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The Family Builds Bryson's Earth Bag Bedroom | $4650 Total Cost for Expenses | Full Version Movie

The Family Builds Bryson's Earth Bag Bedroom  | $4650 Total Cost for Expenses | Full Version Movie
Bree: In 2005, our

family

moved from the conveniences of the city to the open spaces of the country Our original plan was to build a large home Welcome to our courtyard. Here is our

Earth

Bag

bedroom

s, my

family

and how our plans changed. We had talked about so many different things we were going to do Like build a house Gary: I wanted to put in a big house Gary: We experimented with ideas of log and steel Shelly: But as we lived out here longer, we started to meet some of the neighbors Shelly: They were explaining living with alternative building materials and living mortgage free Shelly: This idea that we would have several small structures Shelly: The main house which isn't too much of a main house. It's just a one

bedroom

, one bathroom house Shelly: And then build a

bedroom

for each of the kids around the backyard to make a courtyard Gary: A house with outdoor halls Shelly: We added lofts up into the house so the kids would at least have a space to sleep in until their rooms were built Bree: When we finally settled on doing these

earth

bag houses Bree: I admit even half way through it, I didn't think it was actually going to get done Bree: I was like, no, this can't be happening Bree: Until I moved in, it was just like "Wow, it's happening!" Garen: When we were doing the floor, it was me, Mom and Shae, I think, going through and putting all the paper down Garen: And Shae kept laying

full

squares of pink down Garen: For some reason she kept...
the family builds bryson s earth bag bedroom 4650 total cost for expenses full version movie
grabbing those out Garen: And they were all over the place Shae: It's cute that you think that was an accident Shelly: What's interesting about a round room is ...you know in your world, you step outside, you're not in a square Shae: It's really nice to have a break from that. It's easier on the eyes to walk into something that is more naturally built Shae: Then to walk into something that is very rigid and perfect

Bryson

: I wanted a deck on the top of the room for stargazing.

Bryson

: We went through a couple of designs and then we figured out this crazy eight idea

Bryson

: Where it would be the same amount of square footage as all the other rooms but it would also provide

Bryson

: two separate areas for stuff to be put in. Bree: We're breaking ground on

Bryson

's

Earth

Bag

Bedroom

Bree: The first thing we need to decide is where we're going to put it. Gary: If you were to see it from the house Gary: keeping with how this is swinging around Shelly: Are you going to have to take the laundry down? Gary: Well, maybe not Gary: If we move it over this way Shelly: We could just put it in

Bryson

's room and he could just automatically be the laundry guy. Gary: I like it.

Bryson

: I'm just going to lock my door. Bree: This clothesline is set low so we could help when we were small. Shelly: Sometimes it's hard to have kids help when their little 'cause it's just easier to do it yourself but it's really important to let them help...
the family builds bryson s earth bag bedroom 4650 total cost for expenses full version movie
because it allows them to feel like a valuable part of the

family

, Shelly: But I guess we could raise it now that you guys are taller But I kinda got used to it being short. Bree: The laundry lines are moved out of the way. The guys set a center stake and mark out a circle. Gary: Put your finger right there. Tip it down, and hold it straight up and down and walk. Gary: Alright! That's the inside. Bree:

Bryson

's room will be made up of two small circles, like a crazy eight. Gary: Gonna put our trough in.

Bryson

: We need a trench? Gary: We need a trench.

Bryson

: Alright. Shelly: Okay Shae, I got our chart here. The poles are 41 inches apart. Shae: Alright. Bree: We'll be using railroad ties for the doorways.

Bryson

: And then walk through here and then we have a little walkway through here. We'll have steps down and then we'll have this room here. Bree: The trench is cut in and leveled

Bryson

: So, what we are doing is we picked a spot which is our main level We can see from right here if we pull this up to the right level We got about two inches to go and this string will work its way all the way around the entire loop and we're taking these at about five foot increments so that when we lay down the bags, they will all be level. Bree: Once the posts are secure and the leveling done, a threshhold is constructed. Shae: Awwwwwww Bree: One circle will be lower so Dad sets up for the steps. Gary: Come out here to 45 to here to a 45 'til we get a step....
the family builds bryson s earth bag bedroom 4650 total cost for expenses full version movie
Then I'll build another step in. Five and a half inch risers and nine and a half inch treads.

Bryson

: We're putting cement in. Shae: I'm balancing this. There's absolutely no use to what I'm doing. Gary: First time we have ever put steps in.

Bryson

: Role this along, grab your bags off

Bryson

: Fold them inside out. Bree: We put down the first

earth

bag layer.

Bryson

: Hang on, I'm retrieving my flip flop. Shae: And then overtime they ask me to get into a car, I'd be like, "Why?"

Bryson

: Alright so we got a new tamper. 45 Buckaroonees. Shelly: Wow, it works good.

Bryson

: Really good. Shae: na, na, na, ooohh oh Bree: We're inviting some people over to help with our

earth

bag building. It's time to prepare. Bree: First, easy access to damp dirt Gary: Well, it's not like I forgot that Jeff was coming over. But, he was there early and I wasn't ready. So, I jumped out of bed, 'cause he just knocked on the door to get us some dirt for

Bryson

's building. Gary: We had laid out a circle for him to be able to pull the dirt from. Gary: What a time saver. You know the difference between a huge bucket on a tractor and a wheelbarrow and a shovel. Gary: Ya, it will all level out just fine. Gary: You did a great job. Gary: It's amazing what you can get with a few bucks and a case of beer. Jeff: I go then. Gary: I appreciate you. Shelly: Thank you. You are awesome. Jeff: I'll go back and make sure my couch didn't move...
anywhere. Bree: Next, installing the electrical wire and boxes. Shelly: Shae and

Bryson

and I had a goal that we would put in one layer of bags a day. and get up, I don't know, it's like a couple feet up to the point where the guys are going to be putting the electrical. Shelly: There were several evenings we decided we would just wait 'til the sun went down and we'd put up this big light and just went ahead and working into the evening Shelly: Are you guys out there? I can't see you.

Bryson

: Ah, yes Shae: ooooohhhhhh Shae: Our bag building just right down there. It's really scary, the fire is just right there On a hill not too far from here Shelly: We wanted to get the electrical in prior to the group of people coming over because we just didn't want to mess with that when everybody was over. Garen came in to help us. Garen: What universe have we ever been like everyone? Gary: Go ahead and put these boxes in. in strategic locations for the inside. and one for the out. Gary: We have to separate the wire with the barbed wire that we use to hold the bags. We're able to use these U shaped nails to be able to separate the two wires. Gary: The purpose is so we don't get an electrical short. Garen: It shorts out, it is going to be a bummer. Bree: The electric will be hooked up to the nearby solar system Shelly: The final step before the group of people came over which is getting one layer above the electrical. They broke up in two groups. Gary...
&

Bryson

and Shae & Garen. They raced to see who could finish the circle first. Shelly: Oooohh, nice boots Garen: Yeah! Shelly: Ooooh, watch the nails! Shae: They had a huge doorway in their bag circle. That they didn't have to bag.

Bryson

: But you know they always have to have the last word. Mainly 'cause they don't want to loose any of their "beefiness" or whatever. Shae: Are we doing okay?

Bryson

: But we

total

ly won. Garen: We just like crushed you.

Bryson

: We beat 'em like nobodies business Shae: Oh, we definitely won. We creamed them. Bree: We need several cleats. Gary: We have three different types of cleats that we use. We have the simple cleat that fits inside of the two bags. Then we have another cleat That fits up against a window. Then we have a third kind that we use. They have kinda an L shape. Shae: We made over 40 cleats. I can make mine really fast but

Bryson

he put like a bazillion nails in there.

Bryson

: And then when your done putting nails on this side, you flip it over so the nails stick up like this

Bryson

: When you're doing the cleats, you can put like 5 nails in it or like 20 and I was just putting mine in and I had them beauti

full

y Nice. In a row. Everything symmetrical, perfect. And Shae was just bam, bam, bam, done. Bam, bam, bam, done. Shae: 21 left. Shelly: Wow. Bree: 2x12 Window Frames are also needed. Gary: Found on craigslist a couple of great, brand new windows a 4x3 and a 2x2.

Cost

us $120 for both...
windows.

Bryson

: Windows, you know.

Bryson

: We'll be using these for the steps and window frames. 2x12s and 2x10s Gary: The size of a window is static, meaning it's usually a half of inch shorter so that it will set inside of a window frame. In our case, we could just make the frames 3x5, 3x4 and so on Gary: I use three 2x6s and just nailed them together as a big header. Shae: Why do these things have to be together? Gary: These are headers that go above the window. Help support the weight of the roof. So that we're not putting the weight of the roof over the top of the window itself. Bree: Steps are next. Gary: Okay, these are the threads for our stairs 2x10s They'll be nine and a half treads. Here, come with me. I'll show you how it goes on. It will all go up every two rows we're gonna have one step coming up and a circle going all the way up to there. Gary: Inside the walls, we of course ran nails up and ran nails down, similar to how we do our cleats. We chose to bring that out and let it just kinda free hang and maybe just a small, temporary post underneath of it. Shelly: We also are gonna have bottles prepared. We're gonna put in little bottle windows as the steps go up Bree: Lastly, a center pole is placed for measuring. Gary: We place a pole in the center of the building An inch and a half pipe that runs completely up about 9, 10 feet Now, we have a nice pole that runs through the center of the building to be able to gauge the circular bags...
as they go around. Bree: The lightning storms are bringing additional challenges.

Bryson

: This is what happens when it gets too wet. Water starts bubbling up the sides and it gets really slushy like you can't bag on top of that. It's jello. Gary:If that doesn't dry out, we're going to be in trouble.

Bryson

: My awesome room. Dah Dah Dah! You can see Dad by it. We put in the arch We're going to put up that arch there. We put in one step to go up to the top of that Bree: Our friends arrive to help build

Bryson

's building. However, immediately, we experience a problem. A storm hits the night before dropping two inches of rain. Bree: So Dad, what happened? Gary: We had a 2 inch rain and soaked our bags Gary: Trying to maneuver them around a little bit and we end up with half the wall collapses on one side. So we have to tear that all down. We have to go back to the foundation. and we have to start over.

Bryson

: Restarting at the foundation was a little discouraging. Bree: But the other one, the other circle's okay Dad? Gary: Yeah, the other circle is okay. Gary: So we start bagging as fast as we can so when people show up there's something to do when they get here. I think the night before, if there's a chance of rain, we're definitely going to put tarps on. Bree: I had this ingenious plan to split everyone up in teams. However, there's no way to evenly divide the work because the layers have to go up in sync. But, that's our little...
secret. Green Team mascot Shelly: Wow, lots of enthusiasm.

Bryson

: Oh yeah. Shae: Our friends, Esther, Andrew, Deborah and Peter came over to help us. It was so much fun to work with them. Bree: Faster than the speed of nature. If there is a speed in nature. Shelly: Do you know how slow nature is? Andrew: It's too slow that's what it is. Garen: We are the strength of the ocean. Bree: That's right. Shelly: Our favorite thing about building with

earth

bags is that all ages can participate Bree: Hello, coming in at ...we don't know. and team Blue

Bryson

: We are going to win. Bree: Are you feeling it? And then my, my home team right here. The Green Shelly: Are you guys the Yellow team? Yeah, but what do we get Mom? Shelly: It's a sign. Bree: Hello, little bug. Bree: We need to reinstall the electric Shae: Esther and I ducted tape the wheelbarrow wheel and it surprising worked for quite some time. Shelly: We used our arms to measure how long we wanted the bags. About 3 arms length. and we straighten out the barbed wire as much as we can. Our friend, Jackie helped me out. We cut it in sections using bolt cutters and then it was laid between the bags. Bree: The barbed wire springs into action and Jackie is in the line of fire. Gary: Some of my buddies from work showed up We had Scott, Alex, their son. Malcom was here Bree: Then our hero, Tom, shows up with Pizza! Bree: After lunch we fixed the wall that had fallen and were ready to go higher. Gary: Everything...
wasn't that so bad with all that rain. All that dirt now was a bit damp. That made packing the new stuff a lot easier. Shelly: It was pretty exciting to see that first window frame coming in to be placed. Bree: Whatcha doing Mom? Shelly: I am putting in the bottle lights for the steps.

