I grew up in Hanover County. David and I moved to Hanover last summer, to Beaverdam specifically. He was involved in a custody battle, and was not going to win time with his daughter if we had roommates. We could not afford to live in the large house I owned in Richmond without roommates. So we decided to fix up a small house my grandparents owned in Beaverdam and live there. It was all kind of a catch as catch can plan, where things just fell into place, or didn’t, and we just rolled with it. Fortunately David and I are both hard workers and both enjoy making manic decisions and following through! Or at least following through most of the way… We lived in my short school bus in the yard while we gutted and renovated the 600 square foot house. My family decided to pay for the renovations and add an addition onto the original little tenant house. We are very lucky. We would not have been able to do what we have done without their support. It is over a year now from when we began this wacky project, and if you asked me to do it again, I would be pretty reluctant. School buses are not bug proof. We shared the short bus with 4 dogs and like 4,000 bugs. We tacked up screen over the windows, but that only did so much. For June and July of 2015 we didn’t have any electricity either. We were originally going to keep staying in Richmond at night at my house, but the hour long drive meant we basically gave up on that for the most part and just stayed in Beaverdam so we could get more done.
Once we got electricity we got a bug zapper. One night we thought we would be super clever and zap all the bugs in the bus. We moved the bug zapper into the bus. That was the worst idea ever. Apparently, (DUH), bug zappers draw more bugs. As soon as we had the dang thing in the bus with us, all the bugs came. It was the most super creepy crawly yucky yucky terrible thing and we quickly realized our mistake. It was, however, too late to save ourselves and our sleep for that night. There were so many bugs generally speaking, that multiple times we watched the bug zapper outside catch on fire as the bug carcasses piled up. I suppose as a vegan I should feel bad about it, but those mosquitoes aren’t joking. There are lots of absurd things we did while renovating the house, cooking our meals on an open fire, having to haul in water etc. If we had thought it out and realized how we’d have to live and how hard we’d have to work ahead of time we probably wouldn’t have started the project. Thank goddess for our lack of foresight/planning.