Log Home Builders Association member Peter Andersen was diagnosed with Machado-Joseph Disease half-way through building his log home. It’s a progressive disease that effects his motor control. This health crisis has made his log home journey a lot harder.
The Peter Project: Our mission is to organize a Member Work Party to help get Peter’s cabin weather tight, and wheelchair friendly.
The 5000+ members of the LHBA forum know Peter by his user name “Stressman” (a name inspired by his former engineering job at Boeing). All of our members are excited to be helping Peter, and there’s a two part plan that will make a big difference for Peter and his young family.
The two things make this possible; the involvement of corporate sponsors, and the fantastic community of LHBA members who are willing to help.
Two phase project:
Phase one: August 16th 2014. 9am to o’dark thirty. Members of the Log Home Builders Association (LHBA) will be milling untreated lumber from donated logs. This lumber will be used as traditional Board and Batten siding for the framed support of his roof.
Phase two: September 18 through Sept 22nd. Our goal is to get 20 LHBA members onto Peter’s job-site, with trucks full of construction materials, so great progress can be made on his home.
Who we are
The Log Home Builders Association is an educational non-profit. We have taught log home building classes since 1965. Our focus is on showing owner-builders how to build high quality log homes, on a budget the average person can handle.
Graduates of our class become certified log home builders and full members in our Association. As members they are tied into a support network, and community of people who actually care.
There are members in every state, and they often help with each other’s builds. If tragedy strikes, then LHBA members go that extra mile to help.
We are still humbled by how the LHBA community rallied around fellow member Rachel. She and her husband Stewart were part way done with building their log home when Stewart died in a water skiing accident.
LHBA members rolled up their sleeves and helped Rachel by attending several giant work parties. Her story is very touching and you can see the love both Rachel and Stewart put into their beautiful log home.
An intro to our student Peter Andersen
This is Peter with his lovely wife Ornuma, and their delightful 3 year old daughter Isabella, inside their partially finished log home.
At age 30, shortly after starting on his log home project Peter was diagnosed with Machado-Joseph Disease (MJD) — also called spinocerebellar ataxia Type 3 (SCA3). It’s a disease that causes all the muscles in his body to slowly stop working. Formerly an engineer at Boeing, Peter had to quit his job as symptoms worsened.
Right now he lives in Iowa with his loving family. He has made it back home (to WA) 2 summers in a row. He heads up to his beloved cabin and makes some slow and hard progress over a few hot weeks. It is so enjoyable that it seems like therapy for the mind and soul.
Whenever you spend time with Peter you see his vibrant personalty shine. Always the first to have a huge smile on his face, because Peter pretty much always has a smile on his face. He just has this amazing uplifting personality that has always helped those around him feel a bit happier.
Today Peter’s spirits remain high, his mind is sharp. It is always a joy to spend time with Peter and LHBA members are excited helping him with this big work party event.
A bit about Peter’s House
Peter is building a 100% real Butt and Pass log home in Eastern Washington. It is a very neat log home, with a unique Clerestory roof that maximized natural light (steepish shed roof with high windows). As a former Boeing engineer, Peter is all about maximizing and minimizing and optimizing!
His home is a modest 800 sqr feet, which fits in well with the resurgence of smaller homes. At one story with a half loft, Peter’s cabin could easily be a 2 bedroom, one bath log home depending on how he decides to frame the interior.
Some of the neat features of this home:
- Slope of roof provides natural heat flow from wood stove to upper bedroom.
- It’s plumbed for passive solar radiant floor heat
- It is pretty much surrounded by other LHBA members who have built in the area. Many of which are Boeing and Microsoft workers and all round great people.
This cabin is in most idyllic setting you could imagine. Rolling green hills, speckled with sparse trees. It’s like the background of a movie (the Hobbit). If you spend some time in the wonderful wild area you can’t help but feel reconnected to nature and life itself.
