Building Our Home July 2019

A thousand apologies folks – despite all the best intentions I haven’t been posting about our off grid journey regularly. In the last blog post, we had spent a few days in our newly built cabin and tested out the little starter solar set up. That was a (shameful) 6 months ago. Let’s get caught up!

Finishing the cabin

In July, we insulated the cabin with sisilation & Isotherm before cladding with 21mm recycled plywood boards. Both the cabin & the boards were not perfectly straight so we used a LOT of filler between each board. Then we gave the whole interior a coat of paint (it really needed two coats, but we only had enough paint to do the one coat – it will do for now was & is a popular phrase around here!).

I then moved into the cabin permanently, with Russ going back to Cape Town for work. I must say the first two weeks were difficult. While I didn’t mind the 18m2 space, I did find trying to sort everything out very challenging. I’d find a spot for something to live, then realize I needed something else, have to unpack 4 things to get to the 1 thing, then repack everything so I could move around, then unpack again to put the thing back, and so on. It was bitterly cold and there wasn’t much I could do in those first few weeks bar stay in the cabin and try organize.

I slowly got everything into a semblance of order, and once I could move around and reach things with relative ease, I felt a lot more comfortable.


I had gas to cook on, and Russ filled up water bottles from the spring in Tradouw’s Pass (a 20min drive) whenever he was here. I’d heat water in the stove kettle to fill up a small metal tub to bath in – felt like a frontier woman haha! The compost toilet (which was now working perfectly with a 5l bottle attached to the urine separator) was outside under a little camping gazebo. Our awesome neighbours (who are now firm friends) had me over every Sunday for a hot shower (HEAVEN) and a meal.

Wood Fired Stove

The last thing we managed to do in July was find a small wood fired stove to get fitted in the cabin. We got the Laduma Deluxe – a steel box with a teeny tiny oven section and a teeny tiny fire section, topped with cast iron. GAME CHANGER.


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