The Tiny House That Grandma Built: Downsizing from 1600 to 144 square feet

The Tiny House That Grandma Built: Downsizing from 1600 to 144 square feet

Today I'm excited to introduce you to someone who I find to be particularly inspiring, Dani Moore from The Tiny House that Grandma Built. Dani is a member of the Tiny Transition and Downsizing E-Course (registration is now open for the session beginning on January 4th). When Dani started posting about her project and story in the class forum, I knew I wanted to interview her and find out more about her life. Dani's here today to share with you how she's building her own tiny house, what it's like to downsize in a major way, and how you can make major life changes no matter where you are (or your age!). If you want to be a part of the next Tiny Transition and Downsizing class, you can read more and register here.

 

CometCamper: Tell us about you and your journey up until this point - what is your motivation for building and moving into a tiny house?

Dani Moore: I was raised Bretheren (Think Mennonites in regular clothes) With a "Use it up, wear it out, make do or do without" attitude. We were taught NEVER to throw away anything unless you were sure that no one could do anything useful with it. Great for not wasting, but bad for downsizing!

It was very helpful after my husband died when my daughter was 2 years old. I was already disabled and we had to be really careful about our spending. We went without hot water for 9 months after our water heater died, until we could get a new one. My Husband had spent our entire marriage showing me how things worked and how to fix them. Skills I have been forever grateful for. We also built or remodeled a business and a couple of houses, So I had some basic construction knowledge as well....

A Simple New Year: Tiny Transition + Downsizing E-Course

A Simple New Year: Tiny Transition + Downsizing E-Course

Are you ready for a new year?

More importantly, what are your intentions for the new year? What do you want to be different this year?

Though I'm not much for "resolutions", I do always set some goals and make some intentions for the coming year. I find it's easier to focus and do what really matters to me when I lay it out like that.

What if this year you could...

Simple Living for Everyone - I don't care how many square feet you live in

Simple Living for Everyone - I don't care how many square feet you live in

I want to have an open and honest conversation. 

Not about tiny houses or vintage trailers or living in a vehicle, though I think that those things are wonderful. 

I want to talk about simple living, the power of elimination, saving for later and producerism, without setting any rules about what size home is "right" or "good" to live in.

Simple living looks different to different people. If you have a family, my way of living might seem absurd. I can’t imagine living in a small house with my family growing up - we would have murdered each other for sure. If you are older or disabled, a tiny house might not be a good fit for you, or it might be perfect. If you run your own business, like I do with my vintage clothing store, your needs might look different than someone who works for a company and leaves their work at the office.

I just want to shout out that the number of square feet you live in doesn’t matter. It doesn’t define you. It doesn’t make you smart or dumb. It really doesn’t mean much.

5 Totally Atypical, Radical Ways You Can Start Living Tiny Right Now

5 Totally Atypical, Radical Ways You Can Start Living Tiny Right Now

Living tiny is only partially about the actual tiny house/trailer/RV as an "object", and 90% of it is decisions you make, the attitude you have, and how you live your life day to day.

I see WAY too many people waiting to start living “tinier” until they buy the actual tiny house, but that mentality is totally backwards. If you’re serious about living a smaller life in a smaller home, you need to start changing your habits right this instant. Otherwise, you might be in for a total shock once tiny move in day finally arrives! Instead of thinking “having the tiny house will ALLOW me to do these things”, start to do them and then feel totally empowered to start living tiny right now!

Tiny Transition and Downsizing Class: Registration Now Open

Tiny Transition and Downsizing Class: Registration Now Open

You know, when I started the Tiny Transition and Downsizing class, I never would have imagined how awesome it would become. I hoped that it would be helpful and motivating, but I had no idea that teaching it would allow me to witness the absolutely amazing things the class has accomplished.

Tiny Home Builders Hands-On Building Workshop

Tiny Home Builders Hands-On Building Workshop

Have you been to a tiny house workshop?

I've spoken at and taught about 20 in the past 2 years, and they always get me excited all over again. Meeting people who are just beginning their small home journeys, discussing science and nature, and making good friends are my favorite parts!

Last weekend Matt and I helped Dan Louche at his hands-on tiny home building workshop in Atlanta, GA. We were there to primarily talk about sustainable building, off-grid systems, and how and WHY you should downsize your life sooner rather than later. We ended up answering a lot of questions about composting toilets. Everyone is ALWAYS most interested in our bathroom habits, and we've become extremely comfortable speaking candidly about our bodily functions with total strangers.

We had the pleasure of meeting up with some people in real life from the current Tiny Transition + Downsizing class, and it was SO FUN to hang out and get to know each other off-the-Internet. Putting faces to names and meeting people I had been connecting with online for months was really great.

Right-Size Your Life: Guest Post by Terri Hosford

Right-Size Your Life: Guest Post by Terri Hosford

Today we have our last guest post in the recent series I've been doing. Each week for the past 4 weeks we have heard a story about downsizing, simplifying, and tiny-fying. You can see the other guest posts from this series here:

The Reason for a Tiny House, by Linda B.

