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I ❤ coffee. 

I am Shauna Shanks. I love green smoothies. I'm an author, mom & wife chasing smallness.

Building Our Container Home: Becoming Unhinged.

Building Our Container Home: Becoming Unhinged.

The year was 1993. The hair was slicked up both sides and landed at the top into an imposing sideswept curl. His attire was a slinky white tank top underneath a loud button-up Hawaiian shirt, the usual dress code for this pet detective. Jim Carey, in all of his recently discovered hilarious glory, tilts his head, pauses for effect and exclaims, "If I'm not back in five minutes….just wait longer." 

Oh, Jim. You get it. You make me laugh when I really want to cry. But laughter is more fun, so let's do that. I'll be standing over here waiting, mmk? *smiles and waves.

Ace Ventura's advice is stellar. If what you are waiting for hasn't happened yet, just wait longer. I mean, clearly right? Still sometimes I do other stuff. Pity parties, grumbling, worrying, then I realize, what am I doing? I just have to wait longer. Thanks, Jim.

So here's the deal with the container home we are building. If you ask me when is our "move-in date", if I don't immediately throat punch you (sorry, reflex triggered by that question) I will say, "approximately two months", and then smile at you. The smile will linger longer than it should because you have asked me an emotionally scaring question and my psyche has begun repairing itself and this takes a moment. If you are still standing there until my continuing smile awkwards you out, I'll be ok. Walk away. Save yourself. 

We have been "two months" away from moving in for the last several months. First, we thought Thanksgiving. Then we reluctantly acceded to the idea that we guess moving in by Christmas would be fine. Now, well into January and I can easily see at least another two months passing before we are ready to move in.

Each task is painstakingly slow. Here's what we have now: Insulated walls, unfinished floors, most of the electric. Here's what we don't have now: Heat, indoor running water, interior bedroom walls, kitchen. Oh, but there's one thing we do have.

A mudroom.

Our contractor and my husband's dad took a few days off the house project for Christmas. (The audacity, I know.) He is the brains & engineer behind our whole operation. But Micah and I are in a hurry. We didn't want to break. I found myself mindlessly sweeping little sawdust circle-piles on the concrete floor just wanting to do something. 

That's when we decided to go ahead and strip those old lockers his dad had brought us from another job and re-paint them.

Then once they were dry, we decided we may as well move them into their place in the mudroom where they will be used to store boots, backpacks and umbrella, you know, mud-roomy stuff.

re-finished lockers

re-finished lockers

But once we had the lockers set in place, we already knew the concept we wanted for that small space: Lockers, a bench and a hall-tree. Simple and functional. The plan was to make the hall-tree out of an actual tree Micah had collected from our outside nook last spring. When it fell it looked just like a coat rack to us. So we kept it. 

Once Micah began working on the bench, the mudroom was going to have to come together. There was no stopping the magic that was happening here today. What was that feeling we were experiencing? Finally! Accomplishment! We have sunk so much work into our container home, but the mudroom was the first "completed space." 

We stood back and admired with simple joy. "This will be the first thing guests will see when they come in and the last thing they see when they leave," Micah noted. Yes, we have to "wait longer" more than we thought, but man. We are doing this. Sometimes it still seems surreal. 

We are building a house using found materials from around the farm, and working with family we don't want to murder yet. I'd say that's quite an accomplishment too. And now that my heart is turning from anxious to grateful, come to think of it…We do have a lot done so far. Here's a brief trip down memory lane. 

starting project last winter after some sewage paperwork caused a large delay.

starting project last winter after some sewage paperwork caused a large delay.

Containers were "Placed" today! Yay!

Containers were "Placed" today! Yay!

Beginning stages of the "loft"

Beginning stages of the "loft"

Why yes, we did, put those giant store-front glass windows in ourselves, thanks for noticing.

Why yes, we did, put those giant store-front glass windows in ourselves, thanks for noticing.

Current Situation

Current Situation

You know, pursuing something that seems so distant can be discouraging. Once when I was particularly overwhelmed with waiting in another season of my life, I reminded the Lord of this verse:

Proverbs 13:12 says, "Unrelenting disappointment leaves you heartsick,
    but a sudden good break can turn life around." (MSG)
Or more familiarly, "Hope deferred makes the heart sick,
    but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life." (NIV)

Yes, I know God doesn't need a reminder, but sometimes we just need to know that He knows. He's got us.

Seeing our little mudroom put together as eclectic, and unconventional it may be, filled our hearts with renewed hope.

This is happening.

Sometimes we just need to be reminded of where we are going so we can accept and stay the course in the journey. Spending time in the place you want to end up is critical too. Even if it just seems like you are just sweeping little sawdust circles. STAY THE COURSE. 

You'll get there. And if you don't, just wait longer. 

 

 

~Shauna 

 

 

 

The Girls We Go With

The Girls We Go With

Love, the Shanks'

Love, the Shanks'