Posts Tagged With: Tiny House

Cloth Porch Closure

Every year Hj and I close the cloth porch at the end of fall.  This year is no exception to the rule, though we did find it difficult to do it this year because of the rain!  As my friend Colleen points out, we girls with curly hair could expand so much that we will take flight if the wind hits us!  HA!

The problem with the rain though is that I don’t want to capture water in the porch before I close it up tight, because it is then difficult to get rid of the dampness, and it turns into a sort of green house.  YUCK!

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Photo stolen from Colleen Murphy (who is not the only one with Moxie)

Though it does not look like a big deal, every year the job of closing up the porch is massive!  Up and down the ladder getting everything perfect and closed so that the tarps do not billow, takes some head work as well at time.  It is not a physically difficult job with the exception of moving and climbing up and down the ladder; just annoying.

So when Hj and I were fixing the porch this year, I was also executing a plan to use a new system for this as well.

What I wanted is a UV protected (to keep algae from growing), clear, reinforced, cover that can can be easily rolled up in the spring and then rolled down in the fall.  For this I needed to purchase some items:

3x clear polyethylene 10×12 tarps @ $15.99 each =$32

1x box of 3 1/2 coated screws @ $9.99 = $10

10x 8 foot long 2×2 pressure treated boards @4.43 =$45

2x 12 foot long 2×2 pressure treated boards @ 2.00 (heavily discounted) =4

60x large heavy duty washers (already had these)

50 feet of nylon rope @$3.38 = $4

1x clear tarp tape @10.  = $10

TOTAL $105.

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Should any of you also be considering closing your porch I will share my method.  Over the door, I simply removed the panel that has the cloth in it and covered it with tarp, then Hj put it back in place.  This was done with the remnant of the side tarps that had to be cut to size folded at the edge and taped using special UV and weather resistant tarp tape.

Once they were cut to fit over the existing boards (longer at the bottom and top, they were rolled onto the new 2×2 header boards and stapled on.  Then the header board was screwed in place, paying attention to put the nylon ropes up that will tie them in place in the warm months.

After the header board and ropes are up then a base board is attached to the bottom being careful to roll this up on the OUTSIDE so that the tarp is against the wall tight, the bottom is then stapled on and rolled up then secured with large washers and screws when the tarp is both: tight against the wall, AND down all the way to the bottom board.

After the top and bottom are done, it is just a matter of cutting the 2×2’s to the right size for vertical edges, then use a screw with a large washer to secure these down.  The washers are to keep the screws from going in too far and to create a larger surface tension to hold the boards so that the tarps will stay.  We also put the screws through the grommets where these were available to us.

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In the spring, the vertical boards will be removed and numbered… and the tarps will be rolled up tight against the roofline.

Next fall, they will simply be unrolled and screwed down again at the bottom, and the side boards will be put back in place.  I estimate that opening and closing the porch now will be a half hour job instead of a two day ordeal.

With the cloth of the porch and the reinforcement lines of the tarps the porch is not really clear enough to see through (unfortunately); however, the porch is bright and wind free. In the sunny days it will be really warm out there as well.  We don’t heat the cloth porch, but use it for cooking, and doing dishes year around.  We also store our snow shoes there and use the  room to take off our boots and winter clothing.  It is a sort of “mud” room in the winter.

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The only unfortunate thing is that I did not think of making roll up tarps much sooner!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Categories: Tiny House Ontario | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Nice & Well Underway

There have been a couple of days of work on the panels for Fred’s House.  Lil and Sheryl came to help one day and here is what we got done.

DAY ONE:

I went to Lowes in Hamilton to get materials today – the staff there was super helpful!  Not only did they help with getting things on the carts but when they heard what this community is doing they gave me the company van to bring stuff back, loaded the materials up and three of them even made a cash donation!  Amazing experience!  Thank you

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Sheryl and Hj where here to help me unload the van, we returned it and Sheryl and I got to work on the panels.   We got the base finished, the front and backs both have panels on them and the top is on the work table and will be the next in line.   We still have not built the slightly more complicated side panels which have a slope so that water will drain off.  I hope we can finish this up tomorrow afternoon or Friday.

The funds so far collected are $1223, plus $200 that I will donate to this project as well, and I have spent $692 so about half the money is spent already, I still have to buy 3 more things of insulation ($150), the door ($250), Some outside paneling ($200), ice and rain sheet ($100), roof ($150),  4×4 under beams ($30) just to get the insulated shell done.  That is $880 which means that we are still $330 short for the structure and there is no money yet for a propane heater, a filled propane tank, a bed, or a cupboard for the kitchen so she has somewhere to heat water to make a cup of tea, or butane cooker.  If you think any of your friends might be interested in helping Fred please share this.  We still need roughly about $1000 click here to donate

The bad news is that the heater I hoped to get is sold out – but the good news is that I found another less expensive brand in the states… Thing is I have to drive to Michigan to get it. If anyone is there and coming across the border in the next two days – maybe you would consider picking up a Nu Way propane stove?  Sadly, I don’t think I have time to cross border shop before the build date.

