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Single Mom Converts Schoolbus Into Tiny Home

"Reality: Tiny Home Living 
As I sit listening to the rain fall on the well-sealed roof (roofing tar, folks, it’s a miracle worker) with Mazzy Starr streaming on my Pandora via shared wireless, my feet are propped up on the stove and I sit on my daughter’s bed/the couch, I can honestly say I think it’s going to be alright.
The Hardest Part: driving the bus home, and then up the steep driveway and into this spot. Scary is the right word to describe the overall feel of that event. Other feeling words: anxiety, panic, distress. And then a sense of accomplishment and desire to never repeat the experience.…"
From Anonymous
https://tinyhomebusconversion.wordpress.com/

Artist Celebrates Late Grandfather By Drawing Each Of The 100,000+ Items He Left In His Toolshed

"Talented artist Lee John Phillips has undertaken a project of epic proportions to celebrate the memory of his late grandfather. Phillips estimates that it will take him about 4-5 years to draw all 100,000+ items left behind in the shed by his grandfather, who passed away roughly 20 years ago. Everything from large tools to jars full of nails, nuts and bolts will be covered!
Phillips has been numbering each object in his meticulous project, and has drawn nearly 4,000 at this point…"
http://www.boredpanda.com/grandfather-died-illustrations-tools-shed-project-lee-john-phillips/?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=link&utm_campaign=Newsletter

A Building Permit in Northern New York State for $32

I think this is a good enough comment to bring front and center:

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post http://lloydkahn-ongoing.blogspot.com/2015/03/the-near-impossibility-of-building-your.html

"There are still places where community is good and bureaucracy is limited. In northern New York, we have a small cabin, 14X28, on 44 acres. We bought it as a prefabbed shell, and are finishing it inside as we can. The building permit to set it on a gravel pad was 32 bucks. No problems with a composting toilet, and the inspection to hook up the power, after I did the wiring and ran underground cable up to the road, was 50 bucks. Installing fiber-optic internet was free.

9 miles away is Potsdam, with two universities, and 10 miles further away is Canton, with two more universities. St. Lawrence County was a favorite destination during the back to the land movement of the 70s, and a lot of countercultural folks are still there, still trying to live well and lightly on the land.

It's beautiful there (part of the county is in the Adirondack State Park, and the county is bordered to the north by the St. Lawrence River. Montreal is a couple hours away, and you can make a day trip out of going to NYC, if you don't mind getting home late.

The land is still remarkably cheap, though not as cheap as it was 20-30 years ago. Taxes are high, but in unincorporated areas, with a modest home, they aren't terrible. And what's more, those high taxes pay for a lot of good stuff you don't get in low tax states.

The climate is harsh, of course, but that's one reason the place isn't overrun with people. If, like us, you have a place to go, or can travel during the coldest months, it's a perfect climate.

Best of all, the people there are the nicest, kindest people I've ever run across. I know that sooner or later, I'll run into a jerk up there, but in three summers, it hasn't happened yet. An example: when it came time to hook up the power, it turned out they'd mailed the paperwork to another address. We had to go down to the National Grid offices in Potsdam to get it straightened out. We got into the parking lot, and the guy in charge was outside waiting for us, with the paperwork in hand, ready to be signed.

The same thing happens constantly there, with folks going out of their way to be kind and helpful.

Anyway, there are still Good Places."

$100 Pallet Floor Replaces Ugly Carpet

"We had this weird windowless room with no purpose so we thought to make it a pantry. It needed quite a bit of work to come around to the functional side. Some shelving went in but the floor was a train wreck – awful cheap disgusting carpet.

After that got ripped out, I had to figure out what to put in its place that was sturdy, looked good, and was inexpensive. After visiting a pallet rehabber, the idea was hatched.…"
http://humboldtartdept.blogspot.com/2014/08/the-pantry-floor-is-done-done-done.html

The Tiniest Home in Toronto

"With a footprint of just 29 square metres, (312 sq. ft.) the house is officially the smallest in the city.…the home was shoehorned into the space between two existing properties by Arthur Weeden, a contractor…The tiny parcel of land was originally marked out for laneway access but somehow the curb stones were never lowered to allow vehicular access, rendering the gap useless. Weeden pounced, building a pint-sized home, barely an arm's span wide, for him and his wife. They lived there together for 20 years, content in the tiny space, tending to their vegetable garden and bunking down for the night in the single rear bedroom behind the kitchen.…"

From Godfrey Stephens
http://www.blogto.com/city/2013/04/this_is_the_smallest_house_in_toronto/

Roll Your Own-The Complete Guide to Living in a Truck, Bus, Van or Camper - 1974

Hi guys,

I found this aged photocopy while going through a box of files from years past. It was tucked in with folders of research notes, press releases, rough drafts and galleys of articles for various publications and several rejected or killed stories that I’d had vague hopes of placing in other print media; all this from the days before the Internet. Everything looked so crisp and quaint, especially the neatly typed articles on 20 lb. bonded stationary.

Times do change. Something that has held fairly constant for me my entire more-or-less adult life though is an interest in vehicular living in long or short form.

 I had already been doing it in station wagons and a van by the time I came across this book in my local library. “Roll Your Own” by Jody Pallidini and Beverly Dubin was a classic of nomadic literature, a period companion piece to “Caravan” by Stephen Gaskin and “Vagabonding in Europe and North Africa” by Ed Buryn. I never once found a copy of “Roll Your Own” outside that lone library copy. I ran this copy off a dried-out, tattered, yellowed, and bug-eaten copy of the Whole Earth Catalog if memory serves me. It came out maybe 40 years before Tiny Homes on the Move, proving to me at least that good things never go out of style.

