Hi, I’m Chris.  My wife and I have built our dream home so to speak.  We’ve got a nice little 6 acre rectangle of Ohio all to ourselves. In an attempt to keep our sanity (you can’t keep it all bottled in or you’ll explode) we’re sharing our project and more (life at this point?) with you.  Who knows, you may learn from our mistakes.

Additionally, now that we’ve lived here for a while I’ll write on some loosely based tangent like raising bees, growing apple trees, traveling or whatever the mood strikes me to write about.  Usually nothing too heavy. Should be interesting as we go from house to home. Check in often or sign up for blog alerts, as I’ll try to post a couple of times a week unless I’m totally beat.

We’re both designers, artists and parents.  Two of the three are a breeze, the third one makes us drink a lot and makes our eye lids twitch uncontrollably every now and then.  Apparently there’s not enough stress and too much time and money in our lives (none of which is actually true), so we decided to build a house. The projects never end by the way.

The house employs several unique sustainable and energy-efficient products and features that hopefully will be more common place in the future.

Contact me with any questions on how we did something during the build or if you need a resource that I can recommend for you….a good place to eat, what kind of car to buy, what’s my favorite color….

Everything on my blog is mine, unless of course it’s someone elses.   I’ve made every effort to give credit where credit is due.  All of my photos and all the creative editorial content I created are copyrighted . Please ask permission before using anything from my blog.  Also I’m not necessarily an expert so don’t go doing something crazy and have it turn out badly and come crying to me.  Finally if you’re offended by me or anything I said, or you think I said, lighten up or maybe check out some other blogs that are more in sync with your world view.  For my sanity I’m sharing my stories, thoughts and ideas and if one person decides to build their dream house, or pursue a dream or save the planet or avoid a mistake then I achieved my mission of this blog.

I hope you enjoy.  Please tell friends and family.  Let’s all start building kick ass cool looking earth friendly houses and enjoying life to the fullest.



22 thoughts on “About

  1. I’ve researched them a bit. They’re big over in Europe. I’m convinced it’s the only way to go. We have one in our master site plan but I think we’ll go closer to the house with it than the landscape architect intended. Regardless it will be down the road. We’re way over budget as it is so most of the landscape including the pool is shelved until after we move in, then we’ll see. BioNova Natural Pool is one company I’ve contacted. Total Habitat is another company. Both companies are interested in our project. Choices in Ohio are non-existant but I know each company was willing to see what they could do for us. Total Habitat has DIY solutions all the way up to they’d travel and work with us on site to get the job done.

    Natural swimming pools are great because the mimic how nature (Biomimicry) filters and cleans water without the use of chemicals. These types of pools lookk 1000 times better in my opinion too. I’m pretty sure you can make them cement and pool “looking” too if you’re not into frogs, or rather want to see where the frogs are living while you swim 🙂

    Let me know how it goes and vice versa if we install one next year.



  2. Chris, we are looking into installing a Quadrafire Edge 60 pellet insert as well, and I notice that your interior chase for your fireplace is quite shallow– much less than the 30 inches that I thought was necessary for the depth of that unit. Do you have a chase or “dog house” on the exterior as well?


    • Yes. Look through the blog from about this time last year and or ill post up some pictures this week to revisit the topic. I have about 10″ outside, 10″ thick walls and then about 10″ inside. The chimney chase itself is only a 12″ in diameter.


      • OK, I see some descriptions and pics from 10/21 and 11/3 last year. Sounds like the “outside” portion is really the screened-in porch, which must be the reason you went with a chase rather than just a dog house. Thanks for the info. How have you liked the edge 60 so far?


    • Thanks. It looks a lot different than when we first walked the land. It was “leftover” land but it spoke to us. It’s a fine place to heal the mind, soul and spirit. We are very fortunate.


  3. Hi there – I love your blog, it’s been fun reading through your whole process! We are just starting to build a house ourselves. I had decided on the Silestone Grey Expo countertops quite awhile ago, and your pictures were part of that decision:) My question is I know the Grey Expo comes in “leather”, what kind did you get, the standard non-leather? I love the shinyness of yours an that’s what I want too……thanks so much!!


    • We have the standard finish. I’m not sure they had leather available then. The leather finish is hot right now, esp in glass countertops I believe. Given the choice I prefer the clean smooth standard finish. We love our countertops. Easy to clean and no worries about sealing or bacteria like granite or concrete. We wanted a cement color because we were originally going to do concrete counters. I also wanted a thicker edge but am fine with the standard edge we got. Our joints where the sides come down are butt joints – less sophisticated but a detail few will pick up on. Send me a pic once your counter is in if you’d like – would like to see.


      • Awesome, thanks! That’s exactly what I want anyways, and I agree on the clean smooth finish. We’re also doing a single bowl sink:) Good to hear you guys still love them too! That’s what I’m going for too the cement look. I love how much counter space you have, how it goes down the sides-it looks so cool, we aren’t able to do that unfortunately, but that’s ok I’m just glad we are able to get them period! Yes I will def. send a pic when done, won’t be til about May though. Have a great weekend!


  4. Hi Guys – Love the house color. Looking to do something simular in a house in Portland, OR. You stated two different colors in different posts. One says “Sealskin” and the other “Urbane Bronze”. Which did you actually end up using?


  5. Eric,

    We too are designing a cottage to be placed on Pelee Island. I have been taken by your elevation photos and although our cottage will be different, I would like to see the way that you laid out the interior. Is there any way that you could show me how your main floor is arranged?


    Dave Hertner

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Dave, basically at the left end, by the screen porch is an open space that serves as our living room, dining space and kitchen. All along the front elevation is a hallway, entry area. Far right is my art studio.

      We purposefully kept the plan fairly open and casual. The front windows are all meant for passive solar heating. You can see from one end of the house to the other, all along the front.



  6. Enjoyed reading your blog. We are doing the same thing down here out in Driftwood, TX. I have two roof washers like yours. A big one with two filters and a smaller one with one filter. Where are you getting your replacement filters? I can’t get a hold of the water filtration people in Ohio. Thanks! Do you know also know who sells new units like these still if i wanted to buy another? We have tons of trees!


    Liked by 1 person

    • I’ve only ever washed the elements in our roof washers. I did do a search on the internet and found basically the exact element. Our installer is local so I’d either contact him or search the internet. A quick search netted this result: http://store.rainbrothers.com/filter-for-precast-concrete-roof-washer/ – maybe check them out. I don’t know where you’d get a third roof washer, there’s gotta be a local dealer down in Texas. I don’t think my guy in Ohio would go down there lol. 🙂 We don’t have many trees, and our gutters have screen guards on them. That being said I should be cleaning my roof washers a lot more often then I do.


  7. Chris, we are in northern Ohio too and thinking of installing a standing seam roof in preweathered galvalume just like yours. Curious if you’d be willing to share more info and pics. Thanks in advance! Carrie

    Liked by 1 person

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