When I first introduced y’all to the property we are building our house on it was the middle of winter and nothing was green. Well, I’m happy to say that is no longer the case!
(these were taken before all the crazy flooding here in Texas)
The creek is gorgeous. There are SO MANY ferns that you can’t even get to the water, and the trees are huge and provide lots of shade. We’ve been working hard to clear out all the cedar trees (aka “trash trees”), and if your turn around 180 degree from the creek, this is what you see.
It’s basically Fern Gully up in here.
The cedar trees were are getting rid of (they’re actually Ashe Juniper, but everyone just calls them cedar) are water hogs. I’ve heard that they can drink up to 35 gallons of water a day, per tree. That’s an insane amount, especially when we are in a drought (which is pretty much the norm). They also choke out and kill all the good trees, prevent grass growth, and give me some wicked bad allergies. Just for comparison, here is the cypress tress vs the cedar…
We’re thinking that once all the cedars are cleared out the other trees will flourish, grass will grow, and it will look pretty darn park-like. That’s the dream.
Here’s another view of what we’ve done so far…
and the same view a few months ago.
The top of the property – where the house is going – has been the other area we have been concentrating on.
(That fire is in my future living room.)
We have a TON (many, many years worth, I’m sure) more clearing to do, but around the home site it’s fairly clear and we’re now trying to figure out exactly where the foundation will go. Here is my dad helping us string it out.
All we really know for sure is that the big group of oak trees in the pic below are going to be in the back courtyard area.
Those trees have completely dictated where we are putting the house, since they are right in the middle of the property and there is no way we are cutting them down. I’m excited to have a nice shady backyard in the future…especially since at our current house we only have ONE oak tree on the entire property. We’re sun-baked over here.
So, the timeline on the new house….
Currently Adam and I are in the middle of getting our construction loan and will start breaking ground after that is closed. So maybe two months or so? I’m happy to say that the blueprints are finally complete, stamped and sealed by the architect and everything. In a couple of weeks I’m going to start digging into that, laying out the process we went through to design it, our inspiration pics, and the floor plan and elevations. I’m so super excited to start sharing everything will y’all! I can’t believe how fast this is all happening, since we originally hadn’t planned to start building until the middle of next year or so.
Anyway, that is pretty much how we have been spending all our free time these days. And big props to my husband, who has basically done this all on his own. I try to help, but when I come out to the land I bring three small kids with me, which means the whole time I’m really just trying to keep everyone alive and not slow him down. That’s life these days.
The kids are really excited about the whole process as well, mostly Elijah (5). The very first day we started clearing Adam was getting out his chainsaw, and Elijah says “Dad! Where’s my kid chainsaw?” I was like “Yeeeeeah…no. That’s not a thing. Here are some loppers, your job is to cut down all the baby cedars.”
And cut he did. I’d say we get about 20 minutes of solid work out of him each time we go, then he and Levi just kinda hang out, eat every I snack brought, complain, and get really creative with sticks.
Judah is the easy one, I don’t have to bring him a single snack or constantly wonder where he is. Heck, I don’t even have to dress him.
(Mom hack: a fitted crib sheet over a pack ‘n play makes for a shady, bug free zone with plenty of fresh air.)
The recent flooding here in Texas has been crazy, and our creek (from what I can tell) got huge. There is a low water crossing to get to our property and it’s the only way in or out, so we couldn’t go see it at its peak. Here it is after the water receded enough to get there…
You can tell from the line in the leaves exactly how high it was.
Really, really high. The good news is that the house is WAY up the hill and isn’t ever at risk of flooding. The water was also a few feet short of reaching the plateau where I want to put a future creekside hangout, which means we’re safe to build one of these down there and not have to worry about it washing away.