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"An ambitious project deftly recalled with precision and levity." — Kirkus Reviews

C. Carter


Delightful Read About Constructing a Home….and Managing a Relationship


Captivating read about the common goal of, basically, building a new home and the interpersonal dynamics of managing the priorities and expectations of each party, in this case a husband and wife. If you have ever executed a home renovation or construction project with your spouse or partner you will understand the negotiation that takes place in even the slightest decision. You will also find delight in how the author, often with great humor, navigated these decisions knowing the personality, priorities and decision making process of her husband.

But perhaps most captivating is the scope of this undertaking, and the great depth at which the author goes to describe in detail the why and how of each milestone along the way. I don’t’ see this book as a “how to” in constructing this type of home. It’s unique. It’s more of a “how to” in managing expectations, relationships and outcomes. The author refers to her practice of Zen often, and how that helped her plow forward during even the most difficult times. We all need to take a deep breath and get our bearings along the way, and the author navigates these cornices deftly.

Lastly, while the author is very descriptive in her a desire to educate the reader in several of the construction techniques that were used and the solutions to issues that were encountered, particularly weather related, I highly recommend visiting the accompanying web site. The photos therein really give perspective to the extent of the project and the achievement of its milestones.

S & C Miller


"Must read for anyone contemplating a home addition or remodel (or anyone that's lived through one)"

"This book provides great insight into what it really takes to undertake a major home remodel or someone who has remodeled every home we've lived in (8 houses in 29 years), this book really takes it to another level. I was never brave enough to undertake something of this scale and duration...and after reading this book I know I don't have the right demeanor for it...the book goes into a lot of detail that you don't see on HGTV but gives really important insight into what it really takes...a MUST read for anyone contemplating a home improvement project–large or small!!!"



"Formica chronicles the journey she and her husband embarked on when they decided to reimagine their sweet reproduction Colonial-style house as an energy-efficient 'passive' house. It was no small undertaking. An engaging read filled with wit and wisdom. I truly enjoyed it and think you will, too."



"This book was an interesting and a fun read with tidbits of useful tips/info for every homeowner. Told with witty humor…..and frustration that you can relate to when doing anything house related with your husband!"



"All I can say is, wow. It pulls you in and takes you on their incredible journey. It's wonderful to share the triumphs and tribulations of their adventure along with many ah-hah moments! It's definitely and engaging read for anyone with an interest in building engineering, home design, and the human spirit!"



"Wonderfully written book. I really really liked it, especially the way the writing combines deep construction storytelling with a love story. So good."



"This book is an excellent guide for anyone who is looking to transform their home, or transform anything really, while also maintaining a functional marriage and family. Formica chronicles, not only the practical process of major home renovation, but also the use of down to earth, spiritual practices with a perfect dose of dark humor. I found wise advice on how to manage, those times, when the roof over your head, literally, might not hold and how love and trust really is the best foundation.

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