Those who helped Peter over the last 2 years
Peter’s job site was host to many smaller work parties before he had to move away due to his illness. During that time he forged deep friendships with his fellow LHBA members as they worked together on his home. It’s humbling to see these bonds develop between members over their shared interest in log homes and shared activity in our Association.
Every LHBA member who has helped Peter in the past, and continues to offer him support now, deserve huge acknowledgement. You guys and gals are simply the best!
In no particular order, Peter would like to thank the following LHBA forum members for participating in past work parties:
The Peter Project Scope of work
We asked Peter, “what are the most important things you need to get done on your home.” He came up with the following list.
- Make the home weather tight by chinking it with traditional mortar
- Mill board and batten siding from logs and install
- Install back deck, ground floor
- Install back deck, second floor
- Install railings
- Install the off grid water system
- Run the chimney for the wood stove
- Work hard, stay safe, have fun and get done what you can while adhering to those first 3 things 🙂
As an organization we are also using this opportunity to explore some new and exciting ways to better serve our membership. We will soon be launching three new programs: a website chat feature, a Work Party organizing system, and a new ‘member helping member’ newsletter. These programs spring directly out of our involvement with the the Peter Project will hopefully they will help many other members for years to come.
For Peter, health care costs have trumped build budget. We’d like to give a hardy thanks to the following companies who have graciously offered to lend assistance with either material or labor.
McLendon Hardware: This local chain is simply the best. Voted best in Western Washington because they have cheerful and knowledgeable staff and fair prices.
They also care about their community, just look at how they donated and delivered much needed supplies after the Oso mudflow.
Scott Brothers Coffee: You can’t build a log home without caffeine! Scott Bros coffee (Peter’s favorite) is our official addiction supplier. If you like a superb cup of Joe you should go to their website and order a lb or get a sample pack. This stuff is prime, exotic coffee, fresh roasted and shipped asap.
If you are ever near Scott Bros, you should stop for your free cup of coffee. The owner Rich Scott obsesses about making fantastic coffee and will make you a fresh pour-over! Plus he is an all around nice guy and fun to chat with.
The Rot Doctor is the industry leader in wood repair. If you have a little spot of rot on your log home, don’t panic, just turn that wood into plastic! We have heard fantastic things about their epoxy products. In fact one LHBA member in Oregon used some on his ridge pole, and even he can’t tell where the spot of rot used to be!
www.seconduse.com is a fantastic supplier of used building materials and architectural supplies. They helped Peter by supplying an entire kitchen cabinet set, and pressure treated wood to make Peter an ADA friendly deck on his log home. Peter sends his thanks to Dirk and the Second Use crew!
The awesome crew at Roy Robinson Chevy/Subaru donated a giant fist full of gas cards to Peter to help cover his transportation costs. It is really awesome when a local company like Roy Robinson lends a supportive hand to help a community member in need. If you’re looking for new ride you might want to check in with the straight shooters at Roy Robinson in Marysville. The Boeing and LHBA community says thanks!
Value Village is a Pacific North West institution. It’s a really great chain of thrift stores. We needed some misc supplies (cold weather gear, cast iron cook ware, et cetera. Our local Value Village had it all, and stepped up to lend a hand. Recycling, re-using, and re-purposing are Values that the LHBA supports!
HottubHideaways.com – UK Log Cabin Specialists are super passionate about all things Log Cabin! They were proud to sponsor the Peter Project and raised quite a lot of awareness through their Facebook Campaign. They continue to be a great assistance and are very much appreciated.
- Are you interested in becoming a sponsor? To be included in the upcoming Facebook posts, press release and other internal promotions you should contact us via email ASAP.
- If you are an LHBA member wanting to attend Peter’s work party please email us for additional information. This event would never be happening without all of your help; please know all that effort is deeply appreciated.
Our priority is putting hammers in hands in order to make a difference within the community, and we’ll get you pointed in the right direction.
- You can follow announcements about this event on the LHBA Facebook page. Don’t forget to help spread the word by hitting Like and Share.