Today is April 11 which means that it has officially been two years since we moved our tiny house onto the farm!! We made it! Two years was always our minimum goal to reach and we are so happy to celebrate this milestone today.
We don't quite know what our near future will look like. We haven't put up an ad yet to sell Lil Blue, mostly because we're not sure what our next living situation is going to be. We are entering the happiest and easiest months of tiny living (spring and summer!) and though Jordan is itching to get-a-move on moving, I'm more than happy to slow things down and stay in Lil Blue a while longer. We go back and forth on whether we should go back to renting a space or buying a house. Home ownership is our strong desire, especially mine--I want to get my hands on a space of my own and design and decorate it! I need some new projects and am eager to put my creativity and skills that I'm learning in school to some practice. Does anyone else out there lie awake for nights on end with their minds coming alive with visions of fun and beautiful spaces, projects, and ideas? Sometimes it makes me feel like a crazy person but I love it so much that I can ignore the fatigue that follows. I swear I haven't slept in months and instead I just keep dreaming about each house we look at and what I would do to it. If anyone out there (locally) has a project they need help on, let me know! I need a fix! In a tiny space I rarely have the opportunity to execute these ideas and I need an outlet!
So, even though we want to buy a house, it is a scary process! How do people make these HUGE decisions? Home ownership scares me, mostly for the cost of upkeep and maintenance and also because of my ignorance for not only the whole buying process but for all that comes after! It's scary and the thought of it almost turns me off of the whole idea altogether. Until, that is, I remember all that I can do to a space that I can't do in a rental....
Anyway, back to our anniversary! I don't think I've ever fully shared our Tiny House journey story on this blog before. For those of you who don't know or who are interested, our thoughts turned tiny about four years ago. We were living (miserably) in Madison, WI. We'd been out there for two years, the first two years of our marriage. I was chatting with a dear friend of mine (hi Matt!) on the phone, and he introduced me to the Tiny House Movement. I was instantly intrigued and started researching (like I do with anything that strikes my fancy). My research turned into obsession. I read every book I could find at the library (which was probably 1...maybe 2) and followed every blog that had anything to do with the topic. The Tiny House Movement had already been a thing for many years at this point, though it wasn't nearly as popular or as well-known as it is now. At that point, no one in my circle of friends and family had ever heard of it or thought it was a good-sounding idea. This was before the TV shows on HGTV and the DIY network.
But I was in love. I loved the tiny idea for so many reasons! No rent or mortgage, affordable housing, something beautiful that I can create instead of boring old apartments all the time! I loved the freedom it offered. This was at a time in our lives when we had been moving a lot and were not sure what was next for us. The idea of having something on wheels was appealing because we could pick up and go wherever we needed without leaving our home. It sounded ideal to be able to afford beautiful materials (hello our marble counter top!) because only a small amount is needed and could be bought second hand or even free from the scraps of a larger home build. The environmental impact was not lost on us either. The idea that we could have less impact, live sustainably, and even live off the grid was more than appealing.
Cut to a year or so later of me harping on Jordan--showing him every new piece of information and picture I found, using every tactic I could think of to convince him that this was a good idea, begging him to get on board already and let's try this thing! Now we were living in an apartment in Iowa. We learned from Jordan's brother that Habitat for Humanity's Restore was planning on building a tiny house for the Des Moines Home and Garden Show in 2015. At this point, we planned on building our own tiny house in the spring of 2015 and quickly volunteered to help build it so we could get experience. As it turned out, we probably would have killed each other and/or given up had we tried to build our own house. Volunteering was hard. There's no way we could have finished our own! As luck would have it, the Restore was looking for someone to buy this house after the show was over.
We jumped on that as soon as we heard. We were so excited that this opportunity, this dream, had practically fallen into our laps! The house was finished and staged for the home show and two months later, we were able to tow it to the farm we've been living on these past two years. I quit my job at that time (because I didn't like it anyway and now we weren't paying rent!) to finish painting, building, and designing the interior of the house. It was finally finished and ready for living at the beginning of May (except we still didn't have gas hookup and needed to cook all of our meals and shower at my in-laws....so...we slept there and hung out. It was a cool playhouse for the first month or so. ;) )
And now, here we are. We've learned a lot and are able to look back now at what parts of the tiny house dream are actually true (like being happy with a lot less) and what are not (like cleaning a tiny house takes no time at all). It's been a blast and the best adventure I could have asked for with my best friend at my side.
Happy two years to us! Time to go celebrate!