Bryson

: Hello Camera. Gary: How are you doing Rick? I tell you, he really is a trooper. He came over and jumped up on that wall and just started working hard so thanks Rick! Gary: You haven't fallen off yet? Rick: No vertigo. Shelly: Is that rain? Bree: Over here you can see a storm is threatening But over here it's blue sky so you never know if we are going to get hit or not Gary: Some of us are desk job people. We are starting to slow down. Bree: We are over waist high in bags, 3 window frames are installed along with 4 steps. Bree: Having friends over to help build the

earth

bag walls is a real boost. We're half way to the top Let's take a look at the

cost

so far. Shelly: We are continuing our one layer a day and as we get higher, we'll have to back that down to about a half layer a day. Gary: We stayed pretty diligent on maintaining the distance from the center pole to the outside of the building.This is going to really help us when we get to the roof at the very top.

Bryson

: Okay, so we're not nailing the cleats in those until we get a little bit high so we can level the windows. Gary: That's a little different than we normally do. We normally nail those...
cleats in as we're going up. This time we're gonna wait until after done with the roof.

Bryson

: And the building has to settle to. Shelly: On the bags, we cut out about say a 15 foot length or so and then we turn them inside out. and then we have to be careful that as we lay them, the seams don't match up at the same places.

Bryson

: Our new addition to our farm. Shelly: After the kids get settled in their

bedroom

s, they get a pet. Garen's dog, Diesel, he just gets so excited. Shae: He's a little black lab and he's so playful. He gets into all the bags when we're trying to work. Shelly: Aw. Rolly. Shelly: Are you helping? Shelly: The puppy is pooped.

Bryson

: Play with the bag, a minute later, out.

Bryson

: Look how solid these things are. Amazing.

Bryson

: Point them to the center pole and we do every 2 bags Just enough for like one person you know. Like a normal step is longer. We cut it down in size. so it wouldn't take up most of the room Gary: We're using cleats inside the walls for hanging pictures Shelly: It's really hard to know exactly where gonna put those pictures so we put them everywhere.

Bryson

: I tuck the end like a paper airplane and then I'll step on that, curl it up and lay it on my leg. As they load in dirt, I just let it down. And then at the end, I'll fold it and set it down. Shelly: We put 2 quart jars together and then we tape them down with duct tape so they don't move around. until we get the bags laid...
over the top The jars will now create this natural lighting for each step. Shelly: I wonder if we are going to run out of barbs. Shae: We ended up using around a roll and a half of barbed wire. Shae: Wear jeans, it's advised. Shae: Probably $70 a roll. Shelly: Second roll.

Bryson

: We had to cover the bag building up from the rain. 'cause it was making it soggy. Gary: After the last problem with the rain, we tarp every time when we figure it's going to start raining. Gary: With the header, we level both sides so we get a nice box around the frame.

Bryson

: Are we going to lay a bag over the top of this? Gary: Several bags actually. Shelly: This is another place we added candy jars so that some of the morning light can come through. Shae: And wave them in the air like you just don't care. Shelly: As we get higher, we start to need more help to move that dirt up to the top. Bree got in there and helped us out. Bree: My dog, Max, came out and helped us out while we were working He went out on the top of the

earth

bags with us Bree: When your acrobats get you into places you don't want to be. Shelly: Oh, he passed the steps again. Bree: Oh, now I'm really scared. But I ended up having to go out and save him because he couldn't get back down. It wasn't as if there were stairs or anything. Bree: Hold onto your hats, 'cause it's about to get one. Gary: Because we have a circle, I wanted to put I wanted to put a design on top of it the roof...
that's somewhat circular. So we laid our joists on 2 foot centers, like your would a normal patio roof. Gary: We have 20 footers for the longest sections in the circle. Gary: Our jig that we are going to use The joists will run in this direction here for the rafters on the roof for that flat roof. and then we can adjust them up and down and then cleat them in. on both sides and then when the bags lean up against them, that will give them lateral strength this way. and then these get all pinned in on the top of the bags. Gary: We have straight lines running north and south and then we needed to have joists that go out perpendicular to the outside put on there with joist hangers to help support the weight. and then there were these little jacks that went off on a 45 from that. Shelly: So just when we think we are done bagging, we still have a little bit more bagging to do in between each of the rafters. The alternative to bagging is cobbing and that is not any fun to try to fill it with cob.

Bryson

: 50 pound tamp Shelly: Oh yeah, it's beautiful

Bryson

: And this entire area out here is all going to be the top decking. Gary: Since it's a deck we are going to be walking on I wanted like a 3/4 inch material or 7/8 material Gary: I need to do 2 bisections. Shelly: Gary can be working away and he just seems to know when it's time to slow down and teach the kids something. Gary: Two things, a square corner and bisecting, you can split this up into as many segments as...
you want to that are all equal. Gary: Pull up the plywood a little bit so we can make our cuts put our facia board on re-attach the plywood and we have a segmented roof up here that almost looks circular that's good

Bryson

: Put telescope stuff on there and even a bed maybe so we can sleep up there. Gary: As usual, we're trying something new. I'm not used to a roofing material that isn't like, asphalt or steel We went to a professional roofer and he suggested we us the 30 pound felt and 3 coats of snow roof.

Bryson

: Here's what we're doing. We are taking this microfiber and we're laying over the creases and we're covering it with the white roof coat. We ended up doing like 3 or 4 coats on there. Shelly: The

expenses

are low until we get to the roofing. That's when the

cost

starts to really add up. Bree: The front half of the building takes a creative shape Gary: It's more conical. Kind of a tilted cone to give enough room for the inside to have stairs. they run up alongside and a door that goes out to the flat roof.

Bryson

: These go up there for the door. Gary: The door requires 2 posts be installed on top of the flat roof.

Bryson

: This is really how high we gotta go all the way Gary: Then we can run the bags along the sides right up to those posts. There are now tall bags on one side of the roof and shorter bags on the other because we're stair stepping them up to allow for the cone shaped roof.

Bryson

: We old tent poles and double...
barbed to help strengthen the walls when they get really high. The platform is right at the top of the stairs so that we can open up a door up there and get out onto the main deck outside. Gary: It just glues it right on there so we don't have any problem with squeaking.

Bryson

: We use the same type of cleat system that we used on the other roof. Gary: We choose one of the door posts at the top of the other room to be kinda a center post.

Bryson

: Before we put the plywood on we're going to have to bag up all around the outside edges so that it's flush with the plywood. Booyah! We're closing in on the last little bit here in the very, very corner. It's right there and bagged all the way across here. and it makes it really nice. It closes in the whole section. It's pretty cool. The last bag we will probably ever put up. Right there. Gary:

Bryson

and I go brain dead. trying to get this facia on the outside of this cone shaped roof. There's a lot of compound angles and I'm making calculations errors. I got 2 facia boards up and we had to quit. Garen notices how frustrated I was and feels sorry for me so the next day, he's out there helping. He's helped us with the angles and bevels up here and its made a great difference this morning.

Bryson

: If it wasn't for him we'd all be doomed.

Bryson

: The sheeting up there is like a puzzle. It's so unique that we have to cut all these odd angles and we're doing angles, you know, when...
you have an angle this way and you have an angle that way. Anyway, these weird angles we keep cutting and phew, those are hard to figure out. Bree: We bought the wood for conical roof frame all in one shot. The

cost

? Gary: We're putting up a 6x6 porch

Bryson

: We got some posts instead of going down to the forest and chopping them down we bought them at the store. There really straight Gary: Unlike Bree's right? Bree has these skinny little things, there real strong. It's all mesquite wood but it's just a

total

ly different look. Next thing we do is get all the trim around the edges. The metal rain drip trim and then finish paper, then we're ready for the Ondura.

Bryson

: We went with the Ondura 'cause it's not as difficult to cut. It's suppose to last really long. Right now its been up to a about a year on Garens' room. And it seems to look the same as when we first put it on, actually. Gary: No fading

Bryson

: Yeah, no fading at all. Gary: So the product seems to be pretty solid. We're still not sure. Shelly: That's an interesting way to hammer. Gary: Painful, to watch.

Bryson

: Bam, bam, bam, done. Shae: While the guys worn the roof, me and Mom decided to start with the stucco. Gary: To prepare for the gals going around the corner there with the stucco. We need to have the windows complete so they can bring the stucco right up next to the trim. Gary: We built these particular frames where they are not attached to the bags or the...
header

Bryson

: We're not going to do these windows loose any more I don't think. Gary: No, we're not doing them loose anymore. Shae: They have the windows framed so we're going to start stuccoing at least one of these circles. We've decided on stucco because it holds up better in the rain. Shelly:

Bryson

was up tamping 2 rows up from the glass and to our shock, it cracked. Bree: I've found what we should put in there. Shelly: Oh my goodness. Shae: That's way too big. Shelly: We'll make it work. Shelly: Perfect fit. Bree: Look at that. Shelly: It's a perfect fit. Bree: How are we going to get that in there?

Bryson

: Wearing my glasses for protection of her eyes. Shelly: I got eye protection. I got "Bry" protections. Shae: It feels like the stucco goes really, really slow. Shelly: But we have been plugging away every day we do, you know, a couple batches Shae: I keep getting dropped on. Shelly: Part of educating our kids is to spend about an hour a day doing some sort of physical work. Gary: You know it's really important to have the kids complete something. There's nothing like finishing a project and having that sense of accomplishment. Shelly: One of the benefits of the

earth

bag buildings is that when they get done, they get a

bedroom

. Shae: We started looking back it and it looks like we've gone like super far so obviously now that we're in the lead, we're gonna make it a game and beat the boys. Shelly:Yep....
Gary: The idea that the ladies can beat us is a little unusual because we're really good and very fast. And the Ondura goes up real quick.

Bryson

: And we can hammer those nails like nobodies business. Bam, done. Gary: However, just to make them feel better, we ran out of materials.

Bryson

: Yeah. Garen: We can really slow them down

Bryson

is not to get the door done.

Bryson

: Oh, because they can't cob around the door 'til we're done. Bree: Mom and Shae are racing to get the stucco up before Dad and

Bryson

can finish the door and roof. but, before they can get out there the weather takes a turn for the worst. Shelly: Ut oh Shae, this may put a damper on our victory dance. Bree: Meanwhile

Bryson

and Dad are working inside.

Bryson

: We got a really good deal on a wooden door. Gary: We only paid about $75 bucks for the door on craigslist.

Bryson

: My friend Andrew came over and he helped out.

Bryson

: I'm gonna spray paint these bolts so they are black. And stick them in the holes, tighten them down, grind the tips off. The door had 48 bolts and nuts and washers.

Bryson

: There's a lot of washers. Gary: I had to build a frame for it.

Bryson

: Dad, it looks like you cut it right. Gary: Oh, well amazing that. Gary: Then assemble the door to the frame. Which means cutting in the joints for the hinges and and do some dado cuts and relieving, chiseling and then set the door inside there. Shae: We used cob for Bree's room but cob requires a roof protection Shelly:...
And also some sort of way of protecting it linseed oil or paint Shae: We decided to use stucco which doesn't wash away in the rain My friend, Esther, Esther: Hi Shae: Was so much fun to have her over here. Shae: You do it, I'll watch. I'm just going to have to invite her every time. Bree: We use 10 or so bags of cement. Bree: The gals are the clear winners 'cause the the ridge caps for the roof won't arrive until next week. Gary: We'd like to NOT admit that the ladies beat us because

Bryson

: Oh they didn't beat us Gary: That's not even fair. We didn't have all our stuff. It's still on order.

