Graduation, Renovation, and The Next Phase

Hello friends!

This blog post is an update so that you know what I will be up to this month and next.

I just wanted to let you know because we have a very busy 2 months lined up and we're excited to have a few new adventures lined up to share with you.

1. I'm graduating college THIS WEEK!

So, I technically finished school and graduated from college in June, but because my college only has "residency" (on campus time) twice a year, my actual ceremony isn't until this weekend.

I will be graduating from Goddard College. It has been a wild ride. I fucking love Goddard and will miss the freedom, autonomy, faculty and friends I have made there.

I never thought I would actually make it through college - I'm fundamentally opposed to the whole system - but Goddard was such a special exception. They helped me see the value of doing it your own way within a support system.

I will graduate with a degree in Sustainability, concentration on Ecological Design and Sustainable Business. And because I've been designing my own curriculum the entire time and have been studying tiny houses for the past 4 years, I believe I'm probably the first person to get a degree in tiny houses :)

2. We will be teaching at the Tiny Home Builders Workshop

I'm super excited to tell you that I will be traveling down to Georgia to teach at the hands-on Tiny Home Builders workshop with our good friend Dan Louche (whom we love). Dan is super fun and wayyy smart about tiny houses (he's built a bunch!).

I will be giving presentations about solar power, off-grid systems, downsizing, and life in a small space. We'll answer any questions you may have about trailer life, ecological building and materials, etc etc.

We will be at the workshop in our custom-built converted Honda Element micro-camper.

This is the vehicle we have lived in for most of the past year. You will see first hand how we live in our Element day to day and how it works for us. If you're interested in Van-Dwelling, it'll be a good example of how a COUPLE does it!

We will also be giving out a super special surprise only to workshop attendees - so if you're signed up get ready for that :)

3. We are going to be living in and renovating a 1950s house this fall.

When we return from the tiny house workshop, we will be living in and renovating a 1950s ranch house that we have been hired to work on.

We will be doing a PRESERVATIONIST renovation by request of the home owner and by our recommendation.

The house was built in 1954 and is currently 100% original, in untouched condition. This is obviously very exciting to me, and allows me to practice everything I learned about what materials were REALLY used in that era from when we restored the Beemer (our 1957 trailer we did before the COMET).

Many people think boomerang Formica was popular in that era - but that's not the case. I could get into the most authentic home materials by year, but I'll spare you all the details.

We will be restoring the materials in the house while preserving everything. The original red linoleum counter tops, aluminum trim, all of the fixtures, original woodwork details, bright yellow tile floor, etc. It's basically a really big 1950's vintage trailer. It's very "campy", like a little cottage. Some of the floors need to be replaced because they are totally destroyed, and we plan on using Marmoleum there to give it the same vintage 50s linoleum look.

Depending on how this process goes, we are considering offering this as a service: careful, preservationist renovations for people wanting to preserve and update their retro/vintage homes.

We have so much experience VERY CAREFULLY renovating and restoring homes and trailers from this era (and I'm a TOTAL NERD about all of the materials and fixtures from that era) that it would be perfect for us. The owners of the home do not yet live in the house, and won't move in until the renovation is finished, so we will be staying in this time capsule home until we are done there. 

I found this amazing vintage broom in the basement of the house we'll be renovating. EVERYTHING in the house is from 1954, so I'm pretty much in heaven. Oh, the the previous owners left all of their vintage cast iron for us to use :)

I found this amazing vintage broom in the basement of the house we'll be renovating. EVERYTHING in the house is from 1954, so I'm pretty much in heaven. Oh, the the previous owners left all of their vintage cast iron for us to use :)

Really neat original wallpaper we found behind the mirror in the bathroom when we went to assess house.

Really neat original wallpaper we found behind the mirror in the bathroom when we went to assess house.

And after that, we're not sure what's next.

Get back in the Honda Element and drive somewhere far away?

Get on a plane and explore new countries?

The future is WIDE OPEN. Now that I'm out of school, I truly feel so FREE.

When I decided to live in a tiny trailer, it wasn't really all about the trailer itself. It was about the FREEDOM and FLEXIBILITY that living in the trailer would allow me. If I wanted to hop in the car and drive down the coast for a month, I could do it.

If I wanted to make plans to go overseas for a few months, I could.

I don't have a hefty rent or big home to worry about. I love my little trailer home. But more than that, I love the total freedom I have to go where I want when I want, and not have the burdens of STUFF weighing me down.

I can't wait for this next phase, whatever it is that comes next. I know it will be an adventure.

That moment when you've made it to the California coast, having driven more than 4,000 miles, the air is thick with the scent of wild sage and lavender, and everything is just so beautiful and awesome and perfect that you can't even handle it.

That moment when you've made it to the California coast, having driven more than 4,000 miles, the air is thick with the scent of wild sage and lavender, and everything is just so beautiful and awesome and perfect that you can't even handle it.