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Model of Tiny Home

We'll be selling our books at The Maker Faire in San Mateo, Calif., in May, and we decided to build a model tiny home for display. Our friend Tom agreed to make the model. It turned out that he got into it and spent over a month (not full time) on the project. He said he could have built the full size building in the same amount of time. It's put together with glue. Window shutters and doors open on hinges.

The full size building is 10' x 16', scale here is 1 inch = 1 foot, so this is 10" wide, 16" long.  Single wall construction (no studs).

Materials for model:
Siding: cedar; bats: oak
Shakes: cedar
Ridge beams: redwood
Shutters: cedar
Door: walnut
Door and window trim: oak

It's a little beauty.

Goats, Sheep, and Grazing Animals Celebration This Weekend

The Goateam Gathering is a collective art show celebrating 'Goats, Grass, Grazing and All Things Good Upon the Land'. Mixed mediums from installation, weaving, fiber arts, photography, paint & food. The Goateam Gathering is also an education and awareness show about how grazing animals can be a land stewardship solution supporting healthy soils, water, good food, fiber and the pursuit of happiness. Artists are from around the Bay Area and the Pacific North West.

This Saturday at the Farm Stand, (on the way in to) Bolinas, 4-9 PM

My Photo Exhibit of Driftwood Architecture Opening This Weekend

I'm doing my first ever photo exhibit, opening this Saturday at the Bolinas Museum. It's part of a 2-month-long exhibit on the subject of makeshift architecture, and features artists Jay Nelson, Whiting Tennis, and Eirik Johnson, along with my photos of driftwood beach shacks along the northern California coast.

Rick Gordon has processed and printed 24 14 by 18" prints and printed them here on our new Epson Stylus Pro 4900 ink jet printer. They look pretty darn good! The ingenuity of anonymous beachcomber artists.
The opening is this Saturday, April 2nd. At 2PM, I'll talk a bit about my background and our 46 years of publishing books on building and fitness; at 3PM, there's a reception.

Bolinas Museum
48 Wharf Road
Bolinas, California  94924


Brazilian Seahorse in Aqarium Store

This is just one of the many sea creatures at this remarkable store: the 6th Avenue Aquarium and Flowers place at 429 Clement in San Francisco. There must be 50-60 tanks of exotic sea creatures, all clean and beautifully tended.

The 3 or so blocks centering on 5th Ave. and Clement is a great neighborhood, with 3-4 dim sum places, Chinese herbs, all kinds of ethnic restaurants. The Cafe Bunn is a great Vietnamese restaurant, with Vietnamese sandwiches along with typical Vietnamese dishes, good, inexpensive.

Looking down at cable across river from platform at Louie's before takeoff

The Mystery Tower

No idea what this is. It's maybe 40' tall, hexagonal, log construction with tight joints. I've never seen any sign of habitation. It's on a beautiful sunny south-facing piece of land with lichen-covered rocks right above the (today at least) crashing waves.

Bull on roadside, Hwy 1, north of Jenner

Fine Tiny Home

Ward Hensill has moved one of his tiny homes out onto Highway One near Bodega Bay (instead of being hidden in the town of Bodega). I've written about these excellent little buildings before; they're made with 1-1/8" T&G plywood and the pop-out windows and window seats create a feeling of spaciousness in a tiny space: http://lloydkahn-ongoing.blogspot.com/2013/02/bodega-portable-buildings.html

See: http://www.bodegaportablebuildings.com/

True Sea Ranch Architecture

Here's the model. Too bad the great majority of houses in this gated community are soulless no-overhang boxes, as opposed to the effortless grace of this farmer-designed barn.

2nd-Day-of-Spring Trip to Mendocino County

Conjunction of Four
Sunday was the Spring Equinox (also Evan's birthday).
Monday was Bach's birthday.
Tuesday I left home at 6 AM for points north.
Wednesday (today) is the full moon.

It was a spectacular drive along the coast. Clouds, rain, sun, mist, fog, along with thundering surf. Hills are the greenest of green. Cows, sheep, goats, horses grazing happily.

Music: "I just dropped into see what condition my condition was in by" the Launderettes
"You can have my husband, but please don't mess with my man," by Koko Taylor
"Look how me sexy," reggae, by Linual Thomson…

Louie coming in on cable across river--500 foot ride to his cabin

via Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/p/BDTNS1qAMig/
He's carrying a duck I bought at Costco ($15), which we cooked for dinner. Every time I ride across the river on the cable, my heart's in my mouth. The river is high and rushing right now.

Egg industry sprinting to keep up with cage-free demand

Article by Cogan Schneier
"…As of September 2015, about 4.5 percent of the eggs produced in the U.S. were from traditional non-organic, cage-free facilities, with another 4.2 percent from organic, cage-free facilities.
But there’s every indication that demand will continue to escalate, especially as a ballot initiative expected in Massachusetts this November looks to make it the third state in the country — joining California and Michigan — to pass a cage-free standard. More than 130,000 residents signed a petition to get the measure on the ballot. The state held a hearing in February where opponents argued it would raise prices and take away consumer demand.…

Albertsons Companies, the nation's second largest grocery chain with more than 2,200 locations, announced Tuesday that "it will be working with its suppliers toward a goal of sourcing only cage-free eggs for its store operations by 2025, based on available supply." The company, which operates such well-known brands as Safeway, Shaw’s, Acme and Vons, joins a rapidly growing list of major food retailers and restaurants requiring their suppliers to provide only eggs from hens raised in cage-free environments.

