Category Archives: Tiny House

General tiny house ideas

‘How-To Tiny House – 101’ – Now Live!

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(A four part series)

I put together these presentations as a way to help the tiny house community to the best of my ability.  I presented these locally and have had several requests to put them online so here they are!  The actual live recordings didn’t work out but I was able to re-record the information.  It was not the least bit comfortable for me in front of a camera, just like standing in front of a crowd wasn’t BUT I believe in the information and I believe in helping to empower others interested in living tiny so hopefully you can forgive a little camera shy me and find value in the information presented!  This is my attempt at a complete ‘brain dump’ of everything I know and have learned about tiny houses in the last 4+ years!

These are four sessions I have made to cover some of the main tiny house topics.  I know people aren’t interested in all parts so I split them into four different sessions focusing on ‘Construction‘ options, ‘Systems and Utilities‘, ‘Codes and Foundation Selection‘ and finally ‘Design!‘  I hope they can be beneficial for you!


Tiny House Construction

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This is going to be a conversation about the various types of construction you may use when building your tiny house. I will talk about standard framing practices, advanced framing techniques, steel stud construction and SIPs. The great thing about tiny homes is that even the most complex house is pretty basic. Even though this will be a bit more ‘technical’ information I hope it stays simple enough for those not in the construction industry.

In addition to framing options I will get into insulation types, pros/cons and tiny house specific considerations and suggestions when it comes to moisture protection, fasteners, attaching to your foundation and more. This will MOSTLY focus on tiny houses on wheels. I also hope to give you a basic understanding of tools needed for the task and important safety info!

There are approximately 2 hours of information relating to construction, insulation, glazing selection and special considerations – as it applies to tiny homes. This course is formatted to provide the information relevant to you and enable you to make the best decision for yourself. 

Tiny House Systems

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This is going to be a conversation about the utilities and hookups available for tiny houses including pros and cons of each. I will talk about on-grid, off-grid and self contained options when it comes to water, sewer and electric as well as a basic intro to wiring and plumbing.

I will go through all the fixtures and options as far as plumbing, heating and cooling your tiny house. This will be the one where we talk at length about toilets and all the options there ;-).

There are approximately 2 hours of information relating to utilities, fixtures and systems as they apply to tiny homes. This course is formatted to provide the information relevant to you and enable you to make the best decision for yourself. 

Designing Your Own Tiny House

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This is going to be a conversation about how to design your own tiny house. Fact is tiny houses HAVE to be suited for their occupants, there is no ‘one-size-fits-all’ but there are things to consider and think about in your daily life. I will share some of the important questions to ask yourself, some things to consider and give you some general rules and background of design to help make the appropriate decisions. Design is daunting but it’s also systematic and with tiny houses, form really does follow function, there are reasons that one strategy makes sense over others. In addition to talking about the design of the actual house I will touch on designing your lifestyle!

There are approximately 2 hours of information relating to design, materials, and processes – as it applies to tiny homes. This course is formatted to provide the information relevant to you and enable you to make the best decision for yourself. 

Tiny House Codes and Foundation Selection

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This is going to be a conversation around local and national code issues surrounding Tiny Houses. I will talk about the options you have both locally (to you) and nationally, focusing on the permitting process and alternative paths to legalized tiny house living.

As a part of this conversation I will explain the difference between a foundation tiny house and a tiny house on wheels (legally) and the process that each must go through. The MAIN focus of this course will be tiny houses on wheels so I will get into the considerations that will go into picking your foundation (trailer) including both new and used options.

There are approximately 2 hours of information relating to history, zoning, codes and foundations – as they apply to tiny homes. This course is formatted to provide the information relevant to you and enable you to make the best decision for yourself. 

Some reviews of the live sessions:

“It was outstanding !!! – Macy is so full of wonderful information – Thank you for all the time you take to help others.” -Kym

“Comprehensive, informative and fun! Thank you!” – Dani

“Macy — Once again you wowed us with your tiny house series! You answered a lot of essential questions and asked us to consider some questions I had no idea I needed to think about. You are a master at instruction and even if you feel nervous talking to groups, you are a true master of communication and I thank you for giving of your time to teach us all something new.” – Libby

“Macy, thank you for a great final meeting and a fantastic series! I’m not sure how, if I would like it built for me or a more DIY effort, but I am more convinced than ever that a tiny house is for me! You did a fabulous job presenting the information in a logical and systematic way.” – Michelle

“enjoyed the class while learning much I did not know.” -Joe

“Very informative!!” -Fawn

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Family Update August 2015

Just want to do a quick update, I have the feeling this may be the last chance I get to do that before our little family of four becomes a little family of five!  In the last month or so we have been trying to get out of the house a little more and enjoy the summer, the renovation took a lot of weekends but since it’s over we’ve been exploring!

