Monday, May 8, 2017

The Mud Room, aka The Dermot Healy Hall, Emerges

Let me just say first off, I deeply appreciate and admire those of you who disciplined enough to blog regularly, if not everyday then at least a few times each week. Even weekly is darn impressive.

Lately, time is barreling past me like a Kardashian racing to a lingerie sale.

In the last week we:

     Started the mud room
     Had our big metal pile removed
     Sold seventeen ducks and ten roosters
     Assisted Mucca with the delivery of her first calf
     Dealt with the new (old) barn pieces being delivered
     Ordered twenty-two more tons of gravel and spread it in the drive.
     Tore down the steers shed and relocated all items in the path of the new (old) barn
     Ordered and witnessed the execution of  two huge Elm trees to make room for the barn.
 Let's talk mudroom first. I'll hit the other events in future posts. Here are the before and after pictures.  A slab of concrete off the front (and only) door of The Looney Bin, turned into 48 SF of usable space for housing our chore clothes, boots, egg baskets, fur coats, etc.

Our friend Jay came and spent two days here lending us his tools and expertise.  We three shopped for all our supplies last Saturday morning at Menards  spending $630 of the $1000 we had budgeted for this project. Then Jay and Keith worked through crappy rain and cold conditions, as seen on the radar below, while I kept hot meals and coffee on the ready. All together it took them about 12 hours to complete 70% of the mudroom. Mudroom is its common name whereas The Dermot Healy Hall is its official uppity name, since all funding came through that fine Irish Poet.

They nailed the frame directly to the concrete using mostly new lumber and constructed a temporary roof for some weather relief. We also splurged on a new window and security door.


Then they added a layer of roofing paper as a moisture barrier.

The roof was created out of three leftover pieces from the Looney Bin when Keith cut out the original door frame. Placed horizontally the natural curve of the metal panels will help water run off the roof. One day we'd like to have a rain water collection barrel nearby. Keith recycled old lumber as roof supports since these panels are thick and heavy.

The third roof panel was tricky since it had to be cut to match the curve of the Bin.
but Keith measured and re-measured and got the job done with slow steady cutting., attaching it with a couple of buckets of caulk covered screws.

Jay framed in the metal door (below) and they used pieces of the metal siding from the collapsed 165 year old barn on our property, to cover the outside of the mud room. Keith had taken these roof panels off the old barn two years ago always knowing "one day" he'd have a use for them.

As you can see there is rust and several holes but we'll be covering the metal roofing, now mud room siding, with clear paintable caulk and then a coat of metal paint in silver to match the Loony Bin. This paint is made just for barn roofs and isn't cheap at  $40/gallon, but still well worth it.  By recycling the old barn roof panels we saved over two hundred dollars as we did not have to purchase new siding for the mudroom.

About 4 pm Sunday the guys called it quits just as the rain let up. Of course.  Today Keith is plugging all the holes and gaps with silicone caulk and Great Stuff expandable foam along with some tar paper tape. Later this week we will add batt insulation, plywood walls and finish the plywood bench Jay built. Then I'll paint the inside walls with Menards returned paint, only $5 a gallon. it's a light green and it'll do. After that, hooks for coats and shelves for gloves. I'm so excited and I just can't hide it.

I envision a flower box under the mudroom's window as well as some planters on either side of the door. I think bright red geraniums will go nicely with the crisp white door. Your thoughts?


  1. Oh yes! Bright red geraniums would look amazing there.

    Isn't paint RIDICULOUS now???? I haven't painted in 10 years. It's four times the price, and now it doesn't cover without two coats (at least)

  2. Lol Donna, I wish I could say "what's a Kardashian?" but I'm too addicted to celebrity gossip ha ha, keeps me feeling a wee bit superior in my own way! ;)

    The mud room is amazing!!! What skill! You must be thrilled. I wish we could do these things, but I guess it just takes trying. For now we're just going to tackle making a screened-in porch (porch exists) and go from there! :)

    I like the idea of would definitely look pretty with that white door. But between us, I'd put more Morning Glories! ;)

  3. That is a really pretty entry way. I love the door especially. I don't understand how Keith could figure out how to connect the roof to the rounded body of the bin, but I trust you when you say he did.

  4. WOW! That is SO cool! What a great solution to your needs. And hey, more square footage, even if just a bit, is always a good thing. You can have a little space heater for those cold winter days while you take off snowy boots and coats. As soon as I saw the window I instantly thought "window box with red and white flowers". And yes, either side of the door just cries out for a planter of some sort with flowers, red!

    1. I bought new paint for the siding a couple days ago and then we get the red flowers!

  5. A post a month is good if it is a good post. I have seen people who post everyday and yawn, opps did I say that?! Good job lady. Yup Geraniums red is good. How cool is this whole project???

  6. Lovely stuff, and friends are priceless! That mud room sounds like it could be handy, right about now. With all that rain about. Bet the garden loves it though.

    Now you had to go and ask THAT question. Because when you asked what I would plant, I saw a wooden trellis spanning under the eaves, with either a purple wisteria or grape vine, hanging fruit and flowers down. There I go, making more work for you. ;)

  7. Oh how nice! muddy boots deserve a room of their own. I would tye strings from the holes in the roof, down to somthing (a bar, metal thingies ...?) on/in the ground and let red sweet peas grow wild there and smell too. Leaving the - in my eyes narrow front bare - no flowers or branches to grab baskets, flowes, shpooing bags, all that stuff, you carry in through doors wiht only two fingers left for the key.
    Sorry if my English is not up to describing what I see, I'm not a native speaker.

  8. I think red geraniums would be just the ticket! Way to go re-using some materials in this project. What's next? A conservatory? -Jenn

    1. Last year we planned an entrance that was bigger and with more windows, sort of conservatory and greenhouse, but not enough cash to do it. Maybe in the future.

  9. Yes, very cool. Thanks for sharing the details. I'm envious of the skills to do projects like this. I find hammering a nail challenging.

  10. oh I love the ingenuity, and the hobbit-esque feel of that room. Absolutely add flower boxes <3

  11. Replies
    1. Me too! it's not finished but already we are dumping our boots and coats out there on nail hooks.

  12. Donna, it is you all who are to be commended, forget about blogging daily or weekly. What a list of accomplishments and I will be anxious to read more after seeing and reading all about the mud room project. A great use of recycled materials and creativity and of course a lot of hard work in miserable sounding weather. I would go for the red geraniums.

    1. You know what they say "Necessity is the mother of dissention." Or something like that.

  13. My comment didn't publish Donna. Is it hiding in the spam folder or still awaiting moderation? Thanks. :)

  14. My former comment either didn't come through, or was missed for publication. I thought you guys did an excellent job though. It says, "come in", where as the large structure looked more intimidating before. It's like the mudroom is the frame to the doorway.

    It says to me though, add a trellis or three! I'd want a wisteria on both sides, or maybe a grape all the way round. Hanging flowers or bunches of grapes, just says romantic to me. And I'm not much of a romantic!

    Or what about a clemitis? If you didn't want to put a trellis up, what about a simple tipi, like for beans - and let the clemitis smother it. So many possibilities. :)

  15. It's great! I have to say that our enclosed back porch helps so much in winter. It keeps the wind out and is never quite as cold as outside, even though it isn't insulated. Yours really adds a lovely touch as well as utility.


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