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4/27/15

Passive Solar Off Grid Modern Prefab Embraces Love And Art!

The Dogtrot Mod passive solar prefab cabin house in the northeast has a project meeting with the client, distributor, contractor, and ourselves next week and I will keep you posted.

At our modern passive solar prefab house there was sun, and rain. Sometimes at the same time. Here it's raining, with sun:
"Yay!!! It's sunny but it's raining!!!
I love it when it does that!!!"
And with that, she tossed on a bathing suit to dance in the rain.
Sun... rain. Sun rain sun rain sun rain sun... rain.



At the off grid modern prefab house, it was a joyful week: With less than 24 hours notice, The Rhinestone Cowgirl and Mister Blue Eyes done run off and got married, honeychiles! I was honored to be a witness.
Historic Charlotte Court House is a beautiful place to get married...
The Justice of the Peace was straight out of a combination of Sommersby and the Jeffersonian era; actually, fyi, Sommersby was filmed here, -and- Thomas Jefferson designed the courthouse!

With Mister and Missus F hitched, I threw together a 7 course wedding dinner that night, oh yes I did, and did I mention my nearest grocer is 20+ miles away? Nothing like a last minute rural 7 course dinner...
It was a LOVELY evening.
On Sunday, our little country church surprised Handsome Husband with a recognition ceremony -and CAKE- to celebrate his citizenship from this December.
We just love, love love living here, and the great people who call here home. For population 40, they sure keep us busy!

Our Hens Are Especially Active, Nowadays
We have a hen setting, and hopefully, any minute now, chicks! Good thing because I am tiring of cracking randomly every now and then a semi-formed egg into a bowl... well I guess we've got science covered for the day- can that broody hen just hatch her chicks already?!?

The Art I Had Mentioned Our Pips Had Been In, The Ethereal Work Of Tom Chambers, Is Published!
Here's some images from his To The Edge series, inspired by his trip to Iceland:
Tom Chambers Photography
Tom Chambers Photography
Tom Chambers Photography
Tom Chambers Photography
Tom Chambers Photography
Tom Chambers Photography
If you can't catch his art in London Miami NYC et al, you can do so online:
Tom Chambers Photography

Reading Club:
  • There's a fight brewing over who profits from solar power mojo.ly/1JfYVfE 
  • MT @ieeesmartgrid: Microgrids are going mainstream, according to @Forbes: onforb.es/1bjuN4D
  • Scythe crushes Weedwacker, lawnmower in grass-cutting competition bit.ly/1DQ9GR6
  • Great article on Earth Day, then and now: plus.google.com/10979326918975
  • And for those of you, like I, who ADORE pimento cheese:

After all this excitement, I'm calling it an early night at the off grid passive solar prefab house! Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz...
'Night, y'all.

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4/20/15

A Quieter, Rainy Off Grid Week At The Passive Solar Prefab House... With A New Prefab Project Announced.

It Was A Quieter, Rainy Off Grid Week At The Passive Solar Prefab House...
Awww who are we kidding, when are we quiet over here. 



I'm excited to announce another passive solar prefab house project underway, a Dogtrot Mod prefab house from Green Cabin Kits​, another prefab project in the northeast!  This prefab project, due for fabrication in July, will go quickly.  The design documents should go to engineering this week to ensure it meets local code, then fabrication of the SIP (structural insulated panels) is coordinated with the contractor to ensure they arrive when he needs them. The contractor aims to document the project in depth so it will be fun to follow; I will keep you posted!

Meanwhile, at OUR off grid prefab home...
It's that time of year where I turn off the HRV and throw open the off grid modern prefab house's windows. The air is delicious! The redbuds, dogwood, and quince are blooming!

It's also that time of year where I amuse myself talkin' trash to Toms. They'll gobble from the woods, I'll run out the front door of the prefab and trash talk right back. It's fun. #AmusesSelfEasily

With the 150th commemoration of Appomattox over, you'd think we'd be exhausted, but no, we all have spring fever and that means lots of play!
The temperatures were perfect for al fresco dining.
What al fresco looks like at the #offgrid #prefab...
(And y'all think it's quiet in the country.)

There was lots of rain, but that didn't stop us from embracing fun... and plus our cistern is full!
Again.

Rain? What rain. We LAUGH at rain. We canter in rain. Take that, rain... #DoWeLookLikeGirlsWhoMelt?

Ha. So there.
With all the rain, the tree frogs sing loudly about the modern prefab house. It is lovely. I wonder if we're becoming Seattle. Or Portland. Or... oh. The frogs are telling me to shush and let them sing.
Sing it, y'all...!


