Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: south of somewhere
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I don't know what slip form stone building is, so I can't comment on that bit.
I am going to have to cob the lower floor of our house within the next 6 months or so. I've done a few practise walls with the kids "helping" & I regularly do all sorts of other stuff like gardening, noxious weeding etc. My littlest children are 4 & a bit & nearly 2.
I think there is a definite window of opportunity with kids as to when you can do building or anything that requires you not give the child your full attention. With dd#3 I found her Ok till about probably 15 months of age when she refused to be happy in the hmong any more & wanted to be out cruising. She's now almost 2 & just starting to respond to verbal commands ie develop some sense. It has been hard doing anything that requires me not to be able to physically capture her. Some things I just can't do right now, like hold bits of timber or the ladder for dh as there are too many trenches & beams dd#3 could fall off or into.
I owuld guess that cob is much more child friendly than stone, as they get to play in the mud & there aren't any large heavy objects that could fall on them. Or you whilst you are carrying them. With any building site, you need to closely monitor where the child is for safety reasons. If you are carrying them on your back for example, you need to be careful you're not in danger of falling off any high beams or scaffolding. I just keep right away when they are using power tools or heavy machinery. But then there is a lot I can also do with the kids. Even if it is just to bring him out food & water some days. I help with figuring out calculations for corners. Drive in to town to get things for the house. That sort of stuff. Basically try to keep dh as free as possible to spend his time as efficiently as possible with the building. It all adds up to a lot of time eventually. Obviously once the roof is on & we can start cobbing, I will be more physically involved then.
Another thing I have done while I have been waiting to do the cob is I have done the whole garden so when the house is built, we have a nice mature garden already.