Turtle Lake Cottage

Turtle Lake Cottage

Friday, August 19, 2016

2016 Update - Terrapin Station

Well, here it is 2016.  Another summer is coming to an end.  The summer on Turtle Lake has been spectacular.

The Pileated Woodpeckers had 3 babies, all males.  It has been awesome to watch Dad get suet and take it to them and share with each one.  The hummers provide endless entertainment with their antics.  There is a beaver on the lake; the eagles visit almost everyday.  The highest electric bill all summer has been $77.00

It is with much sadness that it is time for me to start a new journey in my life and sell this little slice of heaven.  My love and soulmate spent 20 months battling that terrible, horrific disease of pancreatic cancer.  Jack succumbed and was able to exit his debilitated body May of 2015.  I've never met a more courageous man.  His original diagnosis was 3 weeks to 3 months after diagnosis and he fought valiantly for 20 months.  Since Terrapin Station was our dream home and dream life, it just doesn't seem right to continue to stay here.  So, I have decided to move back to Grand Rapids MI and have purchased a condo Downtown.  I said I would never move again...what is that lesson about "never saying never"???

I would love for our home to go to the type of person who values sustainability, the beauty and solitude of nature while having all the creature comforts.

Here is the link to the listing: http://www.zillow.com/homedetails/16698-Acorn-Rdg-Beulah-MI-49617/2098160186_zpid/. 

There have been over 14000 hits on this blog.  I want to thank all of you for your interest in our story and who knows, I just might build another LEED Platinum home during my next journey.


Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Lessons Learned - 2 years after building

It is hard to believe two years have past since we moved into Terrapin Station.  The house has had time to settle as have we!

Another summer is coming to an end, the song birds aren't singing as loud, the lake has a cold look to it and the tourists or "fudgies" as we call them have gone home.  The hummingbirds are still here building up strength for their upcoming journey to the south.

My brother Richard Dillon, has asked us several times "what would we do differently if we were to build Terrapin Station again?".  So, the rest of this post will address what we would or should have done differently:

1.  Geo-Thermal - Always choose a Closed-Loop system.

Originally we put in a Open-Loop system.  We use a well and have a great deal of Iron in the water.  This ended up causing major issues with the Geo-thermal and well.  So much so that we ended up spending $13,000 to change from an Open- Loop to Closed - Loop system.  3 new wells were dug, along with much of our roadside yard and piping for the new loop.

Neither Jack and I can remember having a discussion about the type of system, Open or Closed.  But, I am sure we did and since we needed to cut over $100k out the construction, we probably said let's go with an Open system and save $13k.....Poor Decision!

The technology for Geo-Thermal continues to get better each year and much knowledge has been gained in Geo-thermal by the professionals.

So, we saved both our regular well and Geo-thermal system and it should last longer than we will.

2.  Solar Hot Water

We chose not to add solar hot water to our solar and in retrospect, that would have been a good idea.  Heating water is a significant consumption of electricity.

3.  Add more Solar Panels

Add 5 more panels on the garage

Other than the above, we couldn't be happier!

Friday, May 11, 2012

Our House was on TV!

Jack sent out press releases to announce our LEED Platinum cerification.  The response has been very good.  Our local NBC affiliate asked to interview us and yesterday Brody McConnell interviewed us and it made the Morning News.  It was all very exciting.

Here is the link to the interview and story :  http://www.upnorthlive.com/news/story.aspx?id=752483#.T60iW3TsWHA.gmail