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Tiny Home Neighborhoods

"…If you want to make the move from a conventional, 2,500-square-foot home to one half that size appealing, you can’t do it with design alone or even with the combination of home and neighborhood design. The trick to living large in small spaces is to have great public places to go to – preferably by foot or on a bike – once you’re outside your private retreat. This argument echoes Scott Doyon’s pitch for balancing privacy and community. No problem feeding the private, nesting impulse with cottage living; but the smaller the nest, the bigger the balancing need for community. Big community. Bigger than a greenfield new town or village.…" http://placeshakers.wordpress.com/2011/01/14/livin’-large-in-small-spaces-it-takes-a-town/

Mother Earth News Article on our Tiny Homes Book

Great article on Tiny Homes in Mother Earth News (circulation 500,000 or so), August-Sept issue. "Owner of Shelter Publications and godfather of the hand-built homes movement, Lloyd Kahn brings us another great book on tiny homes, chock-full of examples of small houses anyone can afford to own.…"

Stone Cottages and Lime in Ireland

"Why Lime?
Lime mortar, traditionally used by our ancestors to bind stone to stone in the building of bridges, lighthouses, homes and monasteries, was suddenly displaced by the arrival of cement in the early 1900’s.
   On the face of it, cement had much to offer with its quickly hardening properties. Lime was cast aside.
   Seventy years later and with the benefit of hindsight we see what a mistake this was, with the demise of our vernacular architecture speeded not least by the unsuitability of cement to our stone buildings.
   Stone needs to move and settle within a structure. Cement once dried is too brittle to allow movement; hence cracks appear to accommodate expansion. Once cracked, moisture gets trapped within the wall and even within the stone.…"

1950 Flatbed Tiny Housetruck For Sale in Washington $7500

"1950 GMC Flatbed Truck with Custom Built “Gypsy Wagon” or “Hippie Shack” 80 sq. ft. floor space.
Small Block 400 with Turbo 400 Transmission, Lokar Shifter, rebuilt engine…1980 1 Ton Rear end with new wheels and tires. Custom built cedar camper. Whidbey, Washington." http://tinyhouselistings.com/1950-flatbed-housetruck/

Pelican Passenger on My Paddleboard

There were a bunch of 10-12-year-old kids down at the town dock last night when I went down to go for a paddle. I lowered my (Joe Bark 12' stock) paddleboard into the water and lo and behold, up flies this pelican. He lands a few feet away from my board. Sheesh! I've never gotten within 50' of a pelican.
   Then he jumps onto my board. I wonder if he'll stay on when I paddle, so I gingerly get onto the board, scoot up farther than usual, and take off. He stays there! Are we stylin or what?
   The kids love it and shoot pictures with an iPhone. He stayed on for maybe a hundred yards, then flew off.
Photo by Noah Shaw, emailed by Maya Young

Bug and Heritage Salvage Take Down a Barn

Straw Bale Workshop NY Catskills in August

Hey Lloyd,
Thought I'd let you know about my straw bale building workshop coming up August 10-12 in the NY Catskills. We still have room for a few more participants if you want to spread the word on your blog.
Mike McDonough

Global Warming's Terrifying New Math - By Bill McKibben

Global Warming's Terrifying New Math
By Bill McKibben, July 19, 2012 Rolling Stone
Illustration by Edel Rodriguez
"If the pictures of those towering wildfires in Colorado haven't convinced you, or the size of your AC bill this summer, here are some hard numbers about climate change: June broke or tied 3,215 high-temperature records across the United States. That followed the warmest May on record for the Northern Hemisphere – the 327th consecutive month in which the temperature of the entire globe exceeded the 20th-century average, the odds of which occurring by simple chance were 3.7 x 10-99, a number considerably larger than the number of stars in the universe.
   Meteorologists reported that this spring was the warmest ever recorded for our nation – in fact, it crushed the old record by so much that it represented the "largest temperature departure from average of any season on record." The same week, Saudi authorities reported that it had rained in Mecca despite a temperature of 109 degrees, the hottest downpour in the planet's history.…" http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/news/global-warmings-terrifying-new-math-20120719#ixzz214wLCXm4

Skating, Beer, Blues, Hot Rods and Harleys

Sunday afternoon on my way home I stopped off in Santa Cruz at Verve Coffee, and who should walk in but my son Will. He had his 16-year-old niece-in-law with him and they were carrying skateboards. After coffee, we went out and skated along East Cliff Drive, from 41st down to 30th or so. "Do you realize Dad, that you're skating with someone 60 years younger than you?" Ulp.

