Friday, January 25, 2013

Settling In

It's been just over a month since I moved into the tiny house, but its finally starting to feel like home.  After taking up residence on December 15th, I jumped right into the Christmas season with a trip to New York to help my friend, Joe (Elvis), sell Christmas trees, then it was back to VA for the holidays with my family.  When I finally returned to the tiny house in Richmond, I sat down on my bench in the living room and surveyed all that I had to do.  Build the book shelf, finish the closet, paint the kitchen, build a bathroom door, permanently hook up the water and insulate the lines, install a greywater system...and more.  But, for now, most of the projects are done!

First step was to install a greywater system, since the water from my sink and shower was just puddling under the house.  I found some drainage line with built in geotextile and foam material that I buried in a 10 foot long trench:

The line is under ground, so it's kinda hard to tell if it's working, but the shower hasn't back up yet- so far, so good!  I wanted to change the trim color in the kitchen and use a glossier, easy to clean paint.  Having other projects to work on, I decided to contract that project out to my girlfriend:

The agreement was that I would change the oil in her car and build a bathroom door.  To be honest, I probably would have just lived without a door, but since she wrote it into the contract, I was obligated to get it done.  Not only was it not as difficult as I thought it would be, it turned out great!  I used some of the left over rough sawn poplar and got some replica hinges from Pleasants Hardware (a store I wish I had discovered at the beginning of this project- they literally have "most anything").  Its now one of my favorite features in the house:

The closet was another easy task that I kept putting off.  Having shelves and a rod to hang clothes on is a truly amazing luxury!

Even more beautiful is my book shelf that I made out of the wormy maple.  I assembled it in the big house (its great having all that storage/work space!), and it came together very well.  The height was perfect, but once I got it into the tiny house, I realized that I couldn't fit it under the loft beams and stand it into place.  So, I had to take a gamble and chop half an inch off the bottom legs with the skilsaw.  Thankfully, it still looks great!

Oh, and those cabinet doors you see in the background?  I went to install them with some brand new hinges the other night, and for the life of me, I could not get them to rest in the closed position.  They just kind of hung out there, an inch or two from the cabinet face.  After literal hours of trying to adjust things and staring at them, I figured out that the angle on one or two of the hinges was just slightly different from the others, and thus it wouldn't let the door close tightly.  So, I had to exchange them at Home Depot, and thankfully the replacements worked just fine.  Very frustrating though. 

Also, on that bookshelf you'll see some pots and pans and plates.  I've been using some plastic spoons and a bowl for most of my rather meager eating, but I finally found some kitchen items, so hopefully I'll be able to start cooking more wholesome meals :)

I needed a way to store my common toiletries in the kitchen since, well, my bathroom sink is right next to my stove.  I found some nice little baskets at the Family Dollar store for my toiletries and flatware:

And lastly, I've had a couple of tours of the place over the past couple of weeks.  My parents and brothers came down for the day to tour the house and the Virginia War Memorial.  A couple from the Tidewater area came to Richmond for their anniversary and a tiny house tour- sounds like another house on wheels might be coming to VA!

I'm at the library and snow is just starting to come down...can't wait to burrow under the blankets in my sleeping loft and wake up to a winter wonderland!