Are We Nuts? We’ll Let You Know!

Here’s something you may or may not know about us. While Richard can fix just about any computer or electronic gadget, we usually hire someone to fix things around the house (plumbing, electrical, roof, etc.). We’ve always wanted to be a bit more handy, but just haven’t gotten around to learning about those types of things.

For the past couple of months, we’ve been land shopping in rural Maine. The idea began last Fall when we stopped our extensive RVing lifestyle after I got pregnant with our fifth child. Since we were homebound for so many months, Ali and Frank chose to go back to public school with their friends. We’d been homeschooling them on the road but, once we were no longer on the road, homeschooling wasn’t as fun and spending all day, every day, with Mom and Dad just wasn’t what they wanted to do. (They’ve both since asked to be homeschooled again but we told them to stick it out until Summer, and let us know how they feel then.) Max and Mason (the new baby) will be homeschooled when they’re old enough (we’re already teaching Max how to read).

Anyway, we have horribly itchy feet in this family and just can’t stand to stay at home for extended periods. We must leave this place! So, we decided we’d shop for some land in rural Maine so we’d have a place to where we could escape on the weekends. And, to keep ourselves busy and out of trouble (and at the extensive jeering from people who know us!), try to build our own little summer home, with our own hands, in the middle of nowhere. I mean, really, how hard can it be? There are books on everything out there! (I can hear you snickering from here!)

After a few weeks of land shopping that first featured dangerous treks on ice-encrusted roads, one cabin held up on its side by a rusty refrigerator, and a large plot that came complete with it’s own bear tracks (a bit TOO rural for us!), we finally found it! The perfect place! We drove in on a curved road with hills on one side and the valley on the other. The valley side is a 47-acre plot with a driveway and homesite already cleared. In front of the homesite is a wide and breathtaking view of the mountains in the distance. A small creek borders one end of the property and there’s a place in front of the house that would be perfect for a manmade pond or small lake (yes, we have big dreams!).

The owner was there when we drove in and he was very nice. He and his family live down the road. And, not only are they entrepreneurs like us, but they also homeschool their children and one of them is Max’s age!

This week, we learned the appraisal was finished and that we might be able to close on the property next week. That means we’ll be able to go there soon and start making plans. The first steps will be planning where the well and septic tank will be (I told you it was rural!). There is no power out there, but Richard has been investing in numerous solar and wind power parts and other things I can’t identify. And, the RV can get back there so we’ll have a generator until those things get up and running. We’ve decided to make the place as self-sustainable as we can. Yes, that means wireless (our favorite word).

Right now we’re planning on a main house built of stone, another house for the RV and some storage buildings and a greenhouse. And, yes, we understand this is going to take years. But, as long as we stay busy, it won’t be boring. The land was farmland back during the civil war and was abandoned years ago. The farmers cleared the land and build small stone walls all over the property. We estimate there is already enough stone for our building needs, and then some. There’s also a natural gravel pit on the property.

We are so excited! If you’re experienced in solar or wind power, Richard would LOVE to hear from you. He’s at richard – at – While the boys will be handling the technical, water and sewer stuff, Ali and I will be planting a garden and planning a small orchard (apple and cherry trees). We’ll all be helping with the actual building of the main home and surrounding buildings. What better way to get in shape after having a baby than to lift stones every weekend for weeks on end (ug!). The baby is due in less than six weeks!

Will we be writing a book about our experiences? You betcha!

I have one Maxism for you this week. Max (age 4) came upstairs by himself last night. I asked, “Where’s Ali?

He sighed and said, “Ali’s in the sewer. I flushed her.”

Hugs to everybody!


P.S. Want to read real query letters that landed these contracts? Woman’s Day – $2,800; Redbook – $3,500; Ladies Home Journal – $3,000; – $2,000; Lifetime Magazine – $3,000; Life Extension Magazine – $6,480; Natural Remedies – $11,300; and many more! See: