Mallory and Joan's New Home as of 3/5/2012

The link to this website is:
View of Lake James from the mountains. We took this photo from the top of Table Rock Mountain on 9/11/11.

View of the mountains from the lake. To enjoy great mountain views we go out in the boat.

SouthPointe, off of Route 126 near Morganton, NC, includes about 250 homesites. SouthPointe is the peninsula that has roads in the photo; the distant peninsula without roads is Lake James State Park.

Google Earth view of Lake James. Water from Linville Gorge and Pisgah National Forest feed into Lake James from the North.

Southpointe, Our subdivision, is shown in the center of this slide. Our address, 1670 Braxton Gate Drive, is shown by the yellow pin. The land on the left is part of the new North Carolina State Park which includes 35 miles of shoreline.

Our dock and gazebo are toward the water from the yellow push pin - where our house is being built. This Google Earth photo was taken early 2011 when the lake was drawn down 15 feet for a dam reinforcement project. Some neighbors floated their docks out to deeper water during the dam improvement project.

Aerial view of our lot showing property lines (taken after 2005 and before 2010.

The building envelope is the area where we could place the house. The area between the building envelope and lake is a 65' protected woodland buffer. The rectangle sticking out into the lake is our pier zone(boat dock area). We have very little road frontage but lots of waterfront. Our lot is on a "corner" with lake and cove frontage.

After buying our lot in 2002, we discovered a tall tree with a "tree house" in it (stand used by hunters). I removed the structure in the tree so that a bald eagle wouldn't "renovate" and call it home and disrupt our building plans. The tree disappeared during tree removal in our building site.

This is what the lot looked like from water when we bought it.

Before we built the seawall and gazebo.

Camping on our lot in 2002. No seawall, dock or gazebo. We tied the boat to a tree in those days.

Seawall Construction in 2003. One backhoe is on our "beach" area and the other on a barge. Since the 65' protected buffer could not be disturbed, construction of the seawall was done by barge.

Mallory checking seawall construction

seawall construction ... almost finished.

After the seawall was finished, dock and gazebo construction began.

Gazebo construction fall 2003

New, improved camp site where we stayed dry even during thunderstorms.

Lake James ... inviting the camera man to JUMP IN.

Mallory with his favorite toy.

Joan having fun with one ski down and one ski up.

Joan with her favorite toy, "Summer Breeze", her pedal boat.

Gazebo, floating dock and boat

Floating dock, winter 2010, during low lake level while one of the dams on Lake James was being repaired.

See the outdoor shower on the lower level just outside of Bedroom 4. Joan is excited about having an outdoor shower.

The fireplace is a two story masonry fireplace combo. Both the outdoor fireplace and the upper Sun Room fireplace will be wood burning. We have an outside staircase for bringing wood to the Sun Room fireplace. We already have our cast iron pot hooks and are looking forward to cooking in the fireplaces. We love wood fires.

Lot before house construction

Lot is cleared, foundation being poured.

The truck with the extension is a cement pumping truck. The basement walls were poured in 3 hours and used 9.4 truck loads of concrete.

Before the basement floor is poured

Looking across the front of the house

A view of the lower level before the basement floor is poured.

Our van in our driveway before house construction

Floor Trusses Installed

Under the sun room. This is our covered lower patio...fireplace to the left.

Joan, pretending to take a shower in her much anticipated outdoor shower.

Rec Room ... the openings are sliding door and two windows.

10 foot ceilings on both levels. This was photographed while standing in the rec room and shooting towards a guest room.. and beyond that another guest room which will double as Joan's sewing room.

We will have a lot of landscaping to do this winter. We don't want any grass on our lot ... any ideas what we can do with this SLOPE? We want to mulch the entire lot, but we don't want the mulch to run off the slope and into the protected buffer on its way to the lake.

The yellow ribbon marks where the geothermal trench will be hand dug through the protected buffer. 6 large coils will be located under our floating dock.

framing on the main level begins

Lower Level framed ... patio footers in the foreground.

Main level before walls are added

There will be an outdoor fire place under the sun room. We love the view from here and figure we will hang out here a lot.

