Foundations

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The Lodge, Cottage, and Barn have their foundations! Carefully measured and poured, all footings are now in place, ready to stand solid as the underpinning for all that Acorn Lodge will become — this, a crucial step in assuring the integrity of this whole endeavor.

A neighbor stopped by one day recently when I was on the site and commented that progress seemed slow. While his observation was not untrue, I felt compelled to relate to him that over the course of many remodelling projects in the past, our wise and wonderful contractor would remind us in the face of delay that we always had a choice: did we just want the job done, or did we want it done right? Now, as then, we want the job done right!

Our friend Peter says that there are three variables at play with every project, and that only two at a time can be maximized: speed, cost, and quality. So, one may finish the project quickly and inexpensively, if the quality isn’t important; or, one may build to the highest quality standard quickly, but it won’t be cheap; or finally, one may pursue fine quality at a reasonable cost, but it’s not likely to be a time-efficient process.

Acorn Lodge has been carefully conceived, the metaphorical foundation — the heart, essence, and principles that guide us — laid long ago. The cornerstone of that foundation is a trust in the process, and rather than try to rush that process, we value the gift of time in the unfolding, with a belief that all will come right in the end. I walk through the rooms in my head constantly, imagining daily life in each space and fine-tuning the details of the vision, and I am grateful for the opportunity for the plans to evolve: we don’t aim for perfection, but rather meaning, and time is our friend in allowing for the best hope of attaining our goal.

William Morris, the father of the British Arts & Crafts movement, first espoused this idea of ascribing meaning to one’s surroundings many years ago. In trying to practice upon his advice, I’ve found great delight in locating reclaimed wood for flooring and other architectural details, conferring with a local artist who will create a work table for the kitchen, and hunting down unique light fixtures and other hardware, among other efforts. Much as I’ve enjoyed all of this plotting and planning, there’s no getting around the fact that it all takes . . . time.

So, progress may indeed seem slow, especially from a street-side vantage point, but nonetheless progress there is. Now, let the framing begin!

“Have nothing in your house which you do not know to be useful,
or believe to be beautiful.”

                             — William Morris

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