The beginning stages…

“2,578 seems to be accurate.” That is what Dustin is estimating the number of house plans we looked at over the past 3 years! I can’t argue there. Picking out a house plan was tough, as they all started to blend together after awhile. We knew we wanted a smaller home so we can spend more time on details. Character was important to us, however, once you start figuring in all the custom built details, I started to realize why some people choose cookie cutter houses or destination weddings (option 1: leis, option 2: no leis; these were the only decisions my friend had to make for her destination wedding)!

None the less, we finally decided on Sugarberry Cottage as our house plans. https://houseplans.southernliving.com/plans/sl1648. We made a few changes to it by adding a basement and expanding the back porch into a bigger mud room. We read a few blogs of others who have built this house and all gave the suggestion to extend the mudroom (noted, thank you).

Committing to purchasing the house plans made it real for me. I think when the construction crew came, that is when it was real for my husband. Buying those house plans and paying that pretty penny for the architect meant “this is happening now! It’s printed!” We chose Moser Design Group https://moserdesigngroup.com/ to design our cottage and they were worth every penny. It was as if they knew exactly what I wanted…down to every nook and detail of that house. Perhaps this house plan was meant to have that “french country, farm house look,” but regardless, I was beyond impressed. We didn’t have to alter or change any details, they covered it all, without me even talking to them on the phone! They receive our highest regards and we are forever in their debt (actually, yes…financially speaking).

We were able to build this home by having Dustin G.C. this project. I feel guilty admitting this, but we were very fortunate during this pandemic. In 2019, we made the decision that in 2020, we will move to a one income household for the year and Dustin, being a plumber, will not only plumb the entire house, but G.C. the entire project and do majority of the work himself. We planned, sacrificed and saved over the years to get here…and then a pandemic presented itself. While that posed several challenges, overall, little did we know we were preparing for a pandemic not just building our home. We now had an available parent to drop off and pick our child up from school each day and be available when the school closed, then reopened, then closed again. It was easy for me to say how blessed we were (since I wasn’t the one dropping everything to get Owen from his unpredictable schedule). I am impressed at Dustin’s skills that even during a pandemic, he managed to continue to move things along with our house. Here are some photos of our process thus far. Stay tuned for more updates!

Things are never easy around here! The garage pictured above needed to come down in order for us to begin building. A lot of prep work (5 months of prep work) was needed in order for us to begin digging!
This is the other side of our lot and the future home of our vineyard/greenhouse/lavender landscape! Full of potential!

I wasn’t for sure if the garage would ever come down, but it did with a lot of help from our mini general contractor and two senior general contractors (thanks Dads!)

There was no time wasted on celebrating…must make our next moves as winter is coming!

Thank you Papa Trucking and Grading http://www.papatrucking.com/ for doing such an amazing job on breaking ground on our new home.

Why not take a break in all this madness and build a garden and compost station? That’s relaxing, right?! Clearly I needed to stay out of the way with the building process, so my time was spent attempting to grow veggies in a new weather climate. We decided to grow a little bit of everything to trial what works and what needs improvement. Horticulture provided a healthy therapeutic intervention for our family, which was needed during this stressful home building project. Plus, there is nothing better than eating peas and carrots right out of the garden! I envision a community garden group working together in the near future…stay tuned!

We have arrived to this point! Salud! The fun is about to begin as I assisted with picking out windows https://www.marvin.com/products/collections/elevate and exterior doors https://www.thermatru.com/. I think that means I better hop on pinterest https://www.pinterest.com/akaspar1011/future-home/and start finalizing plans for the inside of the home! This month would mark nine months since we began. Thank you for taking the time to share with us in this journey. Next week, the framers are arriving and this house will look much different!

4 thoughts on “The beginning stages…

    1. So much work! We are living in and old farm house on the same acreage. There are many pros and cons to doing this, but so far, it has worked out well for us being near the construction site!

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