Plans Moving Forward and Update

It’s been a while since I have done an update on life things so I was thinking I would do that :).  When I started this, one of the main reasons I wasn’t ‘inhibited’ is that I didn’t have a family and didn’t plan on that ‘for a couple years’.  Well what I thought would be a 6 month build turned into an 18 month build, I have been living here for about 8 months and MiniMiller is on her way in a few more months (man that ‘couple years’ goes FAST!).   One thing I didn’t consider in the grand scheme of things is just how well this is suited to the first year or two of life with a baby!  I am once again finding more reasons why I am so glad I jumped off the tiny house cliff and jumped in with two feet!  The BIGGEST thing I am grateful for is the fact that my ‘living expenses’ account for about $250/month for rent and utilities, that plus food and we’re set!  What I am HOPING for is to be able to cover that stuff at this point with side projects and blog income.  What that allows is for me to raise my daughter!  I don’t have to work my tail off exchanging my hours for rent payments and daycare.  I get to focus on her and the things I am passionate about!  What more could you ask for!  That is a short term plan, the long term plans are developing yet.

The details of our short term plan is this (I realize I am giving away some ‘free ideas’ to others’ here but I think even if someone else did exactly these projects I would still have meaningful and unique info to contribute I think and MOSTLY, I want feedback so I can make sure that anyone’s question areas get incorporated!):

1) I have FINALLY been prompted (by you great people) to put together a set of plans of my house design that are worthy of construction.  This is SO painful for me to do for an existing project, really I should have done it before building but I wanted to get right to the fun stuff.   The goal is to have that available before MiniMiller comes along in March.  It will be a very user friendly set [hopefully] and will look a lot different than many constructions sets you find.  My feeling is that a typical set can be hard to read so I am going to try to address some of those issues while building in a few options to the set.  If you have any suggestions I am all ears, so far I will have an option for a bumper-pull AND goose-neck design, w/ or w/o the patio and some footing details in case you’d like it built on a foundation vs a trailer (and have the ability code-wise to do so).  I am even going to try to figure out a way to get a bath tub in there! (I am pretty sure I have that one solved… it may not make it into the ‘official’ construction set but I am thinking it can be an insert that show how it’s possible :)).  My goal is to make the simplest but most comprehensive set I can so that even those with no construction background can build from it.  I will be selling these as opposed to giving them away since it is a significant amount of work, proceeds will go directly to MiniMiller though if it makes you feel better ;-).  If you want to get a direct notification (and probably a coupon for being such an awesome person and prompting me) feel free to sign up HERE. (I don’t mean to beat this dead horse but I know not everyone reads everything and I am still getting emails asking for this so I just throw it out there as much as I can for now :) ).

2) I have had the idea to put a book together after completing my tiny house that would help others who may be interested in doing the same thing.  The book has morphed over the months but would include a nutshell version of what I did and why (and what I would do different next time!) but also why you may want to go a different route in some cases/regions.  I am working on this right now (this is my call for input if there is anything specific you’d like me to share/research more and include).  At this point I have actually decided to break it down to 4 smaller books because it is A LOT of info and not everyone may want all of it so it gives the option to just get the pieces you want.  Book 1 would be about the legalities, selecting a trailer/foundation, permitting, minor touching on code issues (Ryan has done a pretty good job on that one though in his book Cracking the Code), parking options etc., the not fun stuff but the critical stuff to consider before getting in too deep!  Book 2 would be about framing, types and whys of which methods you may choose from SIPS to metal studs to traditional wood etc.  There is a lot of information to cover here but it would basically be an overview as it applies to tiny houses.  Book 3 would be about MEP (mechanical/electrical/plumbing) consideration and all the options I can possibly think of there and the why’s or why nots as they may apply to you personally/regionally).  Also in here would be potential heating and cooling systems.  Book 4 would be on design and space considerations.   This seems like maybe the least important but it is what I do and is what I am most excited to get to! :)

So those are the projects I have been getting jazzed about and started on… well that and there is that whole co-sleeper and making a baby thing :).  I was able to work on the co-sleeper a little more a couple weekends ago and just haven’t had time to update here yet.  I think I will be able to put in some hours on it again this Sunday maybe get it done (cross my fingers!).   Here are the updates with that:

And the pregnancy… I need belly pictures, she has definitely grown, I will wait to update on that until I am able to snap a few pictures of my fat belly!  :)  She is very healthy and active still though!  I also hear that mom has the baby quilt top all together now, I need to get a picture of that to update, it’s going to be cute!   I think that is all I have for now, I hope that everyone has the best year of their life underway!

