Robinia a Tiny House Case Study

Dennis and Sharon

Dennis and Sharon

Sharon Bagatell and Dennis Hoffarth combine permaculture principles with passion for the planet in Robinia, a tiny house case study in pioneering an ecologically sustainable lifestyle for the future.

Permaculture is way of life that integrates all dimensions of the human condition into a collaborative whole that is greater than the sum of its parts. Practitioners weave a rich tapestry of systems for building, growing food, earning income and nurturing relationships with one another that enhance functionality and multiply our joys while meeting everyone’s needs. It is a lifestyle rooted in ethics that promote reciprocal partnerships between humankind and our environment that are based on care rather than exploitation. The endgame is an abundant world where everyone can enjoy a high quality of life, wherein our problems are solved in the garden instead of on the battlefield. Continue reading

Hobbit Hole Redux

cave home

After living in various simple structures on a two acre horse pasture for over a decade, (tipi, willow hut, tents, beach shack), I ended up going underground with a Hobbit Hole style tiny house. I liked it so much that I continue to live in it some 15 years later. About 10 years ago I decided to add on a small bedroom to the side of the existing structure. I dug the hole, lined it with plastic and used old pine boards to construct a 7X4 by 4foot high tiny space. But when it came time to connect the two rooms I just couldn’t bring myself to cut the hole into the wall of the Hobbit Hole. Theres just something so wonderful about a round space that i enjoy inhabiting. To cut a hole in it to enter another room seemed at the time like a possible mistake. How do you improve on perfection? So the small square room became a storage unit for my outdoor gear. A small door on the front side allowed access. Continue reading

A Girlfriend’s Perspective: Off the Grid Tiny House Livin’

The Girlfriend's perspective

I posted a video and short story a couple of weeks ago about Rob Greenfield and his life in his extremely tiny off-grid home in the city. You can view the post here. Rob sent me an update on some comments he gets on his blog and I thought I would share this post with you.

Because of my non-traditional life in an off the grid tiny house I often see comments like, “This guy obviously doesn’t have a girlfriend” or “He never gets laid” on my posts. Well let me tell you, I DO have girlfriend and she is AMAZING, and GORGEOUS, and we are SO IN LOVE! She lives a different life than I do in many ways but she loves to be a part of my not so average life. Here she shares her perspective of off the grid, tiny house livin’!
-Rob Greenfield

If you are spending time with Rob Greenfield, then you are probably spending time in nature. Rob thrives off of a simple and natural environment. I could say the opposite is also true for him, that in an artificially created environment, he is often quite uncomfortable.

I met Rob over 4 years ago and have enjoyed his company ever since. I am currently in a loving relationship with him. We both live in San Diego. I live in an apartment about five miles from Rob’s tiny home. Sometimes he stays at my place with me and often times I stay over at his home.

Continue reading the original post here.

The girlfriend

Mike’s Unique Tiny House

Mike's unique tiny house

Pro-snowboarder, Mike Basich, gives a tiny house tour of his self-built 225 square foot labor of love in the middle of his 40 acre snow covered property near Truckee, California – and tells us how being closer to nature gives him his most creative decisions.

Several years after leaving the competitive snowboarding world, Mike decided to go completely off the grid. He sold his house, and after five years he managed to build his own off-grid home in Truckee, California with no internet, no indoor plumbing, and no traditional electricity. He has one fireplace that serves as his stove, furnace, and water heater. He says that living the way he does, away from the chaos of the city, allows him to slow down and be more in sync with nature.

Mike says that nature, and his desire to be close with it, was the ultimate inspiration for his decision to live off the grid. The sun is his main source of heat during the day. One wall of his home is entirely glass, which absorbs sunlight and heats the entire house. He built a chairlift on his property that let’s you ride up and down the mountain, taking in the beauty of the surrounding wilderness. There’s even a water source close enough that allows him to have a hot tub off his back deck.

This home represents Mike’s childhood dream. He built it from his own inspiration, his own design, and with his own two hands. To him, it’s more fulfilling than anything else he’s accomplished in his life.

Rob Greenfield’s Teeny Greeny House

Rob's teeny house

Last week someone shared Rob’s tiny house with me on Facebook and I wanted you to see and experience it. I’ll let Rob take it from here.

Here’s an update to my off the grid, tiny house life, in the city! I live here without a bill or debt to my name and life is splendid. I grow food, live on rainwater, compost, harness the energy of the sun with solar panels, practice a near zero waste life, and ride my bamboo bike around town.

My last video left a lot of unanswered questions so here’s a new video that answers a lot of them and gives an update of all the change I made to the place! It’s just hard to cover everything I’m doing in under 10 minutes but this video will answer questions like: where do I shower?, what about city code?, who’s land am I on, and do I pay rent?

I’ve made a lot of improvements over the last month. Every week the place is more beautiful and more self sustaining.

You can follow Rob and his life at