We have a tentative ground breaking for the third week in April! Yay! It might have been earlier, but since we live on a dirt road that has spring weight restrictions, we have to wait for them to be lifted in order to get the big equipment up on our hill.

Just before this most recent snow storm hit, our contractor had one of his contacts out doing a perc test where the septic system will be. We had originally wanted to go with composting (aka: sawdust) toilets and a greywater system with mulch pits throughout the orchard, but since we are going through a bank now we had to change our plans a little. If he wasn’t able to finish getting a lay of the land or doing the test before the storm hit, he might have to go back out to finish in March. No big deal – we have plenty of time before construction can start.

We’ve been busy picking out finishing touches. The contractor we hired has specific instructions to get the house built to move-in status, but not to do any of the finish work. My husband and I will be putting in the flooring, cupboards, trim, woodstove, ceiling fans, etc. We’ll also be painting the walls and exterior. All in all, the builder is fairly certain he’ll be finished well within six weeks. That puts us at the occupancy stage in early June. Perfect timing, since my husband has a three week R&R home from Afghanistan starting June 1st. We’ll probably take a week to do something fun, like hiking in the Porky’s or camping on Lake Superior, then spend the other two weeks working on the house. After he’s gone again, I’ll probably go up there with the kids every chance I get to work on what we weren’t able to finish.

I want to be in there full-time before the kids start school next fall. That leaves us about two months to make it livable – easy peasy. Here are some of the ideas I’ve been tossing around for finish work – just to give you an idea of how much I’m putting on my plate.

Pine flooring. Not a fan of all the lines of oak or other hardwoods. Our ceiling in the living room/kitchen area will be pine tongue & groove as well.

Bathroom vanity made from rustic changing table.


Neutral tone tiling in the walk-in shower.

Stone flooring in the kitchen area. Our cupboards will probably be simple like the ones pictured, too.

Concrete kitchen countertops with built-in trivets next to the stovetop, a drainboard next to the apron sink, and plumbing fixtures made to look antique.

The Alderlea T4 wood stove. We’re still swinging between this and a few other models. Blaze King and Baker’s Oven are in the running.

It feels like everything is finally starting to come together. We’ve waited a decade to own our own land and start building our little homestead cabin. I’m so excited, I could just burst!