Thursday, March 26, 2009

Tiny House Meetup

In late January, Ty and I drove down to San Diego to attend the Tiny House Meetup hosted by Hillary and Michael over at There were about 10 people there besides me and Ty and Hillary and Michael: a couple living in an older small house in SD who also have a trailer like Hillary; a guy who lives in an RV in the backyard of an older woman and her daughter (who let him live there in exchange for helping them out with chores and such), and his friend; a small-house enthusiast, who just finished building a small cob house in New Mexico and is now working on a second one nearby; and a woman whose strawberry-themed trailer you can see Hillary sitting in below.

We got there early and had some time to hang out and get to know Hillary and Michael before the rest of the crowd showed up. They are living in a very narrow two-level house in San Diego, which is separated by mere inches from the neighboring house. It's funny seeing the house because the two have downsized to such a level that they hardly have enough possessions to fill such a space. They're renting this house while working on outfitting Hillary's trailer and they've already spent some time traveling around in it.

In case you're not familiar with Hillary, she had a short jaunt doing web work for Tumbleweed Tiny House Company and has been living in extremely small spaces for more than seven years. We spent a lot of time talking about living small and her and Michael's various experiences. At one point, Hillary and I were talking about her experience living in a commune and being in this place that was so shut off from the rest of society. I asked her what she thought a better model would be, that still incorporated small living, and she said that for her, the ideal community would actually be a series of communities, so that people were still able to share the benefits of the community, but while encouraging travel and not shutting oneself off to the outside world.

For me, it was so gratifying to talk to other small-housers in person and have the chance to interact offline. So much so that I've been thinking we need to arrange some kind of convention where we can all get together and hash stuff out around a table or room. Chat Room 1.0. If anyone has thoughts on where or how to do that, please shoot me an email.

Hillary has begun work on forming an actual tiny village network and I encourage you to take a look. She is trying to make her vision, of people with moveable houses and people with land coming together, a reality. This is what's needed if we're going to start building infrastructure to make small living a simpler process in terms of residential concerns. Thanks to Hillary for beginning the effort.


tammy said...

Great post! It's so much fun getting together in person. I love the internet, but there is no substitute for person to person conversations. I think google has some type of video chat capability - that might be an option to consider... :)


BananaFlip said...

Hi Amanda!
As always, your pictures are vivid and beautiful - but I especially love the last picture with the cat.
Thank you for letting me experience your Tiny House adventures! Hope this semester isn't to taxing.

Ann said...

thanks for posting pictures to go with your blog. i am some what new to small home living and it's nice to see some interior and fun (cat) shots.

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imagineering said...

hi amanda like your blog Im into making small boats and sheds you can see them on htp://
I live in australia and have land at Gundagai on the Murrenbidgee river,We do renovations as well.

Hailey's Beats and Bits said...


Derek said...

Great- true-to-life, photos....and man, I wish something like this were going on here on the East coast- or if anyone knows of anything- drop me a line....

-Deek D.
Author of "Humble Homes..."