Tiny Addition

30 days into the tiny addition

“Some people grumble that roses have thorns; I am grateful that thorns have roses.”
-Alphonse Karr

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When I bought some land this summer on the outskirts of town, I knew I was going to need to add a kitchen. Since moving to Boise I’ve been a huge supporter of the valleys variety of restaurants, so much so that I didn’t put a kitchen in my original tiny house plan. I also knew that because I wanted to make my tiny house permanent and off grid I would need to put in a fireplace to heat it.

On October 1st my mom and I set out to do what we had done 20 months earlier and build an addition onto my original tiny house, doubling it’s size to 220 sq. ft. This time around we faced some additional challenges, no power, no water, plus being a ways away from anything at all. It’s far from being finished, but in 30 days we were able to get the place buttoned up for the winter.

I’m a big believer in the ‘get what you give’ philosophy, however, in the course of the last month the scales have unequivocally been tipped in my favor. Nearly every day I have been astonished by the kindness and generosity of others, from building supplies to food, that near strangers have brought by.

The reason my land was so cheap is because it had no utilities to speak of. I plan to do solar so electricity was a non issue. My family has had to put in septic and leach fields before, so that was doable as well. However, getting water was a big question mark, but I went ahead with the purchase knowing that everything is figureoutable. A couple weeks ago as my mom and I were dutifully chipping away at our to do list, a truck pulled up and I was introduced to Jay (the mysterious owner of all the cheat grass covered land that surrounds my property) and Dan (a resourceful Angus cattle rancher, who needed a place to graze his cattle). They were inquiring about the water situation and I explained all the dead ends I had run into: a caved well, water being 400′-600′ deep, grandfathered in water rights etc. As it turns out that “caved well” was nothing more than a clogged pump and the next day they were putting up fence and building a well house and offering to run water to my house if I would keep an eye on the cattle. ARE YOU EFFING KIDDING?? If I had one wish it would have been for water! If I had won the lottery I would have spent the money on getting water! I would have bottle fed every last one of those cows had they asked, but instead I simply needed to notify Dan if I didn’t have water because that meant the cattle didn’t have it either.

Seriously, simple as that, and on Nov. 1st my 30th birthday, I was able to turn my faucet for first time in 5 months and see water rushing out.

Categories: Tiny House | 12 Comments

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12 thoughts on “Tiny Addition

  1. Amazing Kristie! How wonderful! Happy birthday!

  2. Zach Diaz

    Love the details of how you have adjusted so well to rural life. Running water is something us ¨City Slickers¨take for granted. Now you can take a nice shower and enjoy the scenery! I would love to be your neighbor for how resourceful you are Kristie:) How about updating some pics with you at work!

    • Thank you Zach, I get so busy not to mention dirty that I often forget to stop and take the time to snap a few pictures. I resolve to do better and will keep you updated :)

  3. anotherkindofdrew

    I would LOVE to see some bigger photos to see how the new kitchen built in with the preexisting tiny house!

  4. Lauren Neher

    What have you got for a fireplace? I have been thinking for a while that a smaller version of the Russian furnace with a large brick mass to catch and radiate heat would be good for a non-mobile smaller house like your.

    • Ya I did get a propane fireplace from a local pawn shop for $125. It’s pretty large compared to my space but I just love the look of it, even though its in the addition side of the house I can still see it from my bed in the loft when I’m going to sleep ahhhh

  5. Tracy Lawrence (Off the Grid) Roller derby name :)

    Think that’s amazing about the water. I have no running water myself. Ive been here in the woods since Nov 2009. I hauled water in 55 gal drums for quite awhile. I even caught rainwater on my awning. Very good for washing hair. Now I have hoses hooked to a neighbors house. I do yardwork and get water and access to laundry facilities. Thanks for sharing your story. I’m living in a 40ft camper but have a 12x 20 barn I want to turn into an off grid cabin.

    Merry Christmas.

    • I know it is amazing I’m still just so grateful. I didn’t know how long I was going to be hauling in water.

      That’s really cool that the neighbors let you hook up. I’ve always loved the idea of remodeling a barn, that’ll be incredible. Good luck!

  6. Jay

    Kristie is way too kind. What a great neighbor to have. It is so nice to see other people to have a “can do” attitude. It is infectious inspiration. Thanks Kristie. Jay

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