Are you a Miny or a Piny?

Still consulting with a contractor on our foundation so we can get our plans submitted to the county for our permit. We’ve decided to go with a structure that is large enough to require a permit. It’ll be 18′ x 18′ and the second story will be a full height 18′ x 18′, too. So, total sq ft (minus the second floor space where the stairs will come up) will be about 600. (I guess I’ll have to update the header image, yet again!)

I had a contractor give me a quote for them to install a cement stem wall foundation. Came to about $6500. That was for just the concrete pour… no floor or anything above it. So, as that is out of my budget, I’ve reverted back to doing it myself (to which I’m sure most of this project will default), and doing the pier system instead of a full cement wall perimeter. That is what I am discussing with the guy that’s doing my permit write up, now. What structural requirements it’ll need to meet…etc.

Meantime, I’ve been doing a LOT of watching videos and reading up on different construction techniques. I think I have the cabin pretty well mapped out in my head as to what materials I want to use…etc. I just have to get the foundation done and I’ll be off to the races.

Side note… in my research, I’ve noticed two distinct themes among the Tiny House movement. You have the group that feels it’s a moral imperative that we (humans) reduce our footprint to the bare minimum and to live otherwise is an immoral choice. I call these folks the Minys (Going tiny because it’s morally superior to living otherwise.) Then there’s the folks that choose to live tiny ONLY because of it’s practicality. It’s cheap, cozy, cool, less hassle… whatever adjectives you want to use. But it’s from a practical perspective only. There is no moral implication from this person’s perspective. I call these people Pinys. (P for practical and M for moral… in case you didn’t catch the references.)

Which are you… a Piny or a Miny? (To clarify, most Minys ALSO are Pinys but Pinys can’t be Minys. Otherwise, they’d just be a Miny, not a Piny.)  Got that?  🙂

I’ll leave you with a picture of our dog, Phinny. Since I hate posting without having at least one picture in the post. Ha!

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Water Usage Reality Check

I got a water flow meter and put it on the shower head that I use.

The shower head I use is also the shower head my oldest daughter uses. We have two heads in the master shower and our girls always take a shower at the same time in that shower and of course, Allison and I use that one, as well. (NOTE: We have 4 places to take a shower in our house and all of us use the same bathroom. Talk about a waste!)

Anyway, Zoe uses mom’s shower head and Haley uses my shower head.

So I was able to measure my shower usage and Haley’s shower usage. My average shower usage is about 23 gallons. My daughter’s average is about 34 gallons. Zoe and Haley stay in the shower for the same amount of time, so you can double that when they take a shower. And Allison, bless her heart, spends more time in the shower than most people spend cooking and cleaning. (Just kidding, honey!)

So, just in shower water usage, I think we probably use well over 2800 gallons a month. To put that into perspective, that is over 50 barrels of 55 gallon drums of water.

Then I measured my shower water usage while doing one of those, water on, get wet, turn off, soap up, kinds of showers. My usage went down to about 7 gallons. And I wasn’t abnormally inconvenienced. I just stopped the water when I wasn’t actually needing it to be on me at that particular time. That’s all.

If we drop our usage down so that it reflects my lower number of 7 gallons and let’s just round up to 10 gallons. Allison and I shower every day. The girls shower every other day, or so. So, that is about 90 showers a month between all of us. That gives us a conservative estimate of about 900 gallons a month in showers.

So it turns out my completely uninformed guess of 1800 gallons a month, in a previous post, was about spot on.

Yeah!