Working on things a little bit at a time over the past few weeks, we’ve managed to button up some for winter and get a little more comfy. Here’s a quick look at some of our recent upgrades…

A new floor!! Yes, we were able to find a reasonable solution to address our poorly platform. Evaluating several options to include resetting the yurt with a whole new platform, we opted instead to lay-in 4′ x 6′ rubber stall mats (3/4″ thick) as flooring to cover the platform wood. We did this after filling all the gaps with Great Stuff spray foam insulation. It’s been a huge improvement in somewhat leveling out the whole surface and covering any uneven joints. It also make things much quieter inside, gives a nice cushion underfoot, and seems to make the space feel warmer. We were concerned at first about living so closely with the molded rubber products because of the strong smell and out gassing, but so far we’ve experienced no ill-effects. (The yurt is naturally well-ventilated so we’re hoping the fresh air will continue to dilute any nefarious fumes from the recycled rubber.)

With this awesome interior improvement, we went on to tune up our solar power system by activating a remote starter for the inverter, and an Ethernet communication port to monitor the charge controller remotely via laptop and web-based interface with real-time status reporting. Mark and Molly helped to install these options that have helped to make our yurt a little more homey by allowing us to keep better tabs on our energy usage so we can plug in our wired lamps with LED bulbs.

Finally, we reconfigured our water works to have one of the big storage tanks insulated and closer to the yurt in an attempt to keep our fresh water supply from freezing over the winter.

On top goes an insulated cap and draping

All of these projects have put us one step closer to having a bright, warm, and secure retreat during the winter months. Now that we are settling in here off-grid, I am really inspired about all the ways people can adapt to embrace their natural environments in their living spaces. Please feel free to check out this board I made on Pinterest for more ideas about how you can live more gently on the earth. Thanks for following, and enjoy!!