Friday, December 31, 2010

The new Cool, Welcome to the 21st Century

I've already begun to downsize my "stuff."  I've managed to eject several things that have been simply occupying space in my universe by passing them on to someone who will appreciate them more and possibly use them.  I didn't use these things that have left my grasp but I did appreciate them.  That's why I didn't simply throw them away.  Admittedly, simply disposing of things may have an adverse affect on our environment so the second part of my two pronged attack on consumerism is to want less; to buy less, and to appreciate and use the things that I do purchase.  Here is a great article from Ecominima that I found about facing the New Minimalist Century.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Marksbury Farm Market now open

I believe in shopping locally when I can.  I figure if'n I have to give my hard earned money to somebody, I'd just as soon give it to somebody I know, or someone locally instead of giving it to someone I don't know.  I am excited to promote the new Marksbury Farm Market that is now open on KY Highway 27 South of Rocky Top in Garrard County.  I grabbed this picture from their Facebook photo gallery.  The Advocate Messenger newspaper did a pretty good story on them a little while ago and that story has been bouncing around inside my head trying to get out since I read it.  You can find them just off the road behind Camp Dick Elementary: they're address is 73 Fisher Ford Road, Processing Facility at 7907 Nicholasville Road
LancasterKY, 40444.
I like this idea for all the reasons that Farmer's Markets are great but support the local economy is tops on my list.  Some of these people may be my friends and neighbors so I'm all about helping them succeed.  Also, buying foods that are locally produced means I get the best quality for my family and getting the best for my family has always been a primary objective for me.  I've also posted a real good article about eating locally produced foods on my Facebook page that I found posted by Ryan Mitchell of The Tiny Life blog.

Now, I have to admit that I have not been into the market yet.  But I intend to begin to shop there once I figure out how to get to the property and what types of foods that I can replace from my normal marketing list.  And this relates in a sort of parallel way to my post from yesterday about homegrown prosperity.  I just love the synergy of all this type of stuff.

Hey, that's about it for today.  Hope y'all are planning to be safe as part of your New Year's celebration.  Let's get out there and make it a great day!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Homemade Prosperity by Shannon Hayes — YES! Magazine

This article by Shannon Hayes is just great. She has outlined the precept of escape from the monster of consumerism:

Caught in the consumer trap? Radical Homemaker Shannon Hayes discovered that producing what she needs at home lets her live on a fraction of what she thought she needed.
Shannon has decanted the elements of sustained living in her review of the evolution of consumer mentality. I know that this is probably not new news to many but the direct presentation of so very refreshing that I fell in love with this ideal the first time I read about the shift away from the "buy it now" mentality that I was awed. I strongly recommend that you stop by Shannon's blog as well as read her article: Homemade Prosperity by Shannon Hayes — YES! Magazine

Pumping ions: gyms generate clean energy from muscle power | Eartheasy Blog

This is too cool to pass up. I found this link while reading on the website blog about creating our own power from exercise machines. Of course, like so many of these interesting ideas, this concept is still in it's infancy and needs some real engineers to work out (hahaha) the mechanics of how to convert and capture the energy that we expend while riding an exercise bike or an elliptical, but it's possible. I would guess that this really cool idea will not take off because most people don't want to fool around with the mechanics of the collection. Most will just as soon jump on the equipment and workout. I would consider this "working off" my energy consumption requirements. Shoot, if'n this could charge my cell phone or laptop, I'd be real close to zero emissions in no time. Of course I'd have to add a space in the Tiny House for an elliptical or spin bike to be used as a generator, but the additional space would be well worth the modification for self sufficiency.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

I feel like I should apologize for being absent for a few days.  I have really enjoyed the time spent with family but I am amazed how many of my fellow bloggers have unplugged themselves from their blogs and simply laid off.  I guess it shouldn't really surprise me but I am surprised.  It would seem that many find it appropriate to take some time off during the holidays and concentrate on family and friends so I don't feel so bad about not being here.

Hey, maybe y'all have been unplugged also, so we really didn't miss each other all that much.  Maybe everyone just focused on the important things like family and just let the Internet go to hell on it's own.  I doubt that...most probably it's just me and my inexperience as a blogger.  Most everyone else already knew that the blog traffic would be down anyway so they just used the slow spot for fun times at home.

