What makes our work unconventional isn't that it's a design-build, or that we're dealing with reclaimed materials and "waste." It's that we're living the project. There is a set of social and communal needs that can't be ignored, and so at the onset of the project we eagerly volunteered ourselves to host the annual pre-Thanksgiving potluck dinner that has become a tradition among our friends. The event challenges us to start thinking of the existing space in a very new, and immediate way. Suddenly, we need cooking implements, seating and eating space enough for at least a couple dozen people, a cool place to store food and drinks, lighting on a larger scale than ever before needed by just the two of us, a larger source of firewood, and a general standard of cleanliness.
The dinner becomes a pivotal point in the life of the house and of the community: a resuscitation of space that hadn't seen true life in over twelve years. Practically overnight, the property becomes an active part of the community. Several locals stop by to comment - the warm glow from inside alluring them: "It looks like some kind of Hollywood movie in there...everyone getting together for dinner even though times are tough." We're given invitations to pig roasts and other events within our new community, and what we have so far always referred to as "the house" can now be called home.