I really can do anything!

Just about a year ago I was backing my car out of my boyfriends yard and wasn’t paying attention to how close I was to the gate at the end of his yard.  All of a sudden WHAM, I heard this gawd awful noise and looked over to see my side-view mirror ripped half off my car.  I was sooooo mad at myself, and I hadn’t even had my car for a year yet.

So I’ve been driving around for about a year with my car looking all white-trash-ghetto with the mirror falling apart and all taped up with electrical tape because I just assumed that I was going to end up spending a small fortune at the auto body shop and didn’t have the time or money to deal with it.

Then the other day my boyfriend called me to ask what year my car was because he was grabbing me a mirror at an auto parts shop.  Huh?  You can do that?  Well sure enough, doesn’t he show up with a brand spanking new side view mirror for my car and it only cost $30.  Seriously?

We YouTubed it and saw that it was going to be super easy to replace ourselves.  So that’s what we did.

Yup, $30 and ten minutes later my car looked good as new.

I wish we realized it was so simple a year ago…….geez, don’t I feel silly.

sidemirror

Advertisements

My first Tiny House tour!!!

This past Saturday I had the most awesome opportunity to actually go inside a Tiny House for the first time!!!!!  It was so exciting and now I’m even more motivated to get to the point where I can start building my own.

I had come across the Tiny House Giant Journey website a couple of months ago and I knew that they were going on a year tour around the U.S. and would be coming to New England, but I didn’t know when or if they would be coming through Boston.  Well Friday evening, a girl on a Facebook group mentioned to me that Jenna and Guillaume were going to be in Milton, MA on Saturday.

What?!?!?!?!  Milton?!?!?!?!  That’s fifteen minutes from my house!!!!!!  What’s the chance of that happening?

I had plans Saturday morning to go to my nieces soccer game at noon and the house tour was from 10am to noon, about a half hour away.  So I called my sister and asked if she was ok with me picking her up early because if we could get to Milton for 10am then we should have time to check out the house and still make it to the soccer game.  Of course she was game, she’s game for anything, and that’s why she’s so awesome!

So we got there just before 10am and was able to go right in and check it all out.  I have to say, I was surprised as to how roomy it felt for being a tiny house.  It was great to get an actual perspective of the feel inside a tiny house, other than the gazillion pictures and videos that I have been checking out online for almost two years now.  Now my sister on the other hand, wasn’t as excited and was feeling a bit claustrophobic.  She said there was NO WAY she could live in a tiny house but agreed that it was totally for me.

Jenna and Guillaume were super nice and very informative and helpful with all the questions that were thrown at them, and I learned a lot.

Here are a couple pictures I took, it really is a beautiful home.

10624637_10152731797839318_6491863055429313667_n 10176266_10152731797914318_7061470724301264159_n 1010387_10152731798449318_3271002960406724855_n 10431570_10152731798654318_7729678488845300738_n 1453244_10152731799019318_1926050649181083976_n 10377997_10152731799214318_8919245968526112108_n1146538_10152731799739318_3924968239329137741_n 10622783_10152731800119318_7874215905212026762_n 10710998_10152731800034318_7920105073982581819_n 1796638_10152731798244318_6802921414856780718_n 10712890_10152731800464318_8893704949853214075_n

Homemade natural deodorant/antiperspirant.

Yesterday I was browsing a vegan group that I’m on and came across a post that someone shared about a recipe for natural and chemical free deodorant/antiperspirant. I thought to myself “damn I can make that and would much rather use something natural and chemical free”. Then I looked at the recipe again and realized I had everything to make it.

I couldn’t wait to get home and whip a batch up. So as soon as I got home, that’s exactly what I did. It was so quick and easy.

20140502-181737.jpg

I kept peaking at it to see if it solidified yet, it was like watching paint dry.

20140502-181902.jpg

I put it on this morning then kind of forgot about it throughout the day. Well I just got home from working all day and realized……IT WORKS!!! This stuff is amazing, I had ZERO perspiration all day. I wasn’t actually expecting it to work but it did.

So I want to share the recipe, try it out and let me know what you think.

