Monday, April 14, 2014

Exterior Work Begins!

What a couple of weeks it has been!

I'm a little embarrassed to explain why I have been blog-silent during perhaps one of the most exciting times in our journey thus far! The weekend before last, we began work on the siding. I set up my tri-pod and took shots all throughout the day with plans for a sweet little time lapse. I love all kinds of media and I know you all do too- so I was hoping to bring another video into the mix!

Well, my Windows Movie Maker program decided that it would happily let me spend over an hour editing and getting the video just right, only to crash any time I tried to save. I have spent the last WEEK researching, trouble-shooting, installing/uninstalling, looking at other programs, etc. I now know what programs NOT to use. Alas, my senses came to me. I can't hold back sharing our progress and work just because I can't make the cool video I wanted. BUT I PICKED THE BEST SONG EVER! The pictures changed with the beat and everything....sigh. Oh well.

ANYWHO- back to the progress made. On Saturday- while Dan was in class, I took the time to give The Pod a good cleaning so I could take some decent pictures. So many people have asked to see the interior! Go check them out if you haven't- they can be found under the "Photo Tour" tab of our blog.

On that Sunday, we started with the front wall, considering it's the one we stare at most. We are putting strapping at roughly one foot on center so that regardless of the length (hopefully) of the pallet pieces, we should be able to secure each one properly. 

It was a decent day out and we worked happily and steadily. That morning we got the supplies we needed to apply the trim as well. So while Dan worked on cutting and putting up strapping I painted the trim pieces. 

We haven't even put one piece of pallet siding up, but we both remarked more than once that it looked great. I think it's just that we've stared at that ugly house wrap for so damn long that even some skinny pieces of strapping and a few trim boards makes it look great....because it looks like PROGRESS.

This sudden flurry of activity was inspired by two things- one, moving day is not getting any further away. And two, a reporter from Yahoo Finance contacted us for an interview. I spoke with her that Friday and the article was posted that night! Talk about overwhelming and motivating!

I remember when I used to geek out about getting 500 hits in one day and getting about 1 comment every month. We were also ecstatic about nearing the 300 likes mark on our FB page. With the publishing of this Yahoo Finance article our numbers, our traffic, our SUPPORT, has boomed. 

I almost fell out of the loft when I checked our blog stats the next day. OVER 35,000 HITS! And blog comments up the wazoo! Within 48 hours, that 300 like mark was blown out of the water. We are at 598 likes now! So amazing! THANK YOU EVERYONE!

Along with the awesomeness does come some not-so-awesomeness. This world is full of people with opinions and some opinions are offered, some shared, and some spat at you...or on you. I had just read a post by Macy over at minimotives talking about how she handled all the insensitive comments, judgments, and intrusive "you should be living your life THIS way" declarations. It couldn't have been more timely- and I decided that I would not read any comments on the Yahoo article- I would only respond to comments on our page or our blog. 

This advice has served me well- as I suspected, cantankerous negativity-spewing trolls will gladly shart out (that's right I said shart- I like the random messiness it implies) their hastily formed opinions after a 45 second read into an article that covers maybe 4% of the whole story. Then they move on with their day, leaving behind a trail of spotty smeared remarks until they manage to feel a bit better about themselves. 

I have a secret for you trolls- it will never make you feel better.
 You'll get back what you put out there. 
So maybe try some positivity?
  I digress! Clearly preaching to the choir!

We have received so much love and support on the blog and page from all over the world. Being a source of inspiration for others has always been a continuous life goal of mine. It's amazing knowing we have this platform to reach out and touch so many others. I can't tell you all the people who have told us they wanted to do something like this and now have the courage to get started. MY HEART IS BURSTING!

Speaking of things that make your heart burst- this weekend I went back to the farm to get better acquainted with our future parking spot. Dan went to NYC for a birthday weekend with his brother, so siding work was put on hold. When I visited the farm, I got to meet several new arrivals! Baby goats! And the one that stole my heart was this guy right here.... he keeps escaping simply to follow you around. His little tail started wagging like crazy when I met him. I think I will name him Wiley...even if I'm the only one who calls him that. ;) 

I am quite pumped about our future location. Not only will we be obscured from the road, we have an amazing view! I can't wait to see what it looks like once all the trees have their leaves!

