Working hard or hardly working?

A week ago, Mark turned in our heavily revised building permit with the blessing of our local building inspector. This is a LONG time coming after our county changed inspectors and the new one wasn’t familiar with our plans. Mark had spent so much time in private meetings with the previous inspector discussing our options and what some best practices would be that would help us meet code approval in our county. Things were great! But then a new inspector came in and, without knowing anything about our previous discussions, said he wouldn’t approve it without an engineer’s stamp.

Everything came screeching TO. A. HALT.

Cue several weeks of calling engineer after engineer for advice, assistance, etc. and not really getting anywhere. After much frustration, Mark set up a time to meet with the new inspector and go over everything he’d done with the previous guy. Long story short, Mark is awesome and got the inspector to see how much research and knowledge had gone into our plans. He offered up a few changes that would help it gain approval without a stamp and gave us the go-ahead to put in our application. In that week’s time, he came back with some additional information we need to provide to gain approval — precise window dimensions and placement, stair tread height, fire alarm placement, things like that which aren’t immediately clear in our plans. So we’re still working on it but we’re so much closer than before!

One nifty thing to come out of their discussion is that someone else in our county is talking to the inspector about doing something similar to what we’re doing but with straw-bale instead of cordwood. So cool to know that someone else in our area is working towards green building like we are! Makes me feel a little less alone…not that we know who it is, of course. Let me know if you’re our mystery green builder in northern KY!


Well, we know we’re going to be doing a lot of work sooner or later and that we’ll need a place to put all of our tools. The little camper is nice for our rakes and shovels but not for the big stuff we’ll be bringing out, so we got a good deal on a shed off the lot at a feed and tack store near us. Got it delivered today!


Eventually, this little guy will either continue to be used as a tool shed, or it might move closer to the house to become housing for our battery bank, inverter, and charge controller for our off-grid solar system. Not sure on that one yet.

The window of time for the shed delivery was 10:00-12:00, and being all by myself I brought some things to work on (mostly lesson planning and grading) but I DID take a little time out to do something I’ve wanted to do for a long time:


Play my flute in the wide open spaces of our own property! The neighbors are all pretty far away, but if any of them could hear me today, I hope they enjoyed some scales and Anderson etudes. The hills were very much alive with the sound of music! *ba dum chh*

Of course, I’ll need a house to practice in eventually, so after the permit is in, we have to gain the materials and solidify the timing for our:

*Concrete piers

*Concrete slab

*In-slab radiant heat tubing


*Framing materials delivery and assembly

Once the frame and roof are up, the cordwood wall assembly can begin! Of course, we’re heading into the cold months so the weather will certainly have an impact on how fast we can go, but at this point at least we CAN move.

Onward and upward!

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