Pretty cool in any case.  I'm glad to be back and looking forward in anxious anticipation of the new year and the ever changing landscape of Tiny Houses.

Speaking of Tiny Houses, I spent some time with a good friend, Tim, to find out that I am not restricted by the 120 square foot building restriction that constrains most enthusiasts of the Tiny House Movement.  Tim would know because he is one of the building inspectors here in Central Kentucky.  I availed myself of his handbooks and manuals and stuff to review the local as well as national building codes to make this determination.  We spent the best part of an hour discussing the nuances of the code to determine what restrictions apply when building on my own land and how I can proceed with our plans while maintaining a quality building that adheres to code.  I am pretty excited about this news.  This means that Laura and I have some new design questions to discuss.

Hey, I gotta get otta' here.  Thanks for stopping by.  Let's get out there and make it a great day!

Thursday, December 23, 2010


I have been working on reducing my stuff from a monster of a pile to a smaller more manageable heap.  I posted a few things on Craig's List and am not having any luck selling things.  I may end up simply giving things away to actually get rid of them.  That will prove more emotionally difficult but I intend to follow through anyway.  I just want to be owned by less stuff.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Ride on Ghost Rider

OK, I'll admit before I make you read this entire post that it's kinda sappy and introspective focus is probably motivated by the holidays.  There, I said it, and if'n that makes you sick because you just can't stand another version of "It's a Wonderful Life" story, you can just stop reading here.

But if you're still with me, I want to tell you about a really cool lesson that I've learned over the last few years that became focused this morning at 5:00 a.m. as I was riding that torture machine we like to call the elliptical.  No, it's not really torture and I do get a chance for some personal time to reflect and review.  That's what was happening when Reba came on my headphones (yes, I wear headphones listening to music AND reflect on some personal issues at the same time) with the narrative story of The Christmas Guest.  This is a touching story about the love we are suppose to share all year and how that love is focused at Christmas as we infuse everything about our lives with the love of Jesus.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Greener all the time

Here's another great idea that I found from the people for saving some money, if you're willing to spend some money up front.  LED light bulbs for everyday use.

Now I know that most people are gonna freak out about paying an average price of $35 for a light bulb.  Hell, I find myself flinching as I type that figure.  But the savings over the projected life span of the bulbs you are replacing can be enough to justify the expense, maybe.  (Updated)

Monday, December 20, 2010

More than a little weird

This is the movie poster from the 1988 Rowdy Roddy Piper movie, They Live, although it doesn't really convey the real message of consumerism that is being foisted on the American public.

This is a real cheesy movie about some aliens that have taken over th earth but the message is very relevant to the issues facing our country, our economy, and many of those struggling to make ends meet while conforming the "rules" or standards of what society considers normal.  If you decide to watch this film, I would suggest at least a six pack and maybe a 12 pack to get through the entire ordeal.  And smile, cause you just gotta laugh at some of the acting and actions sequences.

From a Tiny House perspective, this fuels the fire for opting out of the ideal that bigger is better and that maybe we don't have a responsibility to shop our way out of an economic crisis.

More see walking on mortgage as viable plan

I was reading the MSNBC web site this morning when a comment in an article jumped out at me that I felt related to the Tiny House movement as an explanation for the paradigm shift in the perception of housing that makes a Tiny House so very popular.

The title article quotes Rick Sharga, senior vice president of RealtyTrac:
“The mindset of why people purchase a home has changed over the past decade.”  In the early 2000s, as home prices rose sharply and steadily, many buyers saw their home as an investment. But in the wake of the housing bust, it's clear that a home has become far more of a “utility” — a form of shelter — than an investment.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Pretty Excited about the Interstate bicycling system

I was reading on EarthEasy today and found this news bite about an Interstate Bicycling System that is being pursued by enthusiasts of bicycling  and adventure cycling.  Now, before you start to think that I'm a tree-hugger or that I have gone all environmental on you, let me set you straight: I have always thought to do what I could to conserve our natural resources.  There, if that makes be a environmental bunny lover tree-hugger, so be it!  So when I read about this idea of being able to bicycle around the entire country, I freaked!  This could be so very cool!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Very green idea for your chainsaw

I'm off topic again but I found this article this morning and just had to share it with you because it's so very weird-like me.  While searching through some news links I discovered a recommendation to use Canola Oil for your chain saw bar oil to lessen the effect on the environment.  How cool is that?!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Chocolate Holiday Treat

OK, I know this isn't really related to a Tiny House and I know that cooking and shopping are not really part of anything related to the point or purpose of this blog, but hey, it's my post so...

