Box Truck Film

Deek and Alex need our help!

There’s only 17 hours left to help our friends reach their goal! Please, if you love the tiny community, help these guys out to make this awesome film! Think we can shock them with and get the last 2/3 in the next 17hours?? That’d be some amazing stuff!

https://www.fortua.com/campaigns/a-film-fusing-reuse-benefits-and-tiny-home-solutions

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I’m going CRAZY! But enjoying the ride!

Good golly Miss Molly!! I feel like I’m going to lose my mind! For my dear followers, you know we’ve been working on paring down since August. And I feel like we keep chipping away, little here, little there. and then BAM, we add more stuff! Does that make sense?? NO, NO it doesn’t! For instance, we added a kitchen aid mixer in December. Something we’ve always wanted and use quite a bit, to be honest. But in September added a large stuffed animal, a few handmade quilts, recently a couple more dishes that were in storage the rest we did sell off, and donated! I know I shouldn’t complain because it’s not like we added a table and chairs, we’ve been very smart about our choices, but boy is it a long process!

I must confess here, I have a surgery coming and it’s all consuming right now. It’s not expected to be life altering for long. But getting the phone call to schedule it made me realize, AGAIN, WHY we are doing this. Why we are wanting less and live a more simplified life!

So here I will post happy pictures of the life I hope one day to live!! Thanks for reading!

First, we will start with our favorite “Tiny House” Tom and Shaye’s tiny home. It’s wonderful, 8’x24′ for a total of 161sqft living space. We would need to add a bit more space to have a ground floor bedroom, but I love the simplicity, clean lines and large kitchen space. Oh we would need to add an apartment fridge as well. But for a link for a video tour click here.

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Tom and Shaye's floor plan

Next is the always inspirational: The Hansel House. This is fairy tale living at its best! We love this famous little house, but it does seem a little cramped for our taste at 300sqft. But given the chance, I think we would love to live here! Also, they do have some nifty space using ideas. Watch the video tour here. For interesting history about it and photos of the inside click here.

The Hansel House

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Our Favorite: English Cottage: This is our most favorite, we love the angled roofs, dutch style wood showing and stucco siding as well as all those beautiful windows and stone on the outside and chimney for the toasty warm fire inside! It’s only 17’6″ x 23′ making it 402sqft, 300sqft living space. We would probably square it off and make it 25×25 for a full 625sqft which is regulation size, albeit a bit big for us, for the county we want to live in. For floor plans click here.

English Cottage
English Cottage

Paring Down Pt. 8: The Fabric Box

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After, the machine, and in the orange tub: fabric, wooden sewing box, a white box of thread and a white box of ‘extras.’

You wouldn’t think two people who don’t sew much to collect so much fabric! However, we’ve been known to sew a quilt or three in our time as well as pillows, crafts along with teaching children to sew. It also helps that my mother-in-law is a master seamstress and glorious quilt maker. She is an inspiration to us and so, we started collecting fabric in hopes to do projects with her. She’s such a joy to work with and so knowledgeable, helpful and very patient.

Before starting we had to make some tough decisions. While owning a sewing machine is on our priority list, did we really need all that old fabric? If so, why? Through our sorting we found that much of it was kept for a project we either finished or realized we honestly were not committed to actually doing. To be truthful, admitting this was very hard to do. We are passionate about so many things, it’s hard to pick and choose. But ultimately, it came down to the question, “Where do we want to spend our time?” And we decided that we want to spend our time doing projects we LOVED and we didn’t want to spend our time lugging around an anchor. So, as hard as it was we let 75% of our fabric, dream projects and hopes we had for all of it -GO… It was so relieving. I felt so much better because those undone items weighed on my mind every time I saw the sewing machine or fabric box. Now, I get to spend my time where I want to spend it NOW, not where I “hoped” to spend it a year ago. We realized that year to year our tastes and priorities change, and we have to be willing to change with it. It doesn’t make us failures, it makes us human. And we do get some projects done, but not all of them. We keep trying, and now we can enjoy working on them instead of being overwhelmed by them!

The fabric we did keep were the kinds that were versatile for many projects, mainly large pieces, or were set aside for an item we really wanted to accomplish by the end of the year. This was a great opportunity to set goals for the remaining of the year.

We started with so much, there were three different tubs, a cardboard box hiding here, another there, it was all over the house… Here are the photos of the mess we had on our hands!

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Can you spot the THREE sewing baskets??

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That which we tossed was so old it was too worn to be used for anything solid, it no longer had any life in the fabric. The stuff we decided to sell were things like extra quilt blocks from previous quilts we finished, curtains I had hoped to make a belly dancing skirt from, lace curtains, upholstery fabric we decided we weren’t going to actually use, all of our buttons, and yarn.

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The white box was full of buttons. The fan box is full of fabrics too. This was our pile of yard sale items.

Trying Tiny Part 3: The Dinner Party!

