FAST Blog: Family Homestead

Permaculture, Preparedness, Homesteading & Survival

Friday, 14 October 2016

Captain Caveman!


Hope you're all well this Friday!

For this weeks Fast Five I'll spend 5 minutes talking about our new place. Lots of you have been asking to see/hear more about the house we have moved to, mostly because it's a bit different from what we're used to since it is originally a 400yr+ old cave house. We'll be staying here for the next year or so whilst we build our own house on the land we're buying.

I'll share some photos from the estate agents website since at the moment we still have bags and boxes everywhere that need unpacking, the quality isn't fantastic but I'll get some better photos and maybe a walk through video once we're settled in.

Here is what the place looks like from the outside..


..and the view from our front door



 It has been extended with a traditionally built add on but the majority of the rooms inside are carved in to the stone of the mountain itself, so the rooms are very odd shapes and locations and have really quirky ceilings.
here's a snap of the reception room inside the main entrance, notice the fairly low curved ceilings?


This is a photo of the original living room in the cave side, the rooms are a little dark because you can't place a window, and since it was built for ancient Spanish the door frames are a bit of a challenge for a 6ft bloke like myself!



Compare that to the modern living room in the extension, its all high ceilings and daylight to compensate for the cave rooms 

 The Kitchen is also in the modern section of the house so gets a good amount of light, in fact its mostly just the bedrooms that are underground


One of the things about living underground is that they are pretty dark during the day, we've started to remedy this by installing better light fittings and brighter modern energy efficient bulbs, but if you turn the lights off at night here it is DARK. In the bedrooms at night with the light off it is total dark, pitch black, not the tiniest shred of light. It's like you have fallen in to the abyss and it allows for the best sleep once you're used to not being able to see the end of your nose, let alone past it. This room is the spare bedroom which we have affectionately nicknamed "The Demon Room" since the decor is hideous and has been plastered with traditional crucifixes and pictures of Jesus, which I can only assume are there to protect us from the demons that lurk within!


This next photo will be Little Logan's room, it had a weird painting of a river with a total firehazard of a lighting arrangement made to look like a window, we've ripped that all down and put a real, safe light fitting on the ceiling. The Spanish are not known for reliable electrics!


Another thing that you notice straight away is that when you walk in to the modern section of the house there is a difference in temperature, the caves stay cooler in the day and warmer at night. Our Spanish neighbour Juan has been telling us that it's only cold for 3 months of the year here, and that in the caves we won't get cold but the modern part of the house will be very cold. Guess it's good news for us cave dwellers that are sleeping in the caves but the inlaws have a modern bedroom up those stairs you saw in the living room photo, so we might have to thaw them out in March!

Hope you all have a wonderful weekend, don't forget to head on over to Amy's to spread the Five on Friday love!



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42 comments

  1. That is all very exciting. I have to say I love the older part of the property.

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    1. It was a bit of a shock to the system when we first got here but now that I'm used to it I totally love the cave section of the house, in comparison the new part feels soul-less

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  2. What a lovely, very quirky house!

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    1. you've got that right, I wish you could see the layout of the rooms it's totally bonkers, like living in a rabbit warren!

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  3. great house, we viewed a cave house when we looked at buying in spain, but for me I found it a bit claustrophobic, I have to sleep with a window open all year otherwise I panic, same when we are in a tent camping the door has to unzipped, I put it down to my sister shutting me in the wardrobe when I was little, what part of Spain are you in and how far is the house from the land were you will be building a home :-)

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    1. we're in a little village just outside of Pinoso, the land is about 20 mins away from here so we were pretty lucky to find a place that was big enough, cheap enough and not too far away for our needs

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  4. Looks amazing, something completely different. Exciting times building your home, hope all goes well.

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    1. Thanks MM, we'll keep you updated on the build

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  5. Looks like you have lucked out, it's fabulous and as you say close enough for you to get on with building your own. Best of luck with it all and thanks for sharing your new temp dwelling x

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    1. It's improved a thousand times just by putting in some brighter white lights instead of the dim yellow bulbs that were here when we arrived

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  6. I have always been drawn to "different"---and I think your temporary digs are very very nice.

