to build in is incapable of supporting the 3 storied house block. As you can imagine we are pissed about that. Hebel had the plan before Christmas and have made a couple of block quotes on it so they have always been aware of our plans which have not changed much apart from the elimination of the garage and workshop. That they never gave any indication that it wasn’t strong enough is really poor.

So we are probably going to go with insulated concrete blocks. Nick is pursuing information about a render (plaster) product that can add significantly to the insulation properties and if its cheap enough we may go with that. The upside of the insulated concrete is that it is about a third cheaper than the Hebel and means we don’t have to use the Hebel renders, glue etc. So it does make the whole thing that much more affordable which is great.

Also we are having the drive put in this week and are drawing closer on a final decision about the barn which we will have put up as soon as we can. We’re going with an American barn style – Versatile do one and Nathan may be able to get us a good price on one (not sure whose) so we really just have to decide on size & materials. Having a barn out there will be great as it means that we can shift some equipment there and have it fairly secure.

I finally found a horse that I think will be suitable for me. He’s a 16.2 hand Thoroughbred gelding called Ziggy and is very calm – a real character too. On the upside he’s only 8 so plenty of time to tecah him stuff and on the down side he hasn’t done much of anything so he will need to be taught. Tess has kindly agreed to have him at the place that she leases so I’m going to trial him there for a couple of weeks and all going well keep him there until we’re ready to move. We are planning to move the horses (Lad included + Tess’s couple) to West Melton in September as Nick’s mum needs her paddock back so with a bit of luck the Barn will be going up then too. And we’ll start planting around then so lots of time will be spent out there in the Spring.

Finally, Nick and I are off for a week’s skiing in Queenstown where we can catch up with Rowley and generally relax and hang out together in August. He’s been so busy on weekends, and especially when I’ve been feeling unwell I’ve really missed doing things together. Also with all the work we have to do out there and moving all the horses we should get more time together hoepfully.

OK – that’s the news for July…