Living Large

cully grove The past week I’ve been housesitting for Eli and Noelle of Orange Splot, so I’m living large in their three-bedroom house. It’s been fun to be in the Cully neighborhood again and to see the progress at Cully Grove.

I’ve been joking that while some folks vacation by spending a week in the yurt, I’m vacationing this week by trading my yurt for a “normal” house. It feels luxurious to have hot running water instantly available and a gas stove to cook on. Things that I used to take for granted when living in the tiny house I now appreciate completely. This gratitude for simple pleasures is a neat change to observe in myself. Especially since I realize that I don’t need to be in a large house to have these luxuries again. The tiny house I lived in last year had a gas stove and running water. Once I did a little Tiny Home Improvement I also had greywater infrastructure.

I’ve enjoyed Downsizing from a Tiny House to a Tinier House and living in my Home, Sweet Yurt. It’s been a great way to stretch myself, to test the edges of my minimalism, and to get a sense of what I can live without. For instance, I’ve been getting along fine without water infrastructure, but it sure would be more convenient to just turn on the tap and then have my greywater automatically water the plants outside without me having to do it manually. I suppose I could set up this water infrastructure for the yurt but haven’t done it. I have, however, planned running water and greywater into the vardo I’m designing for myself. (Although I prefer cooking on gas the 1-burner electric cooktop I’m using suits me just fine, so I’ll probably go propane-free for my own tiny house).

This week it has also been nice to have enough elbow room to entertain. I hosted a game night with a couple classmates and brunch with my Planning Workshop team. Since moving into the yurt I’ve usually had just one friend over at a time. A couple months ago I had my friends Eleanor and Mike over for dinner but it wasn’t nearly as easy as Entertaining in the Tiny House. Once it’s warm enough to dine outside it will be more pleasant, but during the colder months the yurt is not well suited for entertaining.

The downside of the extra space is that I’m losing it. Really. There are so many surfaces that I’ve misplaced my cell phone several times! I also feel bad cranking the central air since it’s heating the whole house when I’m only in one room. This three bedroom works well for a family of three who need a home office, but it’s far more than I need as a single person.

Spending a week living large has helped me put my Little Life into perspective again. I’m looking forward to getting back to the coziness of the yurt (and especially to the wonderful light of the oculus), but enjoying the infrastructure of a fixed house this week has also confirmed that I want my vardo to be less rustic. It was a treat to have this vacation and I hope Eli and Noelle have enjoyed theirs, too!