View from kitchen, and sunroom part of the house.

Sun room above, covered patio below. There will be double doors into a water toy storage area from the covered patio.

Looking out guest room / sewing room window

The beginning of THE STAIRS !

Ian, from England, works with Rod at Charter Furniture.

We like seeing our boat from the sun room window that faces the cove.

The view from our front door looking through the great room towards the deck.

A view of our Kitchen from the Great Room. The far window is in the kitchen nook.

In the Great Room you can look through the Kitchen window and see the Sun Room. You can walk from the Great Room to the deck and then into the Sun Room through sliding doors.

From the Great Room you can see our mulch pile via the stairs window, front door location, and the Dining Room windows.

The framing team are THE BEST. We are impressed with their fast, efficient work.

Looking through great room from the front door. The great room ceiling has been framed and the roof line shows above it.

foyer ceiling ... where the wood "barrel" ceiling will be.

Sun Room roof rafters. Walls and ceiling of this room will be wood.

View from garage work bench.

Mallory, standing in the great room. There will be a sliding door directly behind Mallory. The sliding door will open to a deck that is also accessible from the sun room.

footers for 2 car garage. The "door" opens to a mud room. The laundry room is to the left inside the door.

Life is good.

The Sun Room is taking shape.

Our dream is taking shape.

Looking up at sewing room and then master bedroom above.

Side view from below Master Bedroom.

9/12/2011 Ready for the Garage to be poured.

Our first 2 car garage is going up.

Check out the attic in our garage. The space inside the garage attic trusses is 12' x 25'.

A view of the lake from the house roof.

A view of the boat dock from the roof.

A view of the driveway from the roof.

Looking thru the front door to the lake before the barrel ceiling is built.

Front view before siding, roofing, and windows.

Roofing shingles and windows installed. This photo was taken from the Sun Room sliding door to the deck.

This photo taken from our house roof makes our driveway look flat and level. It is not flat. We have what we call our "Driveway Drop Off" beside the mulch pile. A lot more grading and landscape work is needed. Our ditches for water, sewer and electric still need to be dug along the right side of the driveway.

Sun Room before there is a fireplace, insulation, paneling or flooring.

The deck connects the sun room sliding door and the great room sliding door. This photo shows the sun room sliding door.

This is a view of insulated walls in the Master Guest Bathroom. The white insulation on the left is a dense fiberglass insulation. It is blown into the space between exterior walls and held in place by thin mesh. The yellow insulation is sound proofing in the wall between interior walls. The red and blue pipes are "Pex" hot and cold water pipes.

Here you can see the new stone steps beside the sea wall which go down to the water. The long black pipe coming out of the lake is for my irrigation system. The plan is to bury this pipe along with the geothermal system lines. There will be 6 - 100 foot coils placed in about 15 feet of water under the far side of the floating boat dock.

Siding has been installed on parts of the front of the house. The light brown siding is actually cement board which was made in Japan and stained in Charlotte, NC. The remainder of the front exterior will get covered with Eldorado brand fake stone.

This is a double masonry fireplace. The lower fireplace is an outdoor fireplace. The upper fireplace is in the Sun Room. The lower hole in the chimney is for an ash pit clean out door for the upper fireplace. The upper hole is one of two fireplace vents for bringing cold outside air into the fireplace. The fireplace vents help to stop the fireplace from sucking all the warm air out of the house.

Here you can see the mail box Mallory installed. We are receiving the first few crates of Eldorado Stone for the house.

Can you tell that the flooring installer's truck is stuck in the mud. He ran into our house and damaging fascia, soffit and roofing when getting our of here.

This is a pile of used kitchen cabinets Mallory purchased at a Habitat Restore Store in Virginia and we hauled to our new house to use in the garage. The garage walls and ceiling have just been primed.

Here is the Sun Room fireplace. The flooring is one of three piles of red oak and being installed on the main level. We will be installing Maple on the walls and ceiling in this room.

