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Prefab Homes : Daylighting Despite Rain, Comfy With SIP, Our Prefab House Is HOME.

At the prefab : weather's changing...
...but we're smilin'.

Frantic moving and packing continues.
We had planned to go work on the Leaky 1800s In-Town Farm House, but after the long week Handsome Husband sighed:
"I miss the land..."
Ok baby. We'll go home.
So off it was to the Passive Solar Prefab Home!!!!!!!!
Finally, officially, now with the sale of the mid-century, this almost-finished-with-construction off grid prefab is finally HOME.

But wait! A Prefab Modern Homes Update!

Prefab modern homes. We've got 'em!
Green Modern Kits
Green Cabin Kits
and if ya like traditional,
Green Cottage Kits!

It is likely there will be a Dogtrot Mod prefab home from our other modern line of prefab house kits, Green Cabin Kits, in New Mexico this fall / winter!!!!! A savvy retired educator who... who WANTS to blog!!!! (ClapClapClapClap)

Pretty much I am the ONLY ONE who has taken (so far) to blogging our prefab homes' projects. So... I'm excited. She totally gets the reasons why I keep singing my passive solar prefab song out into the ether, why it's important for others, and I am looking forward to hearing her sing her own prefab's project story.  Stay tuned.

But back to MY Passive Solar Prefab Home ; )

What a week.
Thursday the movers came and took away pretty much everything from the mid-century modern.

We went from this... this...
...The entire house EMPTY... in a day. 
I tried to navigate the work day on my trusty laptop, on whatever furniture, slowly dwindling by the hour, that was left... Neighbors pressed themselves against the glass as the moving truck was busy, staring at us like cows we pass by in the field...

We speed on to more vibrant things.

At the passive solar prefab home, we arrived to a GORGEOUS day.
Knowing the weather was changing; we made sure to enjoy every second outdoors. As driving rain would soon arrive, I eschewed planting seeds that might wash away and focused on shrubs and grape vines.

I also planted Chicken Helpers-- roses, quince, etc.- fruiting shrubs that offer protection.

I observed curious things.
Nature, as always, takes advantage...
Remember when Pipsqueak 1 had friends over and they Dug A Hole To China?
The Hole To China

I could not have planned this better: A miner bee colony now calls it home.
Fortuitous, as I planted fruit and berries and vines and vegetables and a field of grain around it...

I have been talking bee keeping for years, I just haven't had time to get equipment, and now I've got a colony of pollinating bees. Miner bees: No equipment needed. Pollination, complete.

And then came the rain.
Even as it rained, and rained, and RAINED... there was plenty of daylighting in the passive solar prefab home despite the dreary day. And we weren't dreary, we were COZY! It was a great excuse to relax and read.  It is so nice to have the pleasure of slowly unpacking because you can't do any chores outdoors, then, unpacked a bit, finding a quiet moment where one can curl up and read... Rainy days are blessings.

Mid-morning Sunday I opened a window and realized how much colder it was outside!
The passive solar prefab was so warm from the sun yesterday, we had no need for heat, and woke up warm... I just naturally threw open the window.  You forget, in a SIP house, how steady and easy the temperature is, even when, like this weekend, the outdoor weather swings in extremes.

Yesterday? A mix of sun and then a dramatic front cast clouds and covered the sky... From a high of  *80* degrees, the temperature waned, as the rain began... Today? Pelting rain, *50* degrees.

Through the windows, I watched the wind blow the trees; inside, a feather could drop straight, its path unaltered... I always love reminders of the energy efficiency of the SIP (structural insulated panels)...

And even on a dreary, chilly day filled with rain, the daylighting provided plenty of indoor light!

[Sorry, Tony!]
Watching the rain, I considered The Drafty 1800s In-Town Farm House.
Our friend Tony is there, scraping wallpaper.
I am glad I left him super-warm down comforters... I imagine the drafts and chill the poor guy certainly must have felt (sorry, Tony!)...

The rain picked up, a steady, driving patter, and I am grateful Tony is there because (sorry, Tony!) it is an opportune rain to discover any leaks or wet areas to fix.  Ah, a leaky 1800s farm house...  and from the cozy prefab home on a rainy day I think, "I really love SIP."

And Then: We Headed Back To The Empty Mid-Century
Now, when the puppy barks or we speak, there's a cavernous echo in this house!
We'll spend the next 2 weeks trucking final items to the appropriate locations...

Oh those bothersome outdated people.
Why be there, when you could be here? : )

The Vanderspiegels, the neighbors who made us give up OUR hens last year, arrived as a sad, hen-cited family returned from borrowing our trailer to move their coop. I looked at the daughter, nodded towards them as they unpacked their Costco trip from the car and empathized, "Well, they took our hens away too."

I watched a beautiful little girl fill with indignation.
"But don't worry, sweetie," I assured, "ignorant people like that won't last long. I mean, think about it- Glenn and Catherine Vanderspiegel may have taken away our hens last year, but we've had new hens for months and months and months and they're too slow to notice! Silly people like that will soon fade away."

The Vanderspiegels froze, mid-lift of their hefty Costco Frozen Food take, paused on their Tru-Green Green-y (Perfectly Poisoned) Lawn. TM.

Who wants to bet that as soon as we turned, they ran to the fence and stood on tippy toes, necks craning, to see if they could find Evidence Of Hens.  [Who are, as always, in plain sight and happy in our clover, fruit, year-round-vegetable growin' and roses now-bloomin' back yard.]

Go Ahead, Outdated Zoning, Cite Us.
You will never again harm our family.
We are paid in full, mortgage free, with the world open to us.
I might just have one more shot just for old times... one last call for zoning clarity...

[R.I.P. Levon Helm]

I quote the respected, well-known-for-her-community-enhancement-and-service director of marketing for a beloved RVA non-profit, who used my trailer to sadly move her hens:
"A year ago we decided we wanted chickens, nine months ago we (well, G.) started building our coop, seven months ago we brought our three hens home. One month ago Animal Control responded to a complaint from an unidentified neighbor; today they gave me 24 hours to remove our good birds. Not exactly that center of creativity and innovation you claim to be, Richmond."
First, they come for we green building zoning freaks. Then they come for families up for national sustainability awards (two weeks ago). 
Now, they come for the math professors and non-profit marketing directors.  
FYI: Creative, contributing families flee outdated zoning, city officials... this may shock you, but for many job-attractive families with so many livable, cutting-edge places that are so close, so vibrant... those families don't have to take it.  I am noting the Sustainable Brain Drain.

We push off to the net zero, passive solar prefab home, now, finally, easily, untethered.
Happier, sustainable, livable pastures are right down the road.
Happy Earth Day, y'all: Net zero passive solar off grid living
is not as difficult as it seems.
And chicken friendly. #Sustainability101
It's not just about LEED.

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At 4/22/12, 8:42 PM , Anonymous britta said...

Bet you those neighbors will place that call in the morning:) Perhaps we can invite them over to our house on Thursday......there are more of those crazy people around!!


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