Drywall to Final Punch List: The Second Half of the Build Season in Las Cruces

Following the end of framing, the remainder of the winter and the beginning of spring seemed to fly by as we moved from drywall into trim work on the 5 houses. I was fortunate that we had some extra RV Care-a-vanners come to volunteer with us – as well as some Care-a-vanners stay extra time – in addition to our talented local volunteers. Really though the completion of these 5 houses is due to everyone who showed up on site whether they were there for a day or 3 months. Though I felt like we were perpetually behind with regards to our timeline I knew we were steadily gaining ground; by the last couple weeks of March I was sure we’d have the houses completed for the scheduled dedication on April 27th. Of course there were challenges, occasional moments of semi-panic, last minute changes, and lots of learning done on my part but at the end of the day – or should I say, the build season – 5 families got to move into their homes. And that’s all that matters.

All the tasks involved in finishing our the houses are too numerous to name, nevermind show photos of, but some of the highlights are below. One thing however deserves a special mention since it’s something we’ve never done before at this affiliate — the tiling of a handicap-accessible shower. Care-a-vanners Janet and Bob and those that assisted them deserve a big shout out for making it happen, and for creating a beautiful, oh-so-needed shower to boot. I included a separate video of the final product below in order to show it off.

As this post is published we’re already gearing up for another build season and I couldn’t be more excited. The 4 months of traveling, hiking, and building (as a volunteer, not a supervisor!) this summer were wonderful, but I’m really happy to be back in Las Cruces, collaborating with my dedicated co-workers to get ready to build another 5 homes. We’ll be building all-new floorplans this year to better suit our partner families while increasing affordability and decreasing waste and I’m pretty stoked about that too. But before I get to all that I’ve got lots of hikes and escapades fron our time off to summarize, so stay tuned!

Longtime volunteers from Lockheed Martin cutting drywall

Marking the drywall

Homeowner Corrina rotozipping out a door

Me with board member Cheyenne on one of our paint days

Care-a-vanner Lee painting exterior doors

Local volunteers Mike and Rick sheetrocking the ceiling in the 5th house

Care-a-vanners Andrea and Sandi wrapping up drywall on the 5th house with local volunteer Anna

Tony affixing house numbers

Local volunteer Lee working with Tom to install cabinets

Future homeowner Katie painting trim

Care-a-vanners Barbara and Gail installing flooring

Care-a-vanners painting doors and shelves

Care-a-vanners Jon and Hans putting in trim moulding

Painting the final house

Tom and care-a-vanner Charlie installing more cabinets

Quiet jobsite in the morning

Janet and Lee tiling the wheelchair-accessible house

Care-a-vanners Janet and Bob tiling the wheelchair-accessible roll-in shower

Janet and I with the Care-a-vanner “Crew from Lake Havasu”

Completed kitchen of the larger floorplan

Main room of the larger floorplan

Landscape Day! 78 tons of rock! 52 volunteers!

Landscape Day!

Finished exteriors of 4 of the 5 houses