our tiny home

****read about our NO PLUMBING LIFESTYLE HERE****

CHECK OUT MY NEW WEBSITE: http://www.tinyhouseandland.com/

now that most of everything is done i encourage everyone to take a trip out to see us and our small little mountain town that we live in. 6.5 hours from dallas is a short trip and the pressure to entertain has me creating a list on where we could take people around here…lots of lakes, rives, hiking trails, adventures through the town (lots of magical garden stone stairways leading to god knows where) and a ton of tourist shit that does look interesting. come stay on our couch and shit in our bucket, stay in a cabin on our dirt road (they have jacuzzis) or a cheap motel in town 6 miles away for $40/2beds per night. you know me, i’ll make feasts for dinner and ask you a million questions about your life. so that’s my sales pitch, see you soon.

stone stair, one of many

everything takes longer that i thought. even if we had all of the money when we started, which we didn’t, things just take a while. our first month here we lived in a very hot car, bought ice everyday for our cooler and showered in town at motels once every 5 or 6 days. 2 or 3 blog post back, you can read all about how we lived in a car. mark put together the first thing on our list. MAILBOX, $60

while sleeping in the car, working a million hours a week we saved up for the 2nd thing on our list. EXCAVATION, $300

with the excavation done we had a place on our land to park our car and a flat space to put 2 buildings. we bought marks workspace first because it is smaller and cheaper and we needed to get out of the car. MARKS WOODWORKING SHED, $1,300

we decided that we’d give mark til the spring-ish to working for himself. i make enough money at my job to take care of our present needs (food, gas, etc) as well as save for our land goals. i’ve got a good job but most of the jobs out here are shitty. with one car and living outside of town the stress of juggling the transportation issue is not worth it. in dallas i had a few months when i was being too cheap to shell out $4 a day to take the bus so i’d wait 30 mintues-2 hours for mark to pick me up. i was suprised how easily that brought me down into a depression. i was so suprised that taking the bus made me feel so much better, like my life wasn’t on hold or dependent on someone else. i mean, a lot of times i wouldn’t get home any faster because the bus would take 4 times longer (at least) than if i just waited for a ride. so with that behind me, the idea of waiting around in town, for mark to get off some lame job paying him $7 an hour….no no no. he wants to build guitars, we live in a tourist town in a musical region, we don’t have rent to pay. what better time and place to follow his passion. he can spend 30 hours a week on building shit he cares about and 10 hours a week coming up with different tourist shit that he could sell in town or online. he’s got until spring-ish to work all of this out. we have financial markers, if he can meet those goals than all is well, if he can meet some of those goals he might need to get a part time jig and if this all flops than wood working will become a hobby and he’ll get a job. i believe in him, his wood working is outstanding and i believe he needs to be given a chance. with that said, we were living in his work space so his money making projects were be pushed back so he’s currently in charge of the construction issues. someone’s got to be here when the excavator or electrition comes out. he’s also doing all the manual labor which is a full time job in and of itself.

across from our home in the fog

before the electrition could come out we needed the ELECTRICITY TURNED ON, $285. after a month and a half of living off other peoples electricity (through buying bags of ice or charging our laptop/phone at mcdonalds) i could understand why people living without electricity say that one needs to ween themself off. until i have a set up that doesn’t require electricity then it’s tough going without. weening myself off would simply be creating alternatives to heating & cooling (super insulated house) and alternatives to fridge & freezer (having a fully functioning piece of land with plants, animals and orchards). cold turkey just isn’t going to work. i’m not thrilled about “the grid” but i’m releived to be on it. i am aware of mountain top removal and know that we’re all between a rock and a hard place. “weening” is the word of the day. as you know, i’m against the usage of the words “green”, “alternative” & “renewable” in the same sentence as “solar panel” & “wind power”….it’s still ALL mountain top removal and oil based production. let’s not be confused. so maybe if our land didn’t already have the grid on it maybe i’d go wind or solar. the bigger picture is to ween off. BACK ON TRACK…the ELECTRIC WIRING & METER LOOP, $500.

after 2 weeks of sleeping in the hot, hot shed, doors closed and one window with no air to circulate, we now have power. A/C UNIT, $150 we also got an LED ROPE LIGHT, 2 CHEST FREEZERS, FAN, $400

2 chest freezers took a few weeks to get delivered from the city to our shed, so we continued using the cooler…some times calling it “the fridge” by mistake. i watched this video about converting a chest freezer into a fridge for $12/year in electric cost. FREEZER CONVERTER, $15. we looked into all the ways we could use less energy. it turns out that if set your A/C to 80 degrees and use a floor fan…or no A/C and only a fan that you’d be doing yourself a finanical favor.

turns chest freezer into fridge

yes please! and bought a SINGLE BURNER ELECTRIC STOVE TOP that we can unplug when not using, $70.

