Category Archives: Tiny House Conference

Family Update! March 2015

The kid turned one, spent her whole entire life so far living in a tiny house, what a weirdo! Well more like ‘poor kid, weird parents!’ :). What a great year it’s been though, all those little things I was worried about, about parenting in such a small space, stinky diapers? where does she sleep? are people going to think she’s weird? They have all faded away. (If you’re curious, dumping the garbage takes away the stinky diapers, but really the dog farts are worse anyway… She co-sleeps and we both love it, but she’s getting her own room very soon!… other people’s kids are always ‘weird’ I don’t think she gets any special allowances there, but she’s been called an exceptionally ‘cute’ baby often, I think that is working to counteract the ‘weird parents’ so far.)

Now, we are getting ready for round two and a whole other lot of fears that will soon drift away are starting to surface… I got so uncomfortable trying to sleep being pregnant with hazel that I was simply sleep deprived, that has started, how do you take care of a toddler when you’re sleep deprived!?  When we build the addition, is that going to trigger some neighborhood complaints (the insecurity part stinks…)?  How do I constantly hold and touch a newborn when the other one wants to be held too?  Will Hazel get jealous and feel left out if she has to share me?  How do you handle TWO (probably separate) nap schedules in such a small area?  The list goes on… There isn’t a whole lot I can do about the worry except accept it and trust that it will all work itself out, I think that is all we ever can do, tiny house or not.  I am trying to prepare for the most of it by at least having two separate areas for naps to happen but I am certain there will be times I am ready to cry/scream/walk away… it’s life.  That is where I am at emotionally… physically….

I’m getting bigger!  I think it took a full five months before I even looked ‘maybe pregnant’ with Hazel, I would say at three and a half months I am showing.  It’s kinda that ‘is she chubby or is she pregnant’ stage which a couple people have been kind enough to point out for me :).  I am at the point it is officially uncomfortable to lay on my tummy, oh how I will miss that… that was the ONE thing I missed most while pregnant, more than wine I wanted to lay on my tummy… This pregnancy has been different in almost every way.

With Hazel I was MISERABLE, 24 hours a day I just hated being in my own body.  I hate when people dismiss a pregnant ladies woahs and tell her she should feel grateful, that is the last thing I felt with Hazel, I felt TERRIBLE.  ALL. THE. TIME.  Sure being pregnant is ‘a miracle’, that doesn’t mean it’s always wonderful.  I wanted to throw up 24 hours a day, all day, for TEN MONTHS.  I WISH I could have just thrown up, no, it was the watering mouth, coughs that turn into dry heaving, miserable mess, I couldn’t lay/stand/sit in any position that was comfortable.  Even before THAT point my emotional self was nothing but mad.  I was just angry, sleep deprived and a big mess.

This kid, none of that!  I am happy, I’ve been perfectly comfortable for nearly four months, even forgetting I’m  pregnant at times.  No sickness to speak of, an hour or so here and there but it subsides fast.

With Hazel I worried about so much, I never planned on being pregnant so to be thrown a curve ball and told to run gave me A LOT of overwhelming thoughts that I felt needed to be addressed, midwife, doctor, hospital, home birth, center, who is in the room, what can I eat while preggers, what CAN’T I eat while preggers and on and on… this go round that is all gone, I had a GREAT midwife, I had the best experience, I educated myself on options, I tried to get comfortable with them.  I will do the same here but the majority of the foundation is already under me, which is good, chasing a little one around doesn’t leave a ton of time for more research :).  I feel much more comfortable this go round, that is SUPER helpful for my stress levels.  Oh and the fact I am not working full time for someone else helps.  I still work full time plus some but it’s on MY schedule which is a big deal.

I remember a moment with Hazel, kind of a depressing moment, I was going for a walk with James and Denver and I felt half human for the first time in months, I had moderate energy, I wasn’t so stressed, I didn’t feel like I needed to throw up, it was a nice day.  I knew that second trimester energy boost had hit.  I even told James then, at that moment was probably the highlight of the whole pregnancy (excluding the part where I actually get to meet our daughter…), I felt ‘good’, I knew it was all back downhill after that, I was totally right, but I DID enjoy that day.  This time, I can feel the pregnancy ramping up, I have been feeling TIRED as of lately.  Hazel and I took a three hour long AWESOME nap (I couldn’t do that with her since I worked full time, that probably would have made things easier).  I think I have been lucky to feel this good so far but I think things are moving into the ‘oh, you mean I’m actually pregnant’ phase, time will tell :).  I am ready for whatever.

Miss Hazel had her doctor check up, she is ‘the picture of health’.  She’s gained two pounds and two inches in the last three months bringing her to 21.3# and two and a half feet tall.  She is very proportional and in exactly the 76th percentile for height, weight AND head circumference.  She had a little break from shots last go but this time had to get three.  It was pretty heart breaking for me but she was a trooper.  They had her sit on my lap and I had to restrain her hands because I guess at this age they know enough to swat at things that hurt… I felt like a meanie.  She only cried a second after it was done and then they gave her a book about Clifford and a squeaky toy and she forgave them.  The nurses are great where she goes, they have two give the shots at the same time so it’s not as bad.  I guess they can only tell it hurts and not that it hurts three times at once.  Both nurses came in the door and sighed saying ‘awwww, it’s a cute one…’  They said they fight over who has to give shots to the cute ones… it made me laugh, and also feel bad for the ‘not cute ones’ (but I think they must just say that to everyone :).  She was very brave (and I tried to be too!) and then we went to the park to sit in the sunshine to celebrate it being over.

