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Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Swiss Hill Farm Part 1

On a back pretty road between Jeffersonville and Bethel, NY lay a beautiful and dilapidated tiny little farmhouse and 2 barns on 30 acres. Even though I was past my eyebrows in debt, and owned a dicey business with a good idea but no assurance of short or long term success, we had tired of full-time living in the Rock House, our 600 sq ft house in Cochecton, NY - so I bought it.

Now, it's always interesting for a designer/builder/contractor to put the other shoe on and become a home improver - and now that I have done it a few times, I think I am a believer that every builder should build something for himself and his wife every few years just so they can remember the stress involved by home improvement/home builder participants - financial stress, decision stress, relationship stress, animal stress, did I say financial stress?

The thing about decisions is that the bigger they are, the more intractable and unchangeable they are. You can change a light fixture you don't like, but you can't shrink the house once you put the foundation in, you can't change the kitchen cabinets once they are ordered and installed, and you can't improve a piece of land that can't be improved.

Here's where started:

And with an empty wallet and many stories, some jubliant some sordid, here's where we ended -