It had always been my dream to build my own house and to live off the grid. I’m not interested in some sort of back to the land privation story where my environmentalism is steeped in hardship but rather a more of a modern kind of self-sufficiency, back to the land with all the benefits of modern technology. We live in the most fantastic time in history, my goal has always been to leverage all of the knowledge of the past with the advantages of today.
The house is straw-bale, off-grid, and passive solar. So what do all those buzz-words mean? You can read detailed descriptions on the House page, along with some suggested reading, links to resources (and contractors). Put simply:
If you’re interested in a specific technology, process or section of the house you can use the category’s below to focus your reading. If you’d like to just start at the beginning and start this crazy journey right from the beginning then the House Archive link at the top of the page is just for you.
You can follow the construction of the house from breaking ground for the foundation right up to present day as I continue to finish the interior and add new buildings and features to the property.
We started construction on the house in 2002 and we moved in March of 2003. We have weathered a blackout that took out the eastern seaboard, multiple ice storms, dead batteries, exploding generators, free-falling turbines and more cars in the ditch than we can count.
Fast forward 15 years and Joanne and I have gone our separate ways, I’m still in the house with my boys and we’ve continued to improve and expand. We’ve built a loft for the boys in the house, we make maple syrup in our sugar shack.