From Town House to Tiny House
I am excited about our next adventure. I’m excited about being uncomfortable, about new experiences and about getting lost. The older I get, the more I realize how intentional change and placing myself outside my comfort zone fuels my creative process and growth. — Lisa Congdon
In 2007, my husband Logan and I fell in love with micro-homes. Discovering tiny homes was a turning point for us. We’d always wanted to purchase a home, but we couldn’t afford a large house. At the time, we were living in Davis, California, and the average home price was more than $400,000. We reasoned a tiny house on wheels would meet our needs, and we began saving for our little house in 2007. In 2010, we hired Portland Alternative Dwellings to build and design our tiny house. We moved into our wee abode in October 2011 and lived in the space—in a variety of locations—until October 2014.
Throughout the fall of 2014, we talked about the possibility of living in town for the winter. Currently, our tiny house is parked on my in-law’s property (it's roughly 15 miles outside of Yreka, CA). It's the perfect spot for the tiny house because it's parked legally, and the location is beautiful. We love our little house, and the space is warm and cozy in the winter. However, tiny house living in the winter presents other challenges.
Plus, we wanted to experiment and figure out if we would enjoy living in town or not. The only way to answer that question was by moving into town. At the end of October 2014, we rented a 700-square-foot cottage and decided we would reassess our living situation as winter ended and spring began. Over the last two months, we reviewed the pros and cons of living in town and living in the tiny house.
In early March, we decided to move back to the tiny house in April. I don't know if this will be a permanent move or not. I envision living in the tiny house in the spring, summer, and early fall, and spending winter in a larger dwelling.
Living in the cottage was a great experience. I loved the layout of the space, the new appliances, the giant clawfoot bathtub, and the extra room for guests. However, I'm not a fan of the location because the freeway is loud. The noise didn’t bother me during the winter, but now the weather is improving, and I want to open the windows and work outside during the spring, summer, and fall. I don't want to be blasted with noise from semi-trucks and motorcycles. If we decide to move into a traditional house again, the neighborhood needs to be quiet.
Writing those words makes me feel uneasy because they seem like trite complaints. I don’t want to come across as ungrateful because that isn’t true. I’m extremely grateful to have options and loved ones who support our crazy ideas and perpetual moves.
We feel good about our choice to move back to the little house. It might be small, but it's our home.
We didn’t buy a lot of stuff for our rental cottage. We acquired basic belongings for daily life, like two used chairs, two beds, a small dresser for socks and t-shirts, and a coffee table, plus we bought dishes and glasses from Goodwill. We are planning on putting our new queen bed into the tiny house loft, and the rest of the stuff needs to be sold, given away, or put in storage. I don’t feel good about the storage option. I’d rather give our stuff away to folks who can use it. However, Logan is pro-storage. He feels that storing our stuff is a good option, and I do see his point.
He said, “We don’t know if the move to the tiny house will be permanent, and it might be wise to store the extra bed, chairs, and the coffee table because we will probably move into town (again) for the winter of 2015/2016. I don’t want to run out to buy new stuff for a new place. If we decide to stay in the tiny house for the winter, we can give away the stuff in our storage unit. Besides, isn’t that the purpose of storage? To serve as a transition between places and spaces? It would be like giving away all your winter clothes.”
Whatever we decide to do with our stuff, we will talk about our needs and future plans. We've been doing that since we started our simplicity journey in 2005. Communicating with each other, even when it's hard, is the key to a happy relationship.
I'd love to hear from you. In the comments section below, tell me ...
How do you cope with change and transition?
Thanks in advance for sharing your thoughts and ideas.