Every boy loves tree houses, and in fact, so does about every man. Well, when we bought our land in Madison, I would look at the woods next door and see those tall oak trees and started thinking how nice it would be to have a tree house in one. We had trees on our property, too, but I always thought a tree house should be in the woods away from any house.
I ended up buying a little over an acre next to us. I wanted more, but that is all the neighbor was willing to sell. South of us is a big woods and north of us is a big woods across the road we live on and east of us is woods, too. So while technically not in the middle of a forest, my tree house is in the woods.
I took Wanda out to show her the tree or trees I was planning on using and telling her how much the grandkids would like a tree house, and she got all enthusiastic, but said it had to have a nice safe stairway up to it – no ladders, and if I could do that, then she would pay for the materials.
Well, let me tell you that opened up all sorts of ideas in my mind. She would have a wonderful safe stairway for sure. I didn’t really want to be putting bolts or nails into the trees, so I opted for building platforms that the trees passed through. After building two of these platforms with a elevated walkway between them, I started making drawings and plans to put the house on one of them. Everything I came up with seemed too small or too hard to make waterproof with trees passing through the roof.
About that time, Wanda had to go to Southern Alabama and give a presentation at a school, and I went along. On a back road over there I saw a tower somebody made for their kids to stand in while waiting for the school bus. I don’t even know if the kids could go up in the tower, or if it was just for looks, but it got me thinking… I could build a tower and have another elevated walkway to it.
Sometime way before I even got to the thinking stage of the tower I had lost my funding, but slowing down was not an option. I built the tower. It has a screened porch and a little room with a leaded glass window, a ceiling fan, and one electric outlet. It is good that I am not way out in the middle of the woods because my extension cords just make it to this tree house from my studio.
It is fun, it is done, and it is safe–even for kids. However, I think it needs one more platform kind of faraway with an elevated walkway that would be built with cables and ropes and have a wood walking deck but would kind of move as you went across. Then it really would need a zip line down to the garden.
Why stop now?