First Shower In The Tiny House

Macy M23 comments7246 views

It was magic!  My shower has been working and functional for a long long time but without having the greywater system hooked up I didn’t want to use it and flood under the house.  I have been using friends’ and families showers for a while, it feels AWESOME to get to shower in my own house! 🙂 My Eccotemp FVI 12 does a wonderful job!  I do have to turn it all the way up to hot hot and then back down to temp for it to keep heated, if I just turn it half-way it seems like the heater really doesn’t kick on strongly.  It is awesome though, I had a nice, long, hot shower with even heat, no flash hot or flash cold.  I have to also say I am pretty dang impressed with how far a tank of propane has gone.  I’ve been living in my house full time since mid June and started with a little over a half of a tank of propane and I haven’t had to fill it yet.  My stove and water heater are both running off of propane.  I admit I haven’t been cooking up a storm but I haven’t really been shy about it either… I probably use a couple of my burners at least a couple times a week… hot water every day basically to do dishes and wash hands etc.  I’m expecting I will have to fill my little five gallon tank soon but getting pretty close to 6 months out of about 3 gallons of propane is pretty cool.  We will see how much having regular showers out here will affect that.

Another quick review… My heating!  I had planned on using my radiant floor heat as my main heating source which works well down to about 50 degrees.  Any lower than that and it doesn’t quite cut it.  I have been using my radiant heater as a supplement, the same one I used during construction.  I have it on the lowest possible setting and it works really well.  I should also note, I tend to leave the bedroom window cracked a couple inches throughout the day and night.  I do this for a couple reasons, if I don’t at night the body heat builds up in the house and it actually gets too warm by the time I wake up, second, throughout the day it allows things to vent.  It’s pretty tight ventilation wise and I have a large dog who smells… like a dog.  I used to come home and leave the doors open for a while to air it out but I have realized it’s better if I just crack a window and then I don’t have to walk in the door to a wall of dog smell.  I think it helps keep things balanced inside too, not to stale of air.  So it’s a trade off, it’s the best balance I’ve found though between heat and freshness.   The floor MIGHT be enough without the cracked window, but I doubt it.  That being said, I LOVE that I have the radiant heat floors.  My feet stay warm and cozy, it will be great for MiniMiller too so she won’t have a cold floor to crawl around on.  It really makes the space super comfortable even though I have to supplement the heat a tad.

Third, I get to do other projects now!  That’s pretty cool.  Sunday evening I was feeling like a bum just sitting down and watching TV so I decided to sew a little at least while I watched, then I didn’t feel SO lazy :).  Before I knew it I made a skirt!  Not a bad one either!  I haven’t sewed in years, happy to know I have some skill still.

It doesn’t look magical off of me but it is cute, I promise, I’ll see if I can’t get someone to take a picture of me wearing it some day…

I loosely based it on another skirt I have but I added a belly band for my pregger self.  I have discovered that leggings are my new best friend.  I LOVE them, they are cozy and don’t cut across my belly all uncomfortably like pants.  So, I think my wardrobe will be consisting a lot of insulated leggings and skirts!  Also, I started my prenatal yoga class last night.  I have been really concerned about my back since I broke it just over a year ago.  It has been hurting me quite a bit lately with the shifting center of gravity of my body, it’s passed the pain of my foot now (which has also never healed correctly), I’ve got a permanent ‘gangster limp’ I think… both of those injuries are concerning to me as the next months roll on.  I started yoga to hopefully mitigate some of the issues along the way, it was a good class with other pregnant ladies.  My body is surprisingly sore from all the low impact stuff that happened :), sore in a good way.   I am planning on keeping that up a couple days a week until MiniMiller makes her debut!  I also got a back support band that seems to help as well.  The last tidbit is that Ms. MiniMiller is getting a little routine, that is a weird thing to realize.  She’s her own person with her own schedule.  I notice she gets real active every morning first thing, right after breakfast and then again in the afternoon right around 2pm until 4 or so and then again around 8pm. until after I fall asleep.  It’s getting pretty routine, it makes me wonder if that will be her active times after she’s born, if so I am ok with that, I hope she isn’t a morning person :).

One LAST thing I want to mention… in getting prepared for after baby is here I have decided to invest in an upright freezer and some tupperware to make some big meals in bulk and freeze them for easy meals later.  This will let me have some nutritious meals and be able to focus on baby without running to a food store or eating crappy.  In looking at the cost of things tupperware is just crazy, it occurred to me to try a restaurant supply store and looking at some of the take-out stuff they have. 9-x-9-x-3-medium-3-compartment-microwaveable-plastic-hinged-take-out-container-112-case

A lot of the time those things are microwave and dishwasher safe, they have decent seals and seem like they would be ok to separate out a meal and freeze.  Oh, ad they are WAY cheaper!  Any thoughts?  I will probably post a few recipes I find for crock pot meals to stick in a bag and freeze or for delicious looking food stuffs that would freeze well, if anyone has any particularly good resources or ideas on this I would love to hear them!  

The next thing to look into is also going to be insurance for MiniMiller… I don’t need to get into that debacle right now though, I’ll save that rant for later :).   Hope everyone is well! 



  1. Macy, I’m wondering about your grey water tank and what about icky water from, for instance, washing a chicken? Wouldn’t it get grungy inside the tank and wouldn’t one want to add a little bleach or something like that to keep bacteria down? But then, would you still be able to recycle it to a garden?

