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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

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…"

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.…"

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

Penny Skateboards Popular in Cities

"Lauren Waxenberg, 9, on her pink skateboard in Rye Brook, N.Y. Her father, Scott, 52, likes to ride it when she’s not on it. 'As soon as I saw the Penny board, I was like, ‘Oh my God, this is what I learned on,’ he said. 'And when I got on it, it was like I was 14 again.'”
Photo: Jennifer S. Altman for The New York Times
Full article: http://www.nytimes.com/2015/07/23/style/penny-skateboards-find-a-niche.html?_r=0

"Astrophysicshipster" Camps in Tent For a Year To Save on Rent

"A student camped in a back garden in Greater Manchester (UK) for a year after he was unable to afford rent on top of his £20,000 tuition fees.

Evan Eames, from Montreal in Canada, appealed on various online forums for a camping spot after realising he would be 'drowning in debt' to pay the fees for his astrophysics master’s degree at the University of Manchester.

The 24-year-old was offered a free pitch in Charley Mantack’s back garden in Heaton Chapel, Stockport, after she spotted his appeal on Gumtree, in which he promised tuition in maths, physics, computer science or French, in return.…

He endured snow, high winds and persistent Mancunian rain for 10 months before packing up his tent and heading back to Canada last week."

Photo Manchester Evening News Syndication
Sent by Anonymous

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

Canadian Family Builds Tiny Home on Wheels

"Dear Mr. Kahn,
My name is Elle Campbell, I am writing on behalf of Dave Koszegi and his family, based in Port Alberni on beautiful Vancouver Island in British Columbia. Dave…and his family have been diligently working on a Tiny Homes project since Christmas, which was inspired by your latest book, Tiny Homes on the Move: Wheels and Water.
He filmed a video about it, and I did a blog post which has been shared to his website and social platforms. Tomorrow, Shaw TV News will be shooting a small segment on his project. I know that Dave and his family would be thrilled to be featured in any of your future publications or on your website…
But most importantly, Dave wanted you to see how much you have inspired him and his family to create the project and memories of a lifetime.…
Here is the blog post: http://www.midislandhomes.com/blog/the-koszegis-tiny-home-on-wheels.html 
Thanks so much.…
Elle Campbell"

Boston Couple Build Tiny Home on Wheels From Movie Sets

"They call it their tiny house mansion. Chloe Barcelou and Brandon Batchelder have spent the last five years in New England staying at various apartments, hotels and the houses of family and friends - but now they have a home that can follow wherever they need to go. The creative couple built their new tiny home, which is designed to collapse so it can be towed, almost entirely out of the movie sets where they've worked. It was Chloe who came up with the idea for the couple to build a house on wheels…"
(Scuzzy ads on this website.)

Outdoor Bath House of Cedar and Cypress in Georgia Woods

"Hey Lloyd! This is Frank the traveling carpenter from page 92 of Tiny Homes on the Move. My brother & I just got back from southern Georgia after building an outdoor bath house in the beautiful forest there. The building is made of locally milled cypress & western red cedar from your neck of the woods. The front door, triangular window, & privacy screens were all salvaged materials from the property that were modified to fit the style of the building.…I am always traveling for jobs in my tiny house & can be reached at the below email address should anyone have any unique projects that need some helping hands. Hope all is well out west!"
Frank Belo

Spectacular Hotel in Peru: Clear Capsules Suspended 400 ft. High on Cliffside

"…a…way for visitors to enjoy the incredible views was to construct three transparent pods, suspended 400 feet above the valley floor as accommodations, accessible only after climbing up 1,400 iron rungs…set into the steep mountain face.…"
Photo© Natura Vive

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

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…

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 on Wheels Builder in New York (State)

"Dear Lloyd,
    I have been fallowing your documentation religiously for more than 10 years now and been consistently inspired in my building by your work, so thank you so very much for that. I have built 2 tiny homes on wheels for myself, and having worked out some kinks on my own will be starting construction on a home on wheels for my mom in a month or so. The first attachment is of my first tiny house and the rest are of my second and current house which recently made a move 80 miles across upstate New York to Trumansburg, outside of Ithaca where I'll be building the house for my mom.…
Jamie Carestio"

The Brotherhood of Skateboarding in China's Far West

"In the ethnically mixed region of Xinjiang, in China’s far west, tensions run high, and the government-promoted slogan that 'Uighurs and Han are all one family”'is not embraced by everyone.

But Xie Shi, a 30-year-old photographer and skateboarder based in the eastern city of Nanjing, says that the skateboarding scene there is both ethnically diverse and more harmonious than the mainstream of society. In a new photography book titled Aghine…Mr. Xie compiled 64 photos he took on his two trips to Xinjiang last year. They include 30 portraits of skaters in the cities of Urumqi, Karamay and Kashgar, and in Tashkurgan Tajik Autonomous County. There are also photos that offer a glimpse of the everyday life in the far-flung western region.…"
Sent us by Ed Forgotson

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

More on Tinker's Bubble, Off-Grid community in Somerset, England.

"…The name Tinkers Bubble comes from the spring that flows through the woodland ending in a small waterfall by the road. This is where gypsies brought their horses to water them at the bubble; the gypsy name for a waterfall.
The home pictured is Mary and Joe’s, a roundwood timber frame with lapped exterior walls and thatched roof and repurposed windows.…"
Sent by Anonymous

UK Community Lives Virtually Fossil-Free Lifestyle

"Published on Apr 5, 2015
This is a second year filmmaking student short made by Harvey Quirke, Sam Mulvey, Lutia Swan-Hutton and Tess O'shea.

A documentary made in Somerset about a group of people who share the passion to live sustainably. Having lived without fossil fuels since 1994, we hear the tales of living in accordance with nature and what had brought them to branch out from the 'norms' of society."
Sent us by Anonymous

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.

The Sculptural Archirecture of Javier Senosiain in Mexico

 Javier Senosiain, a professor of architecture at the National Autonomous University of Mexico, has designed a number of unique sculptural buildings in Mexico. It's not that I'd like to live in any of these structures, but it's impressive that they are so imaginative and so well executed.
Sent us by anonymous

West Coast (Santa Cruz) White Sharks

Synchronicity: Before the last blog, about the shark on the east coast was posted, Ed Forgotson sent this link.
"A great white shark near Santa Cruz swam under a kayak on Tuesday – and the paddler, a marine biologist out to see the sharks, snapped a series of photos unlike anything ever seen on the central coast.
'I was just off the cement ship when this 8-foot great white shark swam right under my kayak,' said Giancarlo Thomae, who works as an interpretive specialist for a whale watching operation.
   The photographs also show great white sharks in the shallows just off Seacliff State Beach in Aptos on Monterey Bay, where campers on the beach watch the shark fins as they pass nearby.
   While paddling his kayak, Thomae sighted and photographed four great white sharks at close range along the shore. He then boarded Specialized Helicopters out of Watsonville for a sky view, where he and the pilot counted 14 great white sharks just offshore the state beach, within a quarter mile of the cement ship. In the photos, the silhouettes of the sharks are clear near the sea surface.…"
Photo: Giancarlo Thomae / KayakWhaleWatching.com

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