Since we plan to move at the beginning of May - it's definitly crunch time. We will be starting work on weeknights again...I can feel it. Considering the siding is really all that's left, I think we can manage.

Thanks for reading!!
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  1. The goat is cute, it reminds me of a dog, with strange eyes. You will be living in a beautiful place.

  2. Don't worry about what others say -- it's your life and you two have to live it the way it's best for yourselves. I posted on the interior photo section as well. People change -- your needs will change!! this is wonderful for you guys and the experience has been fabulous for you. What's so fantastic is that people who build their own homes, eventually end up leaving it behind when they move on. What ever you move on to in the future - you'll be able to take your first home with you and use it again as your home, as a back yard office, as an inlaw suite, a future son or daughter's suite or rent it out!! And the ability of moving your home where ever you want!! You can live where ever you want!! AND not have a mortgage!! You are both in control of your future - Win = Win !! God Bless!

    1. Thanks so much for the encouragement and support of what we are doing Suzan! :) It really has been quite the experience. We have grown, learned, gained confidence, gained friends, community, and a certain sense of having a better grip on life. Thanks for reading!

  3. Baby goats are my absolute favorite! They are so cute and they love to cuddle.
    Anyway, Nice job on your tiny house. I love that you are doing most, if not all, of the work yourself! Keep up the great work!

    1. They ARE so cute and cuddly! I had no idea! And thanks so much! That's one of the main three goals of the tiny house- to gain this skill set for ourselves...I think it's really important to have fundamental life skills and to me, one of them is knowing how to build your own shelter. Thanks for reading!

  4. Pete in West GreenwichApril 18, 2014 at 7:19 AM

    Good luck to you both with the move and your future together. Dismiss all the negative comments from those who make them. Always go with your heart. I follow your progress wishing I had done exactly what you nice young people have done when my wife and I were just starting to make a life for ourselves. Many of the fondest memories we have are from projects that we worked on together to make our home what it is today. And blogs are a wonderful way to share your hopes and dreams with others. Our daughter, who is currently in California, started a family blog. My wife and I watch our grandchildren grow though that blog. Its priceless. My only question for you Jess is when the tiny house is done, what will you write about then? I hope you somehow keep it alive. My wife and I enjoy reading about you both. God Bless.

    1. Hi Pete,

      Thank you so much for the kind words and support! It means a lot to us to know we have readers that enjoy our day to day tasks and musings as we create our home. I can't tell you how glad I am now that I pushed myself to start a blog for this project. I wanted to share our story, and also have some kind of record to look back upon for ourselves- this blog has done that and so much more. The projects never end for us! So I'm sure I will continue to have plenty to write about! Once the building is done and we have settled into our spot on the farm, I'm sure my writing will shift back to the more philosophical and reflective side. Not to mention our adventure isn't completely over until we have our own fully functioning micro-homestead! This blog will no doubt grow and evolve to be called Another Tiny House and Homestead Story. :) I'll be filling posts with building mobile chicken coops, rocket mass heaters, learning to care for goats (and make cheese!), gardening, water collection and storage, root cellars, and who knows what else, I'm quite eclectic in my choice of hobbies. :) Thanks so much for reading and taking the time to reach out!

  5. Wow, I am so jealous of your journey and your debt-free living! Can't wait to see the final result! Good luck!

    1. Thanks, Kate! We are so excited to finally be living the plan and not just dreaming about it! We just finished up strapping so we will be putting our siding on soon! Almost there! Thanks for reading! :)

  6. I'm curious, I read a Yahoo article dated April 4 2014 that led me here, but that article said you were done building. It looks here like you haven't finished. What gives?

    1. Hi Bulbo,

      Like anything you read or see online- don't expect all the correct facts from one source. I actually made quite clear to the reporter that we still had our exterior work to finish. Perhaps she called it "finished" from a financial perspective since our siding is wooden pallets which are free. I have no idea. Another great example- she mentions 1 ply toilet paper. I definitely didn't discuss with her the intimate details of my toilet paper preferences- and it isn't 1 ply by the way! haha Thanks for stopping by!