This house is open to the surrounding land; airy rooms that open onto porches, lots of light from skylights and translucent overhanging roof areas. It is full of empty space inwhich to dance, stretch, play, spread out projects, practice music. The sounds I hear are wild birds, crickets, wind in the tree branches, moving water. I rarely, if ever, hear motors, electronics, dogs, roosters, or angry people. I can see the ocean and receive its breezes, so I am not troubled by biting insects. My neighbors are my friends, and we gather often to share meals, music and stories.
The house uses water, electricity, solar heat, solar power, and other resources in an efficient and sustainable way. It is built of renewable materials that require a minimum of maintainance. Recycled materials add soul and playfulness to the elegant and simple design of the building. Off-grid and on-grid options are available for use according to advantage on any given day. The land has a reliable cool clear well, and roofwater is collected for watering the garden. The toilets do not use water, and, instead, produce sterile humus for the fruit trees and ornamentals. There’s a solar oven and a solar produce drier in the garden.
There is a bedroom for me with a walk-in closet and a bathroom with a shower/tub, a guestroom with a closet and a bathroom, an office with extensive storage for books, files, and supplies, a spacious art studio with many tables, shelves and bulletin boards, plus storage for art supplies, completed works, and shipping supplies, an open and informal kitchen/dining/living room area that lends itself to gatherings of friends, a music area, a covered parking area, a gardening workroom, a laundry room, fix-it work area with tools for house upkeep and wouldn’t it be cool to make my own bio-diesel!
Surrounding the house are permaculture style gardens, with the edible plants that need the most oversight closest to the doors of the house, and the fruit trees needing least oversight farthest away. The garden is a jumble of plants that build the soil, plants that feed birds and insects, plants give shade and biomass to the garden, and plants that feed people. I plan to chose plants that multi-task wherever possible! The garden, like the house, is low maintainance, high yield.
I imagine the house design to have curving, organic elements to it, and that I will add mosaic designs to the outside areas. I’ve seen dozens of examples of my dream house in Lloyd Kahn’s book Home Work.
The neighborhood features miles of scenic walking trails, lovely places to swim and snorkel, and a sweet little town or two with lovingly restored old buildings, enormous old trees, a well-stocked and reasonably priced natural foods store, several venues inwhich to gather with friends for natural food and live entertainment, a restored movie theatre with an arts/left taste in films, a friendly bank and post office, and a weekly farmers’ market. Hippie heaven!
I feel happily at home just thinking about it; I am already there.