I believe  that we have concluded our holiday preparations and while looking around I found a recipe for something sweet that is very appropriate for the holiday menu.  I lifted this image from my favorite food site, and I can recommend this delicacy for it's simplicity and as well as is yummyness.  Someone brought some of this to work and it is wonderful.  I'm trying it out for Christmas this year.

Thanks for stopping by.  Let's get out there and make it a great day!

Busy busy busy...

There is another major weather event scheduled for our area.  Keep your head down.  I have been busy working on a severe computer problem so I have been online much today except to read today's edition of the Toilet Paper about Miley Cyrus' Salvia experience.  This was a big wakeup call for me 'cause I guess I'd been livin' under a rock for about five or ten years.  You should check this out.

But hey, I gotta go slay a computer dragon, so...let's get out there and make it a great day!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

I have begun downsizing

I have started my quest to rid myself of stuff.  Today I managed to cast off two items that have been owning me for a long time.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Happy Kerabatsos Day

Theodore Donald ("Donnie") Kerabatsos, friend to Dude and Walter and a shining example to us all of why we should remain out of our element from time to time. He was the walrus, and one of us.  Donnie was one of the ultimate Dudes of the 1998 movie, The Big Lebowski, a great movie about nothing, man.  On this day, dudeists the world over pause to reflect on Donnie's contribution to the move, the world, and the Zen of being a Dude.  Thanks Donnie.

How to Live with Just 100 Things

This is one of the more informative articles relating one man's experience with How to Live with Just 100 Things

Miss Minimalist, my new favorite place

I just wanted to credit Miss Minimalist, Francine Jay with motivating me to begin my weight reduction program.  No, I'm not talking about losing body weight, but stuff.  I have begun the process of reducing my stuff.  I have started sorting things that have owned me for more than 50 years and managed to get rid of a few things that were basically junk but wouldn't leave me, alone.  I have secretly begun to dispose of junk and will be selling or giving away all of my excess.

Mobile Gardening for small spaces, or anywhere

A few years ago I found a gardening system that was being sold at ridiculously high price called Earth Boxes.  These planting boxes employed a very efficient growing system that almost takes care of itself but including a reservoir for watering your plants.  Fortunately for me, I was able to resist the allure of this dynamic planting system.  However, this morning, I found an alternative the Earth Boxes that Ryan Mitchell of The Tiny Life had posted on his blog.  I lifted this image from Ryan's page.  Thanks Ryan.

Friday, December 10, 2010

The Minsumer Movement: A Quiet Revolution

OK, this is getting dangerous.  I have been reading too much of Miss Minimalist and The Minsumer Movement.  I find that I am liking it waaay too much.  This minimalist stuff is making lots of sense to me and I have been thinking of downsizing my stuff.  Yup, I am seriously thinking of shaking off the consumer mentality of having things and learning to live more freely by not being "owned" my by stuff.  Having all this stuff just seems to make me have to fix it or take care of it or protect it or "something it."

So, what do you think?

No real progress

I have been patiently waiting for my unofficial-supplier to provide me with more pallets as building materials without any results.  It would seem that I may need to shop elsewhere.  However, I believe that this lull in productivity may be attributed to the seasonal respite that afflicts many service industry operations.  So, I will practice patience while I review my options.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

living small is enticing

Well, I've searched all of the blogs that I've been reading lately to find that most of my fellow bloggers seem to be distracted or are not posting much new news.  So, I've broken out of my comfort zone to research some new areas of interest to discover Ms. Francine Jay.  A.K.A. Miss Minimalist and her blog.  I confess that I have been fascinated by the general topic of living simply for a long time and have been intrigued by uncluttered space as well as the minimalist mindset.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Gypsy Wagon on Tiny House Blog

George over at Paleotool Wordpress Blog has presented this finished product reflecting months of loving labor on his Gypsy Wagon as reported on the Tiny House Blog hosted by Kent Griswold.  George has been working on his Vardo Wagon and has completed this mini RV dream Tiny House that really captures the spirit of the Tiny House movement.  I've lifted this picture from George's web blog.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Nothing new or newsworthy

I've searched the web for something interesting to share with you today and can't find anything with redeeming value.  I could hang around and tell you something about the weather, like it's COLD outside.  But, then you already know that if you're still above ground 'cause it's one of those things that you just can't miss this morning.