Bryson

: We didn't have all our materials. Shelly: Hey, but we won. Shae: We did win. Garen: The reason they lost was because Garen was not there. Shae: Oh Sure. Bree: Since we now know the roofing

cost

. Gary: This isn't the door we're going to be installing but we are going to be using this as a model. The door up above is a slanted door at the top.

Bryson

: We used 7 2x6 tongue and groove and we glued them together to make the door.

Bryson

: if I got up, this thing would go whoop.

Bryson

:We used bolts to hold all the tongue and groove boards together. Gary: Originally we had decided we wanted a round window. Two half windows as one. But we discovered that the width of the windows was just too much to take out of the center of the door. We'll go ahead and slide the windows this way and then turn it like this so that we have less of a...
width and we have enough room for the handle.

Bryson

: Following the line to cut it out. We're using that tool to do it. So we pre-drilled the hole there and are able to stick our blade in. Make sure the hole is on the inside of the line too. From there we are able to cut around the whole thing.

Bryson

: So let's go ahead and put it in. Gary: We're going to be using Butyl rubber and this is a typical window sealant. Instead of finding ways to clamp this into the window or screw it into the window like you would typically do. We're going to actually glue this little puppy in here with this Butyl rubber. Shelly: Did you notice

Bryson

is not with us? Gary: Decided to go off and go skiing

Bryson

: I love you guys! Gary: While it's drying, I devised a quick and easy system here. I'll do this on both sides. Then I can flip the door over and work on the other side. Gary: We hope that

Bryson

and the crew had a great time skiing.

Bryson

: The door turned out a lot better than what I thought it was going to be.

Bryson

: It fits!

Bryson

: It acts almost like a skylight too with the window and so it lights the room real nice and stuff. It's really, really cool. Bree: We prepare to paint the exterior. Shelly: Before we start painting,

Bryson

moves the dirt away from the building. And then we start taping everything off. Windows, doors, bottle lights.

Bryson

: I'm gonna go ahead and go around and seal all the cracks up above with this foam. Shelly: This paint is...
suppose to be one of the best paints. It's got UV protection and it's suppose to be one coat over the stucco. Which is going to be interesting to see if it really is. It was a lot of money. A little over $200 which is way more than we normally pay for paint. We usually get the recycle paints and pay $10. Gary: We chose to do a different method of painting this time around. Typically, in the past we've used rollers and it's taken us several days to work on it. We own an airless sprayer. The advantages to having the airless sprayer, is of course the biggest one, is time. Gary: Now, let's try the other bit. Gary: I hadn't used this thing in years so we had to get it in, get it cleaned up take it apart, oil it We had things things all set up, flipped the switch. Nothing happened.

Bryson

takes his multimeter out has everything all hooked up. Says, it's the switch. So he went ahead replaced the switch with a little wall socket switch that you have at your house.

Bryson

: Shut if off. Drum roll please. Gary: Oh yeah.

Bryson

: Okay. Gary: When the boys were young, I was really involved in their problem solving but

Bryson

no longer needs my help. He really enjoys working with anything electronic. I just back away and let him do it. Gary: I forgot how to use the sprayer. So I gave the neighbor a call. He gave me some quick instructions. We got it primed right. Gary: Okay, thank-you. Gary: Do you think we're ready Bry?

Bryson

: Gotta get the water out of it...
now.

Bryson

: It's a brown. Gary: Beautiful. Gary: Alright, your going up.

Bryson

: It was my job to paint. Gary: The spray patterns and working with how to spray

Bryson

and I worked together and we got that all figured out. Eliminating a lot of the overspray Conserving our paint.

Bryson

: It was challenging to get up onto those eves but after awhile I got used to it. Gary: Painting in the little corners and edges takes a lot of time. With an airless sprayer. Got it right away. Bree: I just want to show you this light switch. This light switch proves My Little Homestead was a part. This is our signature move. We always put a light switch on electronics. Anything we can't get to turn on, it gets a light switch. Bree: And it's the Garenster's job now.

Bryson

: Show off.

Bryson

: Garen jumped in there and helped me out. He always works really fast so it's like, Oh Yeah.

Bryson

: Alright, I think I got it. Bree: Pretty slick huh?

Bryson

: Yeah. Gary: Cause it's kinda a thinner paint so it went through that machine just perfectly. Bree: An hour to paint the entire building. So how do you think it went Dad? Gary: What's that? Bree: How do you think it went? Gary: Oh gosh this is the only way to do this. Absolutely, It was great. Shelly: There was probably about 2 inches on the bottom of the bucket so it did make it. It painted the whole thing including the eves. And it's, it's a nice coat. Shae: The majority of the painting is done so now it's onto...
painting the trim which is us girls job. We're using this brownish, purple color 'cause it's what we have. And it's not going to

cost

anything. The guys will be working on the trim around the door and the trim around the patio. Shelly: Finishing up the trim guys? The last of it? Gary: The last of the trim. Bree: The guys head inside to begin the soil cement subfloor.

Bryson

: Soil cement is easy. It's easier than laying normal cement. And cheaper. Gary: It's kinda like dry pour with a fence post. You know, you just pour your cement in, pour some water in and shazzam.

Bryson

: Bam, it's done. The whole floor. Gary: We have everything out of here right now.

Bryson

: We level out the floor. Gary: So we can begin to level this floor We want to level it about 3/4 inch down. We're a little bit low on the backside so we had to bring in some dirt in to level it.

Bryson

: Diesel has been a big help Gary:Sure. Shelly: He has? Gary: Oh yeah, he's a wet dog.

Bryson

: He's been breaking up the dirt for me. He was digging holes and it was making all the dirt loose so I could scoop it.

Bryson

: Good Boy. Gary: Think how many muscles we are building. Shelly: Yeah. Gary: Yeah.

Bryson

: Better than working out. Shelly: Were you thinking about working out? Lifting weights?

Bryson

: No. Why would I? I'm doing this. Shelly: Wow, Gary. Okay, I dare you to go up there now. Gary: Walk up the sides. Shelly: No, no, I'm just kidding. Gary: No really. You just...
walk up the side like this. Shelly: Gary. Gary: As long as you stay close to the sides. Gary: Okay

Bryson

, you're the dirt thrower. I need dirt right here. Gary: You have to have enough dirt in the room. to get to your level spot. Gary: Okay Bry, let's do our string thing.

Bryson

: Okay.

Bryson

: Your string was in my way. Gary: No, your dirt was in my string line. Gary: We measure periodic spots around the floor with a line level to make sure we're up to speed. Gary: Found a guy selling a Shelly: Craigslist wasn't it? Gary: Yeah, he was selling lawn mowers and little tillers and stuff. and this was just perfect size for us. Bree: In 2005, our

family

moved from the conveniences of the city to the open spaces of the country Bree: Our original plan was to build a large home Bree: Welcome to our courtyard Bree: Here is our

Earth

Bag

bedroom

s, my

family

and how our plans changed Shelly: We had talked about so many different things we were going to do Like build a house Gary: I wanted to put in a big house Gary: We experimented with ideas of log and steel Shelly: But as we lived out here longer, we started to meet some of the neighbors Shelly: They were explaining living with alternative building materials and living mortgage free Shelly: This idea that we would have several small structures Shelly: The main house which isn't too much of a main house. It's just a one

bedroom

, one bathroom house Shelly: And then build a

bedroom

for each of the kids around the...
backyard to make a courtyard Gary: A house with outdoor halls Shelly: We added lofts up into the house so the kids would at least have a space to sleep in until their rooms were built Bree: When we finally settled on doing these

earth

bag houses Bree: I admit even half way through it, I didn't think it was actually going to get done Bree: I was like, no, this can't be happening Bree: Until I moved in, it was just like "Wow, it's happening!" Garen: When we were doing the floor, it was me, Mom and Shae, I think, going through and putting all the paper down Garen: And Shae kept laying

full

squares of pink down Garen: For some reason she kept grabbing those out Garen: And they were all over the place Shae: It's cute that you think that was an accident Shelly: What's interesting about a round room is ...you know in your world, you step outside, you're not in a square Shae: It's really nice to have a break from that. It's easier on the eyes to walk into something that is more naturally built Shae: Then to walk into something that is very rigid and perfect

Bryson

: I wanted a deck on the top of the room for stargazing.

Bryson

: We went through a couple of designs and then we figured out this crazy eight idea

Bryson

: Where it would be the same amount of square footage as all the other rooms but it would also provide

Bryson

: two separate areas for stuff to be put in. Bree: We're breaking ground on

Bryson

's

Earth

Bag

Bedroom

Bree: The...
first thing we need to decide is where we're going to put it. Gary: If you were to see it from the house Gary: keeping with how this is swinging around Shelly: Are you going to have to take the laundry down? Gary: Well, maybe not Gary: If we move it over this way Shelly: We could just put it in

Bryson

's room and he could just automatically be the laundry guy. Gary: I like it. Bree: This clothesline is set low so we could help when we were small. Shelly: Sometimes it's hard to have kids help when their little 'cause it's just easier to do it yourself but it's really important to let them help because it allows them to feel like a valuable part of the

family

, Shelly: But I guess we could raise it now that you guys are taller But I kinda got used to it being short. Bree: The laundry lines are moved out of the way. The guys set a center stake and mark out a circle. Gary: Put your finger right there. Tip it down, and hold it straight up and down and walk. Gary: Alright! That's the inside. Bree:

Bryson

's room will be made up of two small circles, like a crazy eight. Gary: Gonna put our trough in.

Bryson

: We need a trench? Gary: We need a trench.

Bryson

: Alright. Shelly: Okay Shae, I got our chart here. The poles are 41 inches apart. Shae: Alright. Bree: We'll be using railroad ties for the doorways.

Bryson

: And then walk through here and then we have a little walkway through here. We'll have steps down and then we'll have this room here....
Bree: The trench is cut in and leveled

Bryson

: So, what we are doing is we picked a spot which is our main level We can see from right here if we pull this up to the right level We got about two inches to go and this string will work its way all the way around the entire loop and we're taking these at about five foot increments so that when we lay down the bags, they will all be level. Bree: Once the posts are secure and the leveling done, a threshhold is constructed. Shae: Awwwwwww Bree: One circle will be lower so Dad sets up for the steps. Gary: Come out here to 45 to here to a 45 'til we get a step. Then I'll build another step in. Five and a half inch risers and nine and a half inch treads.

Bryson

: We're putting cement in. Shae: I'm balancing this. There's absolutely no use to what I'm doing. Gary: First time we have ever put steps in.

Bryson

: Role this along, grab your bags off

Bryson

: Fold them inside out. Bree: We put down the first

earth

bag layer.

Bryson

: Hang on, I'm retrieving my flip flop. Shae: And then overtime they ask me to get into a car, I'd be like, "Why?"

Bryson

: Alright so we got a new tamper. 45 Buckaroonees. Shelly: Wow, it works good.

Bryson

: Really good. Shae: na, na, na, ooohh oh Bree: We're inviting some people over to help with our

earth

bag building. It's time to prepare. Bree: First, easy access to damp dirt Gary: Well, it's not like I forgot that Jeff was coming over. But, he was there...
early and I wasn't ready. So, I jumped out of bed, 'cause he just knocked on the door to get us some dirt for

Bryson

's building. Gary: We had laid out a circle for him to be able to pull the dirt from. Gary: What a time saver. You know the difference between a huge bucket on a tractor and a wheelbarrow and a shovel. Gary: Ya, it will all level out just fine. Gary: You did a great job. Gary: It's amazing what you can get with a few bucks and a case of beer. Jeff: I go then. Gary: I appreciate you. Shelly: Thank you. You are awesome. Jeff: I'll go back and make sure my couch didn't move anywhere. Bree: Next, installing the electrical wire and boxes. Shelly: Shae and

Bryson

and I had a goal that we would put in one layer of bags a day. and get up, I don't know, it's like a couple feet up to the point where the guys are going to be putting the electrical. Shelly: There were several evenings we decided we would just wait 'til the sun went down and we'd put up this big light and just went ahead and working into the evening Shelly: Are you guys out there? I can't see you.

