On Living in a Tiny Home: A Response to Lauren Modery

Read this: https://medium.com/@Hipstercrite/dear-people-who-live-in-fancy-tiny-houses-21fdc639ce55 Made me howl. This is my tiny home response.

Dear Lauren,

I lived with six kids in a 400 sq. ft. cabin in Alaska and a a 200 sq. ft. school bus with five kids (one left home to pursue his own dreams), and I can tell you it’s not that big of a deal. But first, let me say that my tiny houses never, ever look as pristine as the ones you showed in your article.

And kids are stinky — thank God there are doors on the cabin and on the bus! Mexican night required use of the campground bathroom and our Alaska cabin had an outhouse, so no worries there.

As for the clean — yeah. We have stacks of books, cords that run over the floor, dishes in the dish tub, and granola bar wrappers on the floor. We are messy people. We homeschool and work from home so there is stuff usually all over the place. But the awesome thing about living in a small space is that it is super easy to clean up — everything has a place and then a quick sweep and you’re done. Living small is fun and easy.

No, we don’t share a towel. That would be weird. But we do have only one per person. Everyone has a towel that they take to the beach or use for showers or the pool or whatever. We hang them outside when we can or plunk a few quarters in a laundromat dryer. No problem at all.

We don’t have any overalls among us, but I once owned a pair of birks. I own flip flops now — and sneakers. Sneakers for hiking whenever we’re in the woods and flip flops for everywhere else because, as full-time rv’ers, we are rarely anywhere that the weather can’t support flip flops.

I can’t speak to the whimsy of a property because we no longer own one, but that’s awesome too because we make the same amount of money we always did but have way fewer bills and no mortgage. Sometimes we camp for free, sometimes we pay, but it’s always less than we used to pay for all of the stuff that went along with having a big house.

I don’t know who Wes Anderson is and I am not at all worried about a zombie apocalypse, but I do know that we have had more amazing experiences in the last 10 months than we’ve had in the last 10 years. I know my kids are getting the education of a lifetime and I love waking up wondering “what will we do today?” Instead of “Ugh, what do I have to do today?”

Is it all flowers, sunshine and whimsy? Nope. I sleep with a 2.5 year-old in my bed every night and she likes to stick her feet in my pajamas while slapping me in the head and sticking her finger in my ear. I have a 6-year-old and an 8-year-old who not only adore being close to me almost every second of every day, but they love to bicker with each other while they do it.

One night, someone’s bedtime “accident” resulted in my shorted out laptop and another time we slept in the Yukon Territory and woke up to a beautiful snowscape outside and inch-thick ice under the bed.

Sometimes I really hate my husband and there’s nowhere to go but outside. In the rain. Sometimes I’m tired of campfires.

But most of the time, I really like it. And I know that the same could be said about living almost any other life in almost any other kind of house almost anywhere.

Nope, you’ll never see me and my occasionally sweaty, often stinky, and generally cluttered family in a magazine, but you’ll see us at the beach and the Grand Canyon. And that’s all we really wanted anyway.

Show your support

Clapping shows how much you appreciated Michelle Kennedy Hogan’s story.