|one of our big curved walls finished.|
|mudbricks, in various stages of drying - in summer they dry in a few weeks.|
|Our friend Ivor has been enjoying the hands on process of making mudbricks.|
|making mud balls to place in the press (on the right hand side of the photo)|
To lay the bricks we have used the same mix (a little wetter maybe), wetting down the previous course of bricks and just placing balls of mud on top and then mudbricks which we wet down as well on top. Its just incredible how well they go together. Another great thing is that all the mess the bits of brick that get cut off or the blobs of mud that fall to the ground can just be reincorporated into the mud mix and reused, so its a zero waste building method, which we are really loving!
|smoothing the mortar - no tools required!|
We are enjoying the hands on process of building our home, even if it takes longer than your standard mass produced choose-from-a-catalog type house. Each part has memories (something you can't buy no matter how much money you have), our kids have been there every step of the way, and have helped out as they have been able to, and there have certainly been fun times (maybe even a little mud throwing). Its also an incredibly satisfying process to look back on the house and know that almost all of it has been built by our own bare hands (and a bit by those of some of our friends and family).
We know that we could both work high pay (and high stress) jobs, we could pay people or mechanize the work and the whole process could have been over ages ago, but what would the fun be in that? There wouldn't be many fun memories (just a big mortgage to remind us), our kids wouldn't learn that they have the ability to do things for themselves and the stress would probably be too much for us all.
Building this house is a real family affair, and we talk and joke and have a great time, no one is stressed about finishing, we are just loving every moment!