Bryson

: Ah, yes Shae: ooooohhhhhh Shae: Our bag building just right down there. It's really scary, the fire is just right there On a hill not too far from here Shelly: We wanted to get the electrical in prior to the group of people coming over because we just didn't want to mess with that when everybody was over. Garen came in to help us. Garen: What universe have...
we ever been like everyone? Gary: Go ahead and put these boxes in. in strategic locations for the inside. and one for the out. Gary: We have to separate the wire with the barbed wire that we use to hold the bags. We're able to use these U shaped nails to be able to separate the two wires. Gary: The purpose is so we don't get an electrical short. Garen: It shorts out, it is going to be a bummer. Bree: The electric will be hooked up to the nearby solar system Shelly: The final step before the group of people came over which is getting one layer above the electrical. They broke up in two groups. Gary &

Bryson

and Shae & Garen. They raced to see who could finish the circle first. Shelly: Oooohh, nice boots Garen: Yeah! Shelly: Ooooh, watch the nails! Shae: They had a huge doorway in their bag circle. That they didn't have to bag.

Bryson

: But you know they always have to have the last word. Mainly 'cause they don't want to loose any of their or whatever. Shae: Are we doing okay?

Bryson

: But we

total

ly won. Garen: We just like crushed you.

Bryson

: We beat 'em like nobodies business Shae: Oh, we definitely won. We creamed them. Bree: We need several cleats. Gary: We have three different types of cleats that we use. We have the simple cleat that fits inside of the two bags. Then we have another cleat That fits up against a window. Then we have a third kind that we use. They have kinda an L shape. Shae: We made over 40 cleats. I can make mine really...
fast but

Bryson

he put like a bazillion nails in there.

Bryson

: And then when your done putting nails on this side, you flip it over so the nails stick up like this

Bryson

: When you're doing the cleats, you can put like 5 nails in it or like 20 and I was just putting mine in and I had them beauti

full

y Nice. In a row. Everything symmetrical, perfect. And Shae was just bam, bam, bam, done. Bam, bam, bam, done. Shae: 21 left. Shelly: Wow. Bree: 2x12 Window Frames are also needed. Gary: Found on craigslist a couple of great, brand new windows a 4x3 and a 2x2.

Cost

us $120 for both windows.

Bryson

: Windows, you know.

Bryson

: We'll be using these for the steps and window frames. 2x12s and 2x10s Gary: The size of a window is static, meaning it's usually a half of inch shorter so that it will set inside of a window frame. In our case, we could just make the frames 3x5, 3x4 and so on Gary: I use three 2x6s and just nailed them together as a big header. Shae: Why do these things have to be together? Gary: These are headers that go above the window. Help support the weight of the roof. So that we're not putting the weight of the roof over the top of the window itself. Bree: Steps are next. Gary: Okay, these are the threads for our stairs 2x10s They'll be nine and a half treads. Here, come with me. I'll show you how it goes on. It will all go up every two rows we're gonna have one step coming up and a circle going all the way up to there. Gary: Inside the...
walls, we of course ran nails up and ran nails down, similar to how we do our cleats. We chose to bring that out and let it just kinda free hang and maybe just a small, temporary post underneath of it. Shelly: We also are gonna have bottles prepared. We're gonna put in little bottle windows as the steps go up Bree: Lastly, a center pole is placed for measuring. Gary: We place a pole in the center of the building An inch and a half pipe that runs completely up about 9, 10 feet Now, we have a nice pole that runs through the center of the building to be able to gauge the circular bags as they go around. Bree: The lightning storms are bringing additional challenges.

Bryson

: This is what happens when it gets too wet. Water starts bubbling up the sides and it gets really slushy like you can't bag on top of that. It's jello. Gary:If that doesn't dry out, we're going to be in trouble.

Bryson

: My awesome room. Dah Dah Dah! You can see Dad by it. We put in the arch We're going to put up that arch there. We put in one step to go up to the top of that Bree: Our friends arrive to help build

Bryson

's building. However, immediately, we experience a problem. A storm hits the night before dropping two inches of rain. Bree: So Dad, what happened? Gary: We had a 2 inch rain and soaked our bags Gary: Trying to maneuver them around a little bit and we end up with half the wall collapses on one side. So we have to tear that all down. We have to go back to the...
foundation. and we have to start over.

Bryson

: Restarting at the foundation was a little discouraging. Bree: But the other one, the other circle's okay Dad? Gary: Yeah, the other circle is okay. Gary: So we start bagging as fast as we can so when people show up there's something to do when they get here. I think the night before, if there's a chance of rain, we're definitely going to put tarps on. Bree: I had this ingenious plan to split everyone up in teams. However, there's no way to evenly divide the work because the layers have to go up in sync. But, that's our little secret. Green Team mascot Shelly: Wow, lots of enthusiasm.

Bryson

: Oh yeah. Shae: Our friends, Esther, Andrew, Deborah and Peter came over to help us. It was so much fun to work with them. Bree: Faster than the speed of nature. If there is a speed in nature. Shelly: Do you know how slow nature is? Andrew: It's too slow that's what it is. Garen: We are the strength of the ocean. Bree: That's right. Shelly: Our favorite thing about building with

earth

bags is that all ages can participate Bree: Hello, coming in at ...we don't know. and team Blue

Bryson

: We are going to win. Bree: Are you feeling it? And then my, my home team right here. The Green Shelly: Are you guys the Yellow team? Yeah, but what do we get Mom? Shelly: It's a sign. Bree: Hello, little bug. Bree: We need to reinstall the electric Shae: Esther and I ducted tape the wheelbarrow wheel and it surprising...
worked for quite some time. Shelly: We used our arms to measure how long we wanted the bags. About 3 arms length. and we straighten out the barbed wire as much as we can. Our friend, Jackie helped me out. We cut it in sections using bolt cutters and then it was laid between the bags. Bree: The barbed wire springs into action and Jackie is in the line of fire. Gary: Some of my buddies from work showed up We had Scott, Alex, their son. Malcom was here Bree: Then our hero, Tom, shows up with Pizza! Bree: After lunch we fixed the wall that had fallen and were ready to go higher. Gary: Everything wasn't that so bad with all that rain. All that dirt now was a bit damp. That made packing the new stuff a lot easier. Shelly: It was pretty exciting to see that first window frame coming in to be placed. Bree: Whatcha doing Mom? Shelly: I am putting in the bottle lights for the steps.

Bryson

: Hello Camera. Gary: How are you doing Rick? I tell you, he really is a trooper. He came over and jumped up on that wall and just started working hard so thanks Rick! Gary: You haven't fallen off yet? Rick: No vertigo. Shelly: Is that rain? Bree: Over here you can see a storm is threatening But over here it's blue sky so you never know if we are going to get hit or not Gary: Some of us are desk job people. We are starting to slow down. Bree: We are over waist high in bags, 3 window frames are installed along with 4 steps. Bree: Having friends over to help build the

earth

bag walls is a...
real boost. We're half way to the top Let's take a look at the

cost

so far. Shelly: We are continuing our one layer a day and as we get higher, we'll have to back that down to about a half layer a day. Gary: We stayed pretty diligent on maintaining the distance from the center pole to the outside of the building.This is going to really help us when we get to the roof at the very top.

Bryson

: Okay, so we're not nailing the cleats in those until we get a little bit high so we can level the windows. Gary: That's a little different than we normally do. We normally nail those cleats in as we're going up. This time we're gonna wait until after done with the roof.

Bryson

: And the building has to settle to. Shelly: On the bags, we cut out about say a 15 foot length or so and then we turn them inside out. and then we have to be careful that as we lay them, the seams don't match up at the same places.

Bryson

: Our new addition to our farm. Shelly: After the kids get settled in their

bedroom

s, they get a pet. Garen's dog, Diesel, he just gets so excited. Shae: He's a little black lab and he's so playful. He gets into all the bags when we're trying to work. Shelly: Aw. Rolly. Shelly: Are you helping? Shelly: The puppy is pooped.

Bryson

: Play with the bag, a minute later, out.

Bryson

: Look how solid these things are. Amazing.

Bryson

: Point them to the center pole and we do every 2 bags Just enough for like one person you know. Like a normal...
step is longer. We cut it down in size. so it wouldn't take up most of the room Gary: We're using cleats inside the walls for hanging pictures Shelly: It's really hard to know exactly where gonna put those pictures so we put them everywhere.

Bryson

: I tuck the end like a paper airplane and then I'll step on that, curl it up and lay it on my leg. As they load in dirt, I just let it down. And then at the end, I'll fold it and set it down. Shelly: We put 2 quart jars together and then we tape them down with duct tape so they don't move around. until we get the bags laid over the top The jars will now create this natural lighting for each step. Shelly: I wonder if we are going to run out of barbs. Shae: We ended up using around a roll and a half of barbed wire. Shae: Wear jeans, it's advised. Shae: Probably $70 a roll. Shelly: Second roll.

Bryson

: We had to cover the bag building up from the rain. 'cause it was making it soggy. Gary: After the last problem with the rain, we tarp every time when we figure it's going to start raining. Gary: With the header, we level both sides so we get a nice box around the frame.

Bryson

: Are we going to lay a bag over the top of this? Gary: Several bags actually. Shelly: This is another place we added candy jars so that some of the morning light can come through. Shae: And wave them in the air like you just don't care. Shelly: As we get higher, we start to need more help to move that dirt up to the top....
Bree got in there and helped us out. Bree: My dog, Max, came out and helped us out while we were working He went out on the top of the

earth

bags with us Bree: When your acrobats get you into places you don't want to be. Shelly: Oh, he passed the steps again. Bree: Oh, now I'm really scared. But I ended up having to go out and save him because he couldn't get back down. It wasn't as if there were stairs or anything. Bree: Hold onto your hats, 'cause it's about to get one. Gary: Because we have a circle, I wanted to put I wanted to put a design on top of it the roof that's somewhat circular. So we laid our joists on 2 foot centers, like your would a normal patio roof. Gary: We have 20 footers for the longest sections in the circle. Gary: Our jig that we are going to use The joists will run in this direction here for the rafters on the roof for that flat roof. and then we can adjust them up and down and then cleat them in. on both sides and then when the bags lean up against them, that will give them lateral strength this way. and then these get all pinned in on the top of the bags. Gary: We have straight lines running north and south and then we needed to have joists that go out perpendicular to the outside put on there with joist hangers to help support the weight. and then there were these little jacks that went off on a 45 from that. Shelly: So just when we think we are done bagging, we still have a little bit more bagging to do in between each...
of the rafters. The alternative to bagging is cobbing and that is not any fun to try to fill it with cob.

Bryson

: 50 pound tamp Shelly: Oh yeah, it's beautiful

Bryson

: And this entire area out here is all going to be the top decking. Gary: Since it's a deck we are going to be walking on I wanted like a 3/4 inch material or 7/8 material Gary: I need to do 2 bisections. Shelly: Gary can be working away and he just seems to know when it's time to slow down and teach the kids something. Gary: Two things, a square corner and bisecting, you can split this up into as many segments as you want to that are all equal. Gary: Pull up the plywood a little bit so we can make our cuts put our facia board on re-attach the plywood and we have a segmented roof up here that almost looks circular that's good

Bryson

: Put telescope stuff on there and even a bed maybe so we can sleep up there. Gary: As usual, we're trying something new. I'm not used to a roofing material that isn't like, asphalt or steel We went to a professional roofer and he suggested we us the 30 pound felt and 3 coats of snow roof.