    1. Teri! Great points! First, I don’t dump any leftover liquids in there if I can avoid it… I dump any leftover milks or broths or whatever out by the compost pile, it makes it so its MOSTLY water going down there. Second, I really don’t cook much with meat, I am not sure how I would handle a long term solution if that wasn’t the case. When I do cook meat I fill up a pot to rinse it off and then dump that water out by the compost too. I imagine it will get grungy in there eventually, I am hoping that by putting the safe soaps down there it cuts the grease and things run through smooth for a while. I think after adding showers to the mix I will make a lot more water than I thought I would so I will send a lot of it down the clean-out and not in the garden… but in the summer I should be able to use it more often and maybe I will have a better solution by then. I should mention too that the water goes through a ‘filter’ of sorts to catch any solids that make it through, the dump out onto a screen that is removable/cleanable and then go through a system that is a series of gravel and then the water gets forced up a pipe and into the catchment cistern to be either used or pumped into the cleanout. The hope being that any greases or grosseness gets caught in the gravel/screen before being stored, though I am sure some will make it through…

      Hopefully some of that makes sense. I am planning on using it for a little while then updating on how well it works and/or what I would/will be doing differently. So far it does seem to be working well.

      1. Thanks, Macy! That all makes sense and made me realize that in my current house I’m so used to having a septic system. In my TH I will have a grey water tank similar to yours and have to separate what goes into it, as you suggested! Tiny-House living takes a little more thought and intention! Thanks for reminding me…. 🙂

  2. those cartons will work but the food will not last as long in the freezer as it would in a proper freezer container. You might even want to slide some ziplock freezer bags over them. The sometimes crack in a heartbeat if you bump them while they are in the freezer. Also if they have the vents in the top like the one you are showing, then you definitely need to pop it in a ziploc because it will completely dry out in the freezer if not. You can buy cheap ‘tupperware’ at the dollar tree that might work better, visit the thrift store, or ask family and friends if they can loan you some of theirs for how ever long you need them. They can just write their names on the bottom if they want them back. Also, there are cheap ‘freezer canning’ 1 quart containers you can use that freeze better and are cheaper. I think I’ve seen them at Winco. I dont see them as often any longer as I used to. I had neighbors that used them to make jam every summer & fall. You might be better off with heavy duty freezer bags and get a couple of corningware type containers that you can slide the meals into to reheat them.

    1. A great idea to slide them in a freezer bag, that would help a lot! I will take a look at Winco for the freezer canning containers, that sounds like a great plan too! Thanks for the input!

  3. I have real bad feelings about using plastic, especially putting hot food in it, even more with microwave. Plastics leach estrogen disruptors which can be especially dangerous for children, and adults, too. But never fear, there are options!

    I do a lot of freezing and have found using wide mouth canning jars to be the most economical way to go. And they make tiny sizes for freezing home-made baby food (definitely the way to go–you can find many blogs with recipes).

    IMPORTANT: before freezing anything in glass you must refrigerate it overnight first. Otherwise when freezing the outside will freeze while the center is still warm, and then when the center freezes it will expand & break the glass. But as long as you pre-chill the jars it’s fine, just leave the cap loose (just sitting on top, not screwed on) until the contents freeze, then tighten down. Be sure to not overfill jar, to leave room for expansion.

    This all seems more complicated than it is, really.

    Another good option is to buy pyrex/glass bowls with plastic lids when on sale. Glass is an investment, but worth it for your health!

    Good luck & thanks for the updates. You always make me smile!
    Peace, Terry

    1. 🙂 It was always my nickname, my brothers are much bigger than me… I have to give it up for the ‘real’ MiniMiller 🙂 I’ll just be MediumMiller now 🙂

    1. Thanks so much Mike, it took way too long for my body to heal because of poor circulation through the winter and then after getting knocked up all my nutrients are being stolen so I’m STILL not getting to heal properly. After MiniMiller comes I look forward to a full recovery! I just have to be careful and aware in the mean time. It’s probably good practice anyway ;-). Kids… they just take, take, take :D. Hehehe!

  4. Macy, have you tried Foremost Insurance? It’s where I have my tiny insured through (and though the policy was briefly cancelled, they just re-defined the structure and re-insured). I pay about $500 a year for it and it includes fire, water, etc. Plus, the insured value is based off of pre-fab tumbleweeds (which are much “pricier” than mine but I feel it’s justified given the amount of work and creativity/uniqueness of the tiny)… Let me know if you want more info 🙂 🙂 🙂 AND CONGRATS on the hot shower!!

  5. Forget the restaurant take out containers in the long run they won’t last and food won’t keep in them, you’ll be throwing money away with them. Go with glass, the type with the loc-n-loc seals are awesome. You can cook in them in the oven or microwave and food freezes great in them. Or go with Vacuum Seal bags if you just want to put things up in the freeze. Glass jars keep food nicely in the freezer too. One of the questions on every survey when you find out that you have cancer is “do you ever cook food in plastic or Styrofoam?” Plastic and Styrofoam leaches into your food when it’s heated. Glass doesn’t.
    I miss my deep freezer 🙁

    1. Vacuum seal bags are a great plan! I forgot about those! I definitely wouldn’t be cooking in them either way, empty it out into a pan or plate to reheat. I don’t think they would hold up well though to freezing either. This is why I like to post things, I get great feedback, thanks so much for your two cents!

  6. there is no way to explain to anyone else what it feels like to have indoor plumbing for the first time. We now have a toilet, kitchen and bathroom sink with hot and cold water and working on the shower now. The first time we got to use our own toilet indoors and didn’t have to drive to the city park bathrooms was a WONDERFUL feeling of independence and luxury. I think you know exactly what I’m talking about. Congrats on the expectancy.

      1. And we love your shower floor! Looks like we have very similar tastes. The tile we picked for our bathroom is also similar to yours. Oh, and we will also have rolling doors for our pantry and bathroom. Great minds think alike.

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