Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Solar Home Building in Mason, Texas

I'm on the road again. After ending an enjoyable week in the Austin/Georgetown, TX area I drove 100 miles west in the quaint, rural county seat of Mason, TX where I'll spend two and one half weeks before returning briefly to Arkansas..

I'm here for my seventh Habitat For Humanity build in the last twelve months. There are about twenty volunteers helping the homeowner family build a single story, high efficiency, solar heated house on the outskirts of Mason.

We're on what's referred to locally as the Second Phase of construction. The first phase entailed laying the underground plumbing, pouring and custom finishing the concrete slab floor, cutting ALL the wall and roof structural components, assembling the roof trusses, and pre-painting exterior sheathing.

On our first day on Phase Two, we began with a comprehensive safety talk and commenced with assembling three exterior wall sections. With the celebratory participation of the soon to be homeowners, we raised the back side, gable end wall plus one side wall into position. Today, we'll put up as many more wall sections as the weather permits.

Lunch is being catered to us by the homeowners as we make new friends among the homeowners and volunteers, many of which travel all around the country as I am trying to do to build affordable homes for families. With Texas hospitality we are staying in our RVs in Mason City's park that hosts a 20 site RV park, a golf course, baseball fields, and rodeo facilities.

Note: A change in my itinerary come March. Instead of going to a Habitat build in Santa Fe, NM. I'm going to head 80 miles further north of there to Taos, NM and supervise students from the University of Texas that have volunteered to build family homes during their Spring Break rather than vacation somewhere else. It's part of Habitat For Humanity's Collegiate Challenge Program where we all can "Give people a Hand-up, not a Hand Out."

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