Bryson

: Here's what we're doing. We are taking this microfiber and we're laying over the creases and we're covering it with the white roof coat. We ended up doing like 3 or 4 coats on there. Shelly: The

expenses

are low until we get to the roofing. That's when the

cost

starts to really add up. Bree: The front half of the building takes a creative shape...
Gary: It's more conical. Kind of a tilted cone to give enough room for the inside to have stairs. they run up alongside and a door that goes out to the flat roof.

Bryson

: These go up there for the door. Gary: The door requires 2 posts be installed on top of the flat roof.

Bryson

: This is really how high we gotta go all the way Gary: Then we can run the bags along the sides right up to those posts. There are now tall bags on one side of the roof and shorter bags on the other because we're stair stepping them up to allow for the cone shaped roof.

Bryson

: We old tent poles and double barbed to help strengthen the walls when they get really high. The platform is right at the top of the stairs so that we can open up a door up there and get out onto the main deck outside. Gary: It just glues it right on there so we don't have any problem with squeaking.

Bryson

: We use the same type of cleat system that we used on the other roof. Gary: We choose one of the door posts at the top of the other room to be kinda a center post.

Bryson

: Before we put the plywood on we're going to have to bag up all around the outside edges so that it's flush with the plywood. Booyah! We're closing in on the last little bit here in the very, very corner. It's right there and bagged all the way across here. and it makes it really nice. It closes in the whole section. It's pretty cool. The last bag we will probably ever put up. Right there. Gary:

Bryson

and I go brain dead....
trying to get this facia on the outside of this cone shaped roof. There's a lot of compound angles and I'm making calculations errors. I got 2 facia boards up and we had to quit. Garen notices how frustrated I was and feels sorry for me so the next day, he's out there helping. He's helped us with the angles and bevels up here and its made a great difference this morning.

Bryson

: If it wasn't for him we'd all be doomed.

Bryson

: The sheeting up there is like a puzzle. It's so unique that we have to cut all these odd angles and we're doing angles, you know, when you have an angle this way and you have an angle that way. Anyway, these weird angles we keep cutting and phew, those are hard to figure out. Bree: We bought the wood for conical roof frame all in one shot. The

cost

? Gary: We're putting up a 6x6 porch

Bryson

: We got some posts instead of going down to the forest and chopping them down we bought them at the store. There really straight Gary: Unlike Bree's right? Bree has these skinny little things, there real strong. It's all mesquite wood but it's just a

total

ly different look. Next thing we do is get all the trim around the edges. The metal rain drip trim and then finish paper, then we're ready for the Ondura.

Bryson

: We went with the Ondura 'cause it's not as difficult to cut. It's suppose to last really long. Right now its been up to a about a year on Garens' room. And it seems to look the same as...
when we first put it on, actually. Gary: No fading

Bryson

: Yeah, no fading at all. Gary: So the product seems to be pretty solid. We're still not sure. Shelly: That's an interesting way to hammer. Gary: Painful, to watch.

Bryson

: Bam, bam, bam, done. Shae: While the guys worn the roof, me and Mom decided to start with the stucco. Gary: To prepare for the gals going around the corner there with the stucco. We need to have the windows complete so they can bring the stucco right up next to the trim. Gary: We built these particular frames where they are not attached to the bags or the header

Bryson

: We're not going to do these windows loose any more I don't think. Gary: No, we're not doing them loose anymore. Shae: They have the windows framed so we're going to start stuccoing at least one of these circles. We've decided on stucco because it holds up better in the rain. Shelly:

Bryson

was up tamping 2 rows up from the glass and to our shock, it cracked. Bree: I've found what we should put in there. Shelly: Oh my goodness. Shae: That's way too big. Shelly: We'll make it work. Shelly: Perfect fit. Bree: Look at that. Shelly: It's a perfect fit. Bree: How are we going to get that in there?

Bryson

: Wearing my glasses for protection of her eyes. Shelly: I got eye protection. I got "Bry" protections. Shae: It feels like the stucco goes really, really slow. Shelly: But we have been plugging away every day we do, you know, a couple...
batches Shae: I keep getting dropped on. Shelly: Part of educating our kids is to spend about an hour a day doing some sort of physical work. Gary: You know it's really important to have the kids complete something. There's nothing like finishing a project and having that sense of accomplishment. Shelly: One of the benefits of the

earth

bag buildings is that when they get done, they get a

bedroom

. Shae: We started looking back it and it looks like we've gone like super far so obviously now that we're in the lead, we're gonna make it a game and beat the boys. Shelly:Yep. Gary: The idea that the ladies can beat us is a little unusual because we're really good and very fast. And the Ondura goes up real quick.

Bryson

: And we can hammer those nails like nobodies business. Bam, done. Gary: However, just to make them feel better, we ran out of materials.

Bryson

: Yeah. Garen: We can really slow them down

Bryson

is not to get the door done.

Bryson

: Oh, because they can't cob around the door 'til we're done. Bree: Mom and Shae are racing to get the stucco up before Dad and

Bryson

can finish the door and roof. but, before they can get out there the weather takes a turn for the worst. Shelly: Ut oh Shae, this may put a damper on our victory dance. Bree: Meanwhile

Bryson

and Dad are working inside.

Bryson

: We got a really good deal on a wooden door. Gary: We only paid about $75 bucks for the door on craigslist.

Bryson

: My friend Andrew came over and he...
helped out.

Bryson

: I'm gonna spray paint these bolts so they are black. And stick them in the holes, tighten them down, grind the tips off. The door had 48 bolts and nuts and washers.

Bryson

: There's a lot of washers. Gary: I had to build a frame for it.

Bryson

: Dad, it looks like you cut it right. Gary: Oh, well amazing that. Gary: Then assemble the door to the frame. Which means cutting in the joints for the hinges and and do some dado cuts and relieving, chiseling and then set the door inside there. Shae: We used cob for Bree's room but cob requires a roof protection Shelly: And also some sort of way of protecting it linseed oil or paint Shae: We decided to use stucco which doesn't wash away in the rain My friend, Esther, Esther: Hi Shae: Was so much fun to have her over here. Shae: You do it, I'll watch. I'm just going to have to invite her every time. Bree: We use 10 or so bags of cement. Bree: The gals are the clear winners 'cause the the ridge caps for the roof won't arrive until next week. Gary: We'd like to NOT admit that the ladies beat us because

Bryson

: Oh they didn't beat us Gary: That's not even fair. We didn't have all our stuff. It's still on order.

Bryson

: We didn't have all our materials. Shelly: Hey, but we won. Shae: We did win. Garen: The reason they lost was because Garen was not there. Shae: Oh Sure. Bree: Since we now know the roofing

cost

. Gary: This isn't the door we're going to be...
installing but we are going to be using this as a model. The door up above is a slanted door at the top.

Bryson

: We used 7 2x6 tongue and groove and we glued them together to make the door.

Bryson

: if I got up, this thing would go whoop.

Bryson

:We used bolts to hold all the tongue and groove boards together. Gary: Originally we had decided we wanted a round window. Two half windows as one. But we discovered that the width of the windows was just too much to take out of the center of the door. We'll go ahead and slide the windows this way and then turn it like this so that we have less of a width and we have enough room for the handle.

Bryson

: Following the line to cut it out. We're using that tool to do it. So we pre-drilled the hole there and are able to stick our blade in. Make sure the hole is on the inside of the line too. From there we are able to cut around the whole thing.

Bryson

: So let's go ahead and put it in. Gary: We're going to be using Butyl rubber and this is a typical window sealant. Instead of finding ways to clamp this into the window or screw it into the window like you would typically do. We're going to actually glue this little puppy in here with this Butyl rubber. Shelly: Did you notice

Bryson

is not with us? Gary: Decided to go off and go skiing

Bryson

: I love you guys! Gary: While it's drying, I devised a quick and easy system here. I'll do this on both sides. Then I can flip the door over and work on the other side. Gary:...
We hope that

Bryson

and the crew had a great time skiing.

Bryson

: The door turned out a lot better than what I thought it was going to be.

Bryson

: It fits!

Bryson

: It acts almost like a skylight too with the window and so it lights the room real nice and stuff. It's really, really cool. Bree: We prepare to paint the exterior. Shelly: Before we start painting,

Bryson

moves the dirt away from the building. And then we start taping everything off. Windows, doors, bottle lights.

Bryson

: I'm gonna go ahead and go around and seal all the cracks up above with this foam. Shelly: This paint is suppose to be one of the best paints. It's got UV protection and it's suppose to be one coat over the stucco. Which is going to be interesting to see if it really is. It was a lot of money. A little over $200 which is way more than we normally pay for paint. We usually get the recycle paints and pay $10. Gary: We chose to do a different method of painting this time around. Typically, in the past we've used rollers and it's taken us several days to work on it. We own an airless sprayer. The advantages to having the airless sprayer, is of course the biggest one, is time. Gary: Now, let's try the other bit. Gary: I hadn't used this thing in years so we had to get it in, get it cleaned up take it apart, oil it We had things things all set up, flipped the switch. Nothing happened.

Bryson

takes his multimeter out has everything all hooked up. Says, it's the switch....
So he went ahead replaced the switch with a little wall socket switch that you have at your house.

Bryson

: Shut if off. Drum roll please. Gary: Oh yeah.

Bryson

: Okay. Gary: When the boys were young, I was really involved in their problem solving but

Bryson

no longer needs my help. He really enjoys working with anything electronic. I just back away and let him do it. Gary: I forgot how to use the sprayer. So I gave the neighbor a call. He gave me some quick instructions. We got it primed right. Gary: Okay, thank-you. Gary: Do you think we're ready Bry?

Bryson

: Gotta get the water out of it now.

Bryson

: It's a brown. Gary: Beautiful. Gary: Alright, your going up.

Bryson

: It was my job to paint. Gary: The spray patterns and working with how to spray

Bryson

and I worked together and we got that all figured out. Eliminating a lot of the overspray Conserving our paint.

Bryson

: It was challenging to get up onto those eves but after awhile I got used to it. Gary: Painting in the little corners and edges takes a lot of time. With an airless sprayer. Got it right away. Bree: I just want to show you this light switch. This light switch proves My Little Homestead was a part. This is our signature move. We always put a light switch on electronics. Anything we can't get to turn on, it gets a light switch. Bree: And it's the Garenster's job now.

Bryson

: Show off.

Bryson

: Garen jumped in there and helped me out. He always works really fast so it's like, Oh Yeah....

Bryson

: Alright, I think I got it. Bree: Pretty slick huh?

Bryson

: Yeah. Gary: Cause it's kinda a thinner paint so it went through that machine just perfectly. Bree: An hour to paint the entire building. So how do you think it went Dad? Gary: What's that? Bree: How do you think it went? Gary: Oh gosh this is the only way to do this. Absolutely, It was great. Shelly: There was probably about 2 inches on the bottom of the bucket so it did make it. It painted the whole thing including the eves. And it's, it's a nice coat. Shae: The majority of the painting is done so now it's onto painting the trim which is us girls job. We're using this brownish, purple color 'cause it's what we have. And it's not going to

cost

anything. The guys will be working on the trim around the door and the trim around the patio. Shelly: Finishing up the trim guys? The last of it? Gary: The last of the trim. Bree: The guys head inside to begin the soil cement subfloor.

Bryson

: Soil cement is easy. It's easier than laying normal cement. And cheaper. Gary: It's kinda like dry pour with a fence post. You know, you just pour your cement in, pour some water in and shazzam.

Bryson

: Bam, it's done. The whole floor. Gary: We have everything out of here right now.

Bryson

: We level out the floor. Gary: So we can begin to level this floor We want to level it about 3/4 inch down. We're a little bit low on the backside so we had to bring in some dirt in to level it....