Saturday volunteers, if you have not given me your email address, please send it to me here in the comments (I won’t post your email, or privately on the THO Facebook site.  If you are coming and you have a truck, please let me know.  We could use a couple of you folks!  The plan is to meet at my house in Hamilton, load up and go to site.  About 8:30 am.  I will inbox all the volunteers with my address.

We are getting there slowly, together!

Thanks to all who have donated time, money, materials and transportation so far!  I am looking forward to meeting the workers who are pitching in between now and on the Big Saturday morning event.

Here is where we are now:

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Categories: Tiny House Ontario | Tags: | 3 Comments

Mushrooms, cloth porch and wood stove

In eight days I am heading to THO again.  I am hoping that the heat that we are now experiencing will have subsided somewhat.  The time has come to get the mushroom spores inserted into the logs that are the correct point of curing.  I will write a full blog post about the mushrooms soon!

Waiting for the spores

Waiting for the spores

It is hard to see here, but I also have to replace the front panel on the cloth porch.  It has several tears in it so sitting in the porch makes you a perfect mosquito buffet.  The porch feels more open now because I re-homed the big metal chairs after I plucked these two tiny chairs from a dumpster.  Sadly the wicker chair broke through – but I had picked that up from the side of the road about ten years ago, so it did not owe me a thing.  Now the plastic footstool from inside has taken the place of that, so we have three seating spots still.  Even though these changes will be happening, or have happened… I think, it is time to do some work on the cloth porch.  So it is likely that there will be more changes there this year as well.

I really have to get the wood stove in!  Not just so that visiting there in the cold weather is more comfortable either!  I am sick of it being in my porch!!!  I don’t want to start this job during a heat wave though… not just because working in the heat is miserable but because it is not ideal for drying mortar when it is so hot… Late August or early September, maybe???

Cloth porch

The ever so humble, and practical cloth porch. It needs some work!

Categories: Tiny House Ontario | Tags: , , , | 2 Comments

In and Around My House: Fall 2014

After moving everything from the most Southern cupboard on the West wall of Tiny House Ontario, I tidied the house up a bit and took a look around.  You know, like most houses things are somewhat fluid in a tiny house too.  Things move, and sometimes things are even replaced.  This year, I have not been there too much but even so there are changes.  I thought it was time to update the images from home.

The West Window is the most decorated in THO. also it is where I put things like the little flower pot heater and candles and even the small propane heater from time to time.  Recently, my son did a dumpster dive for me at the countertop manufacturer and got this great piece of 1.5 inch thick marble so now the window sill won't get damaged by damp and wax.

The West Window is the most decorated in THO. also it is where I put things like the little flower pot heater and candles and even the small propane heater from time to time. Recently, my son did a dumpster dive for me at the countertop manufacturer and got this great piece of 1.5 inch thick marble so now the window sill won’t get damaged by damp and wax.  The little heater, is by the way, great at this time of year to keep the place warm after it is already heated up.  The Pumpkin is a size appropriate holiday decoration and thanks Guillaume for putting that out for us!  ❤

Out the North Window Guillaume's house is being built.

Out the North Window Guillaume’s house is being built.  A little candle holder in the window casts nice light, and adds a little warmth too.  This is not new.  My son won it with a bunch of other things in a raffle at a fund raiser, about ten years ago and gave it to us. 

The chair got a hand made afghan from my cousin Nora.  I love hand made things and think this looks and feels wonderful on the old chair.

The chair got moved and it also got a hand made afghan from my cousin Nora. I love hand made things and think this looks and feels wonderful on the old chair.   You will also notice that I have a new butane cook top.  It works well, but unfortunately it sets off my fire alarm, so… I have to use it outside which kind of defeats the purpose.  It will be nice to have a wood stove so that during the cold months I can use this to cook on.   *** See the orbs in this photo?

Another wonderful and appreciated hand made afghan from cousin Nora.  They cover the sofa nicely to keep dirtily little paw prints at bay and they can also be used as a cover.  Please note the beautiful work of art in the corner, by the Australian artist Asta Lander.  I grew up with swans and really love this piece.

The sofa is in a new spot and it has a wonderful and appreciated hand made afghan from cousin Nora. These cover the furniture nicely, and to keep dirtily little paw prints at bay.   Too, they can also be used as a cover. Please note the beautiful work of art in the corner, by the Australian artist Asta Lander. I grew up with swans and really love this piece.  The shelves are slightly more full because the shelves on the other side have been removed.

The door to the stone patio at the North and the door to the in-house.

The door to the stone patio at the North and the door to the in-house.  Also the stairs going up.  This is a busy corner with a lot of functions!

A bit of a rainy day here - I left the ground level  rain barrel connected so that Guillaume can use the water until it gets too cold.  He will soon have to drain it and tip the barrel for the winter.  Still hoping he gets his roof on before freeze.