1/4 cup refined coconut oil
1/4 cup corn starch
1/4 cup baking soda
20 drops essential oil (optional for scent)

Slowly warm the coconut oil on the stove top. Once it’s melted, add in the mixture of corn starch and baking soda. Mix well until it’s creamy. Add in the essential oil and mix well. It WILL solidify so don’t add extra corn starch thinking it’s too creamy. It is thin and creamy when you first pour it but below is a picture of it the next day to show that it does become a solid form.

20140502-183135.jpg

This recipe made enough to fill a 4 oz. mason jar perfectly. Next time I’ll probably pour it into an empty deodorant container for easier application. But scoop out a pea sized amount and rub it under each armpit.

And there you have it. All natural, chemical free deodorant/antiperspirant. It’s healthy, quick and easy to make, for a fraction of the cost of store bought.

Tiny house movement…..sign me up!

Bayside Bungalowphoto from Bayside Bungalo blog.

In my last post, “Burning desire to start anew”, I talked about my recent urge to start over, make something new of my life.  Well it seems I found what I’ve been looking for, now to figure out the logistics and make it happen.

I’ve been watching the “tiny house movement” for years and it has always intrigued me.  But in my circumstances it was never a feasible option.  Now that I am single again, no debt (just my car loan), and looking for a simpler and more enjoyable life…….I think it’s what I’m meant to do.

I am absolutely in LOVE with this tiny house and I could TOTALLY live in a house like this.  It’s beautiful, don’t you think?  I am amazed at their creativity on storage solutions.  And to be honest with you, it has more storage space than my 1200 sq ft apartment.  That’s pretty sad.  LOL  The full size kitchen is amazing, without sacrificing.  However, being a vegetarian who doesn’t cook much, I could probably get away with a more efficient size oven but this shows that you don’t have to.  I would never imagine that you could have a full size refrigerator in the kitchen of a tiny house, and that would be perfect for all of my produce.

The concept of living simple with less crap is so appealing to me.  I found myself sitting there on my couch last night looking around my place at all the stuff I really don’t “need”.  I love my place, it’s beautiful and cozy.  But as I’m sitting there I realized all the things I really could do without.  My big comfy furniture, the big screen tv and entertainment stand, chunky coffee table and end table, the over-sized dining room set that gets used maybe two or three times a year on holidays, the buffet table, the hutch, an organ that I don’t know how to play but it was my great uncles, a 6′ tall bookcase full of books and picture frames, the modern decor and artwork all around…..and this was all just in my living room and dining room.

As I moved into my kitchen, I see how much crap are in my drawers and cabinets.  I have drawers full of gadgets that I never use, do I really need five mixing spoons and three spatulas?  I’m pretty sure I could get away with keeping only one of the two can openers I have.  And I could probably get rid of the four different cheese slicers altogether, since I don’t tend to serve cheese and crackers on the rare occasions that I entertain.  And the cabinets full of pots and pans when I only use one or two.

I could go on and on here through each room of my house, but I think you get the point.  We tend to hold onto things, things we keep in case we might need it but never actually use.  Or at least I see that I obviously do.  My place is very neat, organized and clutter free anyway because I’m sort of an OCD neat freak.  Trust me, it’s a constant source of teasing from my boyfriend.  LOL  So until I really looked around and paid attention to what I have, I never realized how much I hold on to.

So here is my plan of attack, to make this dream of living a simpler life a reality.

Downsize:
I will start going through every nook and cranny of my house and get rid of items that don’t have a purpose.  Sell it, give it away, recycle or trash anything that isn’t a necessity.  If it’s not something I use frequently, I probably don’t need it.  Now I just need to determine the criteria of frequently.  Would it be something I use weekly or monthly?  I don’t know, haven’t figured that out yet.

Research:
This is the part that will consume the most time.  I am one who needs to make sense of everything and do it in an orderly fashion.  I will extensively research different models of tiny houses and determine what I need in my tiny home.  I do know that I want to build it on a flatbed trailer so I can move every couple of years if I chose, and that will help get around some building codes I think.  And I also know that I want to build it “off grid” along with the option to hook up to standard utilities if needed.  But being off grid is huge for me.

