Tal Covered in Sawdust –  putting a huge kitchen sink into a conventional counter top took a bit of work!

I can’t believe it has been a full year since I made a post to our blog. I have much good news to share. We have moved out of the semi-truck trailer!

Not that we didn’t love our cozy home on wheels, because we did. But life goes on and changes come as well.

THE SHACK going up, them bones . . .

We left our new homestead last November after our pipes started to freeze, but before that we prepared the ground to put up a metal shed 20’x40’ with southern exposure. The main reason was we weren’t ready to leave. The fall weather turned out to be as delightful as the summer. We wanted to stay for the winter as well, but realized quickly the trailer was only set up for southern deserts not high frigid mountain tops. To stay any future winters we would need a winter shelter as temperatures on the Continental Divide can drop below zero.

Our future home!

A three man team showed up and within two days we had an insulated shed. There was nothing else we could do but dream about the home we would build in the spring.

And, dream, or day dream was more like it, I did! Every night I would lay and think about how I wanted it to look, how many windows it would have, etc. Thanksgiving Day 2016 we moved back to the Arizona desert to spend the winter.

Star’s sister came for a camping visit. Shopping in Quartzsite AZ.

My sister Carol and brother-in-law Rodney came for a camping visit which was terrific fun!  We also camped by old friends on the Colorado River, and the winter finally went by.

March provided a warm spurt where our property was, so we decided to make a run for it as we were eager to return. We made it just in time before there were a couple of snow flurries, but luckily our pipes didn’t freeze again.

Putting in the Joists

The truth be known, there was a whole lot Tal and I didn’t know about building. We lucked out and found a handyman with an extensive contractor’s background. Thanks be to all that is good!

The Sub-Floor is in & the Pony walls are going up!

The handyman was our saving grace as he knew a lot about home building, plus had the many tools it takes to build a home. As it turned out the job was made more difficult because we were building it inside a metal structure. Footings had to be poured for a floor and a section by section framing structure was designed. It was not easy work, being in our mid and late 60s, but we persevered and worked right along with the handyman.  We started the project May 1, 2017.

Star putting the Insulation in!

The main thing I learned about building is that everything is heavy! The wood planks are heavy, the plywood is heavy, the counter tops are incredibly heavy, and so it goes.

Siding going up, we’re getting close.

Then there is the matter of perfection. There is no such thing when it comes to building even though we tried our best.

Tal set up water tanks and dug poly-pipe lines, as well as setting up the solar, and running the electrical inside the house.

The windows going in!

We referred to the building as THE SHACK, so named after the book. The only inspiration for such a name being that in the book, God is living in a shack in the woods, and I thought that was cool.  We could live in a shack too!

With all the mistakes and having to use the cheapest of materials and appliances which also provided many imperfections; it really is a shack. Though it turned out to be a very nice SHACK!

Tal inserting copper tubing into stove pipe for hot water making.

We are very thankful to our handyman who led the way and did work that was beyond our strength. Unfortunately, he was not able to finish the job as other work pulled him away. However, he did help us to a point where we could finish, albeit not as well as he could have done.

Taking a much needed break from the hard work.

Still, THE SHACK has turned out quite lovely, is very cozy, and promises to keep us warm over the 2018 winter, and many more to come.

We moved in Oct 7, five months and one week after we started the project.

To celebrate, I cooked a turkey dinner and had a few friends over.  Tal and I agree that life is pretty grand right now.

Again, we are finding fall as lovely as the summer, and we’re looking forward to winter snow.

We wish you a wonderful autumn and many happy tidings for the coming holidays.

THE SHACK is done, friends are over, and a stuffed turkey is on the table!

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6 thoughts on “THE SHACK

  1. That is a nice picture of two beautiful women.

    That waws/is a fantastic project. You have a lot to smile about as you look at the final/almost place to live.
    I think you are going down south for the winter.

    This addition to the blog was/is great and I really appreciate your sending it to me.

    You are beautiful mid-sixty woman.

    Take care.


    • Hi Uncle Hank,
      We built the SHACK so that we could stay the winter. We won’t be going south this year! We plan to stay the winter and once the weather clears we will start building a chicken coup! We are going to have a garden and chickens too. Having the SHACK, which we are all moved into now, is giving us the opportunity to stay year round. No more nomadic travels. It’s nice to be grounded!

  2. Right on time! You’ve accomplished a huge amount of work and the results are fantastic. Your focus, skills and creativity have really taken you a long way and I hope that you will thoroughly enjoy the Winter in your new home – warm, spacious, beautiful. It was such a nice surprise to read this update. Had been wondering how things were coming along and I am utterly amazed at the outcome.

    Warm wishes to the two of you,


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