A bit of a rainy day here – I left the ground level rain barrel connected so that Guillaume can use the water until it gets too cold. He will soon have to drain it and tip the barrel for the winter. Still hoping he gets his roof on before freeze.

Categories: Home, Interior, Tiny house, Tiny House Ontario | Tags: , , , , | 1 Comment

Want-Wants

I am on a role, let me warn you.  A little something that you don’t know about me, until now perhaps… that I am a private ranter.  My friends, I think, can attest to this.  There are so many things that bug me.  They are: laziness, people who make the same mistakes over and over again without learning, rude behaviour, thieves, apathy, cruelty to animals, racists, sexists and so on and so on.   These are things that privately set me off.

Here though, at Tiny House Ontario, I really do try not to let this strongly opinionated part of my personality overwhelm you all.  I think there are enough negative things that people hear about in their day to day lives and this is not really the place.  You know, one thing that I really like about the tiny house movement is that largely it is filled with optimism and it offers light at the end of the tunnel for a lot of people.  I think this is why it is so appealing to so many people.

Fortunately for me, this is what I really love to concentrate on too.  If you have read my blog before then you will have a very clear idea as to what really interests me.  For those of you who are just now joining me, the topics you can expect to see on my blog are: easy and inexpensive environmentally conscious projects, off grid ideas, the beauty of nature, art, music, links to history, stories of hope-change-interest, interesting people who are leaders to our movement, building codes, where to build and live in a tiny house in Canada, all things tiny house and of course Tiny House Ontario.   Recently, too I have also discussed my health… which is not a topic that I enjoy writing about, but which I do in order to keep those in the know, up to date on my progress in this department.

Today, again… two days in a row… there is another issue that I have to discuss.  I take on this topic at the risk of alienating people.  It is not just a very sensitive subject.  I want you to understand that my annoyance with this should not be mistaken for a terrible apathy about those who are really in need.  Nor should people who have genuine interest and in going tiny think this applies to them, in fact I was one of those people once. What I mean to target really is the laziness of the Want-Wants – who want your money for doing nothing.

The Want-Wants in terms of the tiny house movement are a breed of people who are relatively new to this movement.  They are people who have just learned about the movement and who see the light and want what we have without doing one single bit of work to get there.  They simply make a page asking for funding and then post requests on every tiny house Facebook page that they are able to Google.  This is the extent of the work they do.

Sometimes the pages of these Want-Wants have hard luck stories, sometimes not.  Sometimes they have well written requests, sometimes not.  Sometimes they are even fraudsters who post a wonderful “tiny house community” idea and try to get people to join for a fee… BUT…  Those who actually do know about bylaws, zoning and building codes, and struggle to get tiny houses legitimized, know that this is something that they will never have researched and will never be able to be seen to fruition because they don’t have the money or connections that it takes to lobby for change.  No matter, the shape that these people take, they have one thing in common.  They all want-want-want-want you, to give them your money.

I feel now is a good time to qualify, that I DO NOT include legitimate tiny house funding proposals as Want-Wants.  Lots of requests for funding are great and I while I don’t have a lot of money (not even enough to complete my own house), I have donated to many of these fund raisers myself.  As a matter of fact, there is a small one called The Hovel (on my Facebook page) that I just donated to.  Other great and legitimate funding requests that I remember off the top of my head, came when a tiny house that was nearly built burned down.  Another was a little girl who was building with her dad and he was suddenly killed in an accident.  Another came from a girl named Jessica who researched for a long time, saved 5K towards her dream and was looking for and got matching funding.  There are a lot of great and worthwhile tiny house funding projects and I certainly do not want to include these in my very pointed annoyance toward the Want-Wants of the world.

Who I mean to include in this are people who hear about tiny houses, want-want-want-want a tiny house and do NOT A LICK of work.  No research, no planning, no clear idea of how they can live in a tiny house, no idea where they will live in the house if if becomes a reality and certainly no started project or even a 2×4 in place.  Who I mean are those who simply post a request for money because they want-want-want-want what we have.

The thing is that as a relatively well known tiny houser, I get quite some number of requests about this.  The Want-Wants post to my wall and write to me privately.  Also my readers often ask about them including not just those who are asking for funding on sites specifically designed for this, but also about ones that are on their own website that look “legitimate”.  The question is, do they really deserve your money just because they want it?   So, I  decided instead of replying to each of these individually, I would instead explain the Want-Wants, post this link back to them, and hope that they understand what it is, exactly that I am driving at.

Which is, to the Want-Wants: we grow tired of people who don’t do a thing for themselves, asking for hand outs.

And for those of you who are donating, please beware the Want-Wants!

Can we fund everyone who does not do a thing for themselves?

Can we fund everyone who does not do a thing for themselves?

Categories: Money, Open your eyes, Tiny House Ontario, Want-Wants | Tags: , , | 7 Comments