The Straw Bale Plan In Action

Dan and Allison moved to Boise from the Redwood forest of California, where they lived an adventurous and labor-intense year in a yurt. They decided they wanted to make a shift when their family began to grow. Looking to several locations for work Dan found his prospective employer had a role available in Boise, and the young family relocated here.

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Settling into a home in the North End, off 28th St., Theriault and Green struggle with one of the same challenges many do in Ada and Canyon Counties, the lack of available licensed childcare. They want to be able to be more involved in young Daniel’s early years, so they got creative. The family is working with the city’s recently updated zoning around additional dwelling units (ADUs). Always attracted to straw bale homes, which are more common in California, they wanted to build one of their own here and make the most of their space.

The plan is to build an ADU. “Having an Air BnB to generate extra income will enable me to stay home with Daniel,” Allison told me, “and spend more time with him, not have him be in daycare. Mainly I just want to be able to hang out with him more.”

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Window of Truth - commonly included in straw bale homes to show what it’s made of!

Window of Truth - commonly included in straw bale homes to show what it’s made of!

Allison described decorating around a mid-century modern theme, using found and repurposed furnishings. “We want it to be very calm, with neutral tones so it will feel very relaxing—a tranquil space—we feel straw bale homes are very relaxing, the way you can have a lot of softer lines.”


“This will allow us to have another kid, and Mom home with both of them,” says Dan.


“It’s a lot easier financially to have two kids not in daycare,” said Allison.

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Dan added, “It’s been really good working with Ron. He’s been very knowledgable and very helpful. I just feel good about the project with him. We didn’t know where to go, we’d called some people, trying to figure out who could build straw bale, or even entertain the thought of learning about building straw bale.”

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“We felt very fortunate to find someone as knowledgeable as Ron in Boise, about straw bale, something that we LOVE,” Allison stated. “It’s pretty cool that there’s someone in Boise that is doing straw bale.”

Dan and Allison are building this home themselves and working with Mark L. (Ron) Hixson as a consultant, designing the home and helping them navigate through the many codes and ordinances any new home project requires. EarthCraft is providing select portions of the building process in order to enable this project to happen, working within the budgetary criteria of this project.

“It’s been a lot of hard work so far, I’ve cleared out the sod, done some other excavation,” Dan noted.

“Everyone who walks by, and seeing the straw, asks us about what we’re doing. There’s a lot of interest in straw bale here,” Allison said.

Straw Bale Workshop to be announced!
To stay informed about this project and others like us on FB at EarthCraft Design/Build, Boise Straw Bale or follow our work on Instagram or Pinterest!

Mary K Johnson