Torgesen Family Times

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Beach “cabin”




We’ve been working on our beach property lately.  It has sat waiting and waiting for about 4 years now.  We finally have an idea of a). what we want to do with it and b). that fits in with what we can afford.


The property is a rectangle with the short end on the road.  The long end goes into a nice wooded area with lots of places to explore for the kids.  It’s about 0.6 acres in rural Pierce county, Key Peninsula/Gig Harbor area.  We are about 600 feet from the beach, the glorious beach!, that we always go to.  So, it’s a hike, for sure.  But the way to the beach is all down hill, baby!


We decided that we would put a “cabin” on the beach property to allow us to stay there overnight on vacations and weekends.  It’s about the perfect distance to get away from it all, not too close, not too far (~1 hour, 15 min from our house).  By “cabin” – I mean that there is no plumbing, no electrical, no foundation, which means no permits.  It’s also under 200 sq. ft., one of the requirements for the county to not require any permits.  It’s approx. 14’ x 16’ with a loft.  The loft will only have about 5’ of height and a pull down attic style ladder.  Not only are the permits very expensive, if we were to build a house with plumbing, electrical and a foundation, we would be talking big money, and big taxes on top of that.  We just can’t afford that now, nor anytime in the near/far future. 


Also, the thing that got this all started… is to have the boat parked there during the winter.  Although I had much more fun with the boat that I ever thought was even remotely possible, I still wasn’t thrilled when it was in my driveway for 8 months a year last winter.  Lance has some sort of plans to build or buy a carport type structure to keep the boat covered during the winter.  It’s not supposed to be anything fancy, just enough to keep the direct rain off of it (and it rains and rains (or is grey and cloudy) for what seems about 9 months around these parts). 


Cabin property-2a


Lance spent some good quality time moving the logs that were in the way of where the cabin is to be built last Sunday.  He is sure sore today (and will be sore tomorrow, too)!  We are planning on having a campfire pit, just like the one at home, to be able to cook there and have s’mores, of course!  This is where we will cook the oysters and clams that are plentiful on the beach – yum!  We hope to find (or Lance wants to build yet another thing!) a nice picnic table, too! 


There will be plenty of wooded area left on the property to explore for the kids and to provide nice shade.  Only during high noon, will the property get total sunshine (if it is sunny, I guess!).  There will be a shaded section some time of the day, somewhere on the property (important for us fair skinned Norwegians). 


The way I’m thinking about it is this – “nicer camping”.  Meaning, we will be sleeping in the cabin, which will have beds, sheets, pillows, etc.  But, since there is no running water or electricity, it will be like camping. 


Lance is taking off some time next week to do a lot of work on this property.  The wood is being delivered on Saturday.  Sunday we have help from my Mom and Steve coming to set the “foundation” (post and beam) and get as far as we can that day.  Then, some of next week Lance will either have his Dad or his Uncle, or maybe both, to help him with the rest.  I think his goal is to get a roof on it by the end of his week off.  Pretty ambitious – but since it’s only 14’ x 16’ – I think it’s totally doable!   (He thinks he’s sore now, just wait!)


Cabin property-1a


We sure are excited about this new transformation.  We are excited about getting started, our choice to put a “cabin” and a place for the boat over the winter, a place to get away from it all. 


We can’t wait to show you it all!