A Modern Cabin – The Dream Begins

For some time now Mike and I have been trying to figure out where we are heading as far as homes, life, and so on. We want to set some goals and make decisions as to what we see for our life together. Trying to understand each other’s dreams, wants, and needs can be hard. When we first got married we thought we would first find a smaller home that fit us and where we would live for a few years. Eventually we would move on from there just like both our parents have done. But this summer when we realized that getting a loan for a house and being self-employed can be pretty hard without a good down payment (like 20% or so) we began to think through a lot. We began to think about what we want and what we really needed. We realized that being self-employed means having as little debt as possible is always a good thing. It frees you up so you have fewer bills, less liability, and more freedom to take risks. This always seemed kind of impossible when we thought about homes especially. I mean you only think of the really rich buying a house with cash, right? So how would this be possible for us. 


So when Mike sent me this above image from Zach Klein’s home he said “Wouldn’t this be awesome?” At first I was like “Oh man this is rustic and it is cool but I can’t do that.” 


But the more I thought about the more I realized I hadn’t thought big enough yet. I sat on it for almost an hour until I said “We should do this! This is it. This solves everything we have struggled with about a home.” Of course I did not fully explain my thoughts and he was thinking his wife who loves shopping and a hot shower had just signed on for camping for the next 2 years. 


Instead I explained how we could build a modern cabin. Not a big one we are talking 1,500 sq ft or so. My dad was a builder when I was growing up and I knew a lot about what it took to build homes. Every home I lived in growing up was always a constant construction project, but I realized we could do this over a period of time. My thought was this little place times 6 probably ha but a modern/rustic design that was more or less a square with a slanted roof. A loft up above perfect for our studio space / guest room. Two bedrooms and bathrooms with an open kitchen and living area. On one side top to bottom windows taking in the best view of whatever property we find and an outdoor space. A home that would celebrate the beauty that is Northern Michigan but capture the city loft we have always wanted without being an overly large space. Simply a space that provides the necessities in a beautiful way. 


This may sound a little crazy to think of raising a family in a smaller space but I realized I never wanted a huge home. I am bad at cleaning really well and I like smart storage. I grew up in a smaller home and felt it created great bonding with my family. Also I don’t remember spending a ton of time inside growing up. My parents always wanted us exploring and adventuring outside.


More than anything Mike and I need a space that inspires us. I never want to settle on that especially after reading Steve Jobs biography. Clean lines, well used space, lots of natural light, and white walls have always been favorite things of mine. I like tall ceilings, big windows, easy access to the outdoors, and spaces that lend to community. This was a big decision for me as I have been a big fan of the bungalow for some time but began to see a trend in what made me happy creatively in the last year. It was trending towards more swedish designs that complimented the surrounding landscape. I actually am pretty obsessed with it…You can check out my cabin pin board


We have no clue how long this will take or where we will build our dream but it made me so excited to have a plan. It is awesome when you spend hours and hours working and to know that you are working towards something bigger than just paying bills. Hopefully we will be able to do this without owing much at all at the end and feel it is a place we can raise a family, create, entertain, and enjoy the beautiful things in life in the years to come. 


I know I don’t normally share big events like this in my life but I just wanted to share with you all our little dream and why we are choosing to do this. We are excited because this will be probably the biggest accomplishment for us as a couple in the next few years. I cannot wait to take do this together and to watch our dream to come true everyday. 


So first step is finding the right place to build and own it and when that happens I will share more and hopefully keep you all apart of this journey over however many years. 


What are some of your dreams? Did you buy a house? Are you saving to build? Any recommendations for a small business owners doing this? I would love to hear your thoughts or if you know of similar stories like this or resources. 

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  1. I read this a while ago, and saved it to comment on. Yes, a WHILE ago. Part of the reason it’s taken me so long is that I was buying a house! It was the right path for me, but I so admire you both for knowing what your path is. It’s good to know where you belong.