You can jump for joy because we have a floor to jump on!

Oh my goodness we made a floor.  It took about 10 hours to Tyvek the underneath, insulate, then cover it with plywood.  We had some help moving the plywood around which saved us some time and energy and overall, we did not come home feeling the most exhausted we have ever been.  Because the weather called for rain through the night, we decided to make it a day trip, which ended up working out perfectly. We left the site with a solid floor, covered in a big tarp, secured with bungee cords. a2007f02-e37d-4ad5-9080-86df5ad4ac0b

Taking a weekend to recreate in Louisville with my sister, we will be back the following week to frame it up. Hopefully, we will be able to get it roofed and framed over the weekend so we will  have the rest of the following week to tinker around the site and the cabin.

Since we are now on this stage of the build, it has allowed us to start speculating on the interior and exterior finishing plans.  This has had my mind spinning with excitement, thinking of all of the custom things that we can do to make our cabin comfy, efficient, and unique.  

Interior plan ideas:

Dead space: This is an a-frame, so with this style of home comes 14 feet of dead space on each of the sides where the roof is.  I have been dreaming about the best ways to maximize that space (actually, i have been dreaming about oceans swallowing me up and tornadoes, but I digress)so here are a few of my thoughts on this:

Veggie bin for potatoes, onion, etc., cooler bin for drinks. We plan on getting a mini fridge for the barn to store any refrigerated items that we need, so a cooler should work out in the house.   We can also use it as storage bins for dishes, pots and pans. Feel free to share any ideas or thoughts about these things. We love ideas!

Thinking about cooling solutions, we  found a great solar fan that we can install on the loft level to vent out some hot air that will surely collect near the ceiling once the weather warms up.  The amazing thoughts about installing one of these is the fact that we will know exactly where to attach the solar panel onto the roof because we are installing that as well!  If I sound excited about that, you heard me correctly. It may even be a bit of an understatement.

Exterior plan ideas:

We ordered the frame of a hoop house which will be covered in some sort of screen or mosquito netting and fashioned into a screened in porch/catio.  We have quite a slope around the cabin, but i am confident that we can adjust for that with some pallet wood in order to make it level. The current plan is to connect that to the house with some sort of tunnel that the cats can help themselves to when they are ready for some outside time.  If the hoop house doesn’t work for the cats, it will work for the ducks somehow, so no loss there!

Homework

Daydream!  Let your mind wander.  I know I will not actualize everything that I daydream about but if it is half as nice as I imagine, we will be enjoying quite an oasis.  I think that sometimes, people are afraid to get excited about things because they don’t want to be disappointed when something doesn’t work out the way they planned.  As the saying goes, you only have one life so let’s go for it. Don’t hold yourself back and adjust your expectations of the results to either be happy with what has resulted, or try again to make it better.

Howard

Share the Knowledge

Most of the projects that we have done as a couple have been “first time” kind of projects.  Our first big endeavor was tiling our kitchen floor. It was a mess of peel and stick tile which we pulled up ourselves.  Before we got the tile down the whole floor was like human fly-paper! Our friend Joe would stop by with a tool, give us a quick demo of what we needed to do, then, jet out to get back to his family.  He showed us how to install the backer board. Another day, he showed us how to cut the tile, etc. We had at least one other guy on deck to ask questions of, so we would not wear out any one person because we had a lot of questions!  

Since then, we have remodeled a bathroom, put up a tipi, and we have built a catio and a duck compound, basically using the same method.  We have developed an excellent group of advisers whom we consult on a regular basis, not to mention YouTube and the internet, in general. I think we just might be able to do this cabin thing.  I can guarantee we will need some physical labor along the way, but for the most part, Perriee and I will be able to kick this thing off with our virtual team.

Just this past week, we were rewarded with some amazing advice about how to both clear and get the foundation in place.  I am calling January 1, 2019, to finish this by, right here and now. I feel like if we can get the sill in place (trying out a new term there, how’d I do?) by January, we can get it framed and roofed in mid-winter.  Then we can work on the interior in early spring.

Here is what we learned:  

Exhibit A: Neighbor, Requested Text Message Consultationimg_2547

He recommended the size auger we will need (24 inches) and how deep to drill them with a Bobcat (at least 3 feet). Bam! That was exactly what we needed to get going!  Now we need to clear out a spot. Thanks man!

Exhibit B: Coworker and Her Husband, Over Drinks, at the Deep Roots Farm Festival

Talking about cutting up wood and clearing our spot, my coworker’s husband brought up the Ryobi 10” battery powered chainsaw.  We have Ryobi tools and two batteries already.  Because of, said neighbor, actually. He dropped the Ryobi drill off of our roof onto the sidewalk when he was fixing a gutter of ours, and it did not break.  I knew we needed one. We have been wanting a smaller chainsaw for safety reasons and know we likely won’t be cutting trees down. This was life changing! My coworker offered to loan it to us to try out before we buy it.  Had Perriee remembered exactly which one they were referring to, I think she would’ve bought it the very next day! In the meantime, we will also make sure to get the Ryobi reciprocating saw ready to go with the right blade.  Yes, this was another amazing tip from our friends.  

We have since roughly measured the area and began clearing it out.  The spot is about 10 feet away from the tipi. It will overlook the hollow behind us, which we currently do not get the pleasure of looking out on due to the fact that there are no windows in a tipi.  Don’t get me wrong, the natural lighting is amazing in there, which i hope might serve as an unheated hoop house in addition to our guest house. We have been growing mint in there all summer. Mint, may I mind you that was often only watered by the drips in the roof for weeks at a time during the height of summer.  I digress.

Check out the website we are currently consulting about our build:https://www.simplesolarhomesteading.com/ .  Lamar Alexander is the designer. We purchased the plans for the 14×14 A-Frame and determined it will be as large as our living room with a loft.  

Homework

f you have daughters, be sure to expose them to things traditionally thought of as “things that men do”.  Lets change this way of thinking to just, “things people do”. I understand that physically, women might not be able to lift as much as a guy or handle a large chainsaw like a guy can.  That is ok! I am notorious for my lack of upper body strength, but I bet I can fix a broken chainsaw, even if I should not necessarily cut down a tree with it. I can hammer nails while someone else sets a beam in the ceiling.  Come to think of it, I could bet that this is what the upswing of getting more girls in on the Science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) programs is about.  I just gave myself homework, to look into this more!  I am tricky.

Materials at the Restore During an October Visit