March 1, 2007: We've spent many weekends since purchasing the property coming out to the site to study how our home would be orientated on the property.
Given that the site is a corner lot, it is somewhat triangular and of course filled with trees. We wanted to take advantage of the sun for its heating benefits in the winter but also wanted to avoid the direct sun in the summer. We wanted to use the trees as a natural shading element. Removing as few trees as possible was high on our list of priorities. The least amount of land that we disturbed, the better. There's nothing worse than destroying all your grass during construction just to have to install new sod (or seed) when your done.
Once we finally figured out where the house was going to sit, we staked it out. The sub contractors were given a 5 foot offset around the footprint of the house to work in. (As construction progressed, the 5 feet grew but we still tried to keep it to a minimum.) Then the silt fence went up, the one evergreen tree and brush were tagged for removal by a landscaper, our drawings were submitted to the Village awaiting our Building Permit, we were getting pricing on materials and shop drawings for the steel were being started.
We couldn't wait to get started even though the weather was not quite ready for us to start digging a hole. One weekend we were out at the site and Alphonso decided he would get started on removing some of the brush. With no tools with us and wearing a suede coat, he used a hacksaw to cut a small tree down and took about 2 hours. Needless to say my two year old son and I couldn' t have been more bored. Five minutes later the landscaper shows up with his chainsaw and equipment and is done in about an hour-with everything.