It would seem that most of my fellow bloggers are being distracted by the impending holiday fervor and there was not much new news this morning.  I know that I am still on look out for good deals as well as free salvaged supplies.  I have my eye on an exterior storm door that one of my neighbors has put out into what looks like a scrap pile.  I intend to let some time pass to see if'n they rehang that bad boy by the first of the New Year and if'n they don't, I'll offer 'em about $20 for it.  It's real nice black metal door that has some of those decorative bars on the the outside.  Could be a nice addition to the Tiny House HideAWay destined for Rebel Ranch by us 2Coyotes.

In any case, keep warm any way you can.  Hey, thanks for stopping by.  I gotta run.  Let's get out there and make it a great day!

Monday, December 6, 2010

Tools of the trade

Kent Griswold of the Tiny House Blog has posted an intriguing article about a piece of equipment that I am lusting after.  It's a saw.  Actually, a modified table saw.  But the reason that I am lusting after this baby is because I am planning on building a Tiny House in a remote location where there is no power and the saw is question is a DeWalt cordless rechargeable saw that would be sooo sweet in the back field/woods location where I would like to build.  This little baby, designed by Mel Koresh of Pro-Tech Siding Contractors, looks like just the ticket so save me from a boat load of hand saw cuts.  I lifted this picture from Kent's blog spot so kudos to Kent for this lead.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Off topic post, but I just had to say this...

Ok, I was reading around the internet today and found something that I believe is important, and a little funny.  So, I decided that I would deviate from the topic of Tiny Houses to share something that is personal as well as important to me.  I own a gun.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Dan Phillips, builder and philosopher on consumerism

I found this video posted over th The Tiny Life blog as I was so captivated by this speaker that I had to share it with you.  This is a little long but well worth the time.  Dan Phillips have leads us on a tour of a number of Tiny Houses he has built while relating his ideals about recycling and reusing materials that others consider scrape or waste.  This goes along pretty well with the Story of Stuff you see listed just to the right on the opening page of this blog.

Building a Composting Toilet

Derek Diedricksen is an inventor and author of Relaxshax blog, discussing a topic that is very personal to all of us.  Derek has been world famous for his You Tube videos like the one in the second half of this post.  "Deek" has a real good time creating and sharing both projects and his videos on You Tube that most of us would never consider.  I have seen a number of his videos and each one will leave you smiling if not laughing out loud.  You can more of Derek's adventures on You Tube by searching for videos relating to Tiny Yellow House.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

After two years of eco-living, what works and what doesn't...

Susan Carpenter has written an very informative article titled, "After two years of eco-living, what works and what doesn't" for the Los Angles Times that has been picked up by a number of newspapers including the Advocate Messenger here in Danville, KY.  This article is very well written and is based on first hand experience providing clear results on some clever ideas for sustainable living.  I like this article for the clarity and perspective it brings to each of the items that have been addressed and I highly recommend reading this one.

Thanks for stopping by.  Let's get out there and make it a great day!

It has started snowing!

Well, it was bound to happen sooner or later and actually I am glad that it waited until December 1st.  Now I can officially join in the coming holiday festivities with gusto!  I just can't get into the spirit of Christmas before Thanksgiving and I actively resent Christmas Carols and decorations before then.  It just seems wrong somehow.  Maybe because it feels like you're insulting the memory and intention of Thanksgiving.  Call me crazy, lots of people do so you'd be in good company, but I just gotta wait until after Thanksgiving before I can feel Christmasy.

The arrival of winter weather will put a serious cramp in the plans of many people who don't like the cold or being outside.