I discovered Tiny House Nation on the FYI channel recently. More accurately, I discovered the FYI channel recently, which led me to discovering Tiny House Nation. I have been obsessively watching Tiny House Nation.
Tiny living is not new to me. I want to do this. I need to do this. I’ve followed tiny house blogs for a couple of years now. The concept is not new to me. Then, when we bought the Toyota I sort of changed my thinking and moved onto trailers. The thought behind the two are really the same. Tiny space, divest your tangible goods, living small instead of living large. A lot of the tiny houses are portable, to some extent, but not as portable as I am wanting. I’d like something more along the lines of an Airstream, but less costly. I was originally looking at teardrop trailers, but have set my sights a bit
higher bigger so we can really live in it, not just vacation in it.
I grew up in the 80s. I fully understand, and get behind, the Material Girl mentality. I’m also seeing what that has brought us. Lots of junk, over-full landfills, rising debt. It just never ends. We need to change.
Two of my kids have been watching Tiny House Nation with me. Tonight’s episode has a family of three moving into an 8’x24’ home. The host brings out four bins, equal to twenty cubic feet (each? total? I have no idea. I’m thinking total), and says “this is it, this is your storage space” and the family sort of panics.
I’m eying these storage bins. These 20 gallon storage bins, and somewhere in the back of my head I am thinking “how many of these exact bins do I have packed full and shoved into storage already?” I have two in my kitchen right now (admittedly, they have food in them, keeping bugs out because Florida). I have easily a dozen in the garage, full of items I haven’t seen in years.
I’m looking around my bedroom. I could’t fit what is on my half bookshelf into one of those bins. Then I eye my bookshelf a little harder. Do I need anything that is on it? Probably not. It’s pulling double duty. It’s got papers, shoes, and some misc. items on it. A printer that I don’t use anymore sits on top of it, and my nail polish stand is on top of that printer. If I threw out everything on those shelves, I don’t think I could tell you an hour later what I got rid of.
It’s time to pare down. I might not be ready to pack myself into a 20 gallon bin, but I can definitely remember to ask myself “Do I use this? Do I need this? Does this serve a purpose? Would I pay to store this?” If the answer is no, it can go. If the answer is yes, well, use it or lose it.
I am pretty sure my biggest problem will be clearing out my kitchen gadgets. I live for kitchen gadgets. And dishes. I have boxes of my great-grandmothers and grandmothers and mothers dishes in the garage. We have a couple of sets in the house too. On the other hand, let me keep my Vitamix, my Keurig, my Kitchenaid, and two of my crockpots, and I might be ok after all. Even that is probably too much. Blender, coffee maker, crock pot. I’ll survive. I’ll miss having two fridges and a freezer. Or maybe not. I won’t be feeding the world after all. I won’t need to stockpile enough food to see eight people through the impending zombie apocalypse.
I’ve been a little more conscientious of all of our purchases recently. Would I keep [the purchase] if we were gifted a trailer tomorrow? Or would I decide there wasn’t room and I don’t really need it? On a day to day basis, I need clothes, my laptop (which to me includes all my various drives as well), shoes (and not all my eighty million pairs of shoes, but the three or four pair I wear on a regular basis), and my phone. Expanding on that, I have a few bags I use often, grungy clothes, work clothes, nice clothes, The Funeral Dress, etc.. But I can certainly cut my clothes in half and not feel the impact.
I’ve got this amazing space in my head that we can live in. This space where we can focus more on what’s important and less on all of our crap. I’m told that once you wrap your head around getting rid of all your stuff it gets more stressful trying to find a way to keep it than trying to find a way to let it go. I am chomping at the bit to get to that point.
The Husband recently pulled a couple hundred DVDs off our shelves to get rid of. He found a company that will buy them (not for much, but it’s more than we have now) so I’ve been ripping the ones I’d watch again to a drive so the physical disks can go out.
I know it’s going to be a long process. We have a lot of stuff. It’s hard to let go of stuff. We need to curb what we bring in as well. I feel like every other day we have something we have to go purchase right now. And sometimes it’s legit. The other day I had to go buy a new pair of yellow rubber gloves for cleaning. But yellow rubber gloves turned into yet another hundred dollar trip to Target. So we need to fix that. My sister said we need to ban ourselves from Target. That might be the only thing that works.
So I guess this is my first officially tagged “tiny house prep” post. I hope I don’t have another eight years worth of “I got rid of this” type posts. I hope to have more posts about where I want to go, what I want to do, ways to optimize storage in our imaginary trailer. The littlest child is just going into fifth grade. I certainly have time, if nothing else. One thing at a time, right?