Tiny House Chat is your new favorite thing, trust me. If for some obscene reason you haven’t joined in yet, you will, and you will love it. It’s the perfect round table for the tiny community and I’m so excited to have been a part of it this week. The bandwidth of my memory matches my computers, which as we learned during Monday night’s chit-chat, is s-l-o-w. But, I will do my best to recap for you what topics we covered two whole nights ago, and my answers for those of you who missed it.
As I just mentioned, a big fat tiny sorry to everyone participating for me hogging up a good chunk of chat time in the beginning with my slow connection and technology fails. It had me a little frazzled in the start. Next time I’ll just make it easier and mime for everyone. I’m actually not half bad, I practice in the mirror.
In case you haven’t met him, my fellow Wisconsinite Petey from Fat&Crunchy was the other guest host of the night. I would relay his answers here too, but my brain is vain (and evidently a poet!) and only retains my own. Fend for yourself, Petey boy! Below is in no way word-for-word, just the best I can piece together.
My introduction to tiny houses:
What was my first introduction to tiny houses: Honestly, I can’t clearly remember at this time. I do remember see the Tiny House Family on Anderson Cooper a while back and thinking “Ah ha! Kids CAN live in tiny houses too!”. I was sold. Before that though I was very much into travel trailers and truck campers like I have mentioned around here before.
How kids effect building:
We chatted a bit about obstacles with building with kids. Time has been and will continue to be my arch nemesis. Since I have Rowe 24/7, my windows for build time are very minimal. The shop is extremely messy with no place to stash her while I try and work, and since she finally just started walking this week, she’s not old enough to exactly run around playing outside while I’m busy. Her nap time is pretty much my only shot, but since the workshop is too far back on the property for any baby monitor to reach, I have to go back and forth every 20 minutes to check if she is awake…let’s just say very little gets done! I don’t work at night because of this same reason..I’ve watched too many episodes of Criminal Minds to leave my baby in a house when it’s pitch black out for any country creeper to pray on.
I’ve said it a few times here, but this build will be slow. Slower than I ever imagined it before I actually started it. Word on the street is, that’s how things tend to go with construction anyways.
Dating with a tiny house:
Haha, huh? Dating? As I answered, I wouldn’t even know how. At least it is not currently on my agenda, between little person and little house building, my schedule is full and energy tank zapped. Who knows what the future could bring. I did joke about how my family (hey, Mom) tried to tell me I did not need a king or queen size bed that I was planning for, and urged me towards a twin size. Safe to assume that would be her way of suggesting she is happy with one grand-baby for now
Tiny houses with teenagers:
Planning my tiny house around a baby/toddler was a big part of my design, so how our house could adapt to a teen is a great question. I have no idea how long we will live in this house. It could be 2 years, it could be 20. I know I keep teasing about how my design has changed a bunch without sharing the new layout, but the way I have things set up should hopefully accommodate to my growing girl no matter her age. Her “nook” is now larger, big enough for her crib mattress plus a play area. As she grows into a twin bed, that mattress will fit in her nook/room, but will leave much less extra space. However, there is a loft above her room that I plan to use as an office and storage, but as she grows later on that could become her space and I will relocate my office space. It’s a plan without a real plan really.
Tiny house-rs such as Tiny R(e)volution, and I believe Petey mentioned too, that a great idea is to turn your tiny house into a pod concept, where you can add on additions as your needs grow.
Play area for kids:
I touched on this above. The reason my plans changed to give Rowe more space and a designated play area happened a few weeks back. She was sick on and off for quite a while and we were literally trapped in the house for weeks. It made me think “Okay, if this was the tiny house, where would I be keeping her busy?” (because apparently even my sick baby is an active one). I realized she needed more than just her bed nook, so alas, a new design was born. I want her to love the outdoors and adventure, but everyone needs a place for some downtime and a space to call their own, so I wanted her to have that.
Finding space for yourself:
Personal space in a tiny house, could it happen? If it’s more than just you in there, I think it has to. Luckily since it is just Rowe and I, she is smaller so I can lock her in the bathroom with a sandwich and get some peace. [ ] I actually count on my little office area above Rowe’s room to be my sweet spot. Rowe’s room is only about 5 feet high, which gives me decent head room above in the office/storage loft. I plan to keep a stash of wine up there, too.
Bow-chicka-wow-wow. Yeah, we went there. C’mon, you know you wonder. I have no advice to give here because A. I do not yet reside in my tiny home B. I never leave my current home, at least not to hang out with anyone over the age of two. As Macy says, where there is a will, there is a way! I believe someone quoted Jay Shafer saying in regards to the small love shacking space “…it happens more often”.
I just lost all my male readers. They ran to Home Depot to start building their tiny houses.
Noise barriers in tiny homes:
I believe this topic played off of the boom-boom time topic from above, but it’s a good idea to think about if the house is home to more than yourself. I do plan to do some sound proofing inside Rowe’s room. Since our house is only 18 feet long, there is really no way to put her area away from the rest of the action in the house. I don’t want to have to tip toe or turn down my Ace of Base CD (you know you miss them) to keep from waking her.
Tiny house issues- people thinking its abuse/reporting to services:
Someone mentioned this in the chat room, and it’s a great, while scary, thought. Basically asking had we given any thought or have any concern over whether raising children in a tiny home could present issues with child services. Could neighbors interpret our lifestyle the wrong way and make reports? Personally, I don’t think it should be an issue, and if it is, well, that says something about our country. I’d like to dedicate a whole post eventually to raising kids in small spaces and the controversy that apparently lies behind it. Eventually.
We also got a bit off the “family” topic in the end(that’s why this platform is awesome!) and chatted about: Insulation in different climates. Vapor barriers (can I use tar paper?). Fans for the bath and kitchen. And who knows what else.
Let me say I’m willing to share (mostly) all. Questions? Keep ‘em coming.
The lingering question? I know that one of the questions sparked in the Tiny House Chat Facebook event page was something along the lines of; if this tiny home was a solo dream of mine, or if there may have been a man involved who was part of wanting to raise a family in a tiny home?
Ha, you guys don’t dance around the delicate topics, I like it! For the sake of not caring to open the gates to many more questions, and likely some predictable assumptions, I’ll gently clear up any lingering thoughts you might have around that question; This tiny wee dream of mine was built just for the two of us, as I am raising miss thang 100% physically and financially on my own. This wasn’t exactly touched upon during the chat, but I’m happy to clarify a lot of personal details like this because I think tiny homes are personal. Many of our stories have purpose behind them, and this is mine.
No beatin’ around the bush here
Our Tiny House Chat sesh actually went on for over a half hour past the scheduled time, and I think I speak for everyone when I say we totally could have kept going. Good, wholesome (ehh…almost), tiny fun.
I apologize to anyone in the chat who asked questions or made comments that I didn’t get a chance to respond to. Trying to stay in tune with the chat while monitoring the people typing in, and me trying to type with one hand (the other holding the phone) just wasn’t quite working…my multi tasking needs improving.
All my no-clue-what-I’m doing jokes aside (which is not totally false), I’ve put my heart and soul into this tiny home, and will continue to do so until it stands. Thanks so much to each and every one of you for encouraging me to do so. Xo And for coming to chat with us, it was a blast!