There’s few things we like more than to see how others live. It’s why we launched our new column last year that let’s us peek into Krrb members’ homes! Whether it’s a Mid-Century chair or vintage china, we love to see how people make it their own. Here today is Jaime McKee, whose blog Building a Sustainable Life shows her progress to attain sustainability in Eastern Canada. Read on as we pay a home visit to see how Jaime has turned a former schoolhouse into a home.
This past fall, we bought a school. It had closed in 1993, along with other semi-rural elementary schools in the area, having housed four classrooms. In the years to follow, it was well loved by one family who converted the second story into a home. When we purchased it, the upstairs residence was in move-in condition—and the lower level was exactly as it had been decades before.
The walls of the lower level are lined with chalkboards and corkboards, storage cupboards and pencil sharpeners, old bells, drinking fountains and niches for fire extinguishers. This past winter we welcomed a local children’s charity into the space, who made it their “Snowflake Station” from which they sorted donations of gently used children’s items and distributed them to families in need.
The house rests on three acres backing onto the Petitcodiac River. While the exterior could use some work, we love the interior space, with its high ceilings and leaky, costly windows abundant with natural light.
We have yet to determine what to do with the ground floor space. One classroom will afford us a great workshop from which to work on projects, but the other – coupled with elements such as the original bathroom – represents an opportunity to embark on a new business or community-oriented project.