January 9, 2014

Creeping Solo Farm Might Be More Accurate, But There Is Progress...

As any of you out there who have built a farm know, it is so much more than just building.  Even when you have the land, you've barely begun.  At the beginning of this project, I knew that, but at the same time, I didn't KNOW.  No matter how good your builder or contractor is, no matter how long you spent getting zoning permits, building permits, septic permits, well permits, no matter how many maps and diagrams and spreadsheets you put together, you still have to BE THERE.  This tends to clash with my boss' idea that I should be THERE.

Seriously, they were going to throw all this away!!! o.o
It would be wonderful to have a handy extra free person to handle things while I am catching up on work (mail order bride?) but even then, it takes my eyes to identify spots in need of repair (construction is messy!) or an incorrect installation or get the massive amount of very valuable lumber out the dumpster (hey, I paid for it, I'll dive for it!).  It takes me to personally stake out and line level exactly where I want the run-in to be and to catch any attempts to put things where they are NOT supposed to be.

All of this is enough to exhaust anyone, but add on top selling my current home, trying to occasionally make sure my horses are still alive, arguing with my stupid health insurance company (don't even ask), and oh yeah, my truck did a weird thing the other day, misfiring on a couple cylinders.  Perfect timing.  Although it's behaving for now and better continue to do so.

In short, a person had better be ready to pour their heart, soul, stubbornness, and hope in on top of every other resource you have.  I committed to building the farm after a massive personal loss, which stole a future in a way I didn't even know was possible.  So as crazy and risky and stressful and difficult as it is, this farm is my leap of faith in an attempt to build a new future.  All of the greatest things and experiences in my life that I treasure most have come with great risk and many moments of doubt.  But I don't regret a single one.

I may land in a worn out heap on the other side of the abyss, but here I am mid-jump anyway, with blind trust that there IS an other side. 
You can click pics to embiggen.
Front porch in progress:  Step 1

Front porch:  Step 2, although there's a bit of a safety issue.

Front porch:  Accomplished!!!  Now bring the rest of my shutters!
It's all ready for power...
And dinner parties...

And beer on the porch!
You can just see the next-door trainer's barns, looking over my riding field.
Hey, it is awesome.  And it gets installed Friday.  Don't envy my grafix skillz.
And the best part...ONE of the views out of the master bedroom.
I can't believe I almost forgot this last picture...thanks to an awesome Xmas gift, the welcome mat is ready to welcome.


  1. I don't understand how anyone ever successfully sells or buys property -- so many hoops to jump through! so much that can go wrong! -- let alone building their own. But it's starting to look pretty great from these pictures. Kick on!

  2. 1) House looks amazing! You have got to be so proud! Love that kitchen with the dark cabinets and the front porch is adorable. And you can't beat that scenery, which is only going to be improved upon when the horsies arrive and the grass turns green. It's going to be gorgeous.
    2) I applaud you for taking a shitty situation (the same one that you mentioned on my blog, once, maybe? if so, you rank up there as one of the strongest people I know) and turning it into an opportunity. Most of us would just wallow for a few years.

  3. O.M.G - it's beautiful! Shedding some happy tears...and sad tears that I still haven't seen it yet. Alien baby is slowly easing up on me, so I hope to be a semi-functional social person again someday soon. Pease invite me over? Yes, I'm that rude. :) I miss you guys! I'm so so happy for you though!

  4. It's looking good! I've built two places now and totally understand your pain with how LONG it all seems to take and how everything seems to get delayed for the lamest excuses ever! I got lucky with both of mine though. During the build of my first place, I got laid off from work! OK, so there was panic about finding a job, BUT I did have time to be at the farm to harass my builder and get stuff done! We set the house (modular like yours) in February and I got in there in May, got the poles set for the barn that Labor day and had lights and running water in my little barn Thanksgiving (got a job in June).
    With the second one, we closed on the property Nov of 2008, we moved in July of 2011, I got shelter for the horses January of 2012. We (Ben) acted as general contractor and scheduled all the subcontractors and did the purchasing etc and we did a TON of the interior work ourselves but it's all either time or money, or mostly time AND money, and after a while you just write the check, eat the Ramen noodles and figure if it all falls apart you can just live like a gypsy with your horses and dog. OH, hey would you be interested in a FREE used 6x6 Rubbermaid shed? it's not much but might keep a few things dry!

  5. Also, I can't remember- are you planning to go to Southern Pines? I just put it down as my first event of the year, it'd be cool to see you go if your'e competing!

  6. I love Paint. ROFL But in all seriousness, the house *is* looking awesome!

  7. Love your porch addition! Your home is beautiful and so are the views - they are the favorite thing about my home. My bedroom window looks right to the horses paddocks.

    I can't even imagine how hard it is, buying a turn key farm came with enough hiccups. It will be more than worth it in the end for you though!

  8. Thank you so much for the kind comments, the support means a lot!!!!

    Whitney, sent you an email!

    Amber, you are always welcome. Knock some sense into that alien and tell it to bugger off already!

    Alchemy, I'd love to, but at this point, I'm not even sure if I'll have breakfast in March, LOL!

  9. I love it. Can I move in with you?

    I guess that would be a long commute. Oh well.

    So happy for you and excited about this. It's gorgeous and it's going to be great.

  10. Love the reno/build, but please please please pleaseplease do more paint pictures of what your property will look like in the future :D

  11. Wow!! Things are really coming together. The house looks gorgeous. :)

  12. The house looks great - the views are divine. Happy for you!

    And that pile of lumber looks very familiar. I'm looking at a stack of recycled pallets and lumber waiting to turn into a chicken coop as soon as my arm is 100%.

    Around here we call it sca-venging, accent on -venging.

  13. Hahhaha, SB, sure if you pay rent, but I'm not sure the top field is long enough to land a jet.

    So, L Williams, you are saying you would like to see my site plan which includes galloping stick horses???

    CFS, I hope your arm is better quickly -- it is funny how quickly you turn into a pallet hoarder. I need a whole 'nother shed just to put my dumpster goodies in (there is nice metal flashing, plastic tubing, and shingles too!).

  14. Holy crap - just noticed your welcome mat. My bf gave me exactly the same mat as a Xmas present day before yesterday! (except is says Edgewood Farm obviously)

  15. After just watching my parents put just a basic addition on a house (no plumming) I can't even fathom how exhausted you must be doing all of that and so much more. I have always always been envious of you in that you have your shit together so much more than so many people our age, me especially! You are SO close to living your dream! You can do this. And we're right there with you in spirit. :) Fly on, Team. Fly on.

  16. CFS, we are twinsies!!

    Hugs, SP. Your encouragement means so much. If it makes you feel any better, I am actually a flaming hot mess, so I suppose it is a good thing that my attempts to occasionally appear to be a functional human are working! :o

  17. I am so absolutely happy for you! Seeing your farm come together has got to be amazing. I will be doing the same in about 7 years after I retire to the Navy. I have a farm now but buying an already done one and building your own aren't the same. Can't wait to see the next step.