BIG Art; Tiny House Post No. 1 – The Week Before

At 1:00 in the morning on Thursday, June 4, 2015, I saw the trailer of my tiny house for the first time.  Since I got a picture at 5:00 from Nat Bearg, the Hearth Member who drove down to Chambersburg, PA to pick it up, I had been jumping around and grinning at everyone.  But when he told me he was driving straight back and I would have a chance to see the trailer that night before I flew to Minneapolis to host a Tumbleweed Workshop, I was conflicted.

Tiny House Trailer in PA

In the past two weeks, everything has become real.  With the build starting a week from today, the deadlines are suddenly here and the decisions have to be made.  Who was going to pick up my trailer?  Who would supply the lumber?  Where would I get the tools?  What were the building steps for the first weekend?  Where would I store my materials and tools?  Who was going to help me?

I felt a bit overwhelmed, to say the least.

The panic climax actually came last week when I had all of the questions and none of the answers.  In the face of it all, I left work early and drove to Connecticut to hide in my mother’s house for a weekend.  We drank and ate, watched far too much Netflix, walked on the beach, and finally on Sunday we sat down to look at the plans.

We took the questions, which when lumped together were completely paralyzing, one at a time.  First, we figured out exactly where my tools would come from.  I’ve already had several conversations with friends about what they would be willing to lend me and I put all of that into a spreadsheet.  (See: Miranda’s love of spreadsheets).

Tiny House Trailer 3Next, we decided that Nat should be the one to pick up my trailer.  Why pay someone you don’t know to do something for you when you can pay someone who is part of your community?

This conversation, two weeks before the building started, was the turning point.  The first decisions are always the hardest.  They are the moment you take the big lofty dream that’s been buoying you along and send it crashing down to reality, in this case straight into my limited bank account.

Thankfully, once the first decisions crank through the machine that is your mind, everything starts to warm up and come more easily.  It becomes a domino effect: “Okay, the trailer is coming this day which means I need to have the construction by this day which means I can’t go with this company because their delivery is too far out, so I guess I’m going with this company!”

And so things progress.  Rather rapidly, if you’re honest.

This week, I’ve been chugging my way through these questions one at a time.  There are still plenty more, but the longer the completed list becomes the more confident I get.  Having spent $3,500 on my trailer and around $2,000 on my lumber, there’s no going back now so all I can do is plow on ahead.

It was wonderful to feel excited about the project again instead of just paralyzed by the pressure.  That first photo of my trailer, MY trailer, floated me back up to the clouds.

Tiny House Trailer 2

But what would happen when I actually saw it?  Would I feel overwhelmed again and loose the return of my excitement?  I decided to risk it and man am I glad I did.  When I saw my trailer sitting in the parking lot of The Umbrella Community Arts Center, I knew that this insane project of mine was finally happening.  There’s no turning back and I don’t want there to be.

So here goes something!

Tiny House Trailer 1


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