The Mackeys are embarking on their dream to start a career as winemakers, while building a new home and vineyard on the site of an old cattle ranch in northern Virginia. They plan to keep their full-time event planning jobs in the meantime, while building their timber frame home and planting their first crop. Sadly, they learn that they must demolish the 200 year old house on their property because it is beyond repair. While originally hoping to have renovated it, they now must deal with demolition, excavation of an old well system and clearing the site of debris. On top of all that, they encounter a delay in getting a building permit for the new structure, along with other surprising news.
After more than a month in delays, the Mackey's finally have a building permit and waste no time completing the excavation. Work on the concrete foundation begins, but there's a sudden disaster when some wall ties snap. They encounter more delays with ductwork decisions and another concrete pour. While the work on the new house continues, the Mackey's harvest their grapes and take their first shot at wine making.
The massive beams for the Mackey's timber frame home finally arrive, but assembly is threatened by the rainy weather. When the framing is finally finished, the Mackey's mark the occasion with special touches, including a hand carved beam with the vineyard's name, Notaviva. The dormers are next to be installed, and the budget takes another hit when problems develop with the septic tank and force the Mackey's to make some tough decisions.
The frame for the Mackey's new home is now complete, but the delay in starting construction results in bad timing for their sweat equity phase. Although he doesn't have much experience, Stephen decides to save money by doing all the AV wiring himself. Also, the special star-shaped window to be installed more than 30 feet above the ground has even the experienced contractors nervous. Finally, the Mackey's get to show off the fruits of their labor with wine and jelly made from the vineyard's first grapes.
With the Mackey's dream house running more than two months behind schedule, Stephen is under pressure to complete the wiring before Shannon gives birth. When baby Duncan finally makes his appearance, the Mackey's proudly show him and their new house off. Next on Stephen's hit list is the tasting bar, and he has to get it framed and wired in time for the whole house electrical inspection. Later, the insulation goes up in preparation for the drywall phase, and Stephen and Shannon brace themselves for the work they plan to do themselves to save more than a hundred thousand dollars in labor.
The Mackey's have just three months before their construction loan expires. With a seemingly endless list of things that need to be done, there's danger of missing the deadline and busting the budget. Stephen starts installing railings and more than 900 square feet of tile himself. Shannon feels the squeeze as she tries to take care of two children and coordinate deliveries from their tiny one-bedroom rental house. Meanwhile, a wine consultant advises the Mackey's that there's money to made by renting out space in the soon-to-be-built winery building, so they begin excavating and fixing a drainage problem. With spring coming, the focus soon turns to the vineyard and the new season.
Ten months after work began on their dream home, the Mackey's construction loan deadline is counting down fast. They are desperately trying to finish the work on time to get the critical occupancy permit. Realizing that he can't do it all, Stephen gives in and hires professionals to help with the floor and railing work which ends up pushing costs over budget. Meanwhile, hold-ups in electrical and countertop work drive frustration levels to an all-time high, and Stephen prepares to take drastic measures.
After nearly a year of building and sweat equity, the Mackey's must prepare for an inspection to obtain an occupancy permit. Although exhausted, Shannon and Stephen tackle the countless details needed to make their home move-in ready. Meanwhile, the vineyard is growing at full force, and Stephen is splitting his time between finishing the house and keeping the growth under control. Amidst all this work, they set a date for a housewarming party -- in spite of the unfinished floors and wine tasting bar.