As I sit here and watch the bonfire die, I can't help but wonder what I have gotten myself into.
My life has flipped 90 degrees in the last few months.
For the last decade or so the only thing I have wanted more than anything was to own a piece of property. My very own little corner of the world that I could call mine. Every step I have taken since the beggining of the year has led me a step closer to this reality.
I have taken up residence in a poorly kept house on top of a mountain, in the middle of the woods. I live here, working in exchange for rent while being allowed time to save my money for a down payment. Every day I look out my second story bedroom window at trees as far as I can see. Trees, that with the current warm weather will be covered with green leaves in a week's time.
And I wonder, am I capable of this adventure I am about to undergo? You see, at the end of May, my down payment will be paid, my owner financed land contract in place, and then.. well.. then the test of my own personal strength and endurance will come into question. For I am building my own home, on my own piece of land.
A cob home.
Now, if you aren't familiar with cob. Let me give you a little information so you can better understand where I am coming from.
Cob homes can be found all over the world. They are prominent in places like Africa and can be found all over Europe. Some as old as 800 years still being lived in to this day.
Cob is a natural, earthern way of building. It requires clay dirt, sand and straw. When mixed together with a little water it can be formed into bricks of sort and molded together to make walls, thus making a home. When cob dries it is hard as stone and mass thermal, meaning it holds in heat and releases it slowly, and holds in cool air.
Now, my goal is to have four walls and a roof by winter. Complete with a mass rocket heater for heating, a mass rocket stove for cooking and a cob oven. All inside my kitchen.
I am taking on this project mostly by myself as the man I am marrying may the first works with two days off. So, it falls to me. Clearing the land, digging the foundation trench, laying the foundation stones in place, cobbling the home.. everything.
I can't tell you I am in the best shape. But I am determined and well.. we just can't live in a tent all winter can we?
No electric running to the land, so we will be off grid. Both with electric and indoor plumbing.
A compost toilet is the option I have chosen to go with. A little bit of work, But the right option for us.
As I take this journey, I want to share it. I want to share it with friends, family and strangers alike. I want people to understand that it wasn't easy, but that the end results will be both wonderful and worth it.
I want you to see that anything is possible and that even you yourself can make the switch from living a life full of bills, to not having any bills at all if you should so choose that. From renting, to owning a home that you built with your own two hands. From being dependant on the grid, to not needing the grid at all. From spending all your money just to eat and get by, to being dependant solely on what you raise.
It's a lifestyle.
It's being off grid.
It's a journey worth taking.
There will be many more posts to come.
Stick with me if you wanna see how all this plays out.
For now, I'm off to see about my fire.