 Nels Norene

Thanks, Nels, I was able to track down a used copy on Amazon for our archives.- LK

100 Wild Huts

"100 Wild Huts is an experimental challenge I’ve set myself to build 100 small survival shelters on any piece of ground that harbours enough natural resources for the build. I intend to sleep rough in each shelter for one night and blog about the experiences. I intend to experiment with the huts form, structure and materiality in the hope that in due course this site will become a useful resource for budding adventurers and outdoor enthusiasts alike!"
Kevin Langan
Edinburgh, Scotland
http://100wildhuts.blogspot.co.uk/

Expedition Camper Vehicles

"Hi again Lloyd,

I would be stoked if you threw my name in the hat of those who build cool, small spaces for that TV show…

I just finished another adventure vehicle…

http://pauljensencustom.blogspot.com/2015/07/fuso-recap.html
It is a 2003 Mitsubishi Fuso that is one of the original expedition campers…It has been to more countries than I can name, from Antarctica to the arctic…Around Australia and lived in full time for two years.…Pretty hard miles when the new owners got it and hand it over to me for a change…I was given a lot of creative space and the results are something I am especially proud of.…Have a look..."

Muscle Shoals Movie - 4-star!

Ran across this last night on Netflix, and is it good! It also seems to be available on Amazon. I knew about Muscle Shoals, but never put it all together. Excellent documentary about background musicians for some incredible singers and songs.

If you happen to watch it, listen to what Rick Hall says at the end, about imperfection.  He says that in the studio there will sometimes be mistakes. Like the drummer might drop his sticks, "…but it's OK with me if he gets right back into the beat." Then he says something like we need more imperfection in recording, meaning the human element in this digital world. Warmth of vinyl vs. sterility of digital. (There will be people who know exactly what I mean here.)

Tiny Homes in Netherlands

"Dear Lloyd Kahn,
For your book of small homes. Here is our tiny house parked in Plugin City that's in the City of Eindhoven.
It is next to the skatepark Area 51 so if you want to come and take a look, bring your skateboard ;)
If you want to know more you can find us at http://www.waterland-huisje.nl
Regards, Reinoud Boland"

Seeking Small Home (or Apartment or Loft) Dwellers in Towns and Cities

We are doing layout of our next book, Small Homes, right now, and we'd like to get more people living in cities, large and small towns, and—yes—suburbs to contribute. Whereas the paradigm for owner builders in the '60s and '70s was a home in the country, it makes a lot of sense these days to fix up small, modest homes in populated areas. Relatively quick, often more economical than starting on a bare piece of land.
Please contact me if you or someone you know is living in a small dwelling of any kind in cities or towns, and which is unique, creative, inspiring, aesthetic, etc.: lloyd@shelterpub.com

Local Food This Week

It's been a good week for food from close by. I went out Friday in my (12' Scrambler) kayak and spent almost 5 hours between paddling and digging (and raking) for cockles and horseneck clams, resulting in clam fritters and tonight, clam linguine. Got 4 rock crabs that were scooting around in the shallows.(Also ended up pretty exhausted.)
Bought a small halibut from a neighbor fisherman, was given 4 rock fish by a friend, and got a bunch of smelt at night.
On Tuesday I was going to hike along the coast and noticed that the cattails were pollinating and got the pollen shown in the photo (you bend the stalks over and shake into a paper bag) -- took maybe a half hour to get this much. I added it to oat pancakes this morning. All our vegetables are coming from the garden this time of year.
(Two weeks earlier I burned up my Evinrude 2-stroke outboard motor (seaweed clogged water intake) AND on same day got truck stuck in the bay and was pulled out by tow truck just as the water got up to the floorboards -- close call! -- but that's all another story…)
Listening to Mojo Nixon's "Loon in the Afternoon" program on Sirius Outlaw Country station right now.

Changes In My Blog

Truth be told, I love doing blog posts. I find so much that's fascinating in my everyday life that I want to tell (and show) others about it. (I have a large backlog of photos and observations that I never get around to posting—hey, how do I get a clone?)

I also enjoy the blog feedback.

Problem is, it takes time, and I need to shift gears now that I've started a new book. Also, I'm probably more useful to more people doing books than doing blog posts. We're getting almost daily feedback on how our books are inspiring people to create their own homes.

I'll try to keep the blog rolling, posting less frequently in the near future.

Also, we're trying to figure out how to get our considerable "content" out via "social media." We're looking for advice on how to coordinate Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter, Tumbler, and our website (drastically in need of overhaul) and 2 blogs to maximize exposure.

I'm especially interested in reaching millenials because, if you'll excuse the mixed metaphor, they're a whole new ball game. I just love these guys—they're looking at the world through fresh eyes.

I've done layout of 12 pages of Small Homes now and am in full gear with it. Contact us if you know of any practical, aesthetic, inspiring, economical and/or homey homes in the 400-1200 sq. ft. range: smallhomes@shelterpub.com

Seeking Builders of Tiny Homes on the Move

We've been approached by a film maker who is interested in telling the stories of people/a person who specializes in converting vehicles into tiny homes that move. Ideally, we'd like to find someone who does this for other people and makes a living/makes a business of it.

Vans, house buses, house trucks, trailers, or sailboats or houseboats. Please contact me if you know of anyone in this category: lloyd@shelterpub.com