This Woman Was Here

A Do-It-Yourselfer's Life Journey


Garage Raising

We built the garage by inviting friends over for a garage raising. The trick to a successful raising is pre-planing and organization. I had a building plan, materials, and my carpenter friends organized themselves into crews for specific tasks (framing walls, windows, and doors, support posts for porches, stairs, etc.)

I had found ten antique stained glass windows in St. Augustine for the unbelievable price of $225 (one of the first shipments of antique windows to show up). We had to sand, prime, and paint them.

a very pregnant me

JP helped








We had painted the siding and battens before the crew ever showed up.

prep work on slab before construction

painting battens








Paula painting battens

David painting siding

the entertainment











On the day of the garage raising, I provided breakfast with all the food groups, including pickled eggs. The crew showed up and got to work. The only things in place were the slab and the steel beam that would support the second floor.

Sean and Keifer








JP, Sandy, and Juli helped

materials at the ready

framing the back wall

















preparing porch support posts










Raising headers









Germaine takes pictures





















By the end of the day, we had completed the first floor. Then came dinner and celebration.















proud owners

Many thanks to Germaine








Over the next several months, we completed the second floor with master carpenter, Rob Higgins.

roof goes on








sprig on roof to celebrate









The wood for the upstairs floor was salvaged from the pool room of the Winjamer, a bar I used to go to in graduate school.

All accomplished with a little help for our friends!