Longer than I can remember, I’ve designed and dreamed of building a home just for us.
A home meant to last…hopefully one where generations will find joy, learn, & work together. One in which we could feel confident about the materials used…for our children, for those who’ve manufactured them, etc. An abode passively warmed by the sun through orientation and a greenhouse, and kept at a fairly constant temperature using concrete tilt-up walls as thermal mass.
Being totally off the grid was an enticing option, but with the land we could afford (it’s walking distance to the designer’s office & old-town) and the (not-so-great, or lack-of) local options for selling back power…we have decided that this plan and location will offer us the opportunity to stay within a reasonable budget and the opportunity to be quite self-sustaining.
Radiant heat in the concrete floors and a wood burning stove are our back up sources for heat. No forced air A/C or heating units. Maybe one day we can add panels to gain the power need for our electricity. Meanwhile, the natural light will flood the home, and we’ll use natural gas in our oven/stove top and perhaps in some of our future clothes washing appliances. I still like to dry as much outside and on the line indoors as possible.
We’ve read, and studied, talked with all sorts of experts…and studied some more…visited similar homes, and are finally going to try out our theories, hopes, and dreams. There were so many things we knew we wanted…hours spent at the drawing board. Our architect took those designs and desires and created a modern beauty.
Some of our favorite parts of Todd’s design:
- floor to ceiling windows at entry, a view that continues right out to the back…with a view up Gaurdsman Pass
- the corner window in the living room that perfectly frames the designer & I’s favorite view of Widow’s Peak (we fell in love with it after spending evenings admiring it’s beauty in our previous condo home)
- a view from the kitchen to the living room, outside and back out the other way looking at Timpanogos
- oolite stone wall that goes from in front of the garage, through the house and back out again
- greenhouse right off the kitchen where we can grow all year ’round (yes, I will be bringing citrus and avocado trees from Cali)
- upstairs art studio doors open over greenhouse, letting in warmth and light
- bedrooms and laundry all on the 2nd level
- a vertical window going up the stairs
- detached garage (hiding behind stone wall)
Todd has designed the house in a Swiss Modern style (which we obviously adore). What do you think? Do you like modern architecture? How far off the grid would you like to be…or are you? Would you ever consider living in a passive solar home? Here’s to dreams everyone! xo ~ katrina