Friday, 4 December 2009

50 copies of Who Killed Dave? to give away

The free books will be sent to the first 50 Australian* residents
who send an email to
with Who Killed Dave? in the subject line
and their name and address in the email body
and a link to your blog

The conditions? Within 8 weeks you've read it, and reviewed it on your blog.(You're not obliged to give it a good review)
But no spoilers please - Who Killed Dave is a secret.

You can read more about Who Killed Dave? at
*apologies to those overseas - the postage cost is too prohibitive

Thursday, 3 December 2009

A word that rhymes with duck

We got the ducks to get rid of the slugs. But obviously we can't have informed them of their function in life.
Trev told me, 'They'd be at risk of becoming magnetic.'
He'd watched them start at one end of my garden and throw down every snail pellet in sight. They're non-toxic, based on iron and in no danger of dying from anything but my left foot.
We have a large slug population, and they make me think more fondly of snails, who have a nice slime free zone to grab hold of them by and throw them in a bucket. These seem impervious to everything I've thrown at them - all the usual beer and vegemite traps, orange peels have done little to dampen their enthusiasm for my seedlings. I've taken to halving plastic bottles and pressing them into the soil around the plants to exclude them, though the ducks saw them as a personal obstacle course and challenge and tipped them all over.

It's my own fault we have so many slugs, I use enormous amounts of mulch and it's been very wet (though, to be honest that part hasn't been up to my personal responsibility).

Then the ducks ate my strawberries, knocked off the asparagus and gone thrown out of eden and into the bottom grassy area with their bath soon to follow. It was probably good timing. We've been witness to the weirdest of duck perversions (he kept mounting her head), but he's recently come to the conclusion he needed a 180 degree change in the arrangements and is out there looking very proud of himself.

But Trev did warn me that in his experience ducks weren't work a word that rhymes very much the same.

Mud buddys

Trev and I have been slappin' up mud - well I'm probably the slap happy one, Trev's the one who is achieving the unachievable and creating right angles out of clay and straw slip.

He has an audience. Not one he's much enthused by. Brie and Hazel think the house site is a purpose made playground for goats. They love to jump from one window sill, race to the next, jump on that, and continue around the house, appearing at each window for a few seconds before conquering the next. They knock over Trev's test jars full of clay, sand and silt. And they talk, especially Hazel, in a very raspy bleat. Continuously. They've been sent behind the electric fence during the day to hang out with the soon to be mumma goats. Charity is happy enough to share her space with them, poor Bella is so old she knows she hasn't a hope of keeping up with them, but Daisy, big round bellied first time mumma bashes the hell out of them. They've learnt to keep their distance.

Posting photos as soon as I remember to bring my camera home from work.

Billy Button the baby bandicoot

We rescued the 'wee fella' as he is affectionally known about 2 months ago. He'd fallen out of his mum's pouch, and not sure why she didn't push him back in, but by the time we found him he was lying there, very still and cold. Popped into a warm pair of hands and cuddled all the way to the local wildlife carer I was amazed at how unfazed he was.

The carer called us back a fortnight ago to ask us if we'd pick him up and care for him till he'd gained enough weight to be released. He needs to be released where he was found. We have an enormous population of eastern barred bandicoots. A nocturnal marsupial they love digging up 'corbie grubs', curl worm. The wedge shaped holes are all through my garden and across the block. They do sometimes dig up tubers and eat my strawberries too. But I'm willing to share. They're endangered and near extinction on the mainland, we have a good population here. Something that will change when our feral friend the fox builds up his population. He is here already.

Trev is absolutely in love with Billy Button, he hangs around his neck in a pouch for most of the day. We feed him mealy worms, curl grubs, chopped up egg, oats and grated apple and special milk formula. He is gaining weight steadily, which is good, but we're facing the re-release sometime in the next couple of weeks. Hopefully he won't come back because there's been a dog (Nuju)forced to salivate for too long...

Saturday, 21 November 2009

The Age of Stupid

Wondering if anyone can help me out here. I purchased a copy of the Age of Stupid a month ago from the UK for a community free screening. It's next week, the DVD hasn't arrived and it now seems they forgot to send it - sending it now, but it's unlikely to arrive in time.

Has anyone got a copy they'd be prepared to lend me? Or better, a place I can buy one in Aus?