   Then, on the way up the coast, I stopped off at the Half Moon Bay Brewing Co., got a beer, and listened to blues singer Pamela Rose, with a very good band. Here were a couple of vehicles parked outside.

Run/Swim/Fluttering Hawk/Dead Deer

Last night drove my truck up in the hills, went for a run. On the way, a red shouldered hawk was fluttering in the wind, wings outspread, just floating and scanning. It was foggy, bit of a breeze, I went swimming in a pond. No one for miles. On the way back there was a very large and very dead buck, with three turkey buzzards feasting, in a field. I ran in my Sanuk sandals, a very good option for barefoot runners. You can feel the ground with your toes. On the way home on the radio, Jon Cleary was doing Everything I do Gonh Be Funky.

Oso Sol Reggae Band

Good little local (Las Osos) reggae band, Oso Sol, was playing outdoors Saturday night in San Luis Obispo. They were at a large restaurant/bar that had a patio alongside a creek. Nice harmony. Good vibes. http://shltr.net/ososolslo

745 Furnished IKEA/Ideabox House $86,500

745 SF 1BR/1BA, Typically priced at $86,500
"Introducing aktiv, the first in a new line of houses designed by ideabox and appointed by IKEA. Swedish inspired, wide open living, functional, no wasted space…
Working with IKEA Portland designers, we designed aktiv around IKEA systems. In the kitchen, IKEA offers a lot of flexibility in kitchen cabinets. We designed the layout, and our clients can select the colors. IKEA appliances offer state-of-the-art cooking, so we included an induction cooktop and convection oven. A counter depth refrigerator…IKEA flooring…When your ideabox aktiv arrives, all of the cabinets, countertops, and flooring are installed…" http://www.ideabox.us/models/aktiv/

Stone Masonry in San Luis Obispo

Matt & Harry - Motorcycles Around the World

Spotted these guys on the roadside south of Big Sur. Pared down to essentials. Germans. Lightweight bikes. Road-savvy. Said they were on their way from Bolivia to Alaska, and yes, they have a website: http://umdiewelt2012.de/?page_id=2&lang=en

Surf at Malibu Pier

Still happening here, but I didn't go out. Just too many people.

Big Sur: You Can Go Home Again

What a trip! I love being on the road, the serendipity of it all. Except:
1. I miss home.
2. I run across so much stuff (shoot so many pics, make so many notes) that it's frustrating not being able to communicate it all. Fragments:
    I'm back home from a doozy of a trip. Left San Luis Obispo around 11 AM Saturday sunny morning, north on Hwy. 1. By the time I got to Cayucos, it was foggy. Ahh! Northern Californian consciousness kicks in. I like the fog (grew up in San Francisco).
My body adores Southern California.
My mind revels in NorCal.

Sirius music was on a roll. Just 2 examples:
-Jimmie Rodgers, Blue Yodel #3: http://grooveshark.com/#!/s/Blue+Yodel+No+3/3WMJfN?src=5
-Muddy Waters backed by the Rolling Stones, Mannish Boy: http://grooveshark.com/#!/search/song?q=rolling+stones+muddy+mannish+boy Oh yeah!

Got to my house (built it in late '60s). near Esalen. Ehren, the caretaker was there, said I could spend the night. (He lives in a tuned-in tiny home on the road above.
   Ehren is a stone mason, in his 30s, surfer, fisherman, gardener, hunter, explorer. He keeps the house and grounds beautifully. He's like an extension of and extrapolation on all the things I did or wanted to do when I lived in Big Sur. Cross-generational soul mates.

   We went for a swim in the pool (creek-fed water, no chlorine). Later that afternoon I had a beer at Nepenthe. That night I had dinner at Deetjen's, by far my favorite inn in all the world, the ambience of the dining room with candles and chamber music as soulful as it was 50 years ago. That night I invoked former-resident executive privilege and got into the hot springs at Esalen. Mmm.
   I'm goin' home…home, bom bom bom bom bom-bom…