Thursday, February 21, 2013

Indiana Humanities - Guest Blogger

I have been inviting people to guest blog here at the House of Fallen Timbers and as Karma would have it I was asked to guest blog for the Indiana Humanities Council blog "Think. Read. Talk." They are featuring articles concerned with rivalry as part of their "Spirit of Competition" program. I wrote about one of my favorite subjects, How Rivalry Shaped Indiana.


Wednesday, February 20, 2013

I've been pinned!

I recently noticed some visitors from a site called Pintrest and was curious to see where they were coming from. I googled "Pintrest" and and found the site. Then I searched the site for "House of Fallen Timbers" and found that 12 photos from the blog had been pinned and re-pinned by 22 users. Naturally I signed up for an account, re-pinned all the shares on a board titled House of Fallen Timbers, and became a follower of the 22 users who pinned me. If you're a Pintrest user please feel free to pin images from the blog and/or follow my new board. If you're a blogger or own any other real estate on the web I recommend you check out Pintrest and see if you've been pinned!

Friday, February 1, 2013

Living on Water

We all need water to live so we're all "living on water", but Margy Lutz in Powell River British Columbia takes it to a whole new level. Margy is an author and photographer whose blog I've been following for years. I asked her to be my guest blogger this month and she kindly responded with the following article and photographs describing her life on the water. Take it away Margy, and thanks a million!

My Powell Lake home not only has a water view, it has a water foundation. Float cabins are a big part of Coastal BC history. During the heyday of logging and fishing, they were used as support camps that could be moved from place to place. On Powell Lake, they began as inexpensive hunting and fishing getaways for paper mill workers. Today things are a little more regulated. Float cabins have registered BC water leases and we pay property taxes.
My husband and I were looking for a place to retire and knew this was it. We laughingly say, when we bought our cabin, it came with John, the former owner and builder.  He has become our good friend and mentor. You see, Wayne and I were city-folk from Los Angeles. Learning the skills we needed to live off the grid was a lot easier with John’s help and support.
As with any house, the most important thing is the foundation. In our case, that’s a 40X40 cedar log float lashed together with ¾ inch steel cables.  We are anchored in place to a sheer granite cliff and the lake bottom 90 feet below. In a breeze we move gently to and fro, but in a big storm we can really rock and roll.
Our 675 square foot cabin is built on top of a raised deck.  The downstairs has two bedrooms (one for storage) and a new bathroom addition for a compost toilet and tub.  A great room includes the kitchen and living area.  The large upstairs loft is our bedroom.  It’s plenty of space, especially since we have the whole outdoors at our doorstep.
We have additional floats for a variety of purposes: a dock, a floating woodshed, and my floating vegetable garden.  The garden is on a pulley.  I bring it in to tend and then send it out to our log boom breakwater to protect it from hungry critters.
We live 25 minutes up the lake from the marina.  Our power sources are solar, wind, and a wood stove thermoelectric generator. We use propane for cooking, refrigeration, and additional lights. In winter we use a small generator to give our batteries an occasional boost.  Our wood stove keeps the cabin warm so we can live here in all seasons.  And a hand pump in the kitchen draws water from the lake below. Simple but effective.
Now that we’ve retired, we spend about 75% of the year in our float cabin.  Our lives follow the seasons with wood gathering, gardening, swimming, fishing, and enjoying our surroundings.  There’s nothing better than getting up and having a cup of coffee on the deck watching the sunrise over Goat Island to herald in a new day.

You can find more information about float cabin and off the grid living at  Visit Wayne’s website and you’ll find a series of books about our cabin including Up the Lake, Farther Up the Lake, and Off the Grid. Stop on by. We welcome comments and questions.

Thank you David for inviting me to be a guest on your blog and share about float cabin living. – Margy