Green Modern Kits brings affordable prefab house kits to you!

Prefab Green Homes: Passive Solar House Kits from Green Modern Kits!

Our family's passive solar zero energy off grid house kit construction blog.
See affordable prefab house kits at / and


Modern Prefab Cabin Modifies And Adjusts Small Footprints Without Sinking Into Architectural Gluttony

I thought y'all might enjoy seeing a modified version of our modern green prefab cabin, the Dogtrot Mod, with stairs and slight alterations to the small footprint home just for fun:
This would be for a larger family (hence more bedrooms) who desired a downstairs on a sloping lot. As you can see, the original footprint (in lighter shading) was extended to accommodate the extra bedrooms, and stairs added off them.  More on this later.

Here's our "as is" Dogtrot Mod modern prefab cabin:
In the meantime, thinking on underground space, I ran across this article from 2012 detailing how katrillion-aires are, like moths in sweaters, eating into London's landscape. It's a classic tale of small footprint architecture nestled in historic neighborhoods invaded by gaudy greed. It's a fascinating read on pitfalls of urban outdated zoning! Impacts on neighbors! Oh the architectural and community horror.

Have a look:
"But the planning authorities are not quite so enthusiastic. 'There may be some truth in saying that inserting a large concrete box beneath a house might stabilize it,' says Derek Taylor, head of development control at the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea (RBKC), and the man being faced with the barrage of ever-bolder basement dreams. 'But there is a counter argument, that if the neighboring buildings aren't also stabilised, then they might well part company from it.' 
This is precisely what happened, to residents' dismay, in Kensington's Palace Gardens Terrace this summer, when Goldman Sachs boss Christoph Stanger started digging beneath his £7m property to create a playroom for his children. 
After initial excavations, the house began to subside, pulling its neighbours down with it. Cracks appeared within the adjacent basements, and the facades sunk to such an extent that door frames shifted and people were trapped inside."
We spent another week in our beloved 150+ year old Ramshackle.
Boy she's a mess. And because we've been so busy, I have yet to clean her!
But every year, we do one more thing to stabilize and strengthen our sweet grand gal.
We sailed through another year volunteering for Junior Week, teaching the littles how to sail and become pirates. But it was not without bumps! Two days before the Junior Week craziness began, Pip 2 discovered that thanks to alpha-gal triggered mast cell issues that... she was allergic to salt water.

Well, never underestimate the Counselor Who Teaches Knots.
Don't forget the importance of The Counselor Who Sits On The Dock And Yells "TILLER TOWARDS TROUBLE!" to the littles as they swerve and scream and sway in their boats, learning how they work.
"Ommmmm they will not crash,
ommmmm they will not crash..."

There was the ALWAYS needed and valued I'll-Take-You-To-The-Bathroom Counselor.
So albeit not able to get in the water, Pip 2 had skillz! We hope Pip 2's body is more healed by next year. But happy for her that she was still able to participate despite such obstacles.
I love that the Pips work with the littles. It's learning for them, too.
Great job, Pips, on another year turning littles into pirates, done.
Also deep thanks and kudos to The A's, who, without their years of coaching patience and expertise, the Beginner 1 class would not be possible.
When I came up in the Junior Sailing program here, we thought we were big. We never would have dreamed the program would be THIS big! Go pirate sailors, next generation!!!
That's a lotta sailors!
With the crazy, exhausting, rewarding week of Junior Week 2017 finally finished, we took a break. *Whew* it was nice to sit down. I sipped an ice tea and had lunch after Junior Week ended at 12...
...then at 1, the Development Sailing Team summer of sailing began.

Nothing like finishing Junior Week to head right into regattas! 
But I did goof off.
After everyone was rigged and ready, I might have snuck off to the Deltaville Farmers Market...
because there's nothing like Tidewater Oyster Farm's oysters and homemade lemonade (and limeade!) for breakfast.
You can't go wrong with delicious oysters at
a bar made out of a salvaged Chesapeake Bay deadrise.

After a beautiful day hopping between the regatta and pool and bay, we finished with dinner with The H's.

But as always with we Casatis, duty calls, no matter the hour: and so, we had to abruptly leave a delightful dinner party and dancing for a bit of snake-handling.
Some people ghost; we snake.

Have a good week.

