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

Advertisements

The Realities of Trying Tiny!

So, here’s the truth. It’s all about the fridge! Or at least that’s what made me look around to be honest about how HARD trying to live tiny is and sometimes very disappointing! While I’ve enjoyed the benefits of decreasing the amount of possessions we have to maintain, realizing that we may not be able to adjust to an actual tiny lifestyle is sad. However, by observing how we really live and what essentials we NEED, it will help us to make a place that’s just right for us that we won’t regret.

Here are some of the highlights of issues we have found:

Food Storage – We shop sales for our groceries. In a tiny house there will be very little storage for it. We cook our meals and I try to make sure there’s leftovers for the next day. In a tiny house with a small fridge there won’t be much space for that. Because not only would we have an entree but also fruits, veggies, snacks, etc. We also freeze meals for those on-the-go days when I don’t get to cook. Between the sales and freezing foods there’s not enough space. There’s barely enough space now!

I tried. I was putting empty cardboard boxes in the fridge/freezer to take up space and reduce the size available (see the picture above). During the holidays we make buckeyes that need refrigerated so the boxes were removed and we’ve been taking up that space with vegetables and other goods. The same happened with the freezer. I do believe we still have 3 boxes in the back of fridge still, so the experiment wasn’t a complete failure.

One benefit from a smaller fridge is less waste, you eat more of the food in it. There’s not so much space that you forget what is in there. We don’t usually have that problem.

We also do canning and are uncertain where we would find space for that.

Living– We like to entertain and have friends over – A lot! In a tiny house that’s 8ft wide and 30ft long, there won’t be enough space. This is true especially in the cold months, and here in Indiana that can be up to 6 months!! During the summer we can use the outdoor space as an extension of our living space.

Exercise– Space will be a problem too, we enjoy tai chi and yoga. We also have an elliptical for winter time (honestly, it may get replaced in favor of a gym membership, which we are trying now).

Personal Space– Due to my medical conditions, I need daily rest, relaxation and time away from the chaos, this includes the mess of the kitchen, people, clutter, which happens during a project and I have to take breaks. I can’t climb a ladder on a regular basis, so we have to have our bedroom separate. I have seen some tiny homes that have accomplished this really well, but it didn’t leave space for the actual living part of life.

Recycling– This is a minor point right now, but I would love to have a place I could separate my trash and recycle. I currently live in 900sq ft. and have no room for it, how will I have room in 240sq ft? (if you have any suggestions, I’d love to know!)

I know there are many points of view of tiny living, some do it to be pushed to live within their communities or out doors, some to be ‘greener’ or more environmentally friendly, others for the simplicity of life, living debt free, being portable and the list goes on. For us, our goals are 1. simplicity (less to clean/maintain) 2. debt free 3. more time to do what we love.

I worry about being in a place that’s too small and won’t offer the simplicity because it will be tedious and aggravating from not having the ability to do the things we need. I hate tripping over things and feeling closed in.

We just rearranged our bedroom and it really felt closed in, so we changed it again, it’s much better now. But the first arrangement was closer to what we would probably have in a tiny house. It bothered me, it made me wonder if our dreams of living tiny are just a delusion.

Despite these things, we will keep organizing, compacting, sorting and tossing/selling as much as we can. Because in the end, we may not have the 8×30 (240sqft) we had hoped but perhaps a 12×30 (400sqft) instead. It’s still smaller than half of what we have now. It will still be less to clean and maintain, we will build it ourselves with savings, so we will be debt free and have time to do what we love.

Thanks for your readership! I appreciate your interest and comments are encouraged!

Sincerely,

Audrey

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

Trying Tiny Part 2 Making Changes

Wow! Where to start. I don’t want to overwhelm you with photos (those will come later) but we have been working on trial and error style living. This included things from using up what we already have, limiting counter space, changing behaviors and so much more.

As you saw last week in Vertical Space,  we’ve moved the towel drawers, but they got repurposed for our tea collection. We are trying to use up all that tea and get rid of the drawers permanently and stop purchasing so much! But we LOVE tea!

*We have taped the counter tops to replicate what we expect our counters to be – 18inches rather than the normal 24inches.

20141117_214530

*We set our toaster oven on the counter top to see how that will work. We have decided we want to get a Convection Oven/Microwave combo that is mounted above the stove so it wont take up the precious real estate of the counter tops.

20141117_214714

*We are also trying to change the way we do dishes to suite a one sided sink style of doing dishes by placing a tray over the other side to immolate what we plan to have. The plan is to have 1 sink tub with a dish pan inside of it. Fill the dish tub with hot,soapy water set it on the counter top, wash the dish, rinse it in the empty sink tub then put on the drying rack. (in the tiny house, the drying rack will be where the dishes are stored as well (see lower photo).

20141117_215213

 

We are thinking to have it in front of the window like the one on the left but have it as a rack, like the one on the right. The neat idea would be to have translucent, colored glass dishes so when the sun shines in, it would look like a stained glass window! I’m completely in LOVE with this idea. What reality is, I don’t know.

 

20-creative-ideas-to-organize-dishes-storage-on-your-kitchen10

dish-drying-closet-design

*We are also working on buying only what we need at the grocery store in order to get used to smaller cabinet and fridge space. The cabinets are improving but not quite where we want to be yet, as seen in, Organization, the same with the fridge. I keep adding empty boxes to the fridge to reduce the space, but we still seem to fit a bunch in there!

wpid-20141022_172517.jpg

Let me know what you think about our progress and ideas! I would love to hear from you!

Thanks for reading, please be sure to share, comment and start a conversation.

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

20141005_134239

20141020_100019

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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.

din420141003_194104

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

20141020_09311020141020_093201

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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.

20141020_09324920141020_093216

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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

fridge 220141020_112939

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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!