Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Tiny is not for me

I've become a bit obsessed lately with watching shows about Tiny Houses. And while I know that a tiny home isn't in any future that I've imagined for myself, I keep gravitating toward the programs, the blogs, the books talking about this "tiny house movement."

What most attracts me to the tiny house is the idea of the tiny house and its forced simplicity (and what detracts is the lack of empty space).

I wish I didn't have to have a bed frame, a heavy sofa, a freestanding kitchen table and assortment of chairs. I wish I didn't have to have side tables or media cabinets. I wish everything was built in, instead of movable. And I love the compactness of a tiny home's furnishings.

But there's something I love more...

I love having empty spaces in my home. I love having space to move around. I love being able to clean without having to move a piece of furniture in order to clean under it.

With just under 800 square feet I find that there's not enough empty space for me. So trying to squeeze down to under 400 or even 300 square feet sounds more like an ordeal than an adventure.

I've tried to imagine myself, my guy and my cat going tiny. And while we wouldn't have to take all our bulky furniture, we would need comfortable places to sleep, places to relax, places to work, places to eat. We would need space to store all my sailing gear and my guy's technology.

We'd also need some separate space so that we wouldn't be on top of one another whenever we were in our home. And I just can't envision that if we were to live with fewer square feet than we're living with now.

Even if it were just me, or me and my cat, I couldn't imagine living in such a small space - unless that space was a sailboat. I think I'd go stir crazy if I were cooped up in a space that was only as wide as my arm span.

Perhaps it would be different if I owned several acres and had the outdoors as my extended living space. But most of those places that have the extra space (and allow for a tiny home to be built) don't have temperate climates and outside would only be useful "living" space for a few months a year. I just don't see myself stuck inside a tiny home month after month during the cold months - I'd likely end up like Jack in The Shining. So even with the outdoors as my extended living space I would have to pass the opportunity to go tiny by.

And still I watch those tiny home builds. I am fascinated by the people who choose to go tiny.

I try to imagine how they could possibly do it day after day, month after month, let alone year after year. Especially if they're a family of two, three or more.

Fortunately living minimally doesn't mean living tiny. And while I also don't see a McMansion in my future, having a few extra feet, filled with nothing, sounds divine right about now.

With our lease ending soon we are contemplating up-sizing again - instead of opting for tiny. If not back to 1,200 square feet, then perhaps to 1,000. And while the idea of moving is daunting, having minimized quite a bit this past year, it wouldn't take more than a few hours to pack up all our things.

So while I haven't yet found that solution to maximizing (or rather minimizing) my current space, the solution just might be to finding a new space.

To be continued...