Monday, 26 October 2009

Just another day in plastic paradise - not

I've seen Cryptic Moth Productions movie Addicted to Plastic, it showed bird autopsies where the cause of death was pieces of plastic - take a look at the link of corpses of albatrosses with bottle tops, pen lids, lighters and more in their stomachs. A sad endictment on our disposable lives that others lives are disposable as a result.

Thanks Lynn for sending on the link.

Mud Madness

Trev has a new appendage to his name, it now goes, Poor Trev.
It's a fine thing to be able to say no-pvc, strawbale, no concrete - make all the rules and then bugger off into the garden and leave him to it. Not strictly 100% true, but close enough. Still, he's hard at it, and now with all the strawbales up, tensioned and true, he's charged up for more progress.

Trev's trimmed two sides with the whippersnipper and with lots of stuffing around figuring out how best to do it, we've bought a simple metal backpack sprayer, filled it with clay slip - which is thin clay slurry about the consistency of paint, and Trev kills his left arm pumping it up and spraying.

There's been a lot of web searching and phone calls to make. We've finally found pvc-free electrical cables - at 4 to 5 times the price of normal wiring. (anyone know of a cheaper source?) - pvc free plumbing is still being fine tuned with our ideas changing so often we're hard pressed to keep each others latest decision. Often touting completely different ones to different people. The windows, - to make them or to have them made, that is the question. Time and money being incredibly difficult as we don't have much of either. Still, we only have a $13,000 mortgage so far. Though this is expected to blow out soon with electricity, plumbing and windows being major expenses.

I'll add a whole heap of photos of the appreciating-everything-Trev-does, kind. Some stage soon I'll add what's going on in the garden, which is starting to look bloody marvellous if I do say so myself.

A time of Blossom and Baby Animals

Brie (named for the dairy animal she is) and Hazel, because she's a bit nuts. Arrived, 6 weeks old and oh so adorable a couple of days back. Pure Toggenburg, I'm hoping the two sisters will be the source of milk and cheese in years to come for years to come. They spent the first night in the shed. Caleb opted to stay with them. We heard them bleating at 2am - the microwave dinging as he heated up a feed for them. The bleating persisted. But blessed with one very deaf ear, to block it out all I need to do is roll over and put my good ear to the pillow - I did. I'd told Caleb if it's too much come back to bed and leave them to it. He did, at 6am. I got up to give his head a tussle and told him what a good dad he was.
'No, I'm not' he muttered from under the pillow, 'I wanted to f'ing kill them.'

I'm hoping that reduced his likelihood of being involved in any teenage pregnancies.

They'd not had much human contact, so it's taken them a couple of days not to freak out when we come near, and are now content to be cuddled and take to the bottle twice a day. Watching them bunt heads together, jump and spring around... spring is finally here.


Yep, Caleb named the latest lamb - while Ramses, Lamboghini's predecessor, languishes in the freezer, subsides, sizzling, onto the plate and slides through Trev and Caleb's intestines, Lamboghini - thankfully female, and therefore safe - is cuteseying up the place. Born mostly black, she'll whiten up more than Ramses did. She's designated breeding stock, so will get to click her heels in peace for a long time yet.

Sunday, 25 October 2009

Proper Gate

I wanna propagate - er a proper gate. I've been fencing the four chook clock enclosures, in 1/4 of an hour segments. I've floppy fenced most of it, which means laboriously using pliers to halve a 900mm tall 50 metre long roll of chook wire and wiring it to the top of the previous 900mm tall chook wire fence. It's not tensioned, but left floppy to put off raids by animals, in particular the possums, and deters escapees who don't like the insecurity of a wavy bit of wire.

Trev taught me a great trick with a nail, where you place it above one wire of the chook wire and beneath another on the one you wish to sew it to, and roll it around 360 degrees a couple of times and twist the two together. Then you don't need to introduce any new wiring material. If that doesn't make sense and it seems like something you'd like to know more on, say and I'll photograph the sequence.

Anyway, I know have need of at least 2 gates on the enclosures that I'm currently planting in. I need a proper gate - one that preferably came out of a 'farm gates for simpletons' type book. Anyone have a recipe?

Saturday, 17 October 2009

Ready to Launch!

Another month has passed and I've been shocking at keeping up with the blog. I have to come back tomorrow and rave on about Lamboghini,the great straw walls, laying first mud,the chook maze, a wind turbine, and I've even been planning to soap box it on US backyards (with more spent on them than the combined gross GDP of 40 of the worlds poorest countries).
But for now, late at night with an essay on what's going on with Tasmania's old growth forests to read, I'm just going to leave tonight's missive at...

