We are the Lewandowski family and we're building a new house from the ground up. Our goal is to build a comfortable and efficient green home that works for our family. We want to prove that building green is the right choice for the environment, our lives and our pocketbook.

We invite you to come follow us during our adventure and learn along with us, how to build and live green.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Glad this week is over...

After our house sold we had to move out quickly. We needed a rental and there aren't to many available in late November that will take two dogs. Our lovely realtor, Dawn Foran, found us the only one in La Grange that would take dogs and was reasonably priced. We snapped it up. This place is a trip, to say the least! Having lived in new construction or renovated homes for most of my life you get used to things a certain way. Things that when I was going up we're extravagances are now considered necessities; like a microwave, a self-cleaning oven, a dishwasher and a wash machine that actually works without having to stand over it. Anyone who knows me knows I like things tidy and everything in its place. That's not necessarily so in this house. We're a bit crammed in. The dressers don't fit in the bedrooms (so they are lined up in the dining room), there is only one shower (our last house had 4), Jack's head just barely clears the ceiling in his basement bedroom, the kitchen sink leaks, it's drafty, there is glitter on the dining room ceiling that has bright orange walls, only 3 windows open on the first floor, there is no heat in the second floor bedrooms, funny electrical issues and ducky curtains in the kitchen. The list is small! So I've decided to give up the idea of order and as long as it's clean, I will accept it for what it is... a temporary home until we move. Now construction has started on the block. The Village is replacing the sewer system so the street is torn up and down the whole block. It has rained buckets this week, so with that comes mud! We can handle a little construction, right? I need to get over it, but the only think I can't get over is the plumbing! A few weeks back we had a small flood in part of the basement. It was clean water with some tree roots. In old houses it happens. Our landlord is a very nice man. He was here and on it in no time The pipes were roded out and everything was cleaned up. Then it happened again! Last Tuesday Evan and I sorted the laundry all over the floor and wouldn't you know it, the same corner of the basement flooded and our clothes were floating in it. This time it was stinky, gross, disgusting sewage.... YUCK! Thank God the landlord was on it right away. We only lost about $250 worth of stuff. Not too bad, considering. I've spend most of my week dealing with plumbers and clean-up crews. I sure hope this is the end of it so I can go back to laughing about this place and not swearing about it!

We've Hit a Wall

This house was a chance to build something different; to design and build something outside the box, with fresh ideas and be environmentally conscious. At the start of this process we had a meeting with representatives from the Village of La Grange. All agreed to work together and be open to new ideas. Apparently that isn't so. Our first site plan review was rejected. For our second submission, we felt forced to incorporate a system that is illogical and less than earth friendly. Now we've failed round two. We feel depleted and frustrated. I think it's time to re-focus and calmly discuss with the Village a solution that perhaps allows us to meet in the middle thus satisfying us both. A decision may need to be made. Can we do it or should we walk away? I'm really not sure. I don't have much faith but we need to look into an acceptable compromise. If that can't be done, we need to consider clearing the property and put it back on the market.

Friday, April 1, 2011

We're taking a little break in paradise. We'll have lots of house news to share when we get back!