Building our House – Week 6


Overcast skies were predominant during this week.

There was a little more rain this week, which made the building site a bit muddy, but it didn’t slow down the workers too much.  These photos were taken today (Saturday), so none of the construction crew was there.  They normally work 6am to 5pm, Monday through Friday, and have the weekends to recuperate.

View of Manuel Antonio

View of Manuel Antonio


Work continued this week on forming the structural columns in the walls.  Re-bar cages which reinforce the crown beams have been placed at the top of the walls.  Next week the forms will be constructed which will shape the crown beams.


In addition, the swimming pool is taking shape.  The re-bar of the pool floor and walls was bent and put in place.


This is looking into the entryway of the house from the carport. On the other side of the half wall on the left, we will have a nice landscaped/garden area.


We found this little guy on one of the railing posts around our pool at our rental house.  It was finally determined that it is a Boa.  He hides underneath a wooden plank on which we put bananas for the birds.  Not sure if he is thinking about his next meal…


Building our House – Week 5

We are at the end of the fifth week of building and progress continued to be strong.  Most all of the block for the first floor walls has been set.  Some of the plumbing waste lines and electrical boxes have been roughed in.  Forming and pouring of the structural concrete columns within the walls is underway.  The house is really taking shape now and you can see how big the various rooms are, rather than trying to imagine it when looking at the floor plan.  Eddie has been spending time at the property every day keeping an eye on the details and answering any questions that come up.


Most of the first floor walls are up. A concrete “crown” beam will be formed and poured across the top of the walls.


Kitchen wall with cut-out for microwave and cabinetry.

Several waste lines are seen in the wall. The one in the center is for the outside kitchen sink.

Several waste lines are seen in the wall. The one in the center is for the outside kitchen sink.


A stairway will go in between the two walls. The main entrance is on the right.


This is the kitchen area.


Another stairway will eventually go up in this area with a half bath under.


Master BR looking towards the living area.


Master bedroom and bathroom.

Fun with Tia and Mary Carmen

A few weeks ago, our friend Tia came for a visit with her best friend Mary Carmen.  On a lazy Sunday, we decided to take a drive into the country and ended up at the Vanilla Farm.  Eddie and I discovered the Vanilla Farm five years ago and it’s an extraordinary place.  Not only do they harvest vanilla beans, they also grow several other spices, such as,  Ceylon cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, cloves, and turmeric.  Their vanilla extract and Ceylon cinnamon are the best.  Nothing else on the market compares to their superior products.

Villa Vanilla cinnamon2

Ceylon Cinnamon

Villa Vanilla cinnamon



Villa Vanilla also offers tours of their plantation, which we have done in the past.  Fortunately, you can stop by just to shop, which comes in handy.  Tia, Mary Carmen and I almost bought all the vanilla extract in the little store!

Villa Vanilla Mary Carmen Tia

Mary Carmen and Tia buying some goodies.

Villa Vanilla Ellen

On our way back, Eddie and I took Tia and Mary Carmen to our building site.  It was fun giving them the “royal tour” such as it is at the moment.  They seemed to be quite impressed with our vision.

V - Mary Carmen, Tia & Ellen

As we drove off, Mary Carmen screamed out to us, “Perezoso!”  Eddie slammed on the brakes and parked in the middle of the road.  We all climbed out of the truck and there in the grass was a three-toed sloth…Perezoso in Spanish.  The sloth was slowly crawling through the grass on the lot just below our place.  We all whipped out our phones to take pictures of him.  We spent quite a bit of time there photographing him.  The sloth moved pretty fast for a sloth probably because it was a bit scared of us.  It was so much fun to see a sloth that close up…amazing!

V - slothV - Mary Carmen, Tia & sloth

Tia and Mary Carmen spent most of their Costa Rica visit in the most delightful place called The Chapel in the Clouds.  The owner John is a bit of an eccentric, but a very nice guy who is willing to share his “paradise.”  The next time Tia visits, we are planning to tag along with her to this very special place.  It will be an awesome adventure, for sure!

2014_07_13 - Tia's Solo Costa Rica 2014 - 17 Jul 2014

2014_07_13 – Tia’s Solo Costa Rica 2014 – 17 Jul 2014

Chapel In The Clounds John Howard's Home - 22 June 2014

Chapel In The Clouds John Howard’s Home – 22 June 2014

Building our House – Week 4

During this past week, much progress has been made on our house.  The guys are working really hard.  They never seem to be idle.  Yesterday, Eddie met the architect/engineer for the weekly inspection and he was amazed at how quickly things are moving along!  Fortunately, the weather is cooperating, too.  If all goes according to plan, the house should be completed sometime in March.

This is the overall site after week 4.

This is the overall site after week 4.


Walls are now going vertical. This view shows the entrance way and the carport behind, where the blocks are stacked.


Digging out the area of the swimming pool.


Swimming pool


Here the bed for the waste lines is being prepared to the proper slope.


Building our House – Week 3

The construction guys are working hard and fast…making some good progress over the past couple of weeks.  The weather is cooperating nicely, too.  We’ve had mostly sunny days with a few overcast days with a little rain.  Typically, this is the time of year where we have a “mini-summer” without much rain.  Since the last post about the house, work has continued on the footings and foundation walls.  They have started filling in the areas around the foundation with dirt.  Soon, most of the completed work will be underground.  Eddie spent several hours at the building site this morning talking with our builder and the architect who is doing weekly inspections.


This is the carport area now completely filled in  with dirt with the perimeter foundation walls just protruding out of the soil.

This is the carport area now completely filled in with dirt with the perimeter foundation walls just protruding out of the soil.

This is the laundry room and the bodega behind.

This is the laundry room and the bodega behind.


These are the foundation walls of the master bath. At this section of the house the foundation is about 1.6 meters deep.

IMG_3348e IMG_3347e