We Quit Our Jobs to Ride Our Bicycles

I heard about Jim and Shane while on a teardrop trailer gathering in northern California and just their simple Facebook name said it all: We Quit Our Jobs to Ride Our Bicycles. The bicycle tour is still going on, but once they hang up their helmets—the tiny house building will commence.

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The two men from Northern California had both been raised in mountain communities and wanted to return to the land after working for several years. The idea of quitting their jobs and riding around the U.S. on their bicycles coincided with their love of the outdoors, gardening and working with their hands.

“We were growing tired of living in the mundane and felt the need for a dramatic change,” Jim and Shane said. “The idea of traveling by bicycle was appealing to both of us from the stand point of its simplicity, its affordability and the exposure to possibilities. With traveling by bicycle, you see and experience so much more in the slow pace of pedaling than you ever could in the enclosure of a speeding car. We also were interested in exploring the country in search for new ideas and a new place to live, one that would accommodate our dream of building tiny homes.”

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Jim has an interest in small structures and Shane has a strong background in sustainable living. After stumbling across Lloyd Kahn’s book “Tiny Homes, Simple Shelter” in a small book store in San Francisco, they decided that they would build a tiny home for themselves after finishing their trip.

“Our experience with bicycle touring has solidified our interest in simple living and has taught us the virtues of getting by with just the basics,” they said. “We have a particular interest in the salvaged aspect of the Texas Tiny Homes and the ones that emphasize outdoor living and engagement with the surrounding environment.”

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Their tiny house idea has expanded further to become a tiny house community. They want to create a bicycle centered communal living space that includes several tiny homes, a common meal and meeting space, large garden and greenhouse, gray water system, bicycle powered laundry machine, and photovoltaic and water heater panels. They also want to build with salvaged materials. The men recently spent a few weeks building a greenhouse with recycled materials for a host family in Pahrump, Nev. After their pedaling tour, they will be on the lookout for a town to host their tiny house community.

“Finding a town that is willing to work with us on our idea of tiny home community has proven to be a challenge,” Jim and Shane said. “We want to find a place that is in need of affordable living and be able to provide it in the form of tiny homes.”

You can follow their tour and see their beautiful photos on their Facebook page and on TrackMyTour.com.

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Photos by Jim and Shane of We Quit Our Jobs to Ride Our Bicycles

 

By Christina Nellemann for the [Tiny House Blog]

 

Sheepherder Wagon Community in Idaho

Sheepherding may be a thing of the past, but along Idaho’s Salmon River is a little community preserving this past with a modern twist.

Though the residents don’t tend sheep, they choose to live as the sheep herders did in a small efficient sheep wagon.

Massage therapist Renee Silvus had her sheep wagon built by craftsmen Kim and Kathy Vader. The wagon’s 7 ft. by 12 ft. footprint features a small kitchen, a queen size bed, a lovable loo, and a woodstove. Renee plans to retire in her simple home sometime in the future. She uses solar powered lamps for light and has no electricity or internet.

Read the full story at the AOL website.

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Tiny House Hotel in Portland

Right in the heart of the Alberta Arts District in Portland, Oregon sits the first tiny house hotel in the U.S. The custom made houses of the Caravan — The Tiny House Hotel all sit on an urban lot with its own central gathering place that contains a fire pit and BBQ, Adirondack chairs and hammock surrounded by funky, recycled art. Each of the houses are available for nightly stays and contain bathrooms with flush toilets and hot showers, electric heat and basic kitchens.

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Caravan offers three tiny houses on wheels in their hotel: the Tandem, the Rosebud and the Pearl. The Tandem is 160 square feet and can sleep up to four people. It has a loft bed and a day bed. The Rosebud is 120 square feet with wood interior and exterior. It has a sleeping loft and fits 1-2 people. The Pearl is more modern and at 90 square feet is the smallest of the houses. It is energy efficient and has two lofts as well as a wet bath. The houses rent for $125 a night plus tax. In addition, the Caravan owners are also looking for another finished tiny house to add to the hotel.

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Within three blocks of the tiny homes there are cafes, pubs, an organic food co-op, a bike co-op, shops, galleries, tattoo parlors and the local arts walk. Restaurants like the Radio Room, Bye and Bye and the famous Grilled Cheese Grill are just steps away. If you happen to be in Portland on Saturday July 27, the hotel will be having its Grand Opening from 5:00-10:00 p.m. All the houses will be available for viewing and the party will have a band and a bonfire.

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Photos by Caravan – The Tiny House Hotel

 

By Christina Nellemann for the [Tiny House Blog]