Friday, March 16, 2012

appreciating the garden kitchen

 I sure am appreciating the big sink and the finished countertop in the little garden kitchen.  I use them for so many of my weekly jobs and now that the busy spring season is beginning, it's making things so much more efficient and doable than in past years.  
That countertop sat unfinished for waaay too long but finally, last summer, I asked Richard who does a lot of tiling work on Mayne Island to come help me get the job done.  And he did.

Here he is, happily applying the grout to the pebble tiles.

Nowadays, harvesting and packaging sunflower and pea shoots is much more convenient!

So nice to have the big sink with running water (hot water too!) and counter on which to put things....

Fun to take a look at the pics I took way back when we were building...this is the wall where the sink and countertop now sit....cob wall about half way up, window frame in, electrical boxes and conduits in, pipes for water in, niches started....and already a little flower bouquet in a niche...(just can't wait to decorate!)

The locally milled cedar window sills and frames made and installed by Aaron Somerville.

Tracy, one of the co-founders of Cobworks here on Mayne Island did a beautiful job of plastering the walls.  Here she is with her of the first jobs before applying the indoor lime plaster was to burn off all the little bits of straw that are left sticking out of the cob after it dries so we could get a nice smooth finish.

The sink and window wall.  Lime plaster beautifully finished by Tracy and earthen floor finished too....time to build the cupboards and countertops.....

For the countertop, we used some darker brownish grey pebbles and some lighter creamy white ones too.  I got them from a tile store and they came on 12" x 12" mesh backing.

  Some spots were easier than others when it came to fitting them in around all the curves and wonky spaces.  Richard did a fabulous job.

Applying the grout.

Finished grout.

More finished countertop.

Pretty garden peonies on just finished countertop, last summer.

If you're interested in small hand built homes and spaces built with cob and other locally sourced and natural materials, you may be interested in the new book by Lloyd Kahn.  Tiny Homes: Simple Shelter  Take a look.  There's so much good stuff in this book, I may never be finished with it. 

Lots of inspirational photos and interesting stories of the people who build these little spaces and 4 pages featuring Mayne Island's Pat Hennebery and Cobworks. (including my little garden house!)  If you live on Mayne Island and are interested, Lynne at Miner's Bay Books has a few copies in stock so you can take a look and get a copy on-island.  (I hear Tanner's in Sidney has it in stock too)
Some good photo links from the book:
.....but there are so many good ones!!'ll have to see for yourself, I can't possibly list them all!

Also found this Tiny Homes book trailer that you might enjoy watching.

And while I'm at it, if you'd like to learn more about cob and building, permaculture and living in community, this internship with Pat Hennebery, Cobworks and OUR Ecovillage might be just the thing for you to do!

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