8 WINDOWS(craigslist), $25 ~STACKABLE CLOTHES BINS (strong off gas smell),$30 ~WOOL RUG large, $150 ~WALLPAPER, $170 ~PAINT (zero VOCs), $140

i’ve been called extreme for avoiding stryofoam but things like BPA, pthylates (& other plasticizers) and VOCs in the blood have been linked to infertility. every time i come at the crossroads of buying grass fed beef or a cup of coffee in stryofoam, once in a while doesn’t seem like a big deal but I HAVE TO remind myself EACH TIME, what if this is what’s coming between me and never having a baby….really. shit is sad. if avoiding stryofoam is extreme then what does it say about what’s at stake. my odds for getting pregnant so far are not looking good. i don’t want to be living in a home that is off gassing 24/7. we couldn’t find any VOC-free wallpaper glue so we made CORN PASTE, $3 our KITCHEN COUNTER TOP, FREE (used, thanks sue!) a KITCHEN VENT is $70

then we had our money together to buy our TINY HOUSE, $3,224

the company builds these building in all shapes and sizes. they can custom build to your liking and drop them off ready to go. we gave them 5 of our craigs list windows so that we wouldn’t have to buy their tiny windows at $75 each. no good. we could have had them add on a loft for $100 but it was too high up for me. so once it was delivered mark could start his full time manual labor. first he build us a LOFT BED, $104 then a STAIRCASE W/ DRAWERS, $50 then our TINY HOUSE GOT ELECTRIC, $287. as soon as we had some more money collected mark did the INSULATION & DRYWALL, $300

we bought a fancy couch off craigs list that was in really good shape and didn’t smell like shit….like so many other funky couches did. the house that we picked up the couch from was a epic, designed by the owner. the house was a one of a kind. COUCH, $150

UHAUL our stuff from dallas, $500 ~STORAGE while manual labor was taking place, $66

so you add up all the things needed to pull this off. $8,000 for the land + $8,245 for shit mentioned above = $16,245
****read about our NO PLUMBING LIFESTYLE HERE****

anarchist kitchen tiny house and land

our tiny house pictures & info: TinyHouseAndLand.com

now let’s play with the numbers. let’s say you wanted out of the city because living in the woods is SOOOOO SOOOO nice, safe, totally opposite of overstimulating and my guard is never sky-high like it was in the city. i feel much more relaxed. if you didn’t have to buy the land and only  wanted the lifestyle….to own a tiny house would cost you $4500 (more or less)…which would be the same cost as paying $375 per month for one year then NEVER PAYING RENT/MORAGE EVER AGAIN.

we stuck it out for 3 months and now we’re homeowners. starting with nothing, we made it happen.

living in the woods is so much better than i imagined. peeing outside as a standard is good. before i knew it was good, waiting to “go” in a toilet wasn’t an inconvenience, town is super close by. i do not get lonely because i work a bunch and am always around people. having close friends at hand is the same challenge that i felt in dallas…as strange as that sounds, that gap doesn’t feel further apart. i’m always looking forward to getting letters in the mail and want more penpals.

the farmers market is legit. small but so far everyone i’ve meet is organic! and they don’t even know how special that is to me!!! it’s year round, right in town, twice a week, there is live music (mark wants to get in on that). they have a booth that’s just for socializing, it’s like they encourage loitering. wow. organic heirloom tomatoes $1.50/lb….holla!

the library is straight out of my dreams. on the list of things that i wanted out of buying land, i really wanted to be near a library that was like the one from my childhood. in upstate ny we had a little library that was an old stone building and now i’ve got it again. this ones even cooler. being a small town i figured that the book selection wouldn’t be up to par with my high horse standards and that i’d have to inner library loan everything. this is a total artist town and i’ve already read a good feminist book and now onto a composting toilet book. we’ve watched a bunch of wicked documentaries. so far so good.

the health food store in town in locally owned but more expensive than whole foods (yep) but it’s cozy and not a clusterfuck. we like to drive to the city once a week to go to the food co-op because it’s cheaper. they sell ungraded eggs and duck eggs and local/organic produce and tons of pastured animal foods. and no one looks like they just left their yoga class.

now we only shower once a week in the city (no motels) at the TRUCK STOP SHOWER, $10. PS: i love bathing at the truck stop but soon we’ll start bathing in our tiny house. once that’s figured out i will share the info.

our local beef meat share is truly local. they will meet us at the co-op with a 24 hour heads up and we plan to get a quarter cow for $3/lb with 150lbs of steak, ground beef and bone goodness.

with all that good shit out of the way i will say a few things coming from a different angle.

currently we’re thinking that we very well might not be on this piece of land forever. we’re planning to save for another 18 months or so and go check out land elsewhere. we’re thinking about oregon but right now it’s only a thought. i love our land but right now it’s only a home, not a homestead. the ozarks are beautiful and affordable but it’s all trees and rocks. the rocks are a challenge when i think about building up a homestead, more than a novel garden.  with our piece of land i really really do not want to cut a bunch a trees down. we bought this piece of land because we love it, but we love it for what it is. i wish we had a piece of land that we’d love for what it will become. another thing about the ozarks and our piece of land in particular, even though we have 4.7 acres, only HALF of that is really usable. so i’d rather have a larger piece of land. this area is all slopes, to make slopes usable is costly and challenging.  i’m already a bit connected to this area because it’s a small town but full of herbs and organics and artist/gays/bikers (all the mainstream rejects). the shops don’t even have hours on their doors, people do what they please. but if i could be this close to a lively little town with land more suited to what we’re looking for (larger, affordable, no crazy slopes or rocks, cooler summers) then we’d walk away from this with nothing lost. our buildings can be moved. our land can be sold. everyone wants to move here. we paid $8,000 for 4.7 acres. there’s 2 acres (of more useable land) directly across from our plot for sale for $30,000. i’m confident we could make a profit if we sold this. because we’re not super attached to how this land is being used because we don’t have our larger vision here, if any of our homies wanted to come on to our land and use it, it’s free to use and there’s a million shitty joe jobs in town that are 8 months out of the year, many even paying unemployment through the winter…or a 45 minute drive (no traffic through the country) to the city for better job selections. PS: if you’re a hippy, you can sell your hippy shit in town, they’ll love it.

lastly, i really need to be around good spring water, hot springs sucks. i miss canton. canton, i love you! there are good springs in oregon. god speed.

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summer kids, dumpster, woods 077 copy

 

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