Who Killed Dave? my fiction self-publish using green printing methods is about to launch. 15th of November, 2pm at Fullers Bookshop in Hobart, with Peter Boyer doing the honours. If anyone just happens to be in the world's most beautiful rural metropolis on the day - consider yourself invited.

I'm waiting for the shipment of books to arrive, and I'm clearing out the space to house them all. I have 20 of the digital print variety still sitting there. I recently discovered that Consumer Affairs might take an interest in my claim of being carbon neutral - which it may well be, but I can't say so without accreditation, and that costs $3000 - so now I'm saying carbon offset - which is legally the safer option. It's a learning game.

So now I have 20 advance copies of the carbon offset book, which mistakenly says it's carbon neutral - but which is on 100% recycled paper, though not printed with vegetable inks (digital print is toner based). I need the storage space - so selling them off - postage free at $20.00 each if you'd like one. Click here

More info at with excerpts and a couple of reviews. I was tempted to include my mother's. It went someting like this...

It was the sexiest Milly Molly Mandy I've ever read. It gave me nightmares.
Jan Cockburn

Still making me laugh. About 20 years ago I told her that her Catherine Cookson, Barbara Cartland novels were 'Milly Molly Mandy for adults' - obviously that comment has not been forgotten, or forgiven.

But she is right in that the book doesn't have a serious bone in its body - it's about falling into a book, being taken for a ride, one in which the car is full of laughing gas. Kind of Janet Evanovich does suburban Australia.

While the theme isn't serious, the process has been - I'd love to help mainstream publishing go green. Have a quick read of the green stuff page for a brief rundown on the whys and links to green printers and more.

Saturday, 12 September 2009

The Mud Bath

Lots has happened around the perimeter of the house. My brother Stu and partner Lynn came over for somewhere around 10-12 days and were treated to abysmal weather of the rainest, muddiest, windiest since we've been here. They gave up when the trailer/tent we had set up for them (assuming kinder weather) blew down. They 'weathered' it well. Lynn did a lot of back work, lying on it creeping around the bottom of the perimeter beams using the pnuematic stapler to put up the mesh to keep the rodents out. Then filling the space between the beams with blue stone. Stu and Trev made waterproof ladders, base boards and window bucks. Me, I went to work and spent 8 hours a day staring at a computer screen, in a warm, dry office. I still managed to feel throughly peeved I couldn't have been doing something, especially in the garden. Stu and Lynn took a day off to rotary hoe, weed, lay sawdust paths and generally make great use of themselves. I figure, if you spend that many days living in a 6 X 3 metre shed with five people and a dog and not get on each others wick, you're doing pretty well!

So we're up to putting bales up. But first we figured we'd get mudding. The mud bath is set up to help soak clay, some of which we ground through heavy mesh to break into smaller bits (and wear the skin on our hands and our patience thin). We're back to getting the boot in. The clay slip will be sprayed onto the walls with an airless piston style sprayer. This will allow for greater adhesion with the next coat of render. We're not sure how much to make, so I'm erring on the side of caution and will go with... lots. The stuff is quite intriguing, and taken with a fast shutter speed becomes even more so. I'll probably get over the mud phase soon enough, but enjoying it so far. Though Caleb has this bizarre desire to want to immerse himself, 'Look mum, some people can do butterflies in the snow... but look at me!'

Saturday, 8 August 2009

Chook Pen update

It's finished. I haven't got the fences up, they're not high on the agenda at the moment, there's nothing growing there, they can free range for a while.
Trev ended up having to get the doors up - I've been away from the place more than home for a while, still the case, so I caved in and accepted his help. He also made the neat latches too. The chooks love it. I'm happy with it, it doesn't handle close inspection. I'll settle for having a chook pen of character rather than perfection.

Straw Bale Fever

In a time when fevers are associated with pigs it's nice to suffer the strawbale kind.

Trev has 6 and a half bales up, a very early symptom of the condition. We've had to stop there as he's off with Caleb for a week, and with the current weather (incessant rain), we'll need to wait till he gets back to get them up and the render on. But it's exciting. After all the issues of baling twine on the wrong sides of the bales (it was a very old baler) and having to put them on their edge rather than the flat and then changing how they were going to be placed on the perimeter beams, we've finally come to a decision on how it's done. It looks great, and feels solid already. I can't wait to contract the disease seriously and get them all up. Despite the cold and wet I'm even keen for the mud phase. Then the windows, then the floors, then the ceiling lining, all this while the power and plumbing will be happening. Then we're to lock up!

