Gaines Group Architects

Project Update – Penn Laird Home Under Construction Part 2

Our last post about this Healthy, Energy-Efficient, and Durable home was several months ago in March. Since that time, the builder, Trost Custom Homes, has been busy adding siding, stone, garage, and starting some interior space framing. Here are the most current pictures.








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A day in the life of an Architect

One of the most common comments when I meet someone new and they ask me what I do for a living is “I wanted to be an architect when I was a kid.” I find it very interesting that so many people wanted to be architects and so many took another route for various reasons. One of the big ones I am sure is that most architectural schools are designed specifically to weed out those that don’t LOVE architecture. It is a tough major and limits your ability to do other things – party, hang out, sleep… Anyway, I also wonder how many people who wanted to be an architect understand what we do. So here is a description of a typical day in the life of an architect – at least as typical as a day can be with so many varied projects.

Beer Run

6:00 am wake up, get the kids up, get ready for work, fix breakfast

7:00 am leave the house headed to drop my youngest off at Pre-school

7:30 am drop off at Pre-school

7:45 am stop at Post Office on the way in hoping for a fat envelope full of money – hasn’t come yet, but still hoping.

8:00 am arrive at the office

8:00 am – 10:00 am catch up on emails from the last two days. Focus on emails from existing clients, then onto potential new clients.

10:00 am review drawings for renovation job in Vienna to see what has been done while I was out the last two days (in Charlottesville running from meeting to meeting)

11:30 am leave for client meeting in Nelson County

1:00 pm Walk through existing house to review scope of work, discuss with contractor, talk about process with new client.

Ft. Defiance

2:00 pm leave Nelson County for meeting in Ft. Defiance

3:00 pm walk job site for high performance home under construction. Answer questions for contractor. Review execution for compliance with design intent.

3:30 pm leave job site in Ft. Defiance going to job site in Crossroads Farm

4:00 pm arrive at job site in Crossroads Farm, look at progress made over the last few days. Hoping for some dry weather so this job can get going.

Crossroads Farm

4:15 pm leave job site

4:30 pm arrive at EMHS to surprise wife and pick up daughter

5:00 pm arrive at home after a long day in the car

5:15 pm make dinner for the family, eat dinner, talk about favorite parts of our day.

6:30 pm get kids ready for bed, read story, sing song, say prayer, tuck them in

7:30 pm finally done with everything and can get back to work, check social media sites, tweet something worth reading, check blog stats (wow, that many people read my blog?)

8:00 pm stop playing on-line and actually get back to work. Make changes to the Vienna Renovation drawings, work out structural issues so that I can coordinate with partner in the morning, think through design issues that the builder might encounter

10:00 pm go to bed, tomorrow is a long day!