Even more plastering...(we've been doing it for quite a while now)
After I get it all on the wall and as smooth as I can, Melissa comes back and buffs it, first with a sponge, and then with a piece of plastic - cut from the top of a yogurt container. Here she is doing it as the sun goes down, so she needed the headlamp.
It has to be buffed before it gets too dry, so she can't wait until the next day.
Here's the window by the front door, with the plaster on it.
Next step is painting with lime wash, to make it white.
Here's Melissa as she buffs the still wet finish plaster with a sponge. She's really the detail person, checking all the edges and making sure everything is smooth and clean.
I ripped up those warping steps. It was pretty harrowing, as I was very concerned about loosening the other madrone pieces that edge the floor. I had to use a hand saw to cut out the upper one, and now I've got it back in the clamps, gluing up for another try.
Even after letting these planks age in the sun the whole summer, then going back and remilling them, now that I've got them in place in the wall, they are still warping more. how frustrating. I think it actually may have to do with the water content in the plaster... somehow they are soaking up the water and using that move away from flat.
I thought this picture would show it well, but the lower step is pulling up, even cracking the plaster below it, and the upper step is sloping down, especially on the left side. They can't even warp the same way?!?
Melissa has been peeling and drying all of our garlic cloves that were a bit funky. We keep the good ones for regular use, but these that were already sort of soft get peeled, sometimes sliced, and dried in the oven with the pilot light.
the jar on the left is full of the already dried bits. We can put them in the mortar and grind them into powder very quickly when needed.
We began our Lime Slaking project the other day. The major part of the plaster for the outside of the house (and, we've decided, for the kitchen and bathroom inside) will be lime putty, instead of clay.
To make lime putty, we took 5 50lb bags of hydrated Type-S lime, and mixed it into a barrel of water. This is what 250lbs of lime look like in a 55 gallon barrel, with a little water on top:
They say, the longer this stuff sits and soaks, the better it is. It could be a year before we get this stuff on the outside of the house. I hope it's only a couple of weeks before we start working it into the bathroom and kitchen walls.
By the way, since it was hydrated lime, we didn't really have any of the safety concerns that they always warn about. We prepared for them, but it didn't boil, or give off heat, or act like acid, or anything.