Rain, Rain, Go Away…Three Geeks Want to Play…In the Dirt

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It has rained and rained and rained some more here in Southeastern Oklahoma for the past week, so we haven’t exactly gotten much done on our little cob house. Not much to update, but here’s what’s happened in between downpours.

1) Gravel

We were able to get about a 1/2 ton of gravel from the construction site, which is still sitting in the back of the truck. If it’s not pouring down tomorrow, we’ll empty it out and head back for more. Here’s a pic of the bigger urbanite that we obtained the week before, along with Lili taking a tailgate ride with our Chihuahua, Jenny.

Our growing urbanite pile
Our growing urbanite pile

2) Digging

We were able to get another 10 or so wheelbarrow loads cleared off the foundation site and restring our layout to be more rounded with the new tent pegs and twine. Here’s a “before” photo from last Monday.

We really should have put those rocks somewhere else.
We really should have put those rocks somewhere else.

And an “after” photo from today of Lili attempting to dig in the mud. Some progress, but not a lot!

Because now they're in the middle of the pond foundation.
Because now they’re in the middle of the pond foundation.
  1. Reading and Learning

This part was actually during downpours, not in between. We have purchased some books (this comes out of our monthly “book budget” and spending money, usually just lumped together for a bigger book budget in our house) on building with cob. We’ve read or are reading The Hand Sculpted House by Ianto Evans and Michael Smith, The Cob Builders Handbook by Becky Bee (which she also has available online for free), and Building with Cob by Adam Weismann and Katy Bryce.

We have also enrolled in an online course on cob building through ThisCobHouse, taught by Alex Sumerall. We’ve also purchased one of his books on cob houses. I have to say, both the course as well as the book have been extremely helpful in figuring out how to plan out the foundation, test the soil, and pretty much any other questions we have about cob. He also writes a blog and teaches how to build to code, not an issue in our rural area, but definitely something to check on if you’re building your own cob house.

Great Resource for Cob Builders

We’ll give more in-depth reviews of all these resources in upcoming blogs. If you’re researching cob building, these are great places to start!

I realize this post is shorter than my last posts, and this is on purpose in an attempt to see which method our readers prefer. My first two posts were over 800 words, and I posted once a week. However, I recently read a book on blogging that suggested readers tend to prefer shorter posts (around 300 words) a few times a week. Leave your thoughts in the comments section! And, yes, I realize that this post is still over 400 words, but I just can’t seem to cut my ideas any shorter!