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  7. How interesting! I loved "visiting". Enjoy your new space :) I hope you can stop by:

    http://collettaskitchensink.blogspot.com/2016/10/tea-time-dapper-man-and-his-girls-101416.html

    Colletta

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    1. thanks for swinging by colletta :)

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  8. Looks pretty cool. I bet the kids will love it. Are you all fluent in Spanish? I always wonder this when people move to another country. We have thought of France many times, but my French is really bad.

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    1. p.s. I love captain cavemaaaaaaaaannnnnnnnnnn!

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    2. far from fluent, we speak enough spanish to get by but are going to be taking lessons to improve that. My top priority is to get fluent in Spanish as I think its really important to integrate. I think its much easier to learn the lingo after you move when you're thrown in at the deep end lol

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  9. Interesting read, I've seen a cave house on one of those property programmes. How exciting to move to Spain and to be building your own place!

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    1. Thanks for stopping by :) I see that you have been having adventures overseas yourself too!

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  10. I've got several cave homes saved on my Rightmove account, I think they're wonderful. Looking forward to seeing and hearing your progress :)

    Bustywench
    x

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    1. they are definitely growing on me, I really like it here now!

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  11. What an adventure. Good luck with the move, hope you settle into the area soon.

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  12. Looks different and interesting. Are you building underground at your new place?

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    1. We had planned on doing a straw bale build totally above ground but I will have to look in to ways that we can incorporate an earthen build because I'm starting to really like the caves :)

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  13. All looks really interesting! In the cold weather you can always add lots of blankets etc. It will probably be a welcome break from the heat! Tight now we are having freezing rain and snow and it's -1C. I'll take your cold any day!!!!lol

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    1. haha they think its cold here it's still above 20'C!! looking at average annual weather statistics the coldest it ever gets in the deepest winter is 2'C, I think I'm gonna like it here!

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  14. Have heard about cave houses in Spain, but never knew anyone living in one. Ought to be quite an adventure.

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    1. it's a very different lifestyle in Spain in general but things are weirder still living in a cave village lol definitely going to be an adventure

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  15. Perfection sleeping in total darkness, I dislike lights around at night, I can sleep through noise but not brightness.

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  16. Lately I have been following the Tiny House movement and just this morning saw a video of a gal who has built a Hobbit House in the side of a mountain in Oregon. A long time friend built his house into a berm to conserve energy, and I appreciate the efforts that folks make to be energy efficient. Happy Weekend, and Happy Building your new Home!

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  17. What a fun adventure you've embarked upon. We lived in South America and raised our children there - don't regret a minute of it! I love sleeping in the pitch dark, which is so hard to come by in modern cities. Happy settling in!

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    1. took a little bit of getting used to but now I don't know how I ever slept before

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  18. Wow that's immense, the thought of total darkness to sleep is very appealing. The insulation value of building into rock makes perfect sense in a warm country, you get the best of both worlds there, modern and old all rolled into one quaint package. Hope the new house building goes without too many unexpected incidents!

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    1. Thanks Kirsty. I guess it is the best of both, never thought of it like that! The thermal mass properties that the rock gives to the caves is colossal, it takes them so long to warm up or cool down that the temperature is literally always ambient. If you have the geology for it it makes total sense for live in the earth rather than above it for sure

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  19. I have heard about the cave homes, but never seen one. I think it's great ... comes with it's own "insulation"! I agree with Kirsty ... the best of both worlds ... old and modern. It's an adventure! Have a lovely week and good look with the house building.

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    1. Thanks Snap, it's certainly very different, not what we're used to at all!

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  20. I am sorry it has taken me so long to respond to your comment on my Sept. 11 post! My computer time is so limited now with all the moving preparations, but I am sure you understand that! How fascinating that you have moved the family to Spain! I loved seeing your cave house!

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  21. That looks gorgeous! I'd love to give cave life a go, even for just a while. Can't wait to hear how your little ones react to it all :)

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  22. I missed Five on Friday this week - was away in the north of Michigan. The new place looks very interesting. I'll be following along on your adventure!

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We are always glad to hear your comments, thoughts and opinions :)

Etsy

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