Trev admits to telling everyone when they ask, 'When are you going to be in?'
'This time next year' he says, without deducting any months from the passing time.

Spot Trev's hat? It's spun and knitted from our black sheep, Ramses. Our neighbour Juleen knocked it up.
Trev loves the hat, but he's not the least thankful to Ramses, he's off to the abbatoir next week - he's been misbehaving, beating up Panda, having full of warfare with Caleb's duck, and beleive me, the duck does NOT give in. Breaking into the shed and gutsing out on grain, and doing his best to knock Caleb over any chance he gets (but then Caleb deserves it - you don't play butty games with a lamb and expect him to stop when he's a sheep). I'll be sorry to see him go.

Wednesday, 15 July 2009

Transition Towns in Tassie

A couple of weekends ago I spent the weekend in Hobart doing the transition town training - it's a fantastic concept we imported from Kinsale in Ireland and the UK, where it's doing very nicely. It's a community approach to the issues of climate change and peak oil.

I've written an article in the next ABC Organic Gardener Magazine on the topic, so I'm kind of loath to describe it all over again. You can read more about the concept at and and our very first transition town in Aussie and others here.

Where I'm working we have a very supportive committee who were keen to jump on board the boat and our community centre now has funding over $40,000 to do something similar in Geeveston - - it's not often you get to do something at work that you're so passionate about. Our launch is in a couple of weeks, Lara Giddings it officiating, and I'm busy collecting local food from within the community and schools and doing a low food miles feast. We were donated about four kilos of shelled walnuts today, the local beekeeper will supply honey and we're going to make baklava, a high miles recipe with a local flavour.

No doubt I will subject you to more raves about it over the year. Can't wait for our permaculture blitz's, with pruning, no dig gardening, making chicken coops, mini greenhouses, seedsaving workshops and much more. Local food production is only one aspect of the project, but it's definately something I love to get my teeth into.
We lashed out and bought one of those dirt chewing beasts - the enemy of the no dig garden, a rotary hoe. When it comes to break new ground quickly, nothing beats them, and when you're stupid enough to keep expanding your garden range and you have carpal tunnel issues, it saves the pain of digging it laboriously by hand. I love it.

I strip rotary dug five lengths of one paddock and planted cherries, plums, apricots, peaches, almonds and hazelnuts. I also lashed out on a mulberry tree, - I can't get over the price they are here, in Queensland you hack a bit off the old tree stick it in damp ground and a couple of months later you have a tree. Not so here, here they're described as slow growing! It cost $56.
I'll have a go at propagating more from it in the future.

Ugly Duck

He's not ugly yet, but bound to be - he/she is a Moscovy, destined to make gourmet meals of my slug invasion. Right now it's wandering around the shed laying little grey slugs of poo that Caleb, keen to keep his new best friend in good favour, is quick to mop up.

Whenever Cal goes for a walk it's waddling behind him or laying out on his forearm and watching the world from it's elevated perch.

Nuju, a bird dog, does nothing but salivate over it, he trembles with the exertion of controlling his desire to lunge and lunch. He has to endure watching the imposter eat his food from his own food bowl. The duck has no sense of self-preservation and lives up to it's name, 'nibbler', and nibbles on everything including the fur between Nuju's toes.

Trev's jokes revolving around various duck recipes have diminished, he's become quite fond of it - but it is soon to join the ranks of animals that dwell in the outside world as the unsweet smell of duck poo is getting to us all.

Photo to come. Figured I better get a few posts up and happening, because lots has been happening, except posts.

Saturday, 6 June 2009

How do you convert a bus to electricity?

Perhaps a strange ask, but I'm wondering (after a fair bit of googling) if anyone in Australia currently converts gas/petrol/diesel vehicles to electricity?

If not, has anyone converted their own vehicle? I remember featuring a guy years ago who did, is it something you'd consider, what are your thoughts on EV's?

Wednesday, 3 June 2009

Solar Rebates ... times running out!

An image showing it's age, or perhaps the age of its subjects.

If you haven't already heard of the solar rebate program it might be time to cast your eye over it - it's ending June 30.
The rebate scheme means you can score a solar system (no they're not offering you the earth, moon and stars)at no to very low cost. We've paid a refundable $2,500, a 1kWh system will be installed, and when all the paperwork is over, it will be returned, we're looking at a cost of around $450 for our energy provider to hook it up to the grid. It's part of the government committment to 20% renewable energy.

government rebates

If you follow the link it will show you all current government rebates, follow the solar systems and communities link to find a provider near you, contact them to see what they will provide, some people are clubbing together in communities and getting even better deals. Oh, you have to earn less than $100,000 per year. Not much of an issue for most of us plebs.