Labels: , , , , , , , , ,



From A Passive Solar Modern Prefab House To A 150+ Year Old Ramshackle, And Back.

We traveled from the passive solar modern prefab house on the land, to the 150+ year old Ramshackle on the bay, and back.

The summer of back and forth has begun.

The drive down was adventuresome.
Not one car broke down...
but two.

Yet somehow we managed to move twelve chickens, two children, three mastiffs, and A HORSE to the old Ramshackle on the bay. Now we go forth and back, and back and forth, with just the dogs and children. We sail, then sail off grid in our modern prefab house, to... and fro.
"Oh great she's got that vacuum cleaner out."

From top to bottom, I am scrubbing!

The first days on the bay are not fun. The Old Ramshackle needs to be deeply scrubbed and dusted and fogged for any mold- we are an extremely allergic family, and even though "normal" guests can't smell a thing (which is good news!), we need to make sure any mold spore is gone.

Thankfully, the energy efficient improvements we made on The Ramshackle last summer have helped immensely, especially the convection wall heaters!

Also: I would like to deeply thank my friends who told me I was not crazy about dragging our horse to the bay and helped me to make Camp Cornbread happen when it was clear Pip 2 could not be on the sailing team this year due to her medical issues.

When her anxiety starts rising, we head out to brush him. As she lunges Cornbread, she gets her own head back on. Panic attacks wane as she works on her project horse. She leaves her horse happy and my little girl again.
#AlphaGal #HighHistamine #MastCell #FoodAllergies #EquineTherapy
 When she's feeling well, she even has her first job as an exercise rider for another horse! She is thrilled.

We all know this family is about reuse.
Heck I even caught Pip 1 walking around with a found trash bag as a belt this week, OH YES I DID.
"Where'd you get that belt, kid? Wait. WHAT is that belt???"

Whether in the city, on the land, or sailing the bay, I also enjoy repurposing and reuse by thrift shopping.
I appreciate reusing things that otherwise would be discarded- a shovel, kitchen gadgets, plates...

I have a soft spot for thrown away hand-made items that later generations dismiss, especially cross-stitch. Anytime I see a cross-stitch tossed into a thrift store, I usually buy it. I picture a long-ago woman lovingly creating it and say, "Oh you poor dear, you can come home with us, I"ll give you a nice place on the wall somewhere!"

I don't even like cross-stitch.
But by golly, it has a home, even in our modern house.

Yesterday, bored and on a break from cleaning the house, I found in a thrift store eleven green plates with flowers on them. Hand painted morning glories and passion vine wound about the plates, with some metallic touches...

"Hmmmmmmm THESE LOOK LIKE OLD LADY PLATES. I'll take them home, the poor dears! I can serve Old Lady Food on them! Avocados with dressing, cold meat salads, aspic, chilled chicken with iceberg lettuce wedges and blue cheese dressing... these'll be my Lady Lunch Plates, how fun!"

I thought of a careful, feminine woman long ago, whose ungrateful "These Don't Look Like West Elm" grandchildren were cleaning out her storage and tossing them away. Even the thrift store didn't like them, they were 50¢ apiece! So I threw 'em in my basket and dragged them home, muttering as I always do when I pick up (more) china and cross-stitch: "Handsome Husband's gonna kill me..."

As I washed the grime off, they began to sparkle. "What's your story?" I wondered. So I looked up the mark on the internet, and lo and behold those dinky plates are A HUNDRED AND FIFTY YEARS OLD from ENGLAND. That tacky metal was GOLD.
Imagine their stories! I hope to enjoy many more stories with them.

What's the elevation here?
Hey, Did Y'all Hear? The President Called The Mayor of Nearby Tangier Island!
"Most of low-lying Tangier, with a population of about 450, is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Because of the isolation, many residents have retained the linguistic traces of the island’s primarily English settlers who first arrived in the 17th century.

The island is also sinking from erosion and rising sea levels, and scientists predict that residents may have to abandon it within 25 to 50 years.
'He said not to worry about sea-level rise,' Eskridge said. 'He said, ‘Your island has been there for hundreds of years, and I believe your island will be there for hundreds more.’'”

It also bemuses me to no end that my fellow residents on the bay who are usually so fiscally careful think nothing about demanding millions of dollars in infrastructure to build "public water" here (at $50+ a month, clearly not affordable to the rest of the community whose average household income is less than $35,000) yet never mention the word

nor rising seas...

