On this beautiful autumn day, I am sitting on my bed, looking out my window, past my Hills Hoist (which I am still calling a work of art!) and towards our forest and the hills to their right. I still can’t get over this new life I am living. Before hanging up my washing I stood at my HH looking around my property. I looked up the hill where our strawbale home will be. I looked down the hill, where we will put a dam and trees and cows. I looked at this cabin, which is really quite unsightly, and the bus, which I hate, and instead of feeling deflated, I felt happy, because soon we will build a massive shed there. We are actually beginning to make our mark on this place.
We are really excited about our house design. We have spent months – no, years – designing our dream home. We have spent some intensive time over the past few days though, fine tuning the plan. A lot of our original ideas and designs are coming back into the plan – even if by accident! For example, we wanted to make most of the rooms orient north, so we moved the kitchen to the south. In so doing, we got all the wet rooms close together, which was something that was originally important to us (and something that the architect changed). It will be strawbale with a mud brick feature wall, upon which will sit a fireplace. The mud brick wall will store and radiate the heat. 85% of our windows will face north, as this is recommended for homes in Tassie. Monte and I made lots of calculations and eventually got to this number. However, we are not losing out on south windows which showcase the view. I will be able to sit in bed and stare over the hills. The only thing we are losing in our plan is the 5th bedroom/study. We decided that, given both of us dream to work on the land not at the desk, a study is not essential. Besides, we have the cabin that we could work in, if all the bedrooms were being used by our children.
It is so exciting to have a dream and to do something about it. I don’t think I will ever regret what we are doing. Yes, it is hard living in this tiny place, but it is my home now so I cherish it. I am so glad that I am not living in Adelaide at present. The heatwave (biggest ever?) would drive me crazy. I couldn’t live somewhere that will experience massive water shortages in the next few years, when the Murray is left to dry up, and there are 1 million more people living in the city. I think about the effects of interest rate rises and depleting stocks of oil, and I know that we are doing the right thing. We are not alone though; we are meeting so many people from the mainland!