:: Plug for fellow Tiny Houser- Derek “Deek” Diedrickson’s appearance on HGTV! ::

He has a youtube channel under: RelaxShacksdotcom as well as a Facebook page.

Deek is a tiny house and tiny space builder, musician, author and so much fun to watch. He has a great sense of humor and brings a unique energy that keeps the videos not only informative but also entertaining! Please check him out and show him some support!

THE DINNER PARTY:

Sticking with our attempt at Trying Tiny I made a full formal meal and served it on our folding table, family style. This table is what we plan to use in our Tiny Home. Typically you would do it buffet style, so I wanted to see if we could comfortably visit and eat. I made Hungarian meat and gravy, potatoes, corn, green beans, beets, rolls, Iced Tea. The table is 4ft long and just under 2ft wide. We used the couch and a cooler as seating, despite the chair at the end, I did not use it for this experiment.

Tiny dinner two

With all the trimmings on the table we had room for the three of us. I feel comfortable saying that would could fit 4-6 at this table but only if we did it buffet style.

Having room is one thing, being comfortable is another. My guests were not excited to use the couch as seating as it didn’t have any back support. We think there are a couple ways to make this better, one would be making a bolster pillow to help support your back while sitting or using tv tray style plating instead of the folding table. But that would mean using space to store said trays.

The dinner was delicious but honestly crowded. I wasn’t comfortable moving around. So, I think this experiment was informative and helpful, now we know to stick to buffet style serving!

Thanks for reading! Please be sure to check out Deek’s new program and show some tiny love!!

Sincerely,

Audrey

Paring Down Part 5: Shoes 10pr to 5pr!

Yes, I did it! I went through my shoes and pared down. To be honest, I always thought, I don’t own that many shoes…. This used to be true. I used to only own 2 pair! and now? Now I found I owned: 10!! My goodness how did that happen? One word: Crocs!! I own four pair of Crocs! Seriously!!

So here’s where I started 10 pairs:

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From left to right:

Old gym shoes, Black Mary Jane, Black Dress Crocs, 2pr old off brand Crocs, 2pr new Crocs, Brand new black winter boots, Red house slipper boots, Old but still nice grey winter boots.

So, you might be wondering, why so many Crocs? I have problems with my feet and they are so comfortable, it makes it easier for me to stand and walk than any other shoe I have found yet. And I’m still looking! *any suggestions for a shoe that has good arch support and is soft n squishy, I’d like to know!*

Here’s what was decided:

~3 pair Gifted

 

One pair of old off brand Crocs, New dress Crocs and my favorite, nice winter boots, were all gifted to my mom, who loves them! Especially the boots, she was so excited and they looked so nice on her, it made it easier to part with them.

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~1 pair Trashed:

It was easy to get rid of the old gym shoes, they went into the bin! There was no life left in them to donate.

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~1 pair kept for guests

While I got rid of those four I actually kept 6pr, that’s because I kept the other pair of old off brand Crocs for guests, mainly my friend who comes and does my dishes. She says they really help her hips feel better. I feel the least I can do is keep a pair of shoes to help while she does it, right?

So, here is a pic of hers and my Crocs:

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~2 pair Crocs kept for myself

In the picture below are my two pairs of Crocs. Now you may be wondering why I need two pairs. Well, for one, it’s good to have two pair to switch back and forth so they can rest and it increases their life span plus I wear them in the shower, so I can wear one, while the other dries. Also, my two pair are very different. One pair is for hot weather or just indoors (I am never bare foot inside), the other pair is for indoors and when it is wet out, notice there are no holes on the sides for water to splash in or dirt from gardening? These are my main ‘outdoor’ Crocs for when I take the dog out. I LOVE them because they work exactly the way they should! Dewy morning and evening doggy walks no longer leave my feet wet and slippery!

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~2 (3) pair outdoor pairs kept

 

These below are my outdoor shoes. The black boots, center, are my new, very expensive Dansko winter boots that are warm, water proof and have good arch support. These will be my winter wear when ever I leave the house this winter. These will last me a lot of winters and so far have been worth the money! The blue Crocs we discussed above, the cheap black Mary Jane’s on the far left are because I need a ‘dress’ shoe of some sort to go with dresses and skirts when I go to weddings, funerals or gatherings in general. These are comfortable enough and do the job of looking like formal wear with out hurting my feet too bad.

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~1 pair kept for indoor comfort

Lastly are the boots that I have a feeling will be given to my niece eventually but for now in the colder months they are nice to wear inside, a nice change from the Crocs, they are fuzzy on the inside and really comfy. They also have leather bottoms, so I could technically wear them outside, if there’s no water, or to stand on the porch to let the pooch out.

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So, getting rid of half my shoes is a good beginning. But I’m realizing that no matter how much I “smart-size,” due to my medical issues with my feet, I will still need 5 pair of shoes: 1. dress shoe 2. 2pr indoor comfy shoes 3. winter boots 4. gym shoes.

