Six big reasons our family has lived tiny for eight years
It started off as a girl and her dog, Denver. Eventually, I met my partner, James, who came on board. We’ve had a couple of kids, Hazel (6), and Miles (5), and they found a cat, Ginger. Together, the six of us live in our spacious, 232 square foot tiny house. Well, except when we downsized to a more mobile, 84 square foot, also custom-built micro-house, to travel the country’s national parks for a year. Now, we’re very excited to be back in our tiny house, at its new location in North Idaho!
Living tiny is a very easy choice we continue to make every day for a lot of reasons. You might want to know all the nitty-gritty details of HOW we manage four people and a couple pets in 84 square feet or even 232 square feet, but I’m afraid that’s probably a boring read (spoiler: it’s likely not much different than how you live in your place). The more important question is WHY we do it. Here are some of our reasons:
Leading By Example
I didn’t have any kids when I started this adventure, but since they came along living little has only become more important. Kids don’t learn by what we say alone. They learn by what we do. The values I wish to impart to my kids are to be bold and brave, to have integrity, to be creative, and think outside of the box. Most importantly, to be happy. I can’t hope they don’t fall into some circular rat race without showing them at least one way out of it. I can’t hope for their happiness without also striving to find my own.
Living tiny is not an easy social path, other people’s opinions really are the worst part in our experience. However, each time we get pushback is yet another opportunity to teach my kids how to handle being “different”, among other life lessons. We don’t just shift directions because society tells us we should. If it’s working for us and everyone is happy, that’s what matters.
To Minimize Our Impact
We don’t buy things without intent and we don’t support a disposable economy if at all possible. Brilliant marketing can make this hard at times but our house, and lack of space, supports us when our fortitude forgets.
Also, having less stuff makes us appreciate the things we DO have. We have enough without feeling overwhelmed.
It’s hard to tell by looking at it but our house is almost all reused and repurposed materials. We take opportunities to talk about what other things can be used for and we don’t trash things lightly. We are a fix-it family and don’t think of things as immediately disposable if they break. We repurpose, reuse, reclaim, redesign, or recycle nearly everything. And we teach our kids the same through living conscientiously every day.
Continue reading this article in the latest issue of the Tiny House Magazine. (Purchase Here)
Written By: Macy Miller for the Tiny House Magazine