Where I disappeared to for the second half of summer . . .

In the summer of 2019, Connor—always full of ideas and proposals—said, “We should build a geodesic dome.” For better or worse, I agreed 🙂

My mind immediately went to a page from a book my aunt and uncle gave me in the late 70s. But it occurred to me that if we build something out of dowels and bits of old garden hose and cover it in polyethylene, it would be a mere novelty. We would use it a few times and then it would get trashed by the strong winds we get around here during the colder months. What if we build a geodesic dome that is more useful and sturdy? How about replacing our seasonal cloth gazebo with a proper framed structure—something more permanent. Eventually, we chose a 1V icosahedron geodesic design.

It took a while to get started, of course, and, as is so often the case with such things, it ended up taking longer than expected to finish. But it’s finally done (mostly—I still need to add gutters and figure out some sort of outdoor curtain-wall system. (Actually, we finished back in September, but I am only now getting around to making this post.) Below are some pics from along the way, and one in its almost-complete state from back in mid-September.

I have lots of people to thank for help (and understanding) along the way.

Thank you Shane and Heidi for letting me scrounge your old decking. Thank you also for the early use of the miter saw—that saved me a ton of time.

Thank you Zachary for the safe and sturdy ladders and for letting me use them for so long!

Thank you Jeff for the unbelievably helpful array of power tools, without which I’d probably still be hand-sawing ridiculous double-angles and hammering shingles. Thank you also for the expertise and help at a couple of crucial junctures.

Thank you to my neighbors on all sides for putting up with more than a month of hammering and power-tool noises, and to the neighbors to the north for putting up with the visual chaos of a messy job site.

Thank you to Stromberg’s Chicks for the prefab connection plates for the frame.

Thank you Steele for teaching me a ton about framing back in the 90s, and Garrett for fun summer days learning to paint when we were working for your dad. Thank you also to random roofers at Lowe’s for sharing their expertise with me, as I had never shingled anything before.

And speaking of shingling, thank you to Connor for all your work and ideas, and for throwing things up to me while I was precariously perched on the roof—shingles, hips, hammers, roofing cement, even little nuts and bolts, all tossed up with the precision of a major league pitcher!

Thank you to Judy Horenstein Cook for being okay with keeping the car in the driveway rather than the garage for so long. And for some painting, too.

And thank you to any potential future readers of the book I am writing for the fact it it will be delayed by yet another couple of months due to the time I took off to build!

(Gosh, I sure hope I’m not forgetting anyone!)