Friday, 29 May 2009

Who Killed Dave?


It's been a very interesting experience, the first self-publish. Mostly because I've been trying to find the best possible practice when it comes to an environmental publish. So it goes like this...

I've printed it using POD (Print on Demand) in Australia using recycled paper, 91% recycled waste and it's carbon neutral. This is a first, small print run in order to gain a few (hopefully positive) reviews, and to present it to book distributors without whom you can't sell your book through bookstores, and they don't appear to make decisions on whether they will or not until you've printed it. It presents a few delimmas that a small print run deals with. So there are 100 first editions available!

Because I'd like to make it available worldwide the environmental and postage costs make it unsustainable to send it overseas. So I've signed up with Lulu, a print on demand US company for northern hemisphere sales. The book can be viewed here Who Killed Dave?@Lulu Unfortunately, while it's still carbon neutral - it's not from recycled paper stocks or printed using vegetable ink. But! It can also be downloaded electronically from the site for $5 US - making it an environmental read of the first order (as long as you don't print it.)

It also mean it'll be available through Amazon - eventually.

Some of you may have heard me rabbit on about it some time back - for those of you who haven't heard or seen it - excerpts and pitch are here

I had a ball writing it, I hope people have as much fun reading it.

Tuesday, 19 May 2009

The Little Chook House Project (stage two)

Spent Friday slaving over a full wheelbarrow full of mudbricks. Loved it, had got the roof up during the week, and it was gratifying to finally get the part I was looking forward to, the grubby part (how typical). Still have two walls and four doors to go. But managed to drop by the South Hobart tip shop on the way home from Hobart yesterday and scored a $1 wooden window to lighten things up for the chooks.
Really enjoying the process of doing it on my own. Trev gives me advice and helped me shove a couple of screws in that were high and just before a rainy squall hit, but apart from that, oh yes, and cutting the wood to the required length, still not up to using a drop saw, last two times, one chopping fire wood, and the other small wooden posts, I've managed to bust the thing, not strictly my fault but I'm not much interested in tools that spit plastic bits of cooling fan at your face and then go up in smoke.

I'd like to hear what amazing things you've done in the name of home handy person ... particularly if you are a woman. Spoke to one of the female persausion the other day who was renamed Chainsaws. After being told she needed to take out the top of a tree she tied a chainsaw around her waist, climbed the tree and chopped it out. Hats off to her. Way beyond me. What about you?

and I will walk 400 bales ...

We have 400 bales packed tight on a tarpolin, temporarily. It took Trev and I two days in which Caleb (who came down with a horrible flu right on time, and had to come along with us)Trev and I travelled to Hobart airport and hired a 9 tonne truck (Caleb was most impressed with his truck driving dad) and drove out to Cambridge where Laurie and Paul helped us load 400 bales in two truck loads and cart them back to Surges Bay. Trev handled peak hour Hobart traffic with aplomb (no, I didn't say 'a bomb') though it would have been handy a couple of times. Tip no 1. When driving with trucks please don't duck in front of them just before they get to a red light.

Anatomy of a strawbale throw

Didn't get home till 7pm the first night and were up at dawn the next morning to unload the last 200 and take the truck back. Arrived home stuffed to find that the sheep shearer had turned up so we spent the next hour or so running up and down hills after recalcitrant sheep, both ours and a neighbours. Glad the day was finally over and we could stay still long enough for tired muscles to stiffen up nicely. Still, beats paying gym fees.

Getting closer all the time to plonking the bales into the walls and adding another dimension to the house.

Sunday, 10 May 2009

The Little Chook House Project

I'm not a builder, as I like to tell everyone my help towards the house is being on the dumb end of the tape measure and doing a bit of the donkey work, lugging things around, pulling on ropes and every now and then Trev lets me use a hammer (sparingly). My skills are next to nil, so I figured I'd get around to a small project of my own to increase them without the issue of making a mess of the house at the same time. I was inspired by an article in the ABC Organic Gardener Magazine, either last issue or the one before. It was the chook clock. Mine is separated into 15 minute intervals. Basically the large area is divided into four by the central chook pen. From each corner a fence (will) radiate out to the corners of the paddock, dividing it into four wedge shaped garden beds. Each side of the chook pen will have a human sized and chook sized door. When I want the chooks in a particular garden bed, I open that side, leaving the others closed. So I rotate them around the beds without having to relocate the chooks, and pen.