If only I could get one or two pair to do double duty and cover more than one use that would be ideal. However, I haven’t figured that out yet.

Have you gone through your shoes yet?? If so, was it hard to let them go? What are your favorite pair and why??

Thanks so much for reading! Next week I’m going to tell you all about “Trying Tiny” with a formal dinner!

If you enjoyed this feel free to like, share and I would love to hear from you! If you have any questions about living tiny, I could answer or find the answer for you!

Take care and good luck with your own projects!

Sincerely,

Audrey

 

Trying Tiny: Part 1 – An experiment in Tinier Living Now!

It all started with moving the furniture to shampoo the carpets, then it hit us, “Hey, why not put the furniture back in a mock tiny house arrangement?” So that’s what we did. To the best of our ability, we sorted through a few things we knew we would absolutely need and this is what it looks like. Since we live in an apartment the best we could do was to attempt, “Tinier Living,” because we can not get exactly 8×30, so we have tried to work out 8ft sections where possible and smooshing spaces together. I’ve included before and after shots. They are not all pretty as a magazine because this is a work in progress. It turned out that the area previously used as storage for our sewing boxes and exercise equipment was actually the size of our Tiny House living space of 8ft wide.

Before and After

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As you can see on the left, this 8ft. wide space contained our storage stuff and on the right, it is now our living room. If you look closely you can see the cooler is doubling as a side table and the white chair as a table as well. I have a cold so the chair is very handy for my kleenex, orange juice and stuff. The red box underneath is my trash basket. You may notice the fire place with a fan on top… I’m running a fever so the fan was running last night and now I have the heater is on. It is electric and cool to the touch. This is about the size of fire place we are expecting to have in our tiny house, we are still researching if we want an electric one or wood burning.

To be honest, I have come to really like this set up. We have changed other things too. For instance, we brought over a book shelf that houses our favorite books, pretty things like pictures and teapots as well as kitchen items I intend to keep (for now, may change later). It is just beyond the white pillar, you can see the red boxes from the side. We also brought over the microwave/toaster oven counter top where the dining area was (the white chair is in the way of seeing the legs in the picture on the right). We shortened it from 6ft to about 3.5ft. In this apartment, it would have been nice if it could replace the kitchen island but we can not because of where the plugs are located and the load from our tea pot and the microwave is too much for one location. We also moved the pantry forward to fit into our “Tinier Living” space.

Here is the before – To help orientate you, pay attention to the location of the dining room table,  and the pantry doors are open in the picture on the left so it’s a bit hard to see, also the edge of the counter top and carpet on the floor.

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Much of the stuff on the shelf (left) has been removed and prioritized. Later in the post I will show you pictures of what mess we have left to sort through!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And here is after

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We are using the space behind the couch, another 8ft section as a mock “Tiny House Loft Storage” space. It’s a mess. We haven’t sorted everything out yet, but it will be 8×6 and we plan to only stack it up to 3-4ft (as in a real loft). But for now these pictures show were we are with this side of the room. Again to help you get proper persepctive, look at the floor. The linoleum is where the dining table, long counter top, pantry and a book shelf used to be. There is still the living room bookshelf on the left which has not been moved, the dining table is now in the foreground and the two couches on the left.

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To continue the idea of tiny living experiment, I’ve been slowly adding empty card board boxes with green labels to our refrigerator and freezer, and buying less perishables at a time to prepare for the significantly smaller space we will have:

Before and After

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Eventually, I will do a post about what we hope to have in our tiny home with details, drawings and a photo collage of some sort. But this experiment in “Tinier Living” is going to give us a much better idea of what we really need and want in our space which will help us to make more realistic plans.

Next in this attempt we are going to focus on actually removing from the apartment those things we plan to live with out to see how we do. The items will be moved to a storage area at Steve’s moms.

As always, I want to thank you for reading, commenting, sharing and following! You guys help keep me going!

PS. After some prodding from others, I have decided to start another blog soon about my medical conditions and lessons I’ve learned, so look for updates on that!

Paring Down – Part 3 Washer/Dryer Our First Tiny House Purchase!

We got a stackable washer and dryer to save space by going vertical! These things brand new are $1200!! We have always planned to have a stackable unit but figured we  would save and planned on getting it when we moved into the tiny house. But we saw this was at a relative’s yard sale and it was a great price, so we bought it! After selling our dryer and probably giving the washer away (or scrapping it), the upgrade will have cost just under $100! Well worth it since our washer was very old and started tearing up our clothes, however still usable and good for anyone who is in desperate need temporarily.

But the biggest surprise was the amount of space it saved, I couldn’t believe it. Since we had a shelf above our original set, I didn’t think it would add much, but it really did. I am very pleased with this.

On the down side,there isn’t a good place to store my laundry soap, dryer sheets and other laundry related items. We will perhaps have a small shelf built near it in the tiny home. See photos below.

Laundry room before
Laundry room before
Laundry room after
Laundry room after
Corner:  open space!
Corner: open space!