Last week it was the grocery chain Ahold USA making the pledge, and the week before that it was BJ’s Wholesale Club. Costco, Trader Joe’s, Dunkin' Donuts, Taco Bell, McDonald’s, and Mondelez all have recently informed egg suppliers of their cage-free demands.…"


Boosted #motorskateboard at Wise Surf Shop, San Francisco

via Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/p/BDOEuD9AMjF/
Bob Wise said, "Try it out." I hesitated, not having been on a skateboard for 3+ months. "Come on," he said, and we went outside. He showed me how to use the handheld wireless throttle, and it was remarkable. I'm gonna go back and suit up and take it for a longer ride. Fun! No intention of buying one ($1500), but Wise seems to be OK with me taking a cruise. It's got forward/backward controls, you use the latter for braking. It'll go uphill. I now have an arm brace for my recently fractured wrist, slowly working my way back into skating. A lot more careful from here on out.

Homemade #sourdough #bread

What I'm Doing These Days

Three to four years ago, I did a lot more writing of posts than I do now. These days I'm working on other digital forms of communication (takes time) as well as our old school hold-in-your-hands treasures called books, and in the midst of writing, photographing, editing, and laying out our next major book, Small Homes.

Once in a while I like to slip in a post as of the old days. Can we talk?

It's been raining like mad. Marin county reservoirs are spilling over. Shasta Lake, NorCal's big one, is at 81% now—a welcome relief after all the sad years of bare banks. Went out a few days ago with friends to see cascading waterfalls; power of our magic mountain. Toots: "Love the Rain": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1u7YY-jQ0XU

Small Homes, Our Next Book
The book is growing daily. It's a lot like gardening. I am having a lot of back-and-forth emails with builder/contributors, often in search of large enough photo files. (What works on a monitor won't work in high-quality printing.) I'm over half-way through, doing layout with a 5-year-old Brother color copy machine, scissors and scotch tape before they go to Rick for InDesign/Photoshop precision, enhancement, and preparation for our printers in Hong Kong. You can see 17 sneak previews here: http://www.theshelterblog.com/?s=preview

Scotland Shelter Exhibition
There is a festival of architecture in Scotland now, sponsored by the Fife Contemporary Arts Center. It's called "Shelters," and features an entire room exhibiting our work, with photo and page blowups, and our building books on tables (below). It's open now at the Kircaldy Galleries (Kircaldy is about 12 miles north of Edinburgh, on the east coast of Scotland) and runs through June 5, 2016.

I'll be doing a slide show presentation on May 10th, at Kircaldy Galleries, titled "50 Years of Natural Building," chronicling our building books from Shelter in 1973 up to the present.

The Shelter Blog
We have finally increased the amount of original material on our blog (as opposed to mostly references to material already posted elsewhere). Check it out: http://www.theshelterblog.com/. Note: when you go looking for it, you need to type in the "the" to get the correct URL. If you type in "shelterblog," it will go to the wrong place.

Driftwood Shacks: Anonymous Architecture Along the California Coast

My first ever art exhibit; I'm pretty excited to be doing this. On display will be about 24 of my photos, shot on various northern California beaches over the last 15 years. At the Bolinas Museum, opening reception April 2, 2016, 3-5 PM, 38 Wharf Road, Bolinas, Calif

Healing Broken Bones (and Injuries)
(Of interest only to people with injuries.) My broken wrist (skateboarding) is maybe 80% healed (hmm, Shasta 81%, wrist 80%—all to the good!). I explored a lot of modalities, including comfrey (also called "knitbone"), calcium citrate, bone broth, prunes and bananas (yes!), marijuana patches and salves, stretching, and wrist braces. Info on my previous posts (including over 30 comments here: http://lloydkahn-ongoing.blogspot.com/2015/12/did-i-say-i-was-going-to-give-up.html and I'll soon be doing a special post updating the methods for hastening healing. (I did a lot of research.)

45 Years of Publishing
I can't believe it. I'm 80, and have never been busier or more productive in my life—and in an extraordinary profession full of wonderful, intelligent people. I don't even mind all the email and business stuff, but I love shooting photos, doing layout, and especially having the chance to do an exhibit of my photos.

Vine-covered Building in Berkeley

Looks like a brewery. Also, wall appears to be glass blocks. Unique design, must be nice inside.

Fixer-upper in Berkeley

This is exactly the kind of building I'd be looking for if I wanted to live in a city (or town) these days. I'd first check to see that the foundation was solid, and there were no rotting floors to deal with.  (The roof looks pretty good, and the eaves do not seem to be sagging, which usually indicates the foundation is not disintegrating.) It would be exciting to fix a place like this up.