Denver dog!  Is almost two!  April 24th he turns two!  He’s doing awesome and loving the warmer weather, I get to leave the backdoor open so he can come and go as he pleases in nice weather.  He’s been exceptionally ‘barky’ the last few months, we got a complaint and a visit for having ‘that dog’.  I never much cared because he is almost always barking at the neighbors kids who play ‘war’ with guns in and around the yard… my opinion is that I want him to bark at people with guns… but the other neighbors have different opinions, understandably… so he got a bark collar.  He has a love hate relationship with it, he knows it means he will be getting pet when it goes on but it also means he has to shut it… he tolerates it.

We went on a trip to northern Idaho last week where I got to be an alumni speaker at my collage, that was awesome but we didn’t think we would put Denver through that long car ride again and waiting in the car while we had to do the event etc.  My folks were kind enough to take him in for a few days while we were out.  He got to play with other dogs and have a grand ole time at gma and gpas place, when we came home on Sunday he passed out and has basically be catching up on sleep every since!

The talk in Moscow went well, lots of people showed up which is better than no one showing up :).  We had fun exploring our old stomping grounds (James is an alum of the same program), we saw each others houses and jobs and pasts.  In ten years almost nothing has changed, it was sort of weird.  It was cool to catch up with professors though.   Sort of made us want to move back but then we realized the implications of moving back to a town with a tiny population and no real job opportunities… After that we went north a couple more hours and visited James’s family who recently moved that way.  We all took a trip to their childhood home (he is from those parts originally but grew up in Boise like me).  I was pretty impressed with how well Hazel traveled, she slept the whole way up except about an hour, we had toys and jelly beans for her if things went south but we never needed to use them, she just slept.  Similar story on the way back.   It was a nice little get-a-way.  We are looking forward to another this month for the Tiny House Conference in Portland!  :)

That’s the family update for now!  Here are some random pictures:

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We Got the Best Babies!

Who takes a ten day old on a trip across the country… with an almost one year old Great Dane… in a car… and has literally zero issues that come up?  This girl (and James)!  How did we get so lucky to have such great babies! We all survived the journey from Idaho to the first ever Tiny House Conference in North Carolina.  Now MiniM thinks we live in a mansion compared to the Prius she spent more than half of her life in!  That right there is the trick to ‘families in small spaces’, cram them in an even smaller space for a long time and then a tiny house feels huge!

Ryan Mitchell did an awesome job putting the Tiny House Conference together, it was such a great event, it was SO nice to meet all of the people, new builders and old! 😉  I swear that the attendees were the nicest people ever and they sure made me feel like some superstar (I am just a person people, I haven’t done anything that you aren’t capable of too!), it’s so weird/cool/surreal to be treated that way :).   There were SO many people there that I have called upon to answer my questions over the last few years like Drew, Laura, Dan Louche, Ryan of course, Hari and Karl and Chris and Melissa that it was so great to meet in person.  There was even people that I am too nervous to ask my questions of for fear of wasting their time. (cough cough) Dee Williams was one of the highlights of the trip for me.  She is hilarious, sweet and quirky, I LOVED getting to meet her in person.  She’s such a GREAT inspiration, I am so glad the world has people like her, she is what inspires the rest of us!  It was great to meet Zack Jones, I’d like to get you on Tiny House Chat soon to talk about tiny house codes.  He’s a great resource for LOTS of tiny house issues though!  Sarah and her man-friend were awesome :), Suzannah and Sicily are always amazing, I wish I could have spent more time with you two!  I’m really sorry about your house problems but those shots you got when you got back are amazing!

This one is my favorite!
This one is my favorite!

I really enjoyed talking to Teal and his wife as well as his dad, and I was amazed at the craftsmanship of their tiny house, great option if you’re looking to buy instead of build! And of course the bus!  Kelly was a sweetie and their bus is awesome, I want a bus house now! I have probably left off some important people, I do that sometimes… I’m sorry if I missed you!  It was so great to meet everyone, especially the attendees!!  So many great questions and conversations!

Of course I wasn’t as ‘present’ as I could have been if I was not tending my Little Miss but I hope I was still of some use to others too.   Also because Little Miss M was very happily on both parts tying up my paws I wasn’t able to take many (any) pictures but if you search #THC14 on Facebook a whole bunch will come up that others have taken.  you can also see updates here.  I hear rumors that the Tiny House Conference 2015 will be in Portland, that is a MUCH easier drive for me, I hope to meet even more people there!

MiniM has officially been to 18 states and the Atlantic Ocean.  This makes 20 states for Denver, 30 for James and 32 for me.

these are the states we hit.
these are the states we hit this trip

And here are some pictures from our side of this adventure:

And… Baby giggles!