Bryson

: Diesel has been a big help Gary:Sure. Shelly: He has? Gary: Oh yeah, he's a wet dog.

Bryson

: He's been breaking up the dirt for me. He was digging holes and it was making all the dirt loose so I could scoop it.

Bryson

: Good Boy. Gary: Think how many muscles we are building. Shelly: Yeah. Gary: Yeah.

Bryson

: Better than working out. Shelly: Were you thinking about working out? Lifting weights?

Bryson

: No. Why would I? I'm doing this. Shelly: Wow, Gary. Okay, I dare you to go up there now. Gary: Walk up the sides. Shelly: No, no, I'm just kidding. Gary: No really. You just walk up the side like this. Shelly: Gary. Gary: As long as you stay close to the sides. Gary: Okay

Bryson

, you're the dirt thrower. I need dirt right here. Gary: You have to have enough dirt in the room. to get to your level spot. Gary: Okay Bry, let's do our string thing.

Bryson

: Okay.

Bryson

: Your string was in my way. Gary: No, your dirt was in my string line. Gary: We measure periodic spots around the floor with a line level to make sure we're up to speed. Gary: Found a guy selling a Shelly: Craigslist wasn't it? Gary: Yeah, he was selling lawn mowers and little tillers and stuff. and this was just perfect size for us. Shelly: Yeah, it 's a smaller one than last time. Gary: The idea is to put in about 1/2 inch to 3/4 inch of Portland cement. Then we bring the tiller in. and we till it down about 4 inches working the Portland cement into the soil, making soil...
cement.

Bryson

: Pulling it backwards is actually better than having it go forward. Forward did not work very well. It was like rolling on top of the ground. But, if you pulled back it, it would dig into the ground nice. Gary, We water it down, tamp it, and then screet it and tamp it and kind of work with it until its all nice and flat and then it gets watered for 3 days periodically we'll come in and spray some water on it. Gary: It's a nice, rough subfloor. Cob goes over the top of it. Bree: The next step is to complete the walls. Cob is the material of choice. Shelly: The kid's grandparents had a septic dug so they needed a place to put the dirt and we said, Oh yeah, just throw it on our property. A few years later we started to build these buildings and doing cob and we came back to look at this and sure enough if this wasn't clay. So we've got this big clay pile that we've been using for years Shae: We use a mixture of sand and clay. This time though we did add some of our dirt which is kinda like if you put it in a cup, you know how you can tell where the clay and the sand separate. We're about half and half on our dirt so we threw some in some of that and made it extra sticky. We cobbed in between the creases because we had a new system of doing it this round. We are going to try spraying the cob Bree: I am slapping mud up on the walls, apparently. Shae: Sunshine and butterfies. Shelly: We're doing good guys, we got this room chinked in....
Shelly: It's looking just ducky. Bree: Just washed these so I could wear them last night. They were amazing. Isn't there a rubber ducky song? Shelly: Rubber Ducky - it's a Sesame Street Bree: Your the one. Shelly: It's a Sesame Street song but you can't sing it. It will probably be copyright infringement. Bree: No, it's only the original track. Shelly: Oh, let's hear it then. Bree: Rubber Ducky you're the one. You make bath time ...super fun? I don't know. Shelly: He can't hear me 'cause he has head sets on

Bryson

: What? Shelly: Do the headsets make you go faster?

Bryson

: I think they do. Shae: We're done. Gary: Instead of all the time we put the mud on the walls. We thought we would try this idea of spraying it on like stucco. But I don't have a stucco sprayer.

Bryson

: No. We have a sheetrock mud sprayer. We did try it. It failed the first time. Gary: Yeah, it was very bad. Gary: It is an experiment so testing different ways of doing things

Bryson

: Ready to test? Gary: Gonna go with the 3 to 1 mixture of sand and cement

Bryson

: There's a pipe that's in here that goes out to the end And the problem was, it was restricting the mud from going out of the end. It was used for thinner mud. We just cut it back. We're going to see. Look where mud is at. mud at the tip.

Bryson

: So we made a couple of modifications to it and it worked. Shelly: Wow, that's fantastic. Shae: It saved a ton of time. I like putting on cob...
up. It's really soothing and nice but I don't think any of us but the sprayer could stay in the room. 'cause it was so loud. Shelly: The texture is really rough. We tried to soften it with the tool and knock it off by hand. Bree: I think it came out pretty good. Bree: I don't know what I was expecting but, I mean, that's sure a whole lot of work saved. Shelly: We eventually just used the broom to brush it off. We didn't want to go over the entire walls again flattening it out so we decided to just go with the rough look.

Bryson

was happy with it so that's the main thing. Shae: A lot of cob fell off the wall. I mean a lot of it made it on the wall but a lot fell too so we just had to pick that up at the end of days works and we put it in wheelbarrows and we'd use it the next day. Gary: Probably one of the most imprtant things about us is not that all the corners are all straight and the walls are all perfectly round. Shelly:

Family

project. Gary: Yeah, it's more of

family

thing or

family

time together. It's really important to us. Shelly: A lot of times you just want to jump in there. If the kids are going to join in and be a part of it, you just got to let it go. Gary: Um hum. We keep things within safe tolerances There's just something about the roof falling in on the children when we're not there that could be bad Shelly: Right but you would jump in if it was a safety issue. Gary: Oh yeah, absolutely. Bree: Next, we prepare...
for painting. Shelly: We needed to buy brand new paint because we wanted to us the sprayer again to spray the interior walls so when I was at the store, I found a 5 gallon bucket of paint on sale. It was clearance for like $35 and it was interior, it was semi-gloss. It was everything that we needed and I just couldn't resist. There was only one draw back and that is um

Bryson

: Oh my gosh. Shelly: It was pink. Shelly: What?

Bryson

: I see lots of pink.

Bryson

: Pink? It was pink. Shelly: It has a pink hue

Bryson

. It was pink. Shelly: I ..I ..it ..it, maybe it's more

Bryson

: Pink Shelly: Not maybe pink but salmon.

Bryson

: Pink. Shelly : We needed to convert the pink color and we wanted it to be a light brown so we looked it up and we found out in order to change the color, we needed both yellow and blue.

Bryson

: We ended up adding green and saving the day. Shelly: We just kept adding that green color and

Bryson

would mix it until we got a color that actually turned out to be a really nice brown color. Bree: With the paint dilemma solved,

Bryson

can now get to painting.

Bryson

: Aw man, I really like this paint. It's not that pink that I was worried about. Go upstairs. There we go. There's the whole room. Bree: Dad begins the planning. Gary: Close in, in 1x3s. to create a frame underneath the stairs. Shae: I'm helping you out Dad. Gary Thanks Honey. Gary: I'm gonna cut something now. Shelly: What are you making? Gary: A thingy. Gary: No profoundness. Gary:...
The closet under the stairs was something to help support the other side of the steps themselves. What was really cool about the cedar is that we found fence boards, inexpensive ...what 97 cents for each piece so it was real cheap to be able to put that on. The risers are all built underneath so they kinda set inset, underneath using 1x3 material. And then on the outside, the walls actually built on a curve, in small sections just underneath the stairs. So it looks like a curve but really it's a series of straight lines. And then we put the cedar boards on the outside for a nice look. to kinda finish it off. Shelly: Staining this with some golden pecan. That's what

Bryson

wants.

Bryson

: Yep. So beautiful. Gary: And then put a door on the end. Shae: Aw geez, when little kids come over this is going to be a great place to hide. Gary: Okay, these are my boards for the door that's going to go to the closet. 3/4 inch x 6 inch tongue and groove. One side is surfaced with a rough surface, the other side is smooth. We are going to have rough surface out since all wood around it is all the same. Put the cross braces on in similar fashion. We're going to design it the same way as we designed the front door that we had in the upstairs door. Gary: We're going to install this

bedroom

door handle. It's black to match our hinges and so on. It is 3/4 inch material so I have to put a block on the other side. so that this has something to go into. Shelly: Paint these...
all black so they match. This is flat black just like did the other bolts.

Bryson

: Cool. And then the door is gonna have bolts. Gary: It goes in like this, remember how we had the other ones done? I bought one for each one of the panels. We'll be drilling a bolt in each one of these. Kinda give it that same look and feel. Gary: These were a little short so we're counter sinking them. Gary: You'll have to close the door a little. Gary: There, see like that. Up just a touch. Might be a little adjustment Let's look at it though Gary: I love garage sales. Shell picked up a belt sander I've been wanting one of these things for years. Paid a couple bucks for it. Gary: We just need to put the striker plate on and the door is done.

Bryson

: And a stopper don't you think, Dad? To stop it. Bree: While Dad was installing the closet.

Bryson

is laying the floor on the landing using left over materials.

Bryson

: I used some left over flooring material.

Bryson

: Drawing out the pattern. I'll go trim it out. Gotta get this as tight against that wall as possible.

Bryson

: The flooring locks together with tongue and groove.

Bryson

: Alright Dad. Dad: That really looks good.

Bryson

: I trim it out using 1x2. It's an easy install. Bree: It's ceiling time. Shelly: For our ceiling we like to collect pallets and that's probably our favorite ceiling is the pallet ceilings. They worked out really well for us and we've used them on on about 3 projects now. Our...
resource for pallets are beging to run a little dry. Gary: Dried up. Shelly: So I had this idea that I wanted to get, you know, like the wood floor. Like what you those little planks. And I thought if I could find some on Craisglist used maybe we could find a chunk of them and be able to use them up on the ceiling. You just wanted to make sure that is was real wood. Gary: Wood. Shelly: That was the mainthing for you. I saw somebody selling over 300 square feet. And they wanted a little over $100 for it. Gary: Yeah, cheap. Shelly: So, we discussed it and we thought we'll go look at these things. We couldn't tell from the ad if it was actual wood or not. And if it was what we wanted. we would offer $100 for it. We get there, and the guy who was selling it, and I said, "Is it wood?" And he said it's laminate. So I looked over at Gary and I said, "Laminate?" And you affirmed that is was laminate. So I'm thinking, Laminate You know, wood Is there not laminated wood? Gary: Yeah, plywood is laminated. Shelly: So I looked at him and said, "Would you take $100 for it?" And he said, "Yeah." We had to back the car up. We get in the car Gary: Oh boy. Shelly: I was like, "What's wrong?" Gary: We didn't get wood. Shelly: But you went along with it anyway. Gary: I did. I don't have to be a wood snob. Shelly: Yeah, you are... He is a wood snob. Gary: This way we get the floor on the ceiling. Gary: Well with our new...
idea of making a floor a ceiling. Gary: I guess that's how it's going to go in. I've never hung flooring on a ceiling. Kinda new to me. A little different. Not sure how to finish that off but we'll figure out something.

Bryson

, take that one right there. That might work here. I don't know. Gary: It's kinda like a uni-click. Where all 4 sides of the planks lock in. Shelly: That's beautiful. Gary: So you have to have all your seams have to be perfect. Because we can't get it to really hang up there. We do have nail it in because we can't walk. In case you're walking up there, you don't want it to move on you. So you nail it down.

Bryson

: Put some insulation up there. Gary: Do a little bit at a time. Insulation Little bit at a time, insulation We're putting in R-30 insulation.

Bryson

: R-30 instead of R-35 Gary: R-31 1/2 Yeah, that's hard to find. Shae: This is Not insulation. It is the devil's cotton candy. The most feared, itchy Yet strangely beautiful in color.

Bryson

: I hope I got the angle right. Shae:

Bryson

did a great job cutting the edges but there's still a gap between the wall and the ceiling. We decided to use spray foam to fill the gap. Because of the rough wall we were able to do it. Shelly: We're just going to try to blend it. We can fake this to make this look like cob. Shae: Painting the foam here. Trying to blend it in with the wall. Shae: And it turned out pretty good.

Bryson

: Shae's washing...
the ceiling Shae: I'm washing the floor. Gary: You know you need a mop.

