The following is a guest post from Kelley. Thanks again for sharing your story Kelley!
We’ve been building a 192 sq ft cabin with a sleeping loft and front and back porch right on our lake shore.
Our cabin sits on the shore line of a small lake in the woods just west outside if Columbus, Ohio. The building is 16’x12′ with 16′ ceilings, a 4′ front porch and 8′ back porch that overlooks the lake. The sleeping loft is 12’x8′ and has 2 full sized beds. The downstairs is complete with an open great room, kitchen with bar, and bathroom with a sink, standup shower, and composting toilet.
I am building this cabin myself with help from friends and we are slowly but surely making progress! Our cabin is off grid and powered by a gas generator and will have a water pump and filtration system with water being pulled from the lake. We also have a woodburning stove and are building a stone hearth, of course complete with a small flatscreen TV that hangs above the stove.
All of our windows and a lot of our building supplies have come from the Habitat for Humanity ReStore, as well as Craigslist! I am a single mom of 3 young children and we are building this together as a family while I am teaching my children what it means to work for something and then be able to enjoy your hard work when it’s completed. This project is a labor of love and serves as a getaway from busy city life and a place where we can just focus on being a family and enjoy what life is all about; complete with fishing off of our back porch!
We will utilize this cabin as a weekend getaway, which in turn has already made us appreciate our small home in Columbus, a home we were feeling was too small, but is greatly larger than our 192 sq ft cabin! Our 1,100 sq ft Columbus home is definitely more than enough and I even go as far as to say I think our 192 sq ft cabin feels even larger!
We are a “go-get-her” kinda family. Working hard together and inviting neighbors over along the way and throughout the process. Building small houses becomes a community event and that’s my favorite part about it!
I started this project when I became a single mom of 3; to give my 3 children and I an opportunity to begin starting over and moving forward. Throughout this process, we have more than moved forward, we have grown closer as a now family of 4 and have empowered ourselves by learning how to do things we never thought we could ever do, such as my 6 year old can help frame walls, my 3 year old can help paint, and my 2 year old loves to help clean.
Me, well I’m learning being a single parent doesn’t limit me and my abilities AND I can build a cabin! I am creating a very special space for my family and I, a space we built together, created so many memories together, and will have around to enjoy as a family for years to come.
Inspiring story! AND nice little cabin–virtual high five for all that you’re doing and hope you find more of the rewards of such efforts. I’m sure your kids will take away great memories and values from this. Great that you made them a part of the project. I hope others will follow your example.