Six kid-stroller in Mill Valley, California this morning. The nanny was too shy to be in the photo.

Design Revolution in China

In the mail today from architect Peter Calthorpe:
"We have just had a major victory for sustainable urbanism in China. Over the last six years, Energy Foundation and ClimateWorks sponsored us and many others to test and advocate a set of design principles that were antithetical to common practice throughout China. When we started, isolated  superblocks were the norm, and few thought it could change. Now the central government has issued new standards that not only require open, mixed use and walkable communities, but actually attempt to open existing gated superblocks. With newly issued TOD guidelines and  standards issued by the State Council there is much more.

The new standards are a urban design revolution: they overturn the destructive Chinese model of superblocks, gated communities, and giant streets that has been eroding the livability OF their cities. They are perhaps the most important application of global best practices in smart growth to date: Urban Growth Boundaries, compact mixed-use development, walkable environments, infill development, bikeways, auto free streets, Transit Oriented Development, green buildings, and the preservation of history, culture, agriculture and natural ecologies in urban development. They have been testing these ideas for years, but now they are moving them to a scale that is unprecedented. See the following article for a summary:

Liuyun Xiaoqu is a livable community in Guangzhou. It’s not gated, but its public spaces are only open to pedestrians. It is a sustainable and vibrant example of what the new guidelines would support. Image: CC Huang.

Northwest glacier caves are melting, forcing researchers to race the clock

"At 11,250 feet, Mount Hood is the tallest mountain in Oregon, and a volcano that could erupt at some point, even if it likely wouldn’t be an explosive one. It’s also host to a dozen glaciers, which have even formed glacial caves.

Climate change is having an effect, as the northwest glaciers are melting away.
With the amazing view from Mt. Hood, the exploration of its glaciers plays an important role in understanding regional climate. 'The big value is in mapping change. Not just a snapshot in time but mapping the change.' said Eddy Cartay, a member of the Glacier Cave Explorers. He and his group member are exploring the glacier caves.Northwest glacier caves are melting, forcing researchers to race the clock."

Posted by Xuefei Miao on Mar 4, 2016: http://glacierhub.org/2016/03/04/photo-friday-mount-hood-glaciers-of-oregon/
Photos: Francois-Xavier "Fix" De Ruydts)

Water power on Mt. Tamalpais yesterday

New Zealand Boatbuilder Lionel Jefcoate

"Boatbuilder and master craftsman, Lionel Jefcoate, 83, has built more than 56 boats – steamboats, sailboats, launches and large yachts – one of which he sailed around the South Pacific with his family."

Interview with Jefcoate: http://bit.ly/1QFV1w9
From Anonymous

Short bed Tacoma 4x4 in San Leandro

Tiny Chapel Inspired by Tiny Homes on the Move

Just got your Tiny Homes on the Move. Very beautiful stuff. I hadn't seen your books since the early seventies.  I was a custom home builder for many years but now, becoming older, (hate to say it), I'm starting to build tiny structures.  

The attached little chapel was inspired by Sidney Poitier's comment in "Lilies of the Field," "I'm gonna build me a chapel!" So I did. I guess really it's more of a meditation space, only 24 square feet. I built it to try my tiny house structural designs since I wanted something not too expensive to test them out.  Everything worked well so now on to bigger stuff, (on a 16' flatbed trailer). Anyway, I just wanted to thank you for the inspiration. 

There's a terrible tiny house show on the television where two guys build generic structures with conventional framing that are ugly and are guaranteed to be difficult to pull, and to burn out wheel bearings. The prices they quote are astronomical. My little chapel cost only $600 and $300 of that was for the western red cedar siding. The work you show is a complete opposite of that. I really appreciate the work you do to communicate such admirable possibilities in a time when this whole idea is catching on.

Take care and enjoy your day,

Klaus Eyting

Eagle in Fort Edward, NY

this eagle was recently photographed on the property of ZBS <http://www.zbs.org/>, a producer of radio drama in upstate NY.

Manhattan-based radio journalist Jon Kalish has reported for NPR since 1980. Newspaper articles, radio docs, podcasts & NPR stories at kalish.nyc.
twitter: kalishjon

Basket Made of Sliced Walnut Shells

Godfrey Stephens and I saw this at an art auction in Victoria, Vancouver Island, BC a few years ago. I would think some kind of instant-bonding glue was used.

Old Time Rock N Roll - Bob Seger

Earthbag Tiny Home, Nubian Adobe Vault Construction

"The Regenerative Home design uses the Hiperadobe system (a type of Earthbag earthen wall) for the walls, and an ancient Nubian adobe vault method to enclose the space. This was used by humanitarian architect Hassan Fathy. It is still popular today in many countries because it minimizes the use of wood by replacing it with earth, and is very durable. Similar adobe vaults that are thousands of years old still stand today. The Regenerative Home uses this age-old roofing technique with additional reinforcement to ensure safety and longevity."