By the way, in looking for something else, I came across some early pictures of the prefab house people might enjoy- it really shows the "kit" of when we just had the slab, SIP (structural insulated panels), windows / doors, and cladding:
View from the kitchen area towards east.

Reading Club:

Labels: , , , ,



A Passive Solar Prefab Readies For Back And Forth

At the off grid prefab house, we ready for the season of Back And Forth (and Forth And Back): we are busy picking peaches, blueberries, watching after a new baby chick, packing, splitting wood, and feverish with activity and organization as we prepare to go back and forth to the bay!
First blueberry of the season!

A post shared by Green Modern Kits (@offgridprefab) on
At least it's quiet in the country...
Dark. The moon has risen, we are all settled in at the modern off grid prefab house.

I'm halfway through a Netflix episode when I hear a "...thump... thump thump... thump...thump thump thump!" from the coop. I yell for Pip 1 and a dog, go outside, Pip 1 heads into the run, lifts the coop roof and: a HUGE A$* BLACK RACER is thrashing around, mouth open, with two momma hens on top of him pecking and the little baby chick almost in his mouth!

In unison, "AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!" and Pip 1 lifts it out, I'm running for a paper bag, no box, no DAG IT WHAT CAN I PUT HIM IN while the snake is writhing angrily in Pip 1's uplifted hands as he runs, he starts to drop it, the dogs swoop in, Pip 2 grabs it as I yell to the dogs to "LEAVE IT!" as Pip 2 now has a seriously furious snake and I'm running in the house trying to find bags and car keys and we all load ourselves, snake twisting and striking, into the car like clowns and drive off to the edge of a pasture to be freed.

A quiet moment as we now all sink into the car seats, fasten the seat buckles, and slowly pull away, back down the drive, relaxing and glad the ruckus is over.

As we park, the dogs bound up to the car, escort us to the house, when suddenly their attention turns... and off they go. I enter the house, toss my car keys down, and wearily sink into my seat to resume my show when... a scent wafts in through all the open windows.

And I frantically start calling the dogs back in as Pip 2 and 1 run through the house whirring the windows closed. Pip 2: "MAMMAL! MAMMAL! AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA my ALPHA GAL!!!! IT's MAMMAL IN THE AIR!!!"

Anyhoo, how are y'all?


I let a few minutes pass.
Pip 2 has run to my bedroom where mammal skunk atoms seem to have not hit and is gasping for non-contaminated air.
Carefully, I open the windows: a fresh breeze.
"Ok everyone! It's safe! You won't react now! Open the windows!"

I sit back down and press "play" on Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. It's the one where Titus is dreaming about Dionne Warwick. In the black night, I hear a "...thump. Thump... thump thump th..."

"YOU HAVE GOT TO BE KIDDING ME. PIP 1 GET OVER HERE NOW!" and out we go with the dogs to the coop, a gun, a machete, a flashlight... that dies. I turn on the flashlight app on the phone.

We liiiiiiift the coop roof... and there is A LONGER, ANGRIER SNAKE who is almost done strangling Momma 2. Her beak is open, her eyes glazed, Pip 1 swoops down and UNWRAPS the snake from her neck.

I yell to Pip 2, "GET MY CAR KEYS!" and off we go. Pip 1 is sitting in the back of the car trunk wrestling with this long-ass snake. I'm careening down the road. "MOM!" "WHAT?" "STOP THE CAR." "WHAT?!?" "STOP THE CAR IT'S... AAAAAAAAA..." So I stop the car. Pip 1 is now wrestling with the snake on the asphalt trying to get a better grip. Lo and behold we are in front of The W's porch and they are enjoying the quiet of a beautiful country evening.
They take in the sight of Pip 1 wrassling with a huge thrashing snake on the pavement.
They tip their glasses, "Evening..."
"Evening..." we pause, and politely nod back.

Pip 1 now has a firm grasp on the battered, hissing reptile, hops back in to the open car trunk, snake writhing, and off to the cow pasture we go for Snake 2 to rejoin its mate.

And thus, another quiet evening in the country ended.

Labels: , , ,


Newer Prefab House Posts         Older Prefab House Kit Posts