Then I will create a list of materials, supplies and prices to create a budget.  I will play around with different floor plans and probably draw plans up a million times.  I’ll spend countless hours reading books and watching YouTube videos on building and codes.  I will network with other tiny homeowners and gather information on do’s and don’ts that they have learned from their experience.  I will need to find a build site and then I need to figure out where I will put my tiny home to live.

Basically, I want a good solid plan to make this as simple and stress free as possible.  Of course I know unexpected issues will come up but if I do my research I can avoid as much as possible.

Budget/Save:
This will be the hard part.  Living on a single income, paying rent, utilities, car loan and insurance, etc.  I will have to get on a mission of saving some serious cash.  I know I can do it if I put my mind to it.

“…You can do it put your back into it.  I can do it put your ass into it…I’m gon’ do it, gon’ do it.  Gon’ do it, do it, do it…”

Sorry I got a little sidetracked when Ice Cube popped in my head.  But seriously, it will be worth it if I can discipline my budget and cash flow this project.

And I want to look into the possibility of getting sponsors to help with materials and knowledge.  I saw on another tiny homeowners blog that this is possible, who’d a thunk?

Build, baby build:
Once all these previous steps are completed, I can get to the fun stuff!  Fortunately, I do have some building experience and I am very crafty.  I was always my fathers little tomboy and he taught me a lot.  I really enjoy building shit, I really do.  Nothing scares me, except electrical.  But, I have several friends who’s hubbies are contractors so I’m hoping I can work something out where they will help me on those days for some good pizza and beer.  LOL  Or for a nominal fee.  But I’ll be doing most of the labor all by myself, other than recruiting some help with heavy lifting and task where you need more than two hands.

I am obsessed with the concept of living rent free and building my own home and owning it, even if it is tiny.  I am even more obsessed with the concept of living off grid and not spending hundreds each month on utilities and being self sustained.  It blows my mind to think of how much I could be putting into savings each month if I wasn’t paying rent and utilities.

Now that I’ve made this entry far longer than I planned, I guess I will end with how super stoked I am about this project and how I really want to do everything I can to make it happen.  And I will ignore those who will be against this venture and just soak in the positive people and do what I want to do for ME.

If you have read to this point, thank you so much!  And if you have any input on this subject I would appreciate any of it.  Please share the good, the bad, and the ugly……I need to know it all.

Peace!

I can’t stop searching tiny houses, so here are a couple of my favorite sites so far.  Enjoy.

Tiny House Build  (This is my absolute favorite)

Bayside Bungalow:  A tiny house for nighty rental

The Tiny Tack House:  Tiny…..It’s kind of a big deal

The Tiny Life:  Tiny houses, Tiny living

I finally found the perfect table!

In my last apartment I had a breakfast counter between the dining room and kitchen. I searched and searched for bar height chairs in the style that I wanted. I finally found them and ended up paying about $200 on them but they were exactly what I was looking for so I made the investment. Well I recently moved and no longer have that cool and chic’ breakfast counter but now I have a full eat in kitchen. So now I was in search of the perfect bar height table to use with said chairs. All I kept finding were table and chair sets and all I needed was the table. I also searched online for a table that I could refinish but couldn’t find anything I liked or for a reasonable price.

Until finally, I found the perfect table! Well a pattern for the perfect table anyway. I stumbled across the most amazing site for patterns on how to build just about anything and now I’m addicted. Check it out, it’s Ana White and it really is awesome. So after checking out the pattern and supply list I decided I could make this sucker myself, and was confident I’d do a pretty good job of it. So off to the home improvement store I went to pick up some lumber and when I got home, I went right to it. I got the table saw out and started cutting, I started slapping on wood glue left and right, the power drill was screwing in screws with swift precision, and away I went. I was an OCD, perfectionist, table building fool! But best of all, I was having a blast.

In the end, there is nothing better than standing back and admiring your handy work and feeling pride for what you have accomplished. That feeling of accomplishment never gets old. And when your friends and family see what you have built and give you the highest praise, you really feel warm and fuzzy inside.

This table is absolutely PERFECT and I couldn’t be happier with how it came out.

59664_10152107640289318_1783583869_n