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17 thoughts on “Plans Moving Forward and Update

  1. Macy,

    There are some very interesting new insulation materials coming to market from gas filled panels, R5 exterior insulation, to mushroom mycelium and aerogels. I was wondering if you will discuss insulation options in your upcoming tiny books? I have been doing some research from one of my clients that is looking for an insulation material for narrow walls. Let me know if you would like info. In some cases the manufacturers will supply a small sample as well.

    1. I will definitely be talking insulation as well in the framing book and looking into some of the newest alternatives then too! Narrow wall insulation is a good item for tiny houses where space is limited, let me know if you find any magic ‘fixes’ :).

        1. Deal! I will have both of those options and a few others (other natural/non-toxic) covered in the framing book! Thanks for the feedback!

  2. Macy,

    Thank you for sharing your information with the rest of the community. Among the research done on Tiny Houses, yours is the most inspiring and fun to read.

    Wanted to share some research I had done on self-publishing, hope to help you.

    FINISHED MANUSCRIPT
    Highly recommended your finished manuscript is in EPUB format, the industry standard. CALIBRE is a very popular, free ebook management application and offers the largest options for conversions. According to statistics, over 600k monthly installs worldwide as of 12 months ago.

    APPLE iBOOKS
    Although Apple takes standard 30% cut, you need to use an aggregating service to help with the publishing process because Apple does not accept submissions from individuals because most do not have an ISBN number (this will later help push your books towards Kindle and other devices). To push your eBook sales, the most efficient tool is to get included on a section called BREAKOUT BOOKS – Editor-picked list of the best self-published books.

    KINDLE DIRECT PUBLISHING
    Without doubt, incredibly efficient. Here’s an interview with Mel Sherratt, whose first ebook “Taunt the Dead” skyrocketed to #3 best-seller upon release:
    http://www.techdigest.tv/2013/05/qa_mel_sherratt.html
    https://kdp.amazon.com/kdp/self-publishing/signin

    Here’s the information on AMAZON Pricing:
    https://kdp.amazon.com/help?topicId=A29FL26OKE7R7B

    Here’s the information on AMAZON Royalties & Sales:
    https://kdp.amazon.com/help?topicId=A30F3VI2TH1FR8

    Hope this helps,

    Federico

    1. This is awesome info! Thank you Federico! There is actually quite a lot to learn there aside from just gathering the information for the books! SUPER helpful, I will dig through all of this closer!

  3. Macy, I know this is personal, but I remember your significant other being excited about the baby when you first revealed your pregnancy. Yet we have heard nothing more about him. I sincerely hope he is still part of your life and will be part of minimiller’s life too. Children need their daddys too. Thanks for including this in your updates.

  4. Macy, glad to read such a positive post. You ideas to publish plans and book(s) are a great idea.
    A couple of suggestions: To reach a larger audience, in your Book 1 don’t limit your writing to just tiny houses on trailers. Also talk about more permanent concrete pier foundations (and other types) that people may want to build on. Just a few pages should provide an overview. Also in your Book 3, talk about the basics of 12V electrical systems, solar panels and batteries. This would give builders options beyond 120 volt systems.
    I’m glad to see you starting off 2014 with such great plans.
    Dave

    1. Great suggestions! Thank you! I am planning on writing about 12V systems, I admit this is the area I need to research the most on, since I didn’t actually go that way :). It is important though! Thanks for the feedback!

  5. Funny, just yesterday I was looking on your blog for the deep freezer and what brand you bought! Apparently you didn’t even have it yet…this is a route I’ve considered for freezing a week’s worth of meals. Where did you get it?

    1. You know, I have no idea what brand it even is! Haha! My brothers got it off of Craigslist, it was a temporary freezer a family bought while they remodled their kitchen. I’m sorry I’m not more help! I’m usually more astute than that! :)

  6. Are you planning your book(s) as an e-book primarily or printed? If printed, you might still want to do a single book but divided into the sections you have. This will be cheaper to print even through the places designed around small print jobs. If e-book then sold separately does make more sense based on what you are trying for. When it comes to your plans, are you going to put samples out? Of the designs i’ve seen so far, i like how yours has come out and am surprised at how small the space actually is.

    1. I was just planning on e-books but honestly, I’ve never even thought of doing that before so now I am digesting everything that I can… I think ebooks make the most sense though… As for the plans I’m not sure what you mean by samples? Like showing some of the pages? I suppose it will be a good idea just so people can see if they re something that is readable and workable for them… Thank you so much for your kind words toward my design :), I appreciate it!

    1. That would have been smart to start! I really should be more consistent, it’s amazing how ninja I can be when avoiding a camera! :)

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