A thank you to all the helpers and visitors!

In the spirit of Thanksgiving, it seems a fitting occasion to say a big THANK YOU to all those family members and friends who have been out to the build site in the last month or so. Whether coming just to see what we’ve been up to or sweating it out with us on the building front, we are so greatly appreciative of all those who have ventured up the hill to spend time with us.

At the time of this post, we have approximately four-and-two-thirds courses of adobes laid. That represents a little over 1,000 adobes, and is just about a quarter of the way through the adobe portion of the walls. We’ve been helped along by friendly people and warm October/November days, and although we’ve had a couple frosts in downtown Silver City, it has yet to freeze up at our build site.

Here are some of the folks that have been with us over the last several weeks:

Jared and the Story Pole.JPG
Jared is smiling for the camera here, but before I interrupted by taking his photo he was putting notches in the story poles for our first adobe course

Jared has been a huge help. Although I seem to have neglected to take more action photos of him, he’s done everything from mortar mixes, adobe laying, pole notching, and and even helped me get my truck unstuck at the end of a workday. Oh yeah, he also showed us how to two-step! The photo above is from his first visit, but he’s actually been out to help on two separate occasions.

Emily laying an adobe.JPG
Emily setting an adobe on the wall
John carrying an adobe.JPG
John carrying an adobe to the wall. What a great t-shirt!

Emily and John are friends who recently purchased some land down the road apiece from ours. As such, they represent some of our closest neighbors! They are getting ready to build an earthen home of their own, and came out one sunny Saturday to lend a hand and gain some experience.

Anne, Chris, and Megan with adobe pallets
Anne, Chris and Megan pose in front of some adobes. Not pictured is our awesome neighbor Donald who was kind enough to let us store our adobes on his property

Chris and Anne are relatives and badass adobe builders from the great state of Arizona. They currently live in the adobe house they built themselves, and came out to see how our project is going. They have great knowledge and encouraging things to say, and they continue to be an inspiration!

Our attentive readers will notice that the photo above shows our adobe bricks NOT on our property. I could fill two blog posts with the saga of the adobe deliveries, but I’ll just say here that we were unable to have the adobes delivered all the way up to our property. Our adobes were instead delivered to our neighbor Donald’s property, who really saved us by giving us permission to store them there before we moved them up ourselves. As of this post, we’ve moved up 34 of the 82 total pallets (a big shout-out here to Alisha who helped us move some). Any readers who want to skip the gym membership and help move some adobes, let us know!

Doug, Ethan, Sandy, and Denise posing at the south wall

Dustin, whom some of you may remember from an earlier post, has an aunt and grandmother who live in our fair town of Silver City. Dustin’s parents were in town for a visit and came out with Dustin’s aunt Denise to see what’s been going on up on the hill. What a cool group of people!

John at the Mortar Mix Pile
John and the mortar mix

John is a hardcore Clevelander, rhythm and blues guitarist, and now – an adobe builder! Did I mention he is also Megan’s Dad?! John came out for a visit and worked several days with us on the house. We assembled 33 gringo blocks together, and put John to work screening clay, making mortar mixes, packing mortar joints, and laying bricks. He was a great helper and a fun companion!

Paul setting laying adobe
Paul laying an adobe
Ethan and Paul
Ethan and Paul at sunset

Paul and I met at Earth USA 2017, and he was nice enough to come down from Santa Fe to help us out for a weekend. Paul got to see me stressed out about the adobe delivery, but was kind enough to help me get my thoughts together on the matter. He also demonstrated some great adobe-laying abilities and was a quick-learner.

Sean works on wiring
Sean at work wiring the outlets
A photo of one of the outlet boxes

Although he’s also our paid electrician, Sean is another friend who has been out working with us over the last couple weeks. Sean has been putting in the wiring for the electrical outlets. I had initially planned to lay the wire in the middle of the mortar as we laid the bricks for that course, but Sean wanted to do it a bit differently. We ended up laying the adobes without the wire, but scooped out two inches of the mortar on the inside to leave room for the wire to go in. Once the wire is inspected, we will repack the channel with mortar mix.

Daniel NOT at our property!

I would be remiss if I didn’t include the guy who has been helping us out ever since the beginning. Daniel continues to be a huge help every week. He recently cut nearly all the notches in the bricks that were going to have the outlet boxes in them. He did at least 25 of them, which is a dusty and no-fun job. He really did a nice job on the notches too. Thanks, Daniel!


If you haven’t been out here yet, or would like to come again, please let us know! We’d love to have your help and/or your company! Thanks to everyone who has been a part of this build in one way or another!

2 thoughts on “A thank you to all the helpers and visitors!

  1. Hi Ethan,
    I love the photos, as well as your “Thanks” to all the people who have helped you and Megan in one way or another. It’s great that your hard work is mixed with fun, and you know that those who live near or far are cheering you on. We’re looking forward to visiting you in Silver City! By the way, that “hardcore Clevelander” is pretty impressive!


  2. When we were at the stage you’re at with laying the adobes, we called it the “ruinas” stage, as if you came upon it in a thick forest and found old ruins. Nice to see all the support and help of all sorts. Everyone’s thinking about that glass of champagne when it’s done, sitting on lawn chairs and looking at the view. Congrats to you two, on making it happen.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s