Bryson

: Oh yeah, beautiful. Look at that. Shelly: We started to run out of laminate flooring and we knew we weren't going to be able to make it on that second circle. So we decided to buy another batch 'cause we knew we wouldn't be able to match it exactly. The colors are similar but the front building is a little bit lighter. This time we made a better deal and ended up getting more and paying less for it.

Bryson

: The back circle was flat and then the front circle was angled.

Bryson

: We're going to span a distance from this side over to this pole here.

Bryson

: I had cut angles to each individual piece. It was all segmented out so that each section was flat. And then they all kinda just came around. Shelly: This part over here,

Bryson

's really looking forward to.

Bryson

: Right here we only have a pole here but no pole out here. But they'll be just fine because they interlock. So they hold each other in as they as they go down.

Bryson

: It was a fan and it had a light on it. Officially an unboxing video of a fan. Bree: It's your biggest fan. Gary: Take a pair of pliers and bend those to fit and it'll be fine. Gary: Don't do too much because these are just spot welded in there. I don't want that to come loose. But, just these pieces.

Bryson

: Gotcha. Gary: Perfect.

Bryson

: Okay, okay, hang on. I got this.

Bryson

: I was trying to put a screw in. Um hmm. Yep. And it...
was tall. And I just kinda got a little frustrated with it. So I ..yeah Garen had to save me. Garen: What? What was that? What was that

Bryson

? Huh? Huh?

Bryson

: He's probably better with drill than I am. I can beat him any day in 3D printing so Gary: Very nicely done. Shelly: Is that it? On no there's one spot left. Shae: Yeah, I know That's it. I'm giving up right there. Shelly: You're gonna leave that one piece? Shae: Yeah. Shelly: That is so nice of you. Shae: Thank-you. Yeah, it is nice of me.

Bryson

: Done. Gary: We're going to have to extend the fan light pole that drops down from the ceiling because

Bryson

: The roof is so steep Gary: in that section.

Bryson

: The fan would just hit the roof. Thump, thump, thump. Shelly: We're just staining. These are the pieces that are going to be - I guess we can them trim for the ceiling?

Bryson

: Yeah Shelly: That what we call them Bry?

Bryson

: They are going to fit up Shelly: up on the ceiling

Bryson

: They are going to fit up in between the seams up here on the roof. They are going to cover up the creases up there.

Bryson

: Under the landing was just simple, flat stuff. Put some cedar siding around the edges of the platform. Looks pretty nice now. So that it will match the closet. 'Cause the closet is cool. Shelly: The

cost

of the insulation wouldn't change. Gary: It's just he

cost

of whatever we cover the insulation with. Pallets are free. But there not

total

ly free. We still have to go pick...
them up. We still have to tear them down Shelly: We paid $100 for the first batch and $75 for the other. So it ended up being $175 for the ceiling. So the real savings, like you said is in the time savings that it had. Gary: It was huge. I mean that was a lot of work pulling those apart. Shelly: It does take a long time to break them down and... We still like the pallets. We just thought we would do this to do something a little different. Gary: You know us, we like to try something different.

Bryson

: I think the ceiling turned out really, really well. Gary:

Bryson

, that looks so cool. Gary: You know I like wood so you might expect that I wouldn't like it but I actually do like what we are seeing there. So, it's a nice look. It will be easy to maintain. Installation was pretty easy. So yeah, overall good. Bree: It's onto the rocket stove. A couple months back the guys began to plan where they're going to place it. Gary: My thought was, firebox, can, a bench and then you won't take off in the room too much.

Bryson

: And we put a bench here. Bree: They decide on the back circle. Gary: Probably won't need no more than, probably this wide.

Bryson

: Our benches are usually straight but we decided to give this one a little bit of a curve, match the wall. Gary: Contours the wall.

Bryson

: What he said. Gary: We bought the barrel at local oil changing business in town. $5

Bryson

: It's good Gary: We had the first design where we wanted to use block but,...

Bryson

: The problem with this look this look is nice but we have to cut all of them in half. Gary: So we gave up on that. Shelly: I like those. Gary: We found some terra cotta that we had acquired somewhere. Gary: Another inch or two of cob seat.

Bryson

: It's only going to be about that height.

Bryson

: We got the piping at the local hardware store. Gary: At the end of our bench here I wanted to put to be able to put a clean out so we can clean out in different areas. Gary: That will be plenty of room to get that in.

Bryson

: Dirt, lots of dirt.

Bryson

: We were fortunate to already have some firebrick. This is the base of the firebox. Gary: Putting brick along side that too. so are you ready for that?

Bryson

: Yeah, I'm ready Gary: Here's our opening down here. Come around this way here. You might be able to get this to focus right. There we go. Gary: A firebox that we push in from the front as opposed to from the top. Shelly: Okay, so the fire is in that little thing, huh?

Bryson

: Um hmm. Shelly: Okay.

Bryson

: We built the firebox a little different this time. Instead of running the wood in from the top, we ran it from the side. Shelly: Is this the opening that Dad is working on? Gary: Yeah, and then the chimney stack comes up this way. Shelly:

Bryson

got new boots.

Bryson

: A bit dusty. Shelly: So now you're feet aren't going to pop out on every video that we do. With that bright orange.

Bryson

: They're going in my keepsake. Shelly: They're going in...
your keepsake?

Bryson

: Yep. Shelly: Okay. Gary: 6 Inch height. We should go with 12 inches.

Bryson

: We could go look at it. Do you want us to go look at it?

Bryson

: So yeah. If we go 12 inches up from the top of his barrel, which is here. Then that's about where it is on his.

Bryson

: Garen's seems to work really well so we're going to go with a 12 inche one. Which is pretty much simple mathematics. When you have a 6 inch pipe, you want to go a 12 inch chimney. It's just 2 times.

Bryson

: It's a 3 to 1 ratio that we used for the combustion chamber. Gary: We sometimes have had like a smaller, like a 6 inch and then maybe an 8 inch or 10 inch pipe around it. But our barrel is not quite big enough for that. Gary: We didn't really have materials around the property. Gary: Come up 2 inches and flare it.

Bryson

: Measuring out 14 inches so he can flare these back an inch. I don't know what I just suggested but Dad likes it. Gary: So we literally built one.

Bryson

: Three thick. Shelly: Locking them on.

Bryson

: Um hmm. Gary: We tape them together with that great metal tape which works really well. Enough to at least set a form and then we use cob inside the chamber itself. Gary: That's a combustion chamber that we built. Gary: As far as the insulation - the insulation from the inside of the chamber to the out. Gary: We have a minimum of 2 inches that we have from the outside of the combustion chamber to the inside of the barrel that sets over the top of...
it. Shelly: Two inch taller

Bryson

: than the chamber. Gary: So it would be 2 inches at the top and minimum of 2 inches around

Bryson

: on the outside edge.

Bryson

: It means I have to go get a new one. Shelly: It looks a little grinded down.

Bryson

: Ringing ears and a barrel.

Bryson

: Set it down. This goes like this. Wood in here. Fire burning here. And air gets sucking into here and then it goes trough this chamber, and then the barrel is going to set on top of it which is going to allow the fire to burn up and around. It's gonna come down. And it's going to exit out that way, come down here. Come back around the back and up and out.

Bryson

: Diesel was chewing on these. Gray: At this point now we're trying to level our combustion chamber. But also have to make sure that we're within 2 inches from the top. One way to do that is I'm going to measure up from here straight across and see where this fits. It should fit about about ...hey look at that, 9 1/2. It comes up here 9 1/2 so we're good getting our couple inches up at the top which is what we want. Gary: Kinda needs to sit where it needs to sit.

Bryson

: The clean out on the end. Gary: Right here we have some barbed wire. We need to go ahead and cut that loose so I can get a pipe through.

Bryson

: There's a hole in the wall. Gary: I think I have the angles right.

Bryson

: We angled up the exhaust a little bit up as the pipe went on so the smoke would always have an exit going up.

Bryson

: We're...
going to test our fireplace out before we cover it all up just to make sure everything is built correctly. Gary: Like we did on the other rocket stoves, you don't need a lot of clearance between the wall and the stove pipe itself because, there's not a lot of heat that's put off by the stovepipe. The combustion chamber provides a really efficient burn. Burning a lot of the materials there. A lot of heat is spent there, as the little bit of smoke and little bit of moisture comes out of the combustion chamber. The bench passively stores the heat from the combustion chamber exhaust. Garen: You run it that big for half hour, an hour...

Bryson

: Just feel the heat. I mean that is awesome. Shelly: Yeah, it's really nice.

Bryson

: I should chuck more wood it there, why? Because it's fun. Shelly: It will feel really good when it's 100 degree out. Shelly: Are you happy with this Bry?

Bryson

: Yeah. Gary: We're just tamping this down. Getting it into the corners. Making sure that we are filling up the entire box.

Bryson

: Dad, this is awesome. Shelly: So how much higher are you going to go with this Bry?

Bryson

: We'll go about an inch higher than these bricks. Shelly: Okay. Gary: The

family

artist is at work putting together her re-creation of sculpting and molding Trained, of course, by her famous Jack who helped bring her along and make her the sculptor she is today. Shae: Dad, we're not bringing Jack back. Shelly:

Bryson

doing a great job over here...
too. Kinda rounding if off. Looking good. Gary: oh, that does look good. Shae: Jiggle it.

Bryson

: Like jello. Shelly: Wow, that's beautiful. Bree: After the cob is completed, Mom runs to get the tile bucket. Shelly: Kind of a junky tile bin but let's see if put some tiles in there. What does Shae got going over here, a little design. Shae: I'm just pushing 'em down. I hope they're going to be alright. Shelly: It looks good Bry. That's a nice look. Gary: Finishing up the flue. The exterior flue coming out and making an elbow turn. Going up. Putting a little cap on top for rain.

Bryson

: Metal taped it onto here. And then I bent this down to try to keep wind out of the top here. Alright, we got it all finished up. It's on there and perfect.

Bryson

: There's the closet and the rocket stove. Right here. Pipe going up and out. It's a very nice seat, it is. And the glowing coals. Bree: With the rocket stove complete, it's time to move onto the cob floor. Or it might be referred to as an

earth

en floor. Before we get started laying the cob floor, we need to place the tiles on the steps, stairs, and entry. Gary: Would like to make the steps a little stronger. Cob has a tendency to break down. So we tile the area that gets the harder work. I have concrete underneath and then I'm cementing the tiles in to the steps. Shelly: We've had these little brown tiles on the property since we bought this property. What 10, 12 years ago Gary? Gary:...
Yeah. Shelly: We may have found a use for 'em. Shelly: Okay, we're just laying some time ideas out for the entry. Shae: We're putting these down with liquid nails. So that will be fun. Gary: This is a 15, 6. Shelly: 15 sand, 6 clay? Garen: Yeah. Gary: We did have to filter the clay. The sand was just perfect. Garen: They just keep bringing me loads and I would just smooth it all out, get it all level. Gary: Also too Garen, this is the low side. So the higher you want to make it, the better for the floor. Garen: Okay. Shae: Garen has just got this talent to be able to level the floor with his eye and it just looks amazing and it's smooth and it's a beautiful floor and I'm gonna be honest, he is almost as good as I am. Bree: Garen has a knack for leveling the floor by eye. How do you do it? Garen: Make sure that the room is real light so you can see you know, what's higher and what's lower. If the room is all dark, you don't get the glare off from the water, off the cob and it always looks fairly close. You can see level a little better from the shine. It looks level when you walk around and you kinda tilt your head. Gary: It looks... Garen: Perfect. Shelly: One batch after another. You got this thing going huh? Gary: They're punching the clay out so fast and getting that cob floor installed. The work that I was trying to do was get the steps tiled. At least to a point where they could cob up next to it. So I had stay ahead of them. That...
was quite a challenge. Shelly: Wow. It looks complete. Shelly: Are you hiding? Garen: I'm hiding. Yes. Shelly: Gonna do some time lapse of the floor. Shelly: Gary, took off and got a snack, I see. Gary: Peanuts. Shelly: Peanuts, um, I would say it's a little more than peanuts. Gary: It might have a few m&m's in there. Gary: I used my own mixture of cob, with sand, clay and a couple little 2 inch shovelfuls of cement.

