Before and after in a challenging bedroom.

Sometimes the piece is just too short or too long and needs to come out.

Valerie had learned tiling from You Tube, so she and Jenny did the bathroom.  Jenny was always learning new stuff, like cutting ceramic tile, and making grout.

Jenny and Tom installing Jenny’s 2nd ceiling fan.

Valerie worked on installing a cabinet above the chair rail, which interfered with resting it on a 2x4; but she devised a way to solve that problem, and creating an attractive pantry and laundry room for Mary Lou.

Peg was ALWAYS cleaning, moving out of the way on a regular basis. Below, the CLEAN master bedroom is being protected, as it has the only working toilet.

But her efforts were more than rewarding, when you look as the shiny floors throughout the house

Presbyterian Outreach had us staying at Living Waters Campground.  Girls on one side upstairs, guys on the other of this huge oversized gym, with a cafeteria.  Valerie and Peg slept in Valerie’s camper, while the rest stayed in the bunk beds.

Every morning and dinner time,

this nameless dog appeared at the door.  He knew he could not come in, was gentle and loved people, and LOVED belly rubs.  Pat named him Gus.

They had also arranged our overnight accommodations at a Presbyterian church in Nashville, the half way point.  We stayed in the Youth Center, which even had mattresses, so we didn’t have to blow up our own mattresses.  It did NOT exactly meet Peg’s cleanliness standards, so she and Valerie again slept in the mobile home.

    On Sunday, after church, 5 took off for New Orleans, and Tom, Dave and Pat went to a sports bar to watch a football game.  Much needed rest for all.

    On work days, we tailgated lunches.  Glad to have 2 coolers.

    And the weather cooperated, no humidity and low 80s, one night got really cold, but we all survived from another productive mission trip of helping others maintain their hope and get their lives back to normal as soon as possible.


    Mary Lou’s house had been flooded in May, and had been cleaned up and repaired, and she and her husband Joe had been back in it for only a couple weeks when a “500 yr.” storm hit the area, causing flooding up to 4 FEET in their house.  They don’t have flood insurance because they live in an area that doesn’t get flooded, so The Fuller Center decided to help out by providing volunteer labor.  All the walls in the house had been cut out at the 4 ft. level, and then covered with Luan, which does not contain the powdery substance that drywall does.  However, it is not as thick as drywall, so shims had to be used to make it level when installing the chair rail.

    In the photo above on the left, every wall needed the tall baseboard (too tall for my chopsaw), the quarterround, and the chair rail installed.  The 45 angles were challenging to cut because the radial saw only titled to the left; so when you wanted a cut to the right, you had to think spatially, which is not my forte.  Once I learned that I could just flip the baseboard over, things started moving faster.  Kim was doing her best on measuring, but she simply didn’t have the experience and exactness that I have learned from Habitat.  But we didn’t really waste any wood; in fact, several times, we were stymied because we ran out of what we needed.  It seemed so obvious to ME: measure the linear footage of the entire house, closets, hallways, etc., and then buy that amount of all three types of wood.  But despite the delays, we managed to finish the trim work in one bedroom, closets, the hallway, the kitchen, and the living room.  We took our final photo in front of the bedroom closet that Kim and I had frantically finished the quarterround on the last day, as James was trying to shut us down......only to stand up and see that the chair rail was not installed.  So we stood in front of the closet so no one could see the last missing pieces.

    Basically, we had teams: Jenny and Tom on electrical the first two days, Peg on cleaning every day, Valerie and Jenny on tiling and grouting, Dave on painting, Jessica on the nail gun to install the woodwork, Pat and Dave on cutting and installing, and Kim on cutting and installing. We often seemed to be in each other’s way, but we were all flexible and accommodating, and helped each other as needed.  Also there was Mary Lou, James supervising, Mary Lou’s sister Peggy and sister-in-law Sheila, and sometimes other volunteers and employees of The Fuller Center. 

    For a group of unskilled volunteers, we managed to accomplish a lot in less than perfect conditions.