The best plans come about when everyone involved reconsiders and refines until the best solution comes clear. We have not hesitated to retool, revise, and re-do as necessary. Every iteration taught us something new, and every version incorporated new and better ideas. I only started to feel embarrassed when I thought about writing another blog post about how our plans have changed again. However, this whole thing is a process, one I wanted to share so that other people might learn from our experience. I’ve decided that I have no reason to feel embarrassed.
After months of research and at least four different completely awesome plans, we’ve decided on a structure. And lest you wonder if we really mean it: we put money down for it last Tuesday. More money that I’ve ever paid in my life. Two years’ rent worth of money, loaned to us for 24 glorious, interest-free months. We signed the papers and now are waiting to hear the date we’ll get on the builder’s schedule.
Yes, builders: Home Depot will be constructing a two-story Tuff Shed. They’ll do the foundation, base floor, roof, staircase, and the exterior walls. We’ll do the plumbing, electrical, insulation, drywall, interior walls, and flooring. I feel quite pleased with this turn of events. I had been excited about building a yurt from a kit, but I’m also excited to have a structure that “only” requires interior finishing. I actually have a bit of experience with this, and my family has much more, so we’re all on more familiar ground. (And I’m definitely excited to have more square footage than an RV.)
The house will be square, which I regret a bit. Having corners makes it easier to fit in furniture — I have a lot of bookshelves — but I had really fallen in love with the idea of a round house. We’ll have a skylight; that will have to do. Maybe I’ll build myself a little concentric yurt for a meditation space one day. (I’d love to have an artist’s retreat space: my creative friends could come out and work uninterrupted in the countryside, and then join me for dinner.)
Yesterday we went outside in the sweltering heat of a Texas summer day and put up one fence and tore down another. I fetched and carried, hammered in at least one fence post, and dug a bunch of holes. We cleared a fallen tree, pulled a bunch of invasive ground-cover, and chopped down a hackberry tree. After consuming a mountain of sandwiches and a lot of lemonade, the guys pulled out some concrete posts with my dad’s pickup truck. Then we raked, leveled, and mowed. Minor injuries abound, including a nasty allergy rash, but we had no major injuries other than the falling hackberry knocking over my brother’s beer.
We’ll have the sales rep come out and see the site next week and tell us if we have to do any more work. It’s really happening.