Bryson

: That was close Gary: It's just really good. Garen did a great job. Garen: It wasn't just me.

Bryson

: Day 3 and we're waiting for it to dry. We did put these bricks here to help keep the dogs out.

Bryson

: The floor is finally dry after 4 days. Shelly: Cardboard keep our feet from scuffing the floor up. Our feet could tear up the floor pretty easily.

Bryson

: I used boiled linseed oil. Just gonna use a roller here and roll it on. We're going to go ahead and do 5 coats on this floor. Shelly: Okay, this is the floor after. You can see the linseed has soaked in. It's not shiny. Ready for another coat. Bree: We apply 5 coats of linseed oil over the coarse of a few days to allow for dry time in between. We used about 7 gallons of linseed oil. Garen: We put a quick coat of wax on the floor after the coats of linseed. And we just use a hardwood floor wax.

Bryson

: Oh hey, look at this?

Bryson

: Oh, this is so cool.

Bryson

: Does that work? Bree: Now, we need some power. Garen uses solar panels. However, we need more panels if we...
want to add

Bryson

's room to it. Gary: Last year we purchased for Garen's room, two solar panels, two batteries and a

full

kit to do that in

version

to A/C. Shelly: Yeah, and it was our first test of getting solar Gary: In a bigger scale. Shelly: We can't afford to buy it for the whole house but we thought we would start with the little rooms. He's been running a little over a year on that now and so it was a good test for us to see how it would do. And it actually has really well with the exception of, he cannot run his 3D printer over there. Gary: I think the 3D printer would run for 6 to 8 hours. And that was the problem, is it took a big drain. Knowing that we had to increase Garen's room by one more panel, we just added four panels. Shelly: Yeah, because

Bryson

has a 3D printer as well. Shae: We have our panels. Shelly: And our batteries are tucked under here. We have 4 panels and 4 batteries. And then some cabley things to connect them. Shelly: There's the store too. Shae: Yes, that is the Solar. Shelly: He's got a new sign. He didn't have that last time. Shelly: Let's head home and hook them up. Shae: Yes, let's do. Bree: Garen will increase our current system to from 2 panels to 6 panels. Bree: He installs 2 poles with supports angled 32 degrees toward the sun. Garen picked an angle somewhere between summer and winter. We purchased brackets that are designed to connect the rails. Shelly: Are you teasing the pig? Bree: The...
structure is in place. Time to slide in the additional panels. Bree: It's a one to one ratio from panels to batteries. Garen attaches it using specific connectors for the panels. Garen: We need a thicker wire to handle the power coming in from 6 panels so I'm going to replace this wire here. Put a heavier gauge stuff in. Shelly: Was it 6 gauge? Garen: Yeah, putting 6 in. Shelly: What is that? Garen: 10 Gauge. Garen: Coming to help me dig? Garen: Good boy. Bree: Diesel doesn't leave Garen's side and tries to help wherever he can. Shelly: That's the 6 gauge that's come under the building Garen: Electricians look away, please. Don't see my beautiful handiwork. Shelly: Okay, so the white one went up to this. And the black one is going up there. Garen: This thing will take up to 6 panels.

Bryson

: So Garen, how did you wire these in? Garen: Okay, so we have 6 panels, 3 and 3 is what we've separated them in groups. And the reason is, if you get too many amps running through the little wire we have, So we can't have 6 panels running through the little wire. We take and we wire 2 sets of 3 panels into one box and we wire them into a big 6 gauge wire. Under the ground, and that will go straight into the control panel. Because all my wires are coming out of here are black and they're not labeled. I'm just going to check them on the multi-meter. We can check which ones are which. These are coming out of 2 sets of 3 panels. You don't want to...
touch any of these together because these are all hot 'cause of the sun. It's not like you can turn the sun off.

Bryson

: Put these blocks behind it. It helps stick it out. Because the cob, the box is way back here. The building came way out here. So the cap won't fit on it correctly. Garen: I am wiring up the batteries. Bree: Our system is 24 volt so we buy 12 volt batteries in sets of 2.

Bryson

: We have 6 batteries here and he wired 2 these together with minus to plus with a jumper. Then he took and ran the 2 plus and minus over to a main jumper. Garen: I'm gonna check the voltage, make sure that it is 24 volts coming out 'cause otherwise you can get If you wire them all together which I may of done first, you get 75 volts out of this thing and you only need 24. Yeah, we're right on. Right on 24.

Bryson

: He takes the 24 volts and connects it to the main cables which go up to here.

Bryson

: We bought the perfect amount of wire. We didn't even cut this. It was the prefect roll. So it comes out here from the building. Up to that building. Right there it goes in. And diesel, he's watching and he's learning and he is ready to help. Garen: You wanna help me out?

Bryson

: He was laying in the ditch a few minutes ago. Yep. Garen: How can you always be in my way?

Bryson

: Looks so beautiful Garen. It does. Gary: Turn it on. See if you have light. Garen: Shut it off, we don't have power. And we know mine has power. Maybe something unhooked? Gary:...
Do you have a wire that is not connected up?

Bryson

: No juice. Gary: Maybe it's the breaker. Garen: No voltage there.

Bryson

: So it's the breaker? Garen: Oh, I see what it is. Gary: Check the bus. Garen: Okay, we should have power now. Shelly: Was it just in the wrong slot? Garen: Yeah.

Bryson

: Very hilarious. Bree: The solar panels and batteries are separate from the building

cost

s since it's optional. Last year our budget for the initial system was $3000. This year we didn't need to purchase the inverter which was half the

cost

. We budgeted $2500 for the 4 solar panels and 4 flooded batteries. Gary: Part of homesteading is moving off of the grid and that gives us the independence of our own power. Shelly: It is our goal to be completely off gird. But, it's not very pratical for us right now. So we're just taking small steps to get there. Well, a

bedroom

's not suppose to take a crazy amount of power. Gary: Except when you have 2 sons like ours that Shelly: Each have 3D printers, who want to print for hours on end. We got 6 panels for just those 2

bedroom

s. It'll be interesting a year from now to see. Could we run those 3D printers? Bree: It's time to move him in. But first, we need to buy him a real bed. He hasn't had one for over 10 years.

Bryson

is a camouflage fan so it's time to give a camo paint job, a try. Shelly: Here's all the colors we got. We looked it up online and learned how to do it. Shelly: Our base color, kinda...
an olive green. We'll put that base down first.

Bryson

: Always paint left in cans. Or not that one. Not that one either. There's no more paint. Bree: The youtube video we learned from used real leaves but since we don't have any real oak tress around here, Garen has an idea. Shelly: Oh, and then you're going to do that one? Garen printed them out and then we taped them on some light cardboard. Shelly: It's blotchy in some places but I guess it's suppose to be a little blotchy. Shelly: Let's try another color over the top. Garen: We should be doing it on this side. Hold paint a little better. Shelly: Oh yeah. Shelly: Now it's looking

total

ly like camo. Poor thumb. Garen: I should have glove on. Garen: That's it, right there.

Bryson

: This is really awesome Garen. Garen: Shadow from the black. Shelly: It takes two of you guys to wax that? Shae: Definitely. Shelly: It's beautiful though I have to say. Shelly: I made some curtains out of camo. Not really a seamstress but we put a blanket that we weren't using to be the liner. So he'll have some extra protection from the cold.

Bryson

: It felt really awesome to be moving into my room. At first you don't believe it. You're just like no way. I had to pinch myself just to figure out we were actually moving stuff in. Some friends came over to help so it was all fun. The desk that I had was just way too big. It was nice but it just wouldn't fit in the room. So we ended up taking...
it apart and fitting it against the wall so we could put the whole desk in there. We even had to build some legs and stuff. And as we were taking it apart, all of a sudden the whole thing collapsed into this flat pile. And we're like, Oh. So we took some screws and screwed it back together and built legs for it and got it in there. Bree: Alright

Bryson

, what are you doing?

Bryson

: It's a mess. Don't look. And it is a mess but I think I know where half this stuff goes.

Bryson

: Potato gun. Pretty sweet. Bree: I forgot about that chest.

Bryson

: You know, I think I'm going to put it over there. Bree: Each of us have a light box in our rooms. for filming reasons.

Bryson

: Used for filming. Actually, I can put a light box back there. Bree: Where's your 3D printer?

Bryson

: It's right there. Bree: Oh, I see.

Bryson

: I didn't realize I had so much stuff. Garen: Holy cow. So much stuff.

Bryson

: I keep boxes of things you would never use anymore. Garbage electronics, things that have broken and I throw 'em in boxes and I keep 'em. 'Cause I go, you know what? Oh this might have a couple electronics in here I could use to fix something else so I keep it. Someday it could save your iphone.

Bryson

: I was sleeping up in this loft before I moved in. I was happy to move out of there. This is my old loft up here. Oh boy, it's dark up here. And the loft actually was a lot of fun up there. It was nice and cozy. The bedding I used to sleep on. Bye Bye....
Don't need you anymore. It's really nice to finally have walls to decorate. It took 2 days to move everything in, possibly even 3 if you count all the boxes. Is it really and then you wake up and you're just like,Oh my gosh, I'm moved into my room. It's unbelievable. Yeah, that was awesome. Bree: And now,

Bryson

's ready to give us a tour.

Bryson

: Alright, so let's go take a look at my new room. But first before we get to the inside, we have to go around the outside. Nothing to see here but paint. 'Til you get around to this side. Which is the more funner side. Which is actually a dictionary word now so We can use "funner" now. We got these glasses in here. This thing. Window. Cameraman keep up. We got so much to see and so little time. Our newest addition, a pot with what is going to be a live grape. So let's go inside. Got a nice basketball hoop. Closet. Shine some light on the subject. Dog likes to be in here too. Get out. I've got a nice computer area. 3D Printer, Stuff like that. And then in here We got our rocket stove going on over here Our bed. My bed actually. And, dresser area Steps. Open door. And outside we go. And around in a circle. And back inside. Nice view of our... And that's my room. Bree: Our friends came over to celebrate. Scott: I had to climb up on the wall and move some dirt. Shovel it in a bag. She was up on the wall and had a blast. Alex: It was fun. Malcolm: She did all the work. We just handed...
her cans

full

of dirt. Scott: That's right. She stayed up there. We passed the coffee can of dirt. And she didn't fall off. Gary: Good deal. Scott: It came out fantastic. Alex: It looks great. Gary: Well, thank you. Alex: We honestly expected you to ask us to help more. Scott: More, yeah. Gary: Well, you know, we have 2 more large projects and that may happen. Tom: A different experience. We came out here right after it had rained. The wall was partially up and had to be rebuilt. Part of the adventure right? Gary: It was part of the adventure. Tom: It was very interesting process. It is neat to see how it turned out. You did a really wonderful job. Gary: Were you injured in the process of making this? Tom: I think my lawyer says I'm suppose to to say "yes". Gary: Yeah, right, okay. Bree: And now, the grand

total

cost

for the building...

Bryson

: Really, really awesome. It's phenomenal. Bree: I wasn't expecting it to be so big. But, I think my favorite part is the stairs up.

Bryson

: Yeah, that's definitely a favorite. Bree: And I love the use of the wood. Was really clever.

Bryson

: I like the door. Shelly: Shae's still got a little longer in her loft Gary: Not too long. Shelly: She loves it. Shae: I adore it. It's really funny to watch people walk up into the loft though because, their like, "oh, this is nice." Bang! Ow! Garen: Don't post that.