Tuesday, April 10, 2012

wide open spaces.

life is full of our wee little unexpected and beautifully frustrating complications.  we've been looking to buy a house and land - because we can't afford to pay rent.  doesn't that sound backwards?  but we'd rather be investing in the future, than living month by month.  and honestly, i want to grow some perennials - really massive rosemary bushes and asparagus and peach-plum-pear trees that i know i'll be around to harvest. so we're hoping to buy land.  

right now the leading option is located 15 miles from downtown waco - or a 15-20 minute drive.  4 acres.  with a round pen.  perimeter fenced.  and a large barn/storage building.  with utility and water hook-ups.  $60k.  and seeing as we're poor - and prefer the challenge of living simply - we're thinking of living out of a finished section of the barn.  which will basically be like living on a bus.  hopefully.  (doesn't help that i'm reading a book called Twelve By Twelve right now . . . ) so our future plans - or at least our discussed dreamings - include:
  • building a wrap-around porch (which will double our living space - and force us to be outdoors - piddling around with the sheep or the gardens)
  • perennial orchard - with all the fruit tree goodness, grapes, blackberries, rhubarb, asparagus, herbs - medicinal and culinary, and wildflowers galore
  • sheep.  we'll probably apply for a texas department of agriculture young farmer grant - which will give us $5k or $10k if we match funds.  we're interested in keeping our land mown - and i - in the art of shearing, carding, spinning, dyeing and beyond.  (see awesome cyclo-carder below.  i want to build this!)
cyclo-carder from felt the sun

brick-built oven
cob oven
  • wood-burning stove, solar panels, rainwater catchment.  any of the aforementioned.  as we will be living in a tiny space - this means low utility cost.  but we have a large metal roof - so we might as well put 'er to good use.
  • move-able sink for the out-of-doors
  • i want an outdoor kitchen.  built-up with a lovely cob oven/stove/grill that we hand build.  complete with some old reclaimed cast-iron sink.  and ready for processing all the harvested goods for market.
  • and i'd like an outdoor bath/shower.  a solar-heated shower would be lovely.  and we'll plan on growing some evergreens or some sort of privacy barrier so we can bathe out in the open country air.
the infrastructure will be there - but we'll get to hand-craft the home into what we frugally will.  i'm excited to piece together old bits gleaned from the habitat restore and thrift stores and freecycle and craigslist and friends.  as well as give away some of our larger possessions that won't fit into living quarters that are 12'x30'.

lord only knows what we'll do when the babies enter the picture . . .

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