Tag Archives: building in Mexico

Building Project Update

Things have been slow going on the little building project we began some months ago. Partly do to the exorbitant rise in the price of building materials. The latest truckload of bricks literally cost twice what the same amount did two months ago. Rebar and cement have also nearly tripled in price. I’d blame it on the backup of shipping containers in the port in LA, but I know for a fact that the bricks are made locally and the rebar and cement have been sitting in the ferretería (building supplies/hardware store) for several months, so who knows why things are so high all of a sudden.

We’ve fleshed out our plan for the lot finally. The single room and bathroom downstairs will be built so that it can easily be converted to a family restaurant or tiendita (store) in the future. So it has an open plan, counters, and a bathroom. The second floor will also be open, but (at least in my mind) will be my writing/class teaching office. Lots of natural light, good airflow, and a view of the gardens, unlike the dark hole I teach from now. 

We also are toying with the idea of setting up a home gym. We’ve been collecting exercise equipment bit by bit. Right now we have a stationary bike and a pull-down bar, plus 3 sets of hand weights. My husband made a 20-pound barbell with cement and coffee cans, so we have that too. It’s a little beyond my current lifting abilities, but my son uses it daily.  

Anyway, once the second floor is finished, one part would be my writing office and another part would be a home gym. Unfortunately, at the current material prices, it looks like we will not get as much accomplished this year as I had hoped. 

Brick by brick, my fellow citizens, brick by brick.– attributed to Emperor Hadrian

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Breaking Ground

With restrictions eased for who would receive the latest stimulus check, my son and I finally qualified for a piece of that pie. A lump sum like that deserved some special use. So we went in search of lot owners near our house.

One person had two lots a few spaces up the road from us. She named her price. Even with our government windfall, we wouldn’t have enough for those. Moving on. Then we tracked down the woman who owns the lot right next to us. A few months ago, she said she was willing to sell. Unfortunately, she had moved to another town. So we sent her a message via her uncle who owns the building materials place in town. Then when she wouldn’t answer his calls, we sent a message via the ex-boyfriend, loser that he is. I’m not sure if our messengers helped or hindered the cause, because now she wasn’t going to sell. 

We found the father of the owner of two lots walking in town. He said he’d contact his son and see if he wanted to sell. We struck out there too. 

Since we have the padron (master list) of owners that have registered, we decided to contact a few of the other owners in the off chance they were in need of cash. My husband called the owner (not too many propertarios left a phone number) of the lot one up from us. He said he’d think it over and get back to us. A few hours later, he called and said that we would sell. He brought his two sons and picked up the funds in cash. Both parties were happy. 

Obviously two is better than one, so we tried to locate the owner of the lot next to the recently purchased one. The contact address was to a rental and the person no longer lived there. We opted to put an announcement on the radio. We actually got several calls, but all from other property owners who wanted to know if we were having a “junta” community meeting. 

Deciding that enough was enough, we decided to make do with the lot we had. The digger was rented and the holes for the footers and foundation were dug. Construction has been slow going since my husband insists he can’t take a leave of absence from his job and is only working for an hour or two when he gets home, if that. But hay va (it’s coming along).

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Quarantine Project #4 — Back Porch Planters

Once the tinacos were moved to the new roof, my husband started on the back porch. I wanted some additional planters and had him make them from the bases where the tinacos had been.

Since growing our own food has been a priority for some time, I used one to plant leafy greens and the other for root vegetables. 

After we got Fuzz, the planters were completely ransacked after he figured out how to climb that high. I replanted with some larger plants instead and that seems to be more to his liking. He hasn’t bothered them yet anyway.

My husband also ran a tube from one of the tinacos on the roof and attached a short hose for watering. Since we have a rain barrel there as well, there is plenty of water (at least in the rainy season). 

He hasn’t finished the patching of the wall on this section of the house either. I know it is his least favorite part of construction, so I’m sure he’ll put it off indefinitely. Meanwhile, about those tejas from Quarantine Project #1….

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