Friday, June 10, 2011

Considerations and a Success

I love where I live. We consider moving all the time because our house is rather small and we would like more land, but really, where we live is just so nice. We are surrounded by woods and farm fields on three sides. On our street side we have great neighbors. We're in the country, but not far from Target! So, should we be unable to move, which it doesn't seem likely any time soon, I've been considering ways to make do with our little cottage.

I'm intrigued by tiny homes. Here's some links that have really encouraged me as the feathering mother bird of this little nest:

We really can't at this time expand the footprint of our home outwards, so our focus has to go up and down as inexpensively as possible. Our basement is only semi-usable as it tends to be damp and occasionally flood a little. I'm hoping that the installation of gutters (and water storage system) will help remedy that. Otherwise, how the basement is set up doesn't really allow for a bedroom down there. Hubby mentioned putting in a bathroom in the basement, but the need for plumbing a toilet would be costly. Then the thought struck me. Why not a composting toilet?! I'm going to look into it.

We have two bedrooms. The children are quickly outgrowing their room. We have two options, squeeze hubby and I's bed into the kids' room and give them ours. (Free) Or, an option more appealing to me, though it'll probably cost around $5,000 is turning our attic into a sleeping loft. There's no place for stairs in our little cottage and the attic ceiling isn't very tall, so it would be a ladder-access loft like in camping cabins. Thankfully, we're short people so we should be able to stand up straight up there. I haven't decided if it'll be a master bedroom suite up there or the boys' room. My oldest has already been asking to move his bed upstairs.

Those are the two pressing projects I'm researching now, but I'm also considering a summer kitchen. Our cottage doesn't allow for very good cross ventilation and the lower roof over the kitchen makes it hot in the summer. Turn on one stove burner and the whole kitchen is an oven while the rest of the house gets uncomfortable. I've been canning my produce on the gas grill's burner outside, but I keep going back to the idea of having a summer kitchen.

I'd also like to get a Vermont Bun Baker wood cook/heat stove for the basement for when the power goes out and those novelty days when I feel like cooking the old fashioned away.

Now, onto the success story. My daughter ate fruit this morning! Not exactly how I'd like it by actually consuming a piece of fresh fruit, but still an advancement. I had taken extra peach sauce I made yesterday and spread it out on the fruit leather tray for my dehydrator. I made "fruit roll ups." I rolled them up just like the commercial ones and thanks to my oldest's excitement at eating one, daughter gobbled hers up, too. After she ate it, I told her what it was made out of up, peaches, and I put a sticker on her chart to indicate that she ate peaches today. I'm going to make strawberry fruit roll ups today, but I'm not sure how she'll take that. She doesn't visually like the seeds in strawberries and shunned her slushy because of them.

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