Red Oak #1 grade flooring is being installed from the kitchen thru the great room. The fireplace at the end of the great room is a wood burning fireplace insert which will be faced with the same Eldorado stone used on the outside of the house and the other 2 fireplaces.

We are now on the patio under the deck and sun room. The outdoor fireplace will have a hearth which is about 15 feet long.

This is the larger of two geothermal fireplaces which will heat and cool the house. The system uses 6 - 100 foot coils located in about 15 feet of water under the dock. A byproduct of the furnaces is free hot water in the summer.

A view of the gazebo and boat dock from the Sun Room. You can also see the deck which can be accessed from the Sun Room and Great Room.

Red Oak hardwood flooring being installed in Sun Room.

This is Todd, our kilt wearing hardwood flooring pro. He is the guy who backed his panel truck into our house. He said he wears a kilt because it is comfortable ... no Irish connection.

Here is the very high quality radiata pine trim we were able to purchase because of Crystal's work connections. THANK YOU SO MUCH, CRYSTAL!!

This photo shows how Mallory installed his wall cabinets in the garage all by himself. The problem was how to hold up the cabinets while screwing them into the walls.

Check out the new stone chimney for both the lower outdoor fireplace and the upper Sun Room fireplace. The little door in the side of the chimney is to access the ash pit for the upper fireplace. The cement blocks will be used to build 3 fireplace hearths.

See the giant electric service box. A 600 Amp service is being installed primarily because of the 2 geothermal furnaces.

Here is a view of the house from the floating boat dock. The white box on the dock holds the irrigation pump. We will use lake water for our gardening.


Our newly installed stairway treads and railings. Joan is looking down at her future book nook on the stairs landing.

The Great Room about half finished here. The unfinished oak flooring is under paper during the construction.

This is Poncho ... our lead stone mason putting stone over the garage doors. He and his crew do nice work.

The Sun Room ceiling of prefinished maple flooring from Lowes is being installed by Dale and Mike. The walls are maple v-grove boards.

Mallory is starting to install Timbertech decking with hidden fastners.

Our geothermal heating and cooling system used the water temperature deep under our dock to efficiently heat and cool the house. The system is a closed look lake system with large feed lines going to 6 sets of 100 foot coils under the dock. The water under the deep end of our dock is between 15 and 20 feet deep. There should be at least 5 feet of water over top of the heat exchange coils. The deeper water maintains a temperature of around 55 degrees winter and summer. Joan's pedal boat is being used by the Burleson Plumbing installers to position and sink the geothermal lines.

Cement blocks are used to anchor the feed lines and also the heat exchange coils.

This looks like fun doesn't it ... in February this would have been a cold job without the pedal boat.

The 6 one hundred foot coils are covered with a basket weave mesh. The coils all sink when the water and antifreeze is added to the system.

Rod Dooms, our cabinet maker, across the cove neighbor, Mallory's wind surf buddy, and our future water skiing Santa Claus is beginning Kitchen cabinets installation.


Installing stone on the house takes a L O N G time.

Here comes the granite! Mahogany Blue Eyes for the Kitchen, Santa Cecilia for the Laundry Room, master bath and Duck bathroom, absolute black for the Japanese bathroom and midnight storm for the pine cone bathroom.

Rll of aluminum for gutters in the foreground ... the LAKE in the background.

In the sun room looking towards the kitchen

Looking through kitchen to great room fireplace.

shot from the great room, looking towards dining room (on left of photo) and kitchen.

Looking from great room across deck to the lake.

master bedroom

His and her shower heads in the master bath

Electricians and stone mason at work.

buckets of Eldorado stone on their way up to the great room chimney

stone masons ... working without respirators .. in a "cloud" of stone dust.

Pennsylvania flagstone being laid on patio


geothermal and electric for the dock on left side of wall ... the outdoor shower will be on the right side of wall.

father and son graders with landscape designer in the middle.

BEFORE landscape work begins

Mallory installed irrigation, including the red water hydrant, which will use lake water, not city water

Joan's e-station with tile back splash in progress. Back hall to garage (and laundry room) on left.

Mallory's Timbertech decking and railing project is half done.