This is our journal of what we pray is our sojourn of life (Hebrews 11:8-10) along the narrow way (Matthew 7:14), even the old paths (Jeremiah 6:16), submitting to the Bible as a light unto both (Psalms 119:105). It is our prayer that these documented moments in our earthly time benefit whom God might choose to edify, but ultimately that God glorifies Himself through them.

Summer Kitchen

The original plan for the root cellar was to have a concrete slab on top, which would allow for the constructing of a building on top of it, thus creating a rather large insulation space to help keep the root cellar cool (plain air space is apparently a good insulator). We decided (at least at this point) to make this building a summer kitchen, allowing Sue and any of the women in the community who might want to use it, to cook and can the Lord’s provisions in a hopefully ventilated and cooler environment and to not heat up their own houses. And so, the design was to have the north half be the kitchen; the south west quarter be a pantry for the kitchen; and because I would like to have a place to take up the piano again, I thought I’d make the south east corner a piano room.

This is personally my first real building project. While this is still a work in progress, here is a little tour of where it is today and the process by which we got there.

Building the walls:

Time for a “barn” raising. The Lord has granted us the fellowship of like-minded brethren (see here, here, and here) to help and show their love for other brethren:

A quick point of note: when securing a wall to its perpendicular wall at a corner, and in anticipation of internal walls, you not only have the corner stud, but you need another stud to be placed stud width plus 3/4″. This will allow for the tacking up of internal walls. I did that for the corners of the building; however, I forgot about the middle dividing wall. And so, Lord willing if I do put internal walls in, I will need to add a 2×4 wall stud to support the internal walls:

Here is a backside view with the first wall braced:

And more “barn” raising:

“I think the meaning of life is that way.”
“Yes, I see it!”
“I think the meaning of life is over here, and I’m now contemplating it.”
“Yes, I see it!”
“Isn’t it meal time?”

Welcome to the frame of our summer kitchen building:

To secure the building down, we anchored it with heavy-duty 4-5″ concrete bolts:

Here is the structure with the roof put on. We used 24′ long, 2×8 rafters for the roof, and then covered it with Solar Board to help with insulation. Notice here above each window frame now has a “header.” This was suggested to me by our neighbor Logan, who has had more experience building. This is to keep the pressure from the rafters causing a sag in the window frames on the windows. Thanks to Logan:

The metal anchors are called “hurricane clips”, and they apparently help tremendously with high winds:

We covered the roof with tar paper and then began installing the corrugated roof metal:

I continued with Solar Board for the siding, and this is how far I have worked on it:

The Lord is gracious and merciful.

— David


  1. Sage WhiteOwl

    I am enjoying your blog. As I read the comments & the answers you give, it is true that though some of us may or may not be able to afford or have the skills to build, we can still learn & still be able to apply to our own circumstances/needs.
    Thank you for posting and allowing us to learn new things & ways.
    Blessings from Oregon

  2. Anonymous

    It is truly a wonderful thing to see friends and neighbours working together. I am enjoying your blog very much. Thank you for sharing your lives.

  3. Anonymous

    Susan I bet your excited about using the summer kitchen. It will be wonderful to have as well as the pantry. You can listen to David play his piano will you cook! lol. Looking forward to meeting you both soon!

  4. David and Susan Sifford

    Yes, Debylin, it gives new meaning to the words “dinner music” :)) Thank you all for your encouraging comments and we pray in return that God grant you continued wisdom, understanding, obedience and perseverance to serve Him.


  5. kjvbaptist

    i like how you give details. keep up the hard work and being thoughtful. i read your blog and see how often you have others in your plan. God will Bless as im sure He already has.

  6. David and Susan Sifford

    Indeed, thank you all. The Lord truly is most gracious and merciful.

    — David

  7. Joanne

    I enjoy the pictures; thanks for posting them.
    It must be exciting to have a summer kitchen. I have a gas line hookup outside on my back patio … I’ve thought of puting a stove out there for summer canning … however things have a way of walking away if left outside too long; especially appliances 🙂 the joys of city life.

    I look forward to seeing the finished product.

    In Christ,

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