Trust Yourself

So the boyfriend of almost five years and I decided to build our cabin in the woods, seeking to build a beautiful sustainable home and to lead the same kind of lifestyle. I’m sure many people would only dream of being able to do something like what we did. We bought 11.2 acres of beautiful land about a half an hour from the town we both grew up in and started building our dream cabin this past August. It was a dream come true for me, though it didn’t come without many hardships. For one, we didn’t end up having enough time to build an outhouse this fall, giving the expression, “Nice day for a shit in the woods!” a whole new meaning. For two, the cabin we built is only 24X18 and it’s pretty… “cozy” (we had planned on doing many additions). This winter we planned on finishing the inside together and then in the spring get started on a million other projects. 

Plans change, people change.

As the winter wore on I couldn’t help but feel like I was having to force said boyfriend to want to do things, to want to be here, to want to be with me. I ignored this for a long time (winter blues possibly?) until one night I brought up the idea of possibly ending the relationship. Turns out the feeling was mutual and we weren’t sure how or what would happen to us and all of our hard work. The week following that night did not contain a lot of sleep. Instead I went through everything you can possibly imagine a person would in these circumstances. I ended up getting another part time job as well as a full time job within the week. I decided that I wanted to stay. I have never felt so attached to a place or building before more than I have here. I’m still not sure how I will make ends meet on my own, but I am sure some solutions will come to me. Staying here alone for the past couple of weeks has me thinking up ways on how to deal with living out in the country (bears, weirdo bush people…etc.) as well as how to finish the cabin on my own.

    I’ve sort of come to the decision that maybe I need to do this for myself, and in solitude maybe get to know myself better and figure out what I might want to do. This I suppose will be a bit of a turning point for this blog (not that there is tonnes of content in here) no longer will it be a “dream blog about a dream life” but a “real blog about a real person”. Is it even possible for a young person (Turning 23 next week…) to accomplish these kinds of goals? I’ve made a huge (huge) To-Do for myself to tick off as I go. It’s too big to copy onto here, but I thought it might be kind of interesting to post each completed goal as a before and after and to see if it’s still possible to build my dream cabin and live a beautiful life on my own. I will share the first goal.

1. Build a loft.

lofty loft loft

Not the greatest picture, but you can see the log post in the center of the cabin and then a bit of the crossbeam. From the crossbeam to the wall I’m facing (taking the picture) is where the loft would go..

     As I mentioned before the cabin is only 24X18 and it’s definitely a little tight on space. The floor is still not insulated (or skirted – and it’s supposed to really dip down this week… greeeeaaatttt….) so most of the heat from the wood stove rises up to the ceiling and sits there. The floor however cools off super quickly (freezing anything I leave on the floor to be honest) and makes the cabin extremely hard to keep warm in the cold temperatures. Now that I am alone I am having an awful time of trying to keep warm at night. Last night I ditched trying to sleep in bed and pushed the couch up to in front of the stove to sleep. I am sure the living conditions for myself will get worse before it gets better. The stove I have in there now is baaaad. A fire lasts about 4-6 hours. I have to set an alarm for very early morning to stoke it so I don’t wake up completely frozen in the morning. I’m hoping that with the loft built (the cabin has a 12 12 vaulted ceiling) that I will stay warmer. Also for now there will only be a wooden ladder going up to it so it will be nice to not have my dogs smell and dog hair on the bed anymore. Also it comforts me to think that if this spring a bear broke in that it couldn’t reach me as easily as it could now. That however does lead into my next goal on “the list”.

2. Find a way to be able to lock and bar the door.

Hopefully one day someone might come across this blog and find progress. Positive thoughts and prayers are always welcome.


Borden & I



3 thoughts on “Trust Yourself

  1. You’re such a strong woman. If anyone can do this, it’s you. Seriously. Enjoy your time with yourself, you are a beautiful person!

  2. You are already well on your way to achieving your goals by approaching them with a positive, “I can do this!” attitude. I have always been a big believer in the power of positive thinking – that if you put your mind to it, you can truly accomplish anything. Age nor gender have anything to do with this.

    And, though it may not seem like it at this moment, you are also further along the path of figuring out what you DO want in life, as you have been given the gift of an opportunity to learn and grow from this recent experience of what you DO NOT want in life. I believe you have also taken the first big step in that process through your realization of the depth of your connection to the cabin and the land, and knowing this is something you want in your life.

    I don’t know what your particular construction skills are, but there are tons of “How-to” books available in home improvement stores and online to help you with your loft project. Doing this by yourself will be a bit more difficult (as 10-12′ framing members for your loft floor will be heavy), but not impossible. I have found that attaching a temporary wood block at finish height at one end serves nicely as a “helper” to hold that end up while I lift and attach the other.

    If I could suggest one thing to you right now, it would be that you reverse the order of your #1 and #2 goals. Considering your situation, I would feel better about you being secure inside a cold cabin, rather than vulnerable inside a warm cabin…

    Wishing you the BEST of luck and looking forward to seeing your progress posted here!

    • Thank you so much for your encouraging words. I will definitely try and get a jump on getting a lock on that door. 🙂

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