Alternative Transportation

without a car-1

As if living in a tiny floating home wasn’t unconventional enough, the way we get around would definitely be considered alternative transportation as opposed to having a car. Our sailboat carries us long distances but sometimes it’s not practical to move the boat to get to where we need to go. It’s essential to have a kayak, dinghy or rowboat if you live on the water. We opted for an inflatable dinghy with an outboard motor.

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Fifty Shades of Tiny


“Warning: This article is rated R and may offend younger and/or sensitive readers.”

by M.J. Boyle

Since the movie, Titanic, remains one of the most popular movies of all time, I can probably assume that you are familiar with the hand-on-the-steamy-car-window sex scene. Given this, I suppose it only makes sense that during a discussion about sex in tiny houses, a reference to sex in cars would immediately follow.

“WHAT discussion about sex in tiny houses?” you might ask.

Sex is one of those subjects (like composting toilets) where everyone hopes you will tell them all of your dirtiest and most intimate secrets while simultaneously hoping you won’t ask them to return the favor. But, when I posed the question “How is sex in tiny houses different than in a normal house?” on a popular facebook page; there was no shortage of answers. Apparently, tiny house enthusiasts are a pretty open bunch of people. Who’d thunk?

So, before I begin, I have to confess:

  1. Even though I am building a tiny house in my own driveway, I have not had sex in it. (yet)
  2. I have also not had sex in a car. (and I’ve owned one of those for over 30 years!)

Why confess, now? To help you understand how very inexperienced I am with this subject matter. Knowing that, it only makes sense that I would ask strangers to help with my research.

sunset heart

First off, the dozens of people who responded to my query can pretty much be divided into two categories; those who live in a tiny house with kids, and those that don’t. It seems, and would be logical, that the subject of privacy and sex go hand in hand in such a small space. (Actually…everything goes hand in hand, in such a small space, but I digress….)

Secondly, the issues of sex in a loft space vs a first floor bedroom also came to light as it appears that sleeping (or not) in a loft requires a bit more dexterity than some tiny houses enthusiasts possess. Continue reading

Kei-camping Cars are Small but Spacious

David Richoux sent me to this intriguing post about Kei-camping Cars. These are extremely tiny and as far as I can tell may only be available in Japan. However, I think we can check out the use of space and apply to our own tiny living arrangements or plans.

Here is what they say about the little camper…

Kei car is Japan’s unique vehicle standard, which is 3.4m in length, 1.48 in width, and 2m in height with 660cc engine.

Kei car

Based on this Kei car, Kei-camper is developed by creating a space like a studio apartment, installing a bed and a table inside the vehicle. You might be surprised to see such a small camping car, but you will be even more amazed after hopping into the car. The equipments inside are full of Japanese unique mechanism and mastery techniques.

Apart from being a tool for hobbies and travel, owners ranging from 20s to 60s use the car for business, travel, or even as a mobile office.

With a major conversion of the luggage space, those camping-car style cars can be more expensive, but you will enjoy the luxury of being fully equipped, including high ceiling, sink with water tank, and cooking facilities. Curtains are also attached onto the aluminum window, and the car is spacious enough to be called a moving studio apartment which accommodates up to four adults. Many of these types have a pop-up roof structure, and are registered as standard-sized car as the size becomes bigger than other kei-campers. This type of kei-campers continue to be popular and are in short supply due to its reasonable price of two to three million yen [approximately $20,000 – $30,000]. These days, the delivery of the car takes six months after placing the order.


According to the distributor a fully-fledged kei-campers hasgood insulation, warm enough to survive in winter with only a the heater. The distributor also recommends 4WD type for those who intend to drive in snow to go skiing.

Link to original Tokyo Tomo Travel Guide Post.

Osmosis Day Spa Caboose

For this Christmas Eve, I thought I would do a post on a couple of classic, red cabooses that have been made into the offices of the beautiful Osmosis Day Spa in Freestone, California. Osmosis is located in the tiny hamlet between Santa Rosa and Bodega Bay and features a Japanese-style retreat with bonsai, bamboo and Buddha. The spa offers massages, mud baths and their signature cedar enzyme bath.


Each of the recycled train cabooses are located in the backyard of the spa and hold storage areas and computer equipment. They are also nice places for the staff to hang out and have lunch. Over 25 years, the garden has grown up around each caboose, making them look as if they’ve sprouted out of the ground.

The Osmosis Spa is one of the greenest spas in the world. The spa recycles water from its own wetlands and uses the water for local irrigation. The spa is a founding member of the Green Spa Network and uses sustainable practices in its business.





Photos by Christina Nellemann

By Christina Nellemann for the [Tiny House Blog]

A Year in a Car

The reasons for living in your car run the gamut. In college, I knew a few students who lived in their cars so they could afford to go to school, and this article talks about how hard times have forced some people to live in their cars. Jessica Spaulding is doing it..for no apparent reason.

Jessica decided to pursue a life of adventure and has been living in a Prius for past few years. She works about half the year for a public radio station and spends the rest of her time on the road, exploring, writing and photographing her travels.

Jessica Spaulding lives out of her Prius

Jessica Spaulding lives out of her Prius

What I found most interesting about her blog was how she modified her car for living and sleeping. She has also written a few articles on how to live on the road, including:

  • Getting comfortable sleeping in “public.”
  • Showering
  • Modifying your vehicle for comfort
  • Saving money
  • Staying warm and keeping cool

Whether out of necessity, or to simplify your life, living out of your car seems to be more accepted. More and more information is being posted these days on how to live out of one of the tiniest houses of all.

Her modified Prius

Her modified Prius

How to Live in Your Car

Car Living

By Christina Nellemann for the (Tiny House Blog)

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