July 3, 2016
It was always my intention to blog about my tiny house adventure. I must note that time has gotten the best of me, and until now, I haven’t really written about the experience, but rather, lived the experience.
It has taken me awhile to settle in, and as I discovered, I really needed to live in the space in order to learn how to live in the space. Let me elaborate.
I found that I needed to make additional space, shelving, etc. just to unpack. I needed to live around the boxes to figure out where to put stuff, which by the way, is WAY too much stuff. If you’re going tiny, start by thinking of what you need to pack for car camping. More than that, is just stuff, and you need a place to put it.
Cubbies, drawers and space.
I really planned to maximize my space in the house design, and yet when I started unpacking, I found I needed more space. More shelves, more places to put stuff. Did mention that I still have too much stuff?
To really feeling unpacked and moved in has really required me to live in the space and discover how to live in the space. It sounds a bit like I’m talking in circles, but I’ve spent weeks with my suitcases of clothes laying on the bed in the loft because I really didn’t know what cubbies to put my clothes in. I had to develop my day to day habits and discover where things would be most convenient. Even then, I suspect that I will rearrange and reassess where some things are, and hopefully lose the things I really don’t use. Tiny living is all about living simply with less.
I often think of pioneer days, where people had two sets of clothes. What they were wearing, and a clean set for when they washed clothes. That saying: “Don’t throw the baby out with the bath water” came from that time when folks only bathed once a month or so, and when they did, they put on their clean clothes and then washed clothes. For the record, I haven’t gone that far back. I have a shower and take regular baths, and I’ve purchased a hand washer called the Wonder Wash, which has worked well, and also an electric spin dryer, which does a much better job of wringing out the clothes than my hands could ever do. In the nice summer months, I have enjoyed the ability to hang my clothes outside, although I don’t have a formal clothes line. In the winter months, which I recall to be very muddy and drab, I may spring for the laundry mat once in awhile.
My first day, the day my house arrived, I was finally seeing what I could only imagine from the floorplans which I went back and forth with the design team on. I’m really not able to visualize stuff. What I see is what I see, and it’s difficult for me to fill in the blanks. So here was my house, finally, physically before me. I had walked into other tiny houses before. I think it’s really important to do that. I took a two day workshop on how to build my own tiny house (which solidified the concept that I really needed someone who knew what they were doing, to build my tiny house). And yet, nothing prepared me for that moment when I first set foot in my new house.
I had seen a taped outline on the floor (a good exercise by the way) of the dimensions of a 20 ft trailer. When you see how small that is, you definitely begin to realize how premium “up” is.
So I set foot in my new home, and for a moment, it took my breath away. The culmination of years of planning and the excitement of this big revealing moment, and here I was, thinking: “Damn, this is tiny.” Welcome to your new world. Your new reality. Welcome to tiny living.