Living Tiny

May 21, 2018

This is the post EVERYTHING has been leading up to:

What is it like living in our tiny house?

I waited to write this post for a little while so I could gauge things accurately and not make any hasty judgements on what tiny living was like. After any move, things are a little hectic and crazy while trying to unpack, organize, settle into a new routine, and figure your way around in a new town. Now that we are in our routine and settled, let me tell you all about our tiny living life in Asheville, North Carolina!

We ended up in Asheville after Eric accepted a job here to be a landscape supervisor. We left Missouri January, 30, spent the night with my family in Kentucky, and then made our way to North Carolina. Eric and I and Denali drove in the Jeep, while a professional moved the tiny house for us the following day. Before we left, Eric posted on Craigslist that we were looking for a place to park our tiny house while we searched for some land of our own. We got several responses from people willing to let us stay, and after working out the details we headed to our new tiny house spot. This is where things got a little interesting….

We showed up to the property where we were supposed to park the tiny house, and I kid you not, both of our jaws dropped to the ground. I honestly just stared at Eric in…amazement? Horror? I’m not sure what I was feeling because I think I went numb. Now, I don’t want to be too negative, because these people did offer to let us park on their land for a low price, but it is not an exaggeration when I say I thought we had pulled up to the local dump instead of someone’s house. Literally mounds of trash and garbage surrounded their house, along with a good sized pig pen, and broken down cars and a school bus (yes, school bus). When we talked with the owner of the property to arrange everything beforehand she explained that they lived on a farm with pigs, horses, and a bunch of dogs, but also said they had 18 acres so there was plenty of space for us. What she forgot to mention was that their house and all the animals, plus where we were supposed to park, was all on 1/4 an acre because the rest of the 17 and 3/4 acres were wooded hills. Major facepalm emoji here.

After looking at the place we were supposed to park, we knew it wasn’t going to work out. The “parking spot” was on soft ground that was very sloped, and there was no way we could get our house leveled or secure in that area. Plus, mounds of trash….mountains of trash. I do want to clarify, I don’t think these people intentionally lied to us. I honestly think they thought they were helping us out. We just have realllllly different standards of how close trash and pigs should be kept near the house.

Once we realized we couldn’t park at the original location, we were really under the gun to figure something new out. The house was arriving the next morning and it was already 6pm so RV park offices were closing for the night fast. We drove to a Best Buy, pulled out my computer, googled every RV and campsite we could, and started making calls. Thankfully, we got in touch with Dan! Dan the man to the rescue. He’s an older gentleman who owns an RV park and he had an open spot for us. Sometimes I’m amazed at how things work out for the best, because this couldn’t have been better!!! We are high up on Mount Pisgah, right on the edge of Pisgah National Forest. The famous Blue Ridge Parkway is only about 2 miles down the road from us. The RV park has 6 spots, backs up directly onto a beautiful creek with lots of trails to hike near by. Also, the road we live off of leads directly (literally zero turns) to Eric’s work! Going with the flow paid off. That’s right. We’re cool as a cucumbers, people.

Now, as for living in the tiny house….it has been such an easy transition! I honestly can’t remember what I was so nervous about moving into this house. It’s been so easy. Of course, there have been adjustments, the biggest one being having a dog without a yard of our own. Without our own yard, we always have to go out with Denali. Thankfully she obeys us enough that she can run around in the field next to our RV park without her leash on for play time, but we still always have to at least be out there with her. And that includes in torrential rain, which is always a delight. Unfortunately, dogs still have to go to the bathroom even when it’s pouring outside. They should really breed that out of them. It’s also fun trying to dry her off as quickly as possible before she shakes off in the house, because the spray can reach all four walls.

Another adjustment has been cooking in the tiny house. We have a convection microwave to cook with instead of an oven. It’s actually pretty impressive as it bakes, grills, roasts, and who even knows what else. As someone who doesn’t love to cook anyway, I was a little intimidated at using it, but we’ve managed just fine. The hardest part is finding small enough dishes to fit baked meals in, as most are really big for normal sized ovens. We do use our induction cook tops quite a bit, and those things are awesome! I can boil water (a specialty of mine) in like, 15 seconds!

Honestly, the only other thing I can think of that’s been an adjustment is learning to move around another person in such close quarters. It’s easy to get in each other’s way, but we’ve done a pretty good job of navigating around one another. OH! I forgot. The bathroom experience has been surprisingly not horrifying like I thought it would be. I won’t go into details on that, but our composting toilet is basically like using a regular loo. And, for the record, it does NOT smell.

We ended up having plenty of storage space, to the point that we haven’t even bothered organizing some stuff as strictly as we were planning on because 1) we’re lazy, and 2) we didn’t need to so, come on, why bother. It’s also been interesting to realize that we still have so. much. stuff. that we don’t need or care about nearly as much as we thought we would. We have lots of stuff in our storage couch that we haven’t touched one single time since it’s been put in there.

