Working on the Roof, Bathroom, Electric, Plumbing, and a Deck (Tiny House Part 4)

It’s been a while since I’ve posted an update on our tiny house! (Here are parts 1, 2, and 3) So this post covers the main milestones from the past two months, wherein we also got married. 😉

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We chose a light gray color for the metal roof – light so it reflects heat, yet not stark white, which we thought was a bit much visually.

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Here’s the back of the house, with the finished roof!

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Installing the shower…

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And Grandpa framing in the bathroom! The bathroom, which is slightly smaller than 5′ x 8′, is the only real room in the house.

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There is a tiny loft for storage above the bathroom, with a wall on one side.

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Then Judah put up drywall in the bathroom and our water heater. We chose a tankless water heater because we don’t really have enough space for a “regular” water heater. It’s mounted right above where the toilet will go.

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This picture gives you an idea of how big the house feels. It also shows the plumbing along the bathroom wall, which is also a kitchen wall (on the side you’re looking at here). We have the plumbing almost completely finished.

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I got to help Judah with wiring a few times and, like the plumbing, it’s almost all the way done!

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Now we have a deck!! It’s beautiful, and sure beats having to step up two feet to get in the door like we had to before.

And that’s where we’re at right now. Next up are plumbing, electrical, and building inspections, then we can get to the fun parts (for me) like insulating and finishing the inside walls, putting flooring in, and painting the outside! Stay tuned!

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Putting Up Rafters and Closing It In (Tiny House Part 3)

It’s been about a week and a half since I’ve checked in…. and we’ve gotten so much done on our house!!! I got to spend three days over the weekend with Judah and his family, and I’m so thankful for their help and support in this project. In case you missed them, here are part 1 and part 2 of our tiny house journey.

Putting Up Rafters and Closing It In

First, we did a supply haul. It was actually really fun marching around Home Depot with Judah, picking out windows, fasteners, lumber, siding, and lots of other things! Once we got to the land we started on the ridgepole and rafters as well as framing most of the windows and the door.

I learned a ton, and one of the more interesting things was getting to see how supports were used to keep everything square and plumb and in place. You can see that in this picture – all the diagonal boards and the two ones sticking in the air are temporary supports.

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We had a fire going almost all the time because we (I say “we,” but I wasn’t always able to help due to a lack of knowledge or skills) often worked until it was quite dark and cold. Judah’s dad and siblings were often there too, helping and keeping us company. The yahoos (i.e. siblings) and I made a tire swing and a lovely fire ring!

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Next we put sheathing (OSB) on the roof. It was pretty steep and slippery, but thankfully Judah is good at working on roofs so it went pretty smoothly. Also, check out that sunset! I’m so looking forward to living in this beautiful place.

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Next came Tyvek house wrap, in the dark.

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Early this week Judah and his dad put tar paper on the roof, some of the windows in, and most of the siding on! Now it’s weather-proof and we can work on the inside.

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Next up is electrical wiring, putting metal on the roof, and framing the bathroom…. It’s a big project, but it is such a blessing to be able to do something like this with my fiance! And whenever I tell him what an amazing job he’s doing, he says, “It’s all for you.”

Building the Deck and Outer Walls (Tiny House Part 2)

Lots can happen in one week! I got to spend Sunday and Monday working on the house with Judah (and Jo, for a bit). I learned a lot, like how to use a circular saw and a nail gun. And Judah learned that I’m scared of tape measures. (I don’t like it when they retract quickly… for some reason I think I’ll get a major paper cut. Apparently they’re safe, though.) But, for the record, he said I’m tough as nails. 😉 If you missed last week’s post about our tiny house, check it out here.

Building the deck and outer walls

First came concrete blocks as piers. We had eight sets of four concrete blocks each, four on each concrete runner under where the house would go. Then Judah laid four beams across the width of the house, on top of the piers. Next, we made four 32′ runners out of treated 2x6s and notched them for the joists.

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Then we had to get everything square. This part took a long time, and we learned that we should have gotten the concrete piers lined up exactly before putting wood on them… However, after much measuring and string-lining, we got things straightened out.

 

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Squaring the notched beams with a string line

Then we fitted the joists into the notches, like so. We used the string line again to get them perfectly in line.

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Next we put on the outer band. Judah did most of the nailing while I positioned the boards.

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Oh hey, what do you know… we match. 😉 Mud and all.

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Next came insulation and the subfloor.

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Then the outer walls!!! These went up super fast.

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And that’s where we stand now! Next up is the roof. Stay tuned!

If you have any questions or want more specific information, leave a comment and we’ll get back to you!

 

Gettin’ the Go-Ahead (Tiny House Part 1)

It’s 35 days until our wedding, and Judah and I are building a house. Or rather, Judah is building it and I’m wistfully watching from 150 miles away (and helping whenever I can make the trip). Are we crazy? Yeah. But that’s nothing new…

I will be documenting the process of building our home here on the blog! Here’s part 1.

