Longleaf Stories

full circle in the hundred acre wood

I was working at my desk when my peripheral vision caught the movement of something through the front window’s wooden shades.Two young fellows, one in shorts and one in blue jeans, were wandering around. I hadn’t heard a door slam, and was surprised. “Who’s that?” I looked at Buck. His chair was already empty. He was out the door like a shot. . .

The mild-mannered young guys explained that they are part of the house framing crew that will be arriving shortly to frame out our house expansion. They wanted to look at the site, but when they ran into a locked gate out front, they walked the third of a mile in anyway. The main speaker was Jim. His younger companion, Daniel. Jim said the framing part of the project will take about two months, and will take it all the way to the black felt roofing preparation. The roofer will come in right behind them to complete that task. Their boss will bring in a construction trailer to leave on site so they can keep all their tools and supplies, making it easier to come and go each day.

Buck and I have a great feeling about the cast and crew being assembled for this project. Most of the subs have been working for our builder, Ron Parker, for years. In sit-down meetings with the heat/air-conditioning professional Gary Mooneyham, and the plumber, Larry Pugh, we have been impressed with their knowledge, experience and attitude. A good friend of ours, Bob Johnson, and his employee, Shane, will do all the wiring.

Buck designed the house. He immersed himself in the design phase for more than a year to turn our dreams into a buildable plan. He can visualize, think in 3D, and knows the rules of spatial arrangement and construction realities well enough to bend them creatively. I stand amazed.

Chuck Lee drew out all the plans, engineered the trusses, and had the plans certified by a structural engineer for wind loads.

Ron Parker in the lodge

Ron Parker, Parker Custom Built Homes, is the General Contractor.


This is Celeste Campbell. She works for Ron, and makes the trains run on time with energy and great good humor.

Buck and I feel like everyone we have met so far who will be associated with this dream realization project is excited to be a part of it and wants to do their very best. All we’re waiting on now is final approval of the plans by the county so we can get that magic permit.

Guess I had better buy an industrial-sized coffee urn. Does Krispy Kreme or Dunkin’ Donuts deliver?

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