Ultra-Posh Tiny Homes: The Small House Movement Goes Luxe

The Tiny Home Movement is getting noticed by Forbes Magazine.  It’s with mixed emotions that I make that statement, and that I even share this article.

I’m not sure how I feel about the majority of the homes in the gallery photos linked to this article.  The exception is the Zyl Vardos home (see also links under Resources), and a few others.  Some seem way too extravagant (1.8 million?), but it is Forbes.  Ultra-posh may appeal to the typical Forbes reader, but most of us who wish for a tiny lifestyle are focused on living simply and intentionally, not just seeking to expand our inventory of toys.  Still, I wanted to share this article, as I’m always looking for new ideas and working on the plan in my mind.  I do like the media attention the movement is getting of late, and hopefully building codes will be modified by the time we’re ready to transition in a couple of years.

Ultra-Posh Tiny Homes: The Small House Movement Goes Luxe – ForbesLife.

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A Tiny Home Open House: Visiting Hannah’s House

Today we attended Hannah’s Open House, a gathering that we’d found through Meetup.com.  Although we’d seen a Tumbleweed home at the Mother Earth News Fair, and I’ve obsessively viewed thousands of photos online, It was nice to finally see a Tiny Home that was being lived in.

Hannah’s home had a couple of great features that we’ll have to borrow for our design.  The L-shaped seating in the main living space converts to an RV-style guest bed, which is something that will be extremely useful when adult kids return to visit.  I also enjoyed seeing and using the mini-staircase, and we’ve decided this is a feature we like, especially since we’re approaching 50.  We backpack and stay active, but because I’m nearly comatose in the morning, stairs are a good thing!  The loft was nice and bright, and seemed roomy.  We can see ourselves living in such a space.

Wish we’d had time to talk to Hannah or her parents, but there was some serious inquiry going on.  Hannah, we think your home is adorable, and wish you the best in your tiny house endeavors!

Check out additional photos of Hannah’s house here.

Mortgage

 

Becoming Minimalist: Eliminating Junk, Gaining Freedom

Clutter. It tends to creep slowly into our lives, despite our best intentions. Having grown up with a mother who had hoarding tendencies, I developed an aversion to clutter early. This will be a valuable trait while planning our downsizing to tiny house proportions.  When I think about how much “stuff” we’ll need to eliminate to live a tiny lifestyle, I’m relieved we have time on our side, yet I’m anxious to feel free from unneeded possessions.

It’s not that I’m without my own “dirty little secrets” — the armoire that once housed the large TV is now home to an assortment of junk that doesn’t have another place. It seemed like a perfect pairing: an entertainment center that was no longer needed, with junk that didn’t have another place.  Where else would you store 300 or so candles?  Ok, so maybe there’s a little of my mother in me.  To my defense, most of those are tea lights.

Today I was inspired to start getting rid of things I didn’t use. I started in the obvious spot: my own dresser. I realized a while ago that I didn’t know what was at the bottom of my t-shirt drawer. I seemed to be wearing only what was on the top third, but this could be because I live mostly in black t-shirts and denim. (Doesn’t everyone need 15 black t-shirts with varying sleeve lengths and necklines?) I was able to cut my t-shirt inventory in a third at the first pass, and yes, most of what I donated was non-black. I’ll revisit this drawer later, but my strategy for this first pass is to just get rid of the obvious: if it hasn’t been worn in the last year, it goes.  If I forgot I even had it, into the donate pile it went.

The next pass will be more challenging, but it feels great to get rid of the obvious things that are just taking up space. In the first pass, I was able to get rid of 23 t-shirts, and although I wasn’t targeting anything else today, I was on a roll and grabbed 3 sweatshirts, 2 sweaters, and 2 pair of pants. And, to avoid changing my mind, I ran right down to Goodwill and made the donation — 2 paper grocery sacks full of clothes, and that was from only 2 of the 4 drawers of my dresser.  I imagine we’ll be getting to know the Goodwill Donation staff pretty well over the next few months!

MinimalismWhile I feel invigorated by getting rid of just a small amount of unneeded items, I imagine the decisions around paring down will become more difficult as we continue the process of simplification. I’ve challenged myself to look at things with new eyes, and redefine what is a “want” and what is a “need”. I’ve decided it’s ok to want something if it is useful and fills a purpose (black t-shirts), or is simply something of beauty that makes me happy (artwork), but there must be a limit.  We long to live intentionally: to have what we need, and to need what we have.  We will get there, and I’m looking forward to the journey.