Ellen Dawson-Witt was recently featured in her local newspaper because of her tiny house and her downshifted life. Ellen’s 192 square foot house is located on her property in Yellow Springs, Ohio where she grows some of her own food and carries water from a well for washing, uses solar panels for a lamp, CD player and laptop and uses a composting toilet. She does her cooking on a gas range from 1934.
Dawson-Witt, a freelance editor and government contractor, has avoided television and fashion and wanted to live her life like that of Henry David Thoreau.
“I wanted to live deliberately and to not be on automatic pilot,” she said. “I wanted to be connected to the elements.”
However, she is not able to live in her tiny house full-time. The county in which the home is located does not allow full-time living in a home without indoor plumbing. She keeps another house close to her work.
Inside the tiny house, there are three chairs, one table, one desk, a kitchen cabinet from the 1920s, one bookcase, a loft with one bed and one small chest that contains an extra blanket. About 75 percent of all she owns fits in the tiny house. (Ironically, she has a whole shelf of books on voluntary simplicity, she said.) She has her clothes and a file drawer in her other house and her tools and camping gear in a nearby shed.
Dawson-Witt will be leading a seven-week discussion on sustainability at her tiny house. The sessions started on October 4, 2011. Her talks will cover simplicity, ecology, food, money and more for those who want to live more lightly on the earth.
Photos courtesy of YSNews.com