Sunday, September 27, 2015

Our First House

Another summer of Island Airstream Living has come to a close! Fall is here, bringing with it full harvests, beautiful colors, that amber light that I can't get enough of, and the warmth of campfires now that the dry season's burn ban is gone. I never thought that J and I would call our little Blue Moon home for two and a half years, but home it's been.

In the last few years I have heard so much buzz regarding the tiny house movement and downsizing. I've enjoyed meeting others who are living small and supporting our friends who made the leap also. No, all of our stuff doesn't fit in our Airstream; we have a shed with all of our camping stuff, bicycles, and some collected artwork for the non-curved walls of a "someday" home. But we're comfortable with our amount of Stuff, and I've realized that quantifying what we own and collect is only a very small part of Tiny Living. For me and many others I know, Tiny Living is about getting more time outside because your house is small, achieving financial freedom because you own your own affordable home, and getting to spend more energy/money/time on good food and visiting the people and places that mean the most to you. I love run-on sentences.

That doesn't mean I don't drool over gorgeous architecture, great design, and fancy furniture. In fact, I value those things even more because of their power to create excellent living spaces for people. Living small has made me realize that everything has a value - most importantly, my time. Big spaces often require bigger incomes to sustain them, requiring more hours at work, more hours cleaning and more more more. Tiny living is all of those things, but on a smaller scale. No, Tiny Living isn't free, but it does cost less to heat a small home, to clean and maintain a small home, and buy or build a small home. Living in an Airstream or a cute cabin on wheels isn't everyone's solution to time or money problems, but shrinking your footprint can be a great place to start if you are feeling like life has you spread too thin.

Looking back, moving into the Airstream was J and I admitting that we weren't making it financially. We had some debt to deal with, and island rent isn't cheap. We needed to see a light at the end of the tunnel, so we put the word out to craigslist, and Blue Moon found us. The costs of remodeling the Airstream paid for themselves in one summer of living in it, and more importantly, we felt the financial strain ease off immediately.

The colder weather is coming, and we feel lucky to have options for winter housing if we need them, but for now, here's to you Blue Moon, for being our First House.

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