I am getting pretty huge again, I am still a lot less concerned about weight this go around compared to the first pregnancy, I had a hard time putting weight on when I was pregnant with Hazel, even though I am working a lot this go around I am a lot less freaked out and stressed which helps me stay on a better path and I am right on target having gained 25 pounds so far!  It is amazing how much you gain for a small little baby but there is a lot that goes into it that isn’t just a baby I guess… :)  I am feeling much better in almost every way this time, Hazel was a miserable-miserable pregnancy, this time I totally get why people say they didn’t even know they were pregnant until they were so far along… I definitely LOOK pregnant but most of the time I haven’t felt that way.  As things get closer I am definitely much more tired, I find myself often taking Hazel’s afternoon nap with her, or at least part of it… I really think I am down to the last 3-4 weeks.  This is right about the time I stopped working with Hazel.  This go around I am rushing to get a few things done before Mr. T makes his arrival!  I hope I hope!  :)  Stay tuned for that, I SHOULD have an announcement shortly if all goes as planned!

Mr. T is a mover, I wondered which was stronger, him or Hazel for a while, it’s definitely him!  He moves all day long.  It’s nice because he’s not lodged in my ribs like she was (yet) but he is SUPER low which has given me quite the waddle for several weeks now… it’s pretty tough to walk ‘normally’ with a small human lodged in your pelvis… he seems to be doing awesome though at every appointment, He’s been a really easy pregnancy and Hazel’s been a really easy baby, I am so scared that all hell is going to break loose once they meet! ha!

I do think that Hazel ‘gets’ it a little… I think getting a little brother is a pretty abstract concept to really ‘get’ but she has been paying a lot of attention to my belly, she got to feel him move several times and makes the cutest surprised shocked faces every time.  Every night she gives him a hug and a kiss (but then she will kiss James’s belly too…).  I am pretty sure we have a name, it hasn’t really changed much for several months at least, we still have to meet him first to know for sure but ‘Miles’ is at the top of the list still.  At first when I asked if she could say Miles she got a BIG huge grin… then I realized she thought I asked her to SMILE (I didn’t know she knew that word)… she’s since learned and when you ask her where Miles is she will grab my belly… she even says Miles when she wants to :).  She’s got a TON of words and will try to parrot anything we ask her to, some she’s good at, some need work.  Body parts are all down pat now, to the elbows and knees!  She knows most fruits and can identify them at the grocery store, she LOVES mangos, I think she would turn inside out for a mango sometimes…  She has discovered the art of tantrums too! Fun! :)  I have had to catch her head several times before she slammed it into the ground, we all just ignore them as much as possible so hopefully that phase passes quickly… it’s still kind of hilarious how irrational little humans are…

Denver is on a hunger strike, he seems to stop eating in the super heat of summer and the super cold of winter… I feel so bad because he looks so dang skinny!  I thought we got lucky having one of the few danes it wasn’t hard to keep weight on and then right around a year he turned out to be a skinny mini dane… I have tried putting yogurt in his food to get him to eat it, he just licks the yogurt off…. I’ve tried broth, he drinks it and leaves the rest… I have put hamburger in with the kibble and he picks out the big pieces… I would normally say ‘well he will eat when he’s hungry I guess’ but I can see every dang rib!  I feel guilty when we take him to the park and he plays with the other dogs and looks like Skeletor!  So I am trying to put some pounds back on him… James had some leftover Wendy’s chili the other day and I mixed a little of that in and it did the trick, he scarfed the whole bowl… so that is my method right now until he looks like a healthy dog again!   He’s totally happy and active as usual, just looks skinny, this is the third hunger strike he’s had… it MIGHT have to do with the introduction of Hazel slipping him her leftovers… he’s had a taste of the good stuff and is through with those dang brown pebbles!  Hopefully he gets over it soon!

I have some sad news too, my grandpa who was a very special person in my world passed away last week :/.  He was 90 years old and had such an amazing life (a lot of which I am only finding out about now! I knew he always wore a fireman’s jacket but had no idea he was a volunteer fire fighter and even chief for many years!), he was very influential for me.  I grew up spending every summer on his ranch with the cows and horses.  We used to eat burritos, go to ‘the office’ (the country store) and talk with all the farmers about everything, he’d get a coffee and I’d get a candy… He taught me how to work hard and enjoy life at the same time.  He exposed me to things I would have never got to experience otherwise which have shaped who I am as a person today.  He was an amazing man and I am VERY lucky that I get to share his gene pool!   I always felt like we had a special relationship and I will always cherish that…  On a whim, the week before he passed, I invited myself and Hazel on a road trip with my mom and grandma to see him.  I had a feeling it may be the last time I got the opportunity.  While it was great to see him again and he still had every bit of the spark I know in his eyes, he cracked corny jokes like always and was still ‘grandpa’; his body was giving out, his memories were failing.  It was very humbling to see such a great, independent, strong man in the final days of his life.  He was just a guy that was easy to be around, genuine and fun, oh so serious when needed though!  He was truly loved by everyone he met!  And I got to be his grand daughter!  How lucky for me!

Grandpa Z
My grandpa :)
Hazel got to meet him!
He called Hazel ‘twinny’, because they were twins, just separated by 89 years… :)

I am sad that Mr. T won’t get to meet him but he will certainly hear countless stories of the great man that is my grandpa Z!

Here are some random pictures in no particular order of all of our adventures and projects!  We will sit and patiently await the arrival of our little boy!  I hope your world is as amazing as ours!