Rachel’s house is a bona fide family affair. When Rachel isn’t working as a waitress at Joe’s Tavern or sleeping, she’s helping me assemble the house. I, her father, am the architect and all-around laborer on the project. Mary, her mother, cares for 3-year-old Sonny and supplies an extra pair of arms when needed. Also present on the job, in spirit if not in body, are Oscar and Doris, Rachel’s deceased maternal grandparents.

Oscar and Doris bequeathed each of their three grandchildren 1/12th of their estate and although it wasn’t enough to buy a house outright, Rachel is betting it is enough to buy the materials to build a house. Rachel’s little brother, Nicholas, was able to parlay his inheritance into the lion’s share of materials for the house he and I built in Virginia (watch this video for tour of Nick’s house: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SOotfMaH1wQ&feature=youtu.be  . Mathew, Rachel’s big brother, used his inheritance to make the down payment on the purchase of Oscar and Doris’s Leavenworth house from the Hatmaker estate.

So there you have it: by living a frugal life and investing their savings wisely, Oscar and Doris made it possible for each of their grandchildren to own a house. And not just any house – in Rachel and Nicholas’s cases, these are houses that they have built themselves (with sweat equity from Mom & Dad.)

We have the main floor framed now. Next comes the top floor.


In this photo, taken from the Wenatchee Heights Road which borders the back of her land, you can see the current state of construction as well as Rachel’s view of Mission Ridge.