My Story of Downsizing, by Becky Gibson

My Story of Stuff, by Andrea Mortensen

Today Terri Hosford has been kind enough to share her story with us. Terri is a member of the Tiny Transition and Downsizing E-Course. Her story has a lot that we can all relate to. I especially love Terri's idea of "right-sizing" - not too tiny, not too big, just right FOR YOU. Enjoy her article! Thanks for sharing with us Terri!

 

I am retired and a single female. I have had a health issues for the last couple of years. The effort of maintaining a home has become more difficult and costly. I have been interested in Tiny Housing for almost a year. The idea of having a smaller foot print and housing that is affordable, has gotten my attention. The idea of living more efficiently is intriguing. I have perused floor plans and pictures of hundred or more tiny houses less than 250 square feet built on trailers. The planned use of every square foot is mind-boggling, ingenious. It has also brought me to a concept of Right Sizing. This fits me better. Houses are 300-800 square feet. These homes are put on a permanent foundation. Most have full size kitchen appliances, a flush toilet, main floor bedroom and laundry.

I live in Michigan, my family is here. That, of course, is my first love.  Isn't that the meaning of life, relationships? BUT my soul longs to be in the mountains. How could I possibly live in both places?  Enter tiny house (right sizing). In a couple years my income will increase. Then I will start looking for property in the mountains. In the meantime, I need to prepare. This means I need to downsize! This is a process not an event!

Guest Post: My Story with Stuff by Andrea Mortensen

Guest Post: My Story with Stuff by Andrea Mortensen

Hello wonderful readers! I'm extremely excited to be hosting a guest post by Andrea Mortensen today on the blog. Andrea is a current member of the Tiny Transition and Downsizing E-Course (registration is currently open for the next session!) and has offered to share her story with us. I think you'll love reading about her journey as much as I've loved hearing about it! Andrea blogs about her simple life and downsizing efforts on her blog, The Newborn Minimalist. Make sure to go check her out there too to read more about her ongoing journey toward tinier living! Thanks for sharing with us Andrea!

My Story of Stuff

Guest Post by Andrea Mortensen

We lived in Italy and Austria during the 6th and 7th year of our marriage. We moved halfway across the world and before then, we lived in a house that was 450 square feet, plus a garage. We had deliberately kept our life simple because we wanted to travel, and also, we got married to spend time together.

So we worked part time, we volunteered, and went on lots of backpacking trips and traveled all over the world. It was pretty awesome. So picking up to move from San Francisco to Sicily was exciting, but getting rid of stuff wasn’t a problem. We didn’t have anything, so we gave away the few things we had, sold our car, and packed our clothing and stereo and that was pretty much it. The movers that came to ship our furniture were pretty shocked at how little the company that moved us was going to have to pay to ship our things overseas.

Guest Post: My Story of Downsizing (Why I Did It)

Guest Post: My Story of Downsizing (Why I Did It)

Today I'm excited to announce we have another guest post from a member of the Tiny Transition and Downsizing E-Course (registration now open for the next session!). I'll hand it over to Becky and she'll explain all about her relationship with stuff and her simplifying journey. I think we can all relate to Becky's story, I know I definitely can! Thanks Becky!


I hardly know where to start for this blog entry for Mariah. I guess at the beginning. I have always loved to shop, loved getting new “stuff”, whether it was for my house or for me or as a lovely gift for someone.  So I was already primed for action when I met my best friend, who is a true shopaholic. And I took my cue from her – expensive purses, expensive makeup and beauty products, expensive clothes. She buys everything under the sun, and I tried to keep up with her for awhile. And I was always swearing I would reform and STOP, because my house was filling up with “stuff” and my bank account was emptying and my credit card balances were rising at an alarming rate.

It never got totally out of control, I just ran through a ridiculous amount of money in a very short time, all for “stuff”.

It was like Christmas at my house every day when I came home from work – boxes from Amazon, QVC, Coldwater Creek, etc etc etc, all stacked neatly at my door, waiting for me to come home and open them. I was so busy buying clothes that I very seldom wore the same thing twice in six weeks. I didn’t know if my UPS guy loved me or hated me, but I sure was keeping him busy, rain, snow, or sunshine. I started buying Coach purses compulsively – I loved them and I wanted them and I wanted people to see that I had them.

Guest Post: The Reason for a Tiny House

Guest Post: The Reason for a Tiny House

This is a guest post written by Linda B. of Land Lost Sailors. Linda is a current member in the CometCamper Tiny Transition and Downsizing Course, and she volunteered to share her tiny house story on the blog today! Thanks Linda!

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Let me introduce ourselves we are Dorwin and Linda a newly retired couple. Do to the losses of each other spouses we spent time on our own, then after while we decided to join forces. With the rising cost of living separately on our own, we came to the conclusion that house sharing would be in our best interest. As we having been renting for the past 7 years and getting tired of the cold winters in Ohio, we decided to take a look at other options that will be cheaper than the way we are going now. The cost and endurance of taking care of our rented house has become more difficult. So we decided to take a trip this past February down to Florida & Georgia to check out houses and lay of the land. Since we have family in GA we decided on residing there.