Today we are so excited to have you read a piece by Dawn, who has been living in Harmony House for over 7 months now. We get a lot of questions about how people really live in such a small space, and so we thought she could tell it best!
Well, here we are, fast approaching the heart of darkest December. The nights are long and cold, the moon pearlescent and close. I'm putting up coloured lights, thinking about Solstice, elves, flying caribou and random acts of kindness, perpetuated by a man, dressed like a mushroom, who flies up and down chimneys.
When people ask me how living in the tiny house is going, all I can honestly say is, "great". This is somehow (I know) woefully inadequate. Let's face it, a little magic and some drama are what makes a good story. I can only report that learning to live in a tiny house has lacked drama. I suppose I could wax on about the alchemical attributes of photo-voltaics, or the magical flame that heats water, fueled by the vapors from liquid propane but... seriously. Whether the systems would actually work, which might have been a concern as we were building, has dissolved into the functional reality of everyday life. I had a fine summer of running all systems & parallel systems without issue. The 12volt DC truck fridge I was awaiting came in July, is of great quality and holds everything I need it to. Even the logistics of where stuff goes and how I actually use it, ( as compared to my plan) was a minor adjustment. I switched the side I lift up on some storage bins. I moved my clothing from the loft to the little cupboard by the front door. I hung my instruments on the wall and put up a second set of brackets so that I can move the ladder when the table is up.
The only fly in my ointment appears to be finding the "right" piece of land. ( Any ideas, I'm open). There was a problem with the propane regulator when temperatures first dropped below zero. (OK - THAT made for a very cold, and vocally expressive, shower one morning.) But that was fixed and here we are. I've even had high-speed internet hooked up. (With minimal eyebrow raising and maybe even a twinkle of admiration.)
This winter I'm recording weather, battery levels and indoor/outdoor temperatures daily. This aids immeasurably in learning how to regulate electrical use & heating. My Morsø wood stove is great and all that insulation is paying off. Even with so many windows the house is holding heat in an astonishing way. The challenge was learning to build the right size fire, relative to the outdoor temperature, and then experimenting with how long I can let it go out for. On the coldest day/night so far ( -7) the fire was out for over nine hours & the house was 11 degrees. Not a temperature you'd want to hang out in, but no threat to one's water pipes.
I'm still researching and contemplating window coverings that will look good and retain heat at night. I still need to finish the area around the fridge (now that it's here). Mostly it's like living in any house. Somehow though - now here's some real magic for you - everything money, time and energy consuming is decreased, and the joys are expanded. The tiny house calls for daily deliberateness, an intentionality, that in itself, brings many rewards.
So, all is peaceful and cosy here in the tiny house. Recently, I did think about the fact that I can't hold large gatherings now, but that will change when summer cycles around. There's a alot to be said for allowing time and space to simply be what it is and aligning yourself with that