We finally have what I would consider a Tiny staple. A bed that hides away. We decided to do a Murphy's bed kit, and honestly it took me about 6 months to finally finish it. Somehow the awesome curtains in the background came first. I took a few days off, and had to decline a paintball party at a friends house, but with focus I got it done. It is made out of maple and was to heavy for the wife and I to carry it into the house from the backyard where I did most of the assembly. So we put down some towels and slid it in to the house. The DIY kit that we used has strong enough pistons though that even our 9 year old daughter can put it up. The House feels huge without a mattress in the living room.
The last couple of weekends we have looked at the possibility of either using a trailer or RV as a foundation for a Tiny house. This could be part of a temporary plan to hold us over until we build a full fledged Tiny House, or it could turn out to be the end goal. Since we have never owned an RV or trailer before we decided to take a look and start to educate ourselves. We have some friends who restore and rebuild travel trailers as a hobby. Their take on the subject is that it is much better than building a standard Tiny house on a heavy duty trailer because a travel trailer is more portable and therefore offers more practical use. Also that it is much cheaper than what people are paying for 13 foot tall Tiny houses. The one obvious thing that a Tiny house has going for it, is that it looks like a house, and doesn't have the stigma of "White Trash".
So we went and looked at our closest trailer dealership, and learned quite a bit. First thing was that they can be much more affordable even for a brand new one then we thought. We saw that for the most part that these things were not designed to be lived in full time. This was evident that most of them lacked a general living area, that resembled a family room. Some had a couch, but they were dominated by a kitchen and dining area. This makes total sense if you are going camping and plan on being on the lake paddling your kayak, but not very good for a rainy day, reading a book or watching TV. We both agreed that the models with a separate bedroom was a giant waste of space. Very happy to learn that we don't need to buy a big rig to tow one of these things around.
In the end the idea of taking an old trailer and taking it apart and making it more of a living space, using some of the Tiny House multi-use ideas and concepts may end up being part of the plan.
As part of this blog I am going to work at getting caught up on the projects that we have already completed. When we closed on the house and got the keys in May, we decided to wait a few weeks to move in so that we could get some stuff done in the kids room. Mama and Papa can handle living in a construction zone, but we didn't feel it was a good idea to have the kids start out that way. In each of the kids rooms we removed all of the existing sheetrock, and changed the electrical around in the rooms. I am a big fan of having all of the circuits in a house limited to one room per circuit. A room can have more than one circuit, but 2 rooms shouldn't share a circuit. Another big thing we liked, is to have multiple can lights, and a ceiling fan in each of the bedrooms. We used daylight colored LED bulbs in the canned lights, and it makes a huge difference. We did add something that is a bit fun for the kids. We put in a secret passage between their closets. We took the connecting wall and removed the lower half. I wish I had one when I was a kid!
Six months ago we began a new chapter in our life. We decided to buy a house. We previously owned a couple of houses and had been renting since losing our houses during the economic challenges of 2008. I was very comfortable with continuing to rent for a while since it gave us the freedom to move easily if we wanted to. My Wife Tina wanted the freedom that came with owning a house. Mainly that she could make it ours. Over the last few years we have watched the tiny house movement from the sidelines and loved the idea of having more experiences than possessions, and more importantly, passing that lesson on to our children.
For the last 10 years or more, we have planned to have my Mom, "Moe", move in with us when she retires. That date is now less than 100 days away. After several conversations we have decided that we will build a Tiny House on wheels for her! I will continue to update this blog with information about our journey, and all the ups and downs.