The 57 acres that comprise Cedar Ridge Farm are located in the beautiful rolling hills of South Central Kentucky. My wife, our four children, and I are on a homesteading adventure as we work toward increased self-sufficiency. We grow much of our own food and enjoy being in touch with the agrarian roots of our lives.

One of the major projects we have undertaken is the building of our own home. The house we're building has three major distinguishing features: 1. we're building it without incurring any debt; 2. it is a timber frame structure; and 3. the exterior walls will be plastered straw bales. We live debt and mortgage free, and building our house with that approach makes perfect sense. Large timbers in a home possess a beauty and project a sense of strength, stability, and warmth that we want in our home. Straw bale walls provide insulation and make ecological sense. This blog is a record of our home-building project.

Saturday, September 3, 2011


As I took lumber that’s been stacked in the barn for the last five years to have it milled into flooring and began to see how much (or little) I actually had, I began to think about one of my plans. I’ve been planning on putting up a wood ceiling in the kitchen, mudroom, laundry room, and Robert’s room (the room that was going to be the sewing room/study but which we redesigned to be a guest room – Robert is a friend for whom it is currently intended). But, as I saw my supply of wood diminish, and knowing that I have need for more dry 036boards for base board, moldings, cabinets, doors, etc., I felt a need to explore other options.

I finally decided to put up drywall ceilings in these areas. I will paint them with the same clay paint that I will make for the other walls. 042It should make these areas brighter than they would’ve been otherwise, and it preserves my other wood pile near the garage for some of the other needs I anticipate.

So, earlier this week, I brought home enough drywall for the ceilings that needed done. I also bought some moisture resistant green board drywall and insulation for completing the 040root cellar.

I spent time this week putting up ceilings and was able to get them all up by yesterday afternoon. I also had time to begin taping and mudding seams in the kitchen before it was time to quit yesterday. As I like to have it happen, the only waste from the sheets of drywall I bought were small pieces and one piece about 3 feet by 4 feet.


Meg said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Meg said...

Hi, I was looking for a contact for you and couldn't find one, so I hope you read this. I write for an environmental newspaper called The Appalachian Voice ( Our next issue will be focusing on sustainable building, and I'm writing an article about alternative building methods, which led me to your blog. Would you be interested in interviewing for the article and bragging about your straw bale house? Please email me at Thanks so much!

Kitchen cabinets said...

By putting up ceilings is really hard to do.

Newport News Kitchen Remodels said...

I am very much enjoyed for the great services in this blog.