Wednesday, August 10, 2005

And so it begins...

After reading so many housebuilding journals and blogs out there that have inspired me to take on the task of building my own home, I finally decided I would do one myself.
A little background:
From the time I was an infant to about age 15, my family had a part ownership in large ranch in central CA as a vacation place. We'd go there every year for a few weeks in the summer to relax and have fun swimming, fishing, hunting, hiking, relaxing, catching frogs and dragonflies, making camp fires, and making some of the best memories I have as a kid.
A small river ran through it, and you had to drive through the river to get to the ranch houses. (some years this was an interesting adventure when the water got deeper than the built-up crossing) The river was dammed up in one place, which provided a fantastic swimming area. There were several old ranch houses, and we usually stayed in the large main house, an old thick-walled adobe home with an enormous screened-in covered porch that ran the length of the house. (it was also the most used "room"!) There were several bedrooms, a bathroom with a huge cast iron clawfoot tub, a large galley kitchen (with three old Servel propane refrigerators just outside in the screened-in covered entry), and even an outdoor canning kitchen, which my dad often used to work on a deer he'd shot if he was able.
There was no electricity, except when we fired up the old mind-numbingly loud diesel generator down the way. The house was wired with the old turn and "SNAP!" knobs for switches. Often, there were various cattle and horses wandering the pasture. Some years there were so many cows it was an adventure to avoid the cow pies that littered the roads.
This place deeply influenced my dream home ideas and also what recreation means to me.
More tomorrow. It's time to go to bed.

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