They call it the “Tiny House Revolution” — the apparently growing movement to downsize your living space to maximize financial security, independence, simplicity and freedom.
I don’t have stats to prove this movement is growing, only a sense of how often I’m seeing this kind of thing in the news and a gauge of my own web traffic — terms like “Alternative Living Spaces” and “living in a school bus” are consistently among the top things people search for that bring them here.
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It’s a bit more lonely in my home office than in recent days. I didn’t even know I was missing anything, but after my husband found a lost Chihuahua just before Christmas, I found — and my whole family found — surprising pleasure in its presence.
We loved the sound of his little feet scurrying across the floor, the feel of his warm body snuggling onto our lap or beside us in bed, the sound of his plaintive whining when a favorite person would leave the house. We called him “Cookie,” because that was the incentive my husband used to lure him closer after he’d been hanging around his company’s business park for a few weeks.
We brought him home just before Christmas. He was skin and bones, all painful angles. He smelled. One of his legs was had gotten entangled in his collar, which resulted in a painful-looking abrasion. And, yet, we avowed big-dog people saw light and love in his eyes. We’re probably too soft-hearted for our own good. But what else could we do? Here was an obviously lost dog — a tiny thing with very little fur to protect it from the cold — that was clearly injured and hungry. Could we leave him to his fate? Obviously not.
After taking some pictures, we called all the local shelters, posted in every online place where local people hang out, and, finally, put up a flyer at the local convenience store at the center of town.
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I had nearly given up on having tomatoes at all this year — they kept getting munched — but the fall cool-down is making for tomato heaven. It’s cool enough for flowering and pollination, but not cold enough to freeze them. Long may it last! [click to read on…]
It was bound to happen, of course. We prepared ourselves by buying eight chicks, when we only wanted and expected six full-grown hens. Either they would die in chick-hood, we thought, or one of them would turn out to be a cockerel — as sexing chickens at one day old is an inexact science. Or perhaps, as ended up happening, one would get gotten by a predator.
But it’s still disturbing, especially since we’ve gone so far without any losses. It didn’t help that the one we lost was the only one that was laying regularly — we called her Layla, as a result. It was completely my fault, though I have lots of explanations for what happened. [click to read on…]