So... a few weeks ago, an Amish friend mentioned she is making "Kraft cheese" which then led to a lively discussion on how certain things she's making (like Kraft cheese) ironically originate from really bad Non-Food from we English.

As a joke, when I came over to visit I thought I'd bring her some real Kraft "cheese," wrapped in plastic and having sat in my purse in the hot sun while the farrier came.
As you might imagine she was absolutely delighted (not)!

As I took my leave, she gifted US with some of HER (homemade) Kraft cheese.
I definitely think my family came out ahead on the gift giving...!

We headed into the city for our friend, architect, food activist, permaculture gal, and artist Lisa Taranto's art opening at Eric Schindler Gallery. Have a look!
The art of Lisa Taranto available
at Eric Schindler Gallery.
I love the way the light shines through these botanical watercolors...

So... Anyhoo. Back in the Country, Handsome Husband picked up a stack of Readers Digest books, a series of Today's Best Nonfiction.  I scanned them- "Oh, great! D Day! The Roosevelts!..." My heart warmed as I saw Pip 1 deep in them, and happily I asked,
"So, whatcha reading?"
"KINGS OF COCAINE! IT'S *AWESOME!* They're an immense network of criminals who make BILLIONS of dollars in the seventies!"
SMH
(that means "shakes mah head" if y'all don't know internet speak!)

Reading Club:

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4/13/15

Off Grid Modern Prefab House Commemorates Appomattox.

At the off grid modern prefab house, we were inundated with guests! Heck yes it was fun.
 The plan was to have everyone camp on our field; the reality of ongoing dangerous lightning storms pushed us all inside. 
Somehow, I found beds for everyone, and it was one big slumber party in the small footprint modern prefab house!

We might be small footprint, but we are livin' large.
Here's some pics of the Modern Off Grid Prefab House's Interior - We cleaned up a tad for the 150th guests but still live happily messily... Our modern prefab house is not a showcase but a home, y'all.
FYI- Here's why you rarely see shots of the children's bedrooms:
1. They're still not finished, since we're using them to cram as many guests in as possible vs. looking chic (cramming large numbers of weekend guests into a bedroom is much more fun than looking chic, no?)
2. We live in a prefab home. It's a home: a laughter-filled, dogs in beds, cat on your stomach, stuffed animals, muck tracked in from the backyard, Virginia clay strewn all over the floor daily kinda home.

Prefab House Updates:
Next week I should have updates on the Modified R1 Residential modern prefab house in the Northwest as it finally winds through planning. I will also be introducing a new project, a Dogtrot Mod prefab cabin house in the Northeast.

We experienced firsthand our nation's sesquicentennial.
Even when we were not in the thick of history in Appomattox, it was so wild to hear cannon fire in my own backyard! 

150 years ago, Appomattox did so much to heal re-United States.
It is clear our nation needs healing and unlike prior commemorations, to me, Appomattox at the 150th was about all of us and who we were, are, and will be. We all depend upon another. Community local, and as a nation. WE NEED EACH OTHER.

We, and the nation, discovered Hannah Reynolds.

4,600 lanterns lit for the 4,600 slaves in Appomattox.
Hard tack.
Parole slips are printed.


WSET.com - ABC13
If you ever have an opportunity to attend the annual Appomattox 1865 Foundation Lantern Tour, DO IT.
WSET.com - ABC13
And here, we meet Hannah.
Hannah tells her story.
(We were so honored when we, after, met "Hannah," the mortally wounded slave who died free.)
We got to meet "Hannah!"
Footsteps To Freedom
"The National Park Service and the Carver-Price Legacy Museum have partnered to create this program that invites us to think about emancipation as one of the significant outcomes of the war. Unlike the theoretical ideas that inspired the Emancipation Proclamation, Lee’s surrender led to Emancipation Realized.
...
Hannah Reynolds was the only civilian casualty of the fighting which occurred around the village on the morning of April 9, 1865. She was an enslaved woman who was mortally wounded just hours before Gen. Lee surrendered. Ms. Reynolds died from her wound on April 12. This ceremony will take the form of her funeral, including a horse drawn hearse, pallbearers, and a choir. This service will provide the opportunity to eulogize her life and the institution that died with her. The program will end with the hearse rolling in the direction of her home, along the Stage Road through the village, and the lighting of 4,600 luminaries representing each person emancipated in Appomattox as a result of the surrender."

150 Years Later, Civil War's Lessons Resound.
The 150th was about all of us, and who we were, are, and will be. We all *must* depend upon another. Lift up.
Homeschool:
We're pretty much done with school, we try to be done by the last week of March. Now we finish our annual tests. It's really important to have a quiet, undisturbed place to test...
'Cause, you know, it's always so quiet in the country...

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