Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Sustainable Living

This is Chai Tea and Double Shot back in 2006 walking our dogs, Eve and Lu Lu, on property of some friends of ours. We had gone out there to see the house they were building by themselves.

They used materials found on their property and the design of the house dates back centuries. The walls are made of wood they cut themselves (like you cut wood for fires... same size) and then layered with cement (mortar). Bear with me as I try to describe this stuff in a woman who doesn't know the proper construction terms way.

The house itself is fascinating... but the husband and wife that have done this all themselves are even more so. They were able to move into the house full time about three years ago. They both work and they tackled this project on the weekends.
This is the ceiling inside of the house. All the lumber came from their property. They are completely off the grid and are working at becoming completely self sustaining. All they need to do to accomplish that at this point is start raising animals.

This is their barn and the first thing they built on the property. They used to camp in it when they were working on the house. We stopped by and visited with them on Sunday and I didn't think to get pictures of how things look there now. They have added a green house to this side of the barn.

I did take some picture of the inside of the greenhouse. I loved her salad bar sign on the wall. The drums are full of water. This whole set up is amazing!

They were vegetarians... she had been for over twenty years. However, she was having some problems and they learned that her body had been damaged by eating that way... even though she was careful and made sure she was getting enough plant protein. She is a nutritionist and a personal trainer. It is taking a long time for her body to recover.
Do you see the stings hanging to the right? They string up melon vines and they grow up the walls. By putting the melons in women's nylons they can grow that way without breaking the stem.

Next time we go out there I am going to take better pictures. I wasn't thinking about blogging about this when we were out there. They are now getting ready to build a little guest house. It will be a single room in the same design as the house and will not have plumbing. They've already got the trail from the house to the spot and have supplies gathering.
One of the things they talk about in regard to our food supply is very interesting. While they now eat meat, they are careful to only buy meat that the animal was raised eating what it would naturally in the wild. Much of our food comes from places where the animals... and even fish... are fed corn. That is not natural to them.
I would love to live somewhere like they do one day. They had a herd of elk in their yard just that morning. However, they did have a bear get on their deck last summer. Yikes! I hope we never have to leave Colorado. I love the mountains.


Trisha said...

Such a neat place! I love the photos and the idea is so appealing. Unfortunately I am not that good with my hands so . . .

Oklahoma Granny said...

What an amazing couple! Their home is just beautiful. They must have such a feeling of fulfillment to be so self-sufficient.

Karen Deborah said...

I love this! Sign me up! My man just doesn't see the glory of it, but I always wanted to live like this. You have met some life artists, very cool. Go back and do some more photos. I can totally relate to your love of the mountains. I have always loved them. I never thought I would live in flatlands. Maybe some day you and your hubby can leave the burbs and get into the country. Karey Swan lives out there. Elk is a great source of meat. Any food raised as God intended is good for us. Only fools would corrupt their own food and water supply for moeney.

Chris H said...

That is an amazing house!

claudia said...

You have some very amazing friends! I also would love to live that way. I just don't think at the age of 57 is a good time to be starting a project like that by myself. Thanks for sharing your friends' place it is beautiful!!!