Little House on the Prairie

by Kent Griswold on March 20th, 2012. 43 Comments

Guest Post by Jerry Hambley

In 2004, my wife and I decided to purchase 20 acres in rural Kansas about 45 minutes away from our suburban home in Overland Park, Kansas. With a daughter close to graduating from high school, we thought the best way to transition to the country might be to build a small cottage that would serve as my home office. I sat down and made a list of requirements for the office and decided it might be wise to add a small kitchenette and second floor sleeping loft just in case we wanted to spend the weekends at the farm.

Exterior of the cottage after roofing

After a good deal of research, I settled on a set of plans called the “Weekend Warrior” by Robinson Residential. Using those plans as a guide, I expanded the footprint of the cottage by three feet and added a full second floor sleeping loft. Continue Reading »

Little Shaver House for Sale

by Kent Griswold on December 9th, 2010. 22 Comments

House is Sold! Back in August of 2009 Crystal Shaver first contacted me about their beginning construction of the Little Shaver house, I later did an update on their construction. Ron Shaver contacted me recently and wanted to let me know that they were having to sell their little house. Here is what Ron said:

Over the past year and a half my wife Crystal gave you a couple of updates on the progress of our tiny house. We’re happy to report that the project is finished. However, we’re at the point where we need to sell the house due to our ever-growing family and due to the fact that we are still trying to sell our old house!

The house measures approximately 23′ long from the porch to the back and is 8′ wide including an approximately 2 1/2″ wide front entry porch. The peak of the roof measures 13’6″ tall which allows the house to be transported to any state. The trailer the house is built on is a heavy duty car trailer with 12,500 pound axles and a 20,000 pound coupler. The house can accommodate a king size foam mattress in the main sleeping loft and a twin size mattress in the small loft. The house comes equipped with a washer/dryer, kitchen (sink and stove included), a bathroom area with a fully functioning shower and area for a portable or composting toilet, and a storage closet. The house comes fully wired for 50 amp RV service and includes hot and cold water lines, a tankless water heater, a 55 gallon water storage tank and direct water inlet, and a water pump and accumulator tank. Continue Reading »

Tiny House in a Landscape

by Kent Griswold on September 19th, 2009. 4 Comments

Paul Kraus from Kansas is sharing a stone cottage in Kansas for our feature this week. Here is what Paul says about this cute little cottage.

When visiting my roots, my mother informed me that my Great Grandma
built a tiny stone cottage called her “Rambler’s Rest”, constructed of
stone gathered locally and from friend and family travels around the

Thanks Paul for these great photos and sharing them with us. If you have some interesting photos that would fit into this weekly feature be sure and email them to me at tinyhouseblog(at)gmail(dot)com.

rambler's rest

Welcome to Rambler's Rest

Welcome to Rambler's Rest

Ramblers Rest with Fire Pit

Ramblers Rest with Fire Pit

Rambler's Rest Profile

Rambler's Rest Profile

View from the South

View from the South

by Kent Griswold (Tiny House Blog)

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The Little Shaver House

by Kent Griswold on August 30th, 2009. 3 Comments

Crystal recently emailed me about a tiny house they are building in Kansas. I wanted to share their story with so I’ll let Crystal tell you about their project.

We began researching the tiny house movement about four years ago. After also examining how we were living and the way we would prefer to live, we knew it was time to make a change. Some of those changes would be spending more time with family and friends, doing more charity work, and making better use of our resources. Building a tiny house was the natural next step toward having the freedom to live our lives the way we envisioned. We decided to put our house on the market and also began selling all of our possessions on craigslist and in a garage sale. What we couldn’t sell we donated to Goodwill.


Ron is an attorney and I’m a Montessori teacher who decided to stay home with my daughter. We’re still a little (okay I am, at least) nervous that Ron will have room to put all of his suits for work!

After purchasing our trailer, we began considering design concepts in order to maximize the space. Having a nine-month old little girl, we needed create extra room so that later she could have her own sleeping loft. We stumbled upon the design for Darren Macca and Ann Holley’s Protohaus and visited them over a weekend trip to Denver as they were wrapping up their build. Not only did we learn a lot about how to build a tiny house, but we also decided to incorporate dormer windows on both the front and back loft spaces of our tiny house.


With the help of family and friends, we decided to build our home ourselves. Progress has moved rather quickly on the house since construction began. We started with a building party in mid August to kick start our build. Friends and family joined us in building and we were able to raise all of the walls within the first two days and finished all of the framing and sheathing within 10 days. We hope to be moved into our tiny house in the next month!


We have used many reclaimed materials during the course of the project. These items include everything from studs removed from someone’s basement to gently used appliances to furnish our home. We are still considering our options on where to place our tiny house after it is finished.

We are very excited about working toward completion of our tiny house and welcome visitors who may have interest tiny houses. We are also documenting our build at: and will update as we continue the build.

Crystal with give us an update and more pictures when their house is complete. It is so neat to see more small families moving into the tiny house living style.


by Kent Griswold (Tiny House Blog)

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