I've already made the mud bricks for two of the walls, and as soon as we have strawbales I'll be able to complete the other two. Wanted to have a trial go at rendering too.

Run into the usual 'trap for young players' as Trev calls it. One of my post holes had a weird natural hole at the bottom, and of course once weight was placed on it my post collapsed into it, I had to do the wonderful Tasmanian trick of propping one corner of the chook house up on a few rocks. (some sheds around here have been sitting on piles of rocks as foundations for over a hundred years). The usual not quite square issue, matched with Trev's reject wood which is bowed, twisted and not square in the first place and I'll have some interesting doors to make.

Still, it's all experience, I just wish I wasn't still scared of the drill, the one that twists your wrists off your arms off their stems when you've got your screw in. It's also convinced me even further of Trev's natural born brilliance... I can only look on in wonder.

Friday, 8 May 2009

Pea Paper

Not to be confused with paper that you use in the toilet to deal with pee.
I picked up a book from the library The Art of Papermaking with Plants by Marie-Jeanne Lorente. I adapted it to more organic methods, using wood ash as a lye solution rather than caustic soda. It worked well, I let the pea vine and leaves, which were already dry and brown rot down for weeks in the solution and then cooked it for several hours on the wood stove. I played around with the mix making paper that was purely the plant pulp and then added pulped recycled paper and created a different paper from that. I've got beans, pumpkin and tomato stems to use next, though, no doubt the goats will think it a waste.

We Flew

My no-flying policy took a bit of a lickin' this month. We jetted off to see a friend in Queensland because we really wanted to. It was an emotional 5 day rollercoaster ride which ended on a high note when we spent time with Leela and Ehren, Trev's kids. Despite paying to offset carbon emissions the guilt of such flagrant non-renewable energy use was a trifle unsettling. It's my first flight in around 7 years, and that was work related.

Of course we had to make a trip round to our old house where we did our six months. We shouldn't of. The solar panels were not connected, not sure what the issue was, and why they weren't, the rainwater tanks were also disconnected,same story. My citrus trees are covered in scale and partially skeletonised. Lots of trees are missing, though my avocado tree is still thriving, there were macadamias, custard apples, carambola and chillies still going hard, and the surprise was the size of the three olives, massive.

I was chuffed, but then you can't kill an olive with neglect. Nor too can you do much to buggar up bamboo, they were HUGE! They were planted to be an eventual barrier to the road beneath, and if I'd continued propagating them they would now be a complete sound and visual barrier about 30 metres high.

One small gratification ... spotted some tobacco drying, not all is lost.

The Great Frost

Autumn announces itself with a gentle turning of leaves, winter blasts it's icy warning with a frost capable of turning tomato leaves to black slop and NZ yams to a brownish slump, pumpkin leaves are limp seaweed hanging from drooping stems. Oh well. I manage to get half a wheelbarrow of tomatoes good enough to bottle. Between Trev and I we've 45 1.5 litre or bigger jars full of them. Plus pasta and tomato sauces using Trev's mum's recipe
Pumpkins are salvaged and stored, the yams stay where they are, they're capable of their own small resurrection at this advanced point and will continue to develop tubers under the ground. Though this bandicoot has rooted around for a couple of meals worth already.

On to the apples, bottling of which I'm onto today - it's wet outside and great weather to slave over a hot stove in.

Internal Walls

Trev's right into it, getting the roof on has been a great boost, not just to morale, but to his ability to work in all weather. Each internal wall is made on the floor and then lifted into place. His perfectionism shows, each one fits (like a finger up a bum). It defines each space so it's no longer just in minds eye. The flooring goes on last and so far we've managed to avoid falling into the void. Next step is electrical wiring, plumbing and walls. We've decided to go for a small mortgage, as the next stages are expensive, so far we've managed to save for each step, but not this one. But there's a hold up on this, we've just discovered that the banks insurer will not insure a strawbale house, or a mudbrick or an EPS (polystyrene home). Which has left us bemused. Surely there must be an insurer happy to do so. We make jokes about the durability of our house, as a devotee of ABC's Time Team I hope that they will doing a segment on our house one day in the very distant future.

Anyone know an insurer willing to step up to the mark on strawbale housing?