Mostly life in Asheville has been pretty normal. The views and scenery here are by far more interesting than our house, although I’m constantly impressed with how great Eric did in building this for us. This house is great. I really do love it, and living here has been so pleasant. Our original plan when we moved here was to buy some property to put the tiny house on, but the real estate market in Asheville is InSaNe! Apparently, this place has grown a crazy amount in the last 2-3 years, so now the market is almost impossible to work with. So, we’re figuring out our future slowly but surely. We’ve always managed to roll with whatever comes our way!

Below are a bunch of pictures showing the inside of the house, how we’ve organized some of our everyday items, plus a lot of the scenery around us. Enjoy!

Getting the house ready to be moved!

Nephew Levy saying goodbye and also probably trying to figure out how to stow away. We’d take him!

Everything is packed!

Hello, NC!

Almost there!

Dominic delivered the house and it was in 1 piece, thank goodness!

Eric getting the house leveled and ready.

All moved into our beautiful spot!

The creek behind our house.

Our living room. The suitcases on the top shelf hold our out of season clothes.

Our kitchen area. We still needed to hang up some shelves next to the window to keep our counters cleaned off a bit more.

Stairs and storage

Pantry area. This is a bit of a catch-all area right now. We will get around to organizing this a bit more…at some point. Also, most of our towels are in the clean clothes still sitting in the laundry basket.

Our composting toilet! It hides away in that little nook, and we just slide it out when it’s needed.

This is our food pantry. We were SHOCKED at how much food can fit into this drawer. It holds all of our dry/non-refridgerated foods. Also, don’t judge us on the junk food in there.

This drawer is where we keep our 2 induction cooktops.

Our spice rack. Also, you’ll see we use half of the table to eat on pretty regularly for quick meals.

Making tacos!

The next few are of Denali being…Denali.

Denali making herself at home. Heart eyes.

Seriously.

Ok, what.

So comfy, I guess.

Denali knows what all the neighbors are up to.

Still spying.

Hanging out in our “yard”

Waiting for Eric to come home from work.

Greeting Eric when he comes home from work. Ah! So cute.

Trying to not come back inside. I can see you!

Still trying to not come inside… We made a small 4×8 deck to have a bit of extra outside space.

The next few pictures are of the amazing scenery around here!

There are creeks surrounding us every where you walk! You can hear them any time you’re outside.

Foggy, misty, smokey

Bright and beautiful!

Snow on the mountain. Of course, I had just switched out my winter for summer clothes.

On the drive back to our house from town.

Such a cool scene! Thick, thick fog covering the mountains.

This horse stable and field are across from us in the RV park.

This is Dan’s yard, and usually the mountain would go up another inch or two in the picture, but all the clouds completely covered it up.

I think this is THE definition of a “hair-pin turn.” This is on the way to the Blue Ridge Parkway.

Hiking at Buck Springs Gap off the Blue Ridge Parkway, only a few miles from us!

Seriously, so many creeks. After a heavy rainfall, it sounds like a thunderous applause every where you walk on the mountain. It’s very cool…and loud.

Buck Springs Gap

One of the trails we regularly hike on that is very close to our house.

Not a bad way to show how we feel about the Asheville outdoors!

Thanks for reading this last post! I have enjoyed this journey so much. Of course, there were times of major frustration, but Eric and I learned so much about each other, ourselves, and obviously, construction. I wouldn’t trade this experience for anything. Eric and I vowed at our wedding to keep life interesting for one another, and I think this definitely fits the bill.

Also, I just wanted to take the time to encourage everyone to step out of your comfort zone every now and then. You don’t have to go full crazy and move into a tiny house, but so much of our experience has been learning new things and pushing ourselves. Is our house perfect with no flaws? Of course not. Did we even know for sure we would like this new lifestyle? We were just guessing and thought it’d be fun to try. Do people think we’re crazy? Absolutely, although it might have less to do with tiny living than I care to admit. The point is don’t let the fear of failing or messing up or changing your mind or something not being perfect stop you from trying a new adventure, big or small. We have messed up, we’ve had doubts, we have totally busted on some of our attempts, and plenty of our projects were real humdingers. Every step of this house was a new experience, a new way to fail, or a new way to succeed. Those mistakes made us better in the end, and the flaws add character to us and the projects we worked on. Our successes gave us confidence to keep going and to take even more risks. If there is one thing I hope people can take away from following our transition into a tiny home, it’s that no idea is too crazy to try and even one small step into the unknown or the uncomfortable can make a world of difference in your life. I encourage everyone to take that step!

Again, thanks for reading. I think in the very first post I said you might be reading along as we lose our minds going tiny. If we have, don’t tell me, because so far it’s been great!

 

 

 

 

3 Comments

  • Reply Jenny May 21, 2018 at 1:53 PM

    SO so happy for you guys!! Must feel amazing to have it built and be gone on your own. Wow. So cool!!!! Be careful and I hope you get some land soon for sweet baby to live on too!!!

  • Reply Robin hoch May 21, 2018 at 5:50 PM

    What a journey! Keep writing as I look forward to more.

  • Reply Katie May 21, 2018 at 5:55 PM

    I LOVE this post. I am so happy to see the finished work and to know that you guys are loving it. You did such a wonderful job and what an exciting adventure you both are having!! Also…. spotted a little baby on the fridge! ♥️♥️

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