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  • Writer's picturehawaiichocolate

First Week Living Tiny

I’ve been in my tiny house almost a week now and it’s been interesting. I am slowly putting things away and finding the best placement for furniture, and artwork. There’s been a lot of assembly- an Ikea Kallax storage unit for my closet with 4 drawers that acts as a dresser, an inexpensive metal daybed, a bamboo shelving unit for my plant collection , towel racks etc. It’s pathetic but my hands ache from using a screwdriver/allen wrench and peeling plastic off appliances.

I ordered a sofa from a company that makes them in Austin. It’s a sleeper sofa so I can have guests and it was a generous gift from a friend. She insisted I get one with a good sleeping mattress, so I did. You’ll thank me when you visit. Size was important so I was able to get a full size sleeper that doesn’t just overtake the room. The delivery is 8-10 weeks , so in the meantime the daybed with a twin mattress from Ikea serves as a sofa (or bed) and will later move to the porch when the real one arrives.

A tiny house is super quick to clean, about 20 minutes to vacuum and mop , and wipe down, but also due to its small size you will have to do it more frequently. We have crushed granite outside and it finds its way inside despite door mats in and outside. I don’t like a lot of clutter and I see some people fill their small spaces with a lot of stuff, but I’ve edited carefully what I keep inside and the rest is behind closet doors or if infrequently used, in my storage unit to keep the space uncluttered and airy.

My dog bed was another concern. Its large to fit all 75 lbs. of Lillie. But I found a great solution. In the daytime, I slide it under the daybed, at night I pull it out. During the day she typically sleeps on the porch and if its warm, she wants to be on the deck or floor, not in a bed. So it works out and there’s another dog bed on the porch if she wants it.

The adjustment for her has been difficult. For the last year, she’s had free roam of 23 acres. In a community with neighbors you don’t want your dog crapping on their lawn or causing their dogs to bark. So its been leashed up walking. The walking is great for me, but I don’t walk fast as I have some undefined mobility issue. Yesterday she was truly unhappy.

We went for a small ride in the truck and she refused to come out of it. I left the door open and after an hour made her come out of the truck.

Across from my house is about a ten acre field, filled with grass and about 10 different wildflowers in a riot of colors. After a week of walking the perimeters on a leash, I cut her loose. She ran and ran with exuberant joy, and rolled in the grass. She loosely followed me as I walked the path cut thru the grass. She spooked a neighbors goat and sheep in an adjoining pasture but didn’t get crazy, and came when I called her. We are both a lot happier now.

This week I will collect more of my tubs and boxes from the barn they are stored in. Pots and pans and kitchen items comprise a lot of it. I haven’t used my cooktop yet. I need to go fill propane tanks and then the property owners will hook all that up. I’ve been using my toaster oven this week instead, making tacos, baking cinnamon rolls and warming a rotisserie chicken.

I bought a tabletop Cuisinart Chefs Toaster oven and am very pleased with it. It came with baking pans and a pizza stone. It fits a quarter sheet pan or 13x9 pan or glass pan with ease. No need to heat up a giant oven when I can cook everything I need either on the propane cooktop or in this oven.

I will say it’s nice to be living in a community where I know all my neighbors. Each one has an interesting story about why they went tiny. The current demographic is 4 couples and 5 single women, with another couple coming in May. So far everyone is respectful and helpful. There is happy hour on someone’s deck each week and people that go for walks in the Am, share garden plants, or play games. You can be as social (or not) as you please. I never envisioned this lifestyle for myself, always living on some acreage , but at this stage of life its suiting me fine and its nice to be free of the burden of a big mortgage, lots of maintenance, and high utility bills. And when I leave, there’s built in neighborhood watch.

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