Tuesday, January 12, 2016

End of 2015, Tiny 2016 has begun!

Happy New Year!  A lot has happened and nothing has happened.  Let me 'splain...

The weather has been...not great...for quite a while now.  SURPRISE, right?

I took a week off for Thanksgiving and it rained the ENTIRE TIME...and not just a little bit of rain for a few hours, it was a constant deluge.  I've never seen anything like it.

We were able to work one day (December 15th) between rainstorms ... Build Day 36 was a day that Gregory joined Susan and I and we got the ledger board up, loft boards attached to it and then bathroom floor prep and pocket door frame installed.  It was chilly and REALLY MUDDY.
squishy squishy

Gregory and Susan
AND then... there were tornadoes... 9 of them hit north Texas right after Christmas...and the nearest one touched down 6 miles away from my tiny house while I was about 45 minutes away from that town. I have only seen hurricanes and tornadoes on the news (when I lived in California).  I was very lucky. The rain continued for a few days and then...

Roof is complete!

The final week of 2015 (Dec 30) the wee little roof piece over the window bumpout was put on!  Clark Louver Roofing Company out of Ft. Worth did the work and installed the main part of the roof but waited until the siding and windows were in for precise installation of the small piece remaining.  They were nearby putting the roof on Demere's tiny house (The Little Fish House) so they swooped by, did the measurements one day and then worked on it the following day.  I was very happy that they were able to do the work!  We were afraid the weather would mean further delays but they did it!  Yay!

The 3rd day of 2016 I was out at my tiny house.
1 - to give two tours
(Sean, a visitor from PA & Todd, a nearby enthusiast)
2 - to clean out the tools from the shed in preparation for moving the house
3 - for Tiny Modern Homes to come and measure my house (Cory & Rob)

Sean came with his chauffeur (friend driving him around Dallas while visiting Texas) and seemed to really like the design and had lots of questions...he has been researching for years so he is likely to build in a couple of years when he has more funds and a property plan.

Todd brought his mom. He wanted to show his mom and convince her that tiny houses were a great idea. WELL...that didn't quite happen. They had a lot of questions and they loved my house but when she said "it's just that he's a collector...he has so many things...I don't know how this would work".
I looked at him squarely and said,
 "Tiny houses ARE a great idea but they aren't for everyone. You have to make some decisions about your stuff. If you try to put all your things into a tiny house and only a fraction of it fits, then you will come to believe that tiny houses are the stupidest idea on the planet. Maybe your "tiny" is 500 sq ft....  Maybe your tiny is 1000 sq ft. 
You have to be able to be at peace and soulfully happy with the amount of stuff that you want and need. That's for YOU to decide. I don't know how much stuff you have but you're going to have to look at it and really explore the options in front of you. If you want to go forward and build then I'll help you plan and show you what we're doing in this meetup group, there are several of us willing to share our experience. Take some time and think about it. You have my number."
About a week later Todd texted me and thanked me. He had come to the realization that he wouldn't be able to live in a tiny house and keep all of the possessions that he wanted to keep. He said that it was good for him to experience mine and know for sure that he needed a bigger space and that a tiny house might be somewhere in his future but not any time soon. It was sad to not have another person join in but it was also good to know I helped one more person KNOW for sure.

tiny paws in the mud 

It was still muddy out there but not too bad for walking around. Susan and I loaded the shed stuff (tools, materials, etc) into her truck and my car and cleaned up the site a bit after the wind and rain had shredded the plastic covering the wood pile. It was good to get out there and see my tiny house...the tornadoes scared me.

The 3rd reason, the appointment with Tiny Modern Homes, Sketchup Master Cory Hagen was very exciting. He was measuring my house inside and out so that he could create a model and help me "see" how it would work...if all my "big" ideas would actually be feasible inside my tiny house.    Cory holds free workshops for the people here in the area and he is great at explaining, very funny and you can SEE what you've had on 2-D paper come to life. I highly recommend coming to his workshops, his next one is this Sunday, actually.
IF you can't arrange to come to a free one but you DO want his services, then you'll have to fork over his regular rate and make an appointment. BUT NOT UNTIL HE FINISHES MINE. Wait, that's not nice, I don't mean to hold up his business...you can totally call him.... in about 2 or 3 weeks. ANYHOW, after the initial measuring of the house, he sketchup'd the house and then had me over, measured me and created a tiny Nina and put her in the house and he measured my leg and I walked the stairs in his building so that he could measure my natural/comfortable stair rise.  OH!   my stairs!  This is funny....

I have decided on stairs, not a ladder, for getting up to my loft.
I had been searching for a stair design that I saw in my head, but not really anywhere yet...but I was getting closer and closer to the design concept...
a few of the pictures I kept on my phone

I wanted stairs but still wanted the compact nature of a ladder AND I wanted them to double as storage.  I wanted a cool version of the picture on the bottom row, 2nd from the left. That is the Lapeyre Alternating Tread Stair that is used in industrial situations... that was where I started.  Basically, they're more upright.  You can see that the other pictures have a more planned out designery look to them.  I most liked the picture next to Lapeyre, it is from the internet, don't know who owns that tiny house but I see that they function well in it.  I talked to Susan and showed her the pictures and we were set on sketching it out and  planned to build them.  AND THEN... I see this posted on Facebook:

Vina Lustado! You read my mind!!!
THIS!  This is what I had envisioned with my rudimentary sketch! I cannot even believe it.
Vina Lustado/Sol Haus Design (those are two separate links, one for her website, one for her facebook page) is the designer of my tiny house! I bought my plans from her and the stairs she designed here are for her newest tiny house design.  I am telling you...it was such a joy to see that I would be following in the design ideas that the house was born from.  I love love love that. LOVE it. Her designs are dreamy and smart.   

ok, I think I'll leave it there. I will get into the interior design fun in the next post.  Remember, Cory is AWESOME but you cannot have him yet. Just...wait. 


  1. Hi Nina, love the update!! I'm glad you found your stair/storage design. The new one looks great. Some of the stairs in the photo collage look a little scary. Hope your New Year is off to a great start.

    1. Thanks for reading, Kathy! And thanks SO MUCH for your support...it means a lot. :)

  2. Oh, Nina, you are the sweetest!! Thank you much for the rave review. :-) And for believing in me. I couldn't ask for a better friend.

  3. Oh, Cory, you KNOW it's just all TRUE and I am happy that we're friends. You're so much fun!


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