Inspections, permits, and lots of mud

Even though our house will be moveable and less than 450 square feet, we still had to go through the process of getting the land set up and inspected as if we were building a “regular” house.

Before that could happen, we had to reroute the water and electric lines. On December 17th (2016) we rented a trencher and Judah used that while I cleaned off the concrete runners (this site was set up for a house trailer, so there are two parallel concrete runners under where our house will be).

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The house site before trenching
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The trencher and Judah’s two lovely trucks 😉
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My favorite person doing an awesome job with the trencher
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Here you can see the concrete runners and one of the trenches

I thought it was beyond awesome that I got to be there with Judah as we broke the ground for the first time to build our house. I’ve always loved stories of the pioneers, and I can still hardly believe that Judah and I are building our first house together. There’s something so wholesome and wonderful about that.

It wasn’t all wonderful, however… later that day before we had a chance to finish the job it started raining. We worked in the rain for a while. And then it got dark. So we worked in the rain and the dark for a while. But eventually we stopped, discouraged and maybe a bit frustrated because we hadn’t planned things out very well.

 

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Two very wet and muddy people – smiling because we’re together

In the following weeks, everything passed inspection. The septic inspection took forever, though, leaving us hanging a couple weeks before we could even apply for a building permit. Once we passed the septic inspection, the permit took just a day to acquire. Judah got it yesterday! *cue confetti and party noisemakers*

Then Judah was free to buy supplies and start hammering! (as he would say) I shall spare you a picture of the precarious truck and trailer loaded with supplies, but here is a piece of wisdom: don’t bite off more than you can chew. You may be left driving home at less than 30 mph because you bought more than your rig can handle well.

Isn’t life such a neat adventure? I’m so thankful for the path God is leading us down. And I’m especially thankful for my man and how he’s building this house for us! Stay tuned for part 2!

 

Big Dreams and a Tiny Home

Lots has happened in the past two weeks! Chicken processing pretty much marked the end of the farming season for me, aside from putting the garden to bed and harvesting kale here and there. But that’s totally fine, because I’ve had other things to give my attention to! Namely, making decisions with Judah (my fiancé) about our wedding, job situations, and where we’ll be living once we’re hitched.

Many of you know that I spent the summer in a mentorship program with the Logan County Farmers Market, learning from some produce growers and the Market in general. The idea was that I would spend a year learning and then launch into selling my own products at the Market in 2017. However. I have been swept off my feet by a man from Kentucky, and that’s where we’ll be starting our home and our farm. I will put the things I learned from my mentorship to good use! It just won’t be in Logan County. We are planning on raising pastured broilers like I did this year, but on a larger scale; a few pastured/forest raised hogs; and of course a garden (whether it be to raise produce to sell or just for us is undecided). For those of you who were looking forward to buying meat chickens from me in the future, know that we will likely be bringing some chickens to Logan County to sell in 2017 as long as we have customers. We’ll keep you updated via Facebook and this blog.

Judah and I are planning on a late winter wedding so we can get settled before the farming season starts. And while we don’t have this written in stone yet, we’re playing with the idea of renting land for a year and building a small portable home on it. Technically, it would be a tiny house, at 30′ x 14′ (plus a loft and big porch 🙂 ). The reason for this plan is that neither of us want to launch into debt as soon as we get married. This is a way for us to have a beautiful, inexpensive place to live while we’re getting started with farming and saving for buying land and building a bigger home in the future.

So. We’ve been messing around with house plans and it’s quite fun.

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Here’s the land we’re thinking about living on for a bit! Oh, and that’s us. 😉

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Back at home I’ve been going through some of my things and sorting out what I’ll want in our first home and what I won’t want. For example, I managed to have acquired three pie pans. I might need all three sometime in the future, but I don’t want all three in our tiny home! So I’m just sorting things like that.

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I’m also crocheting dish rags.

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And finishing my quilt…

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So the quilt has an interesting story. I started this quilt maybe a year ago, piecing it all by hand. I got that done in no time and then moved on to quilting it. By hand.

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It looks nice, doesn’t it? But hand-quilting was taking waaay too long – I have 100 8″ x 8″ squares in that thing, guys. I assessed the situation and realized that the only reason I wanted to hand-stitch the entire queen-size quilt was so I could say I’d done it, just like they did in the pioneer days. Or something. But I realized that hand-quilting the whole thing was going to take up too much precious time, so I decided to finish it with the machine. It’ll look kinda funny if you look too close, but I’ll have a good story to tell my kids someday!

I used masking tape to keep me sewing straight lines. It’ll smooth out when it’s done.

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Life’s exciting, especially when I know I’ll be spending the rest of it with my best friend and love of my life!