Sunday, November 17, 2013

Filling my days with daydreams of simplicity...

My newborn is of the verity that likes to nurse once an hour and cries when we set her down. So I spend a lot of time confined to bed or the table. I have a couple different carriers that I can wear her in but its still tricky because she doesn't have enough head and neck control to nurse that way yet.

So, while I nurse her I surf the web and daydream. I like to dream about downsizing. My husband and I live in a small rental apartment house. Its bigger than the tiny home I grew up in with a mom, dad, three siblings, four cats and countless short term guests. So of course, I always think about how we could make do with so much less space.

The tiny little casita I grew up in with my family, it was just 750 square feet.

I won't lie, part of the reason a downsize appeals to me is the idea of a reduction in rental expenses. We live in a state with some of the highest cost of living in the country and housing here is just insane. With my husband still in school and me working only part time, our income is very tight. About half of what comes in is spent on rent alone. But the fact of the matter is, unless we are willing to move into a crappy apartment in a dangerous part of town with crazy slumlords landlords, we cant actually find a cheaper place to rent. This scenario combined with my love of simplicity, eco-sustainability, tightwad habits and adventure and I find myself day dreaming about how to live rent free in ways most people would cringe at.

I like the idea of living in an RV and moving from free state campsites to campsite every few days. That might be fun. But even more than that I love the idea of buying a small plot of land and living in a yurt, camper or tumbleweed home off the grid while we build our own earth sheltered dwelling place. In my mind, we magically inherit $15,000 that buys a little plot in the town we currently live in. I find and renovate one of the motor homes I see offered on Craigslist for 0-1,000 and we save the nearly 12,000 a year we put into our rental  to build the Dream Home.

Wouldn't a yurt like this be dreamy?

In a rare act of indulging my whimsy, my husband accompanied my to a plot of land down a quiet country road in our town today. As I stood in the over-grown lot with him in the rain, gazing at the beautiful burnt out shell of a house on a hillside too steep to do much of anything but raise goats, a spark of hope was kindled in me. I see it all-- the earth sheltered house, the passive solar heating, the chicken coop and dairy goat pens, the clothesline filled with cloth diapers, the children running around in the enormous vegetable garden.... I can almost hear the crackling of the wood in our homemade rocket-stove and the creaking of our wind turbine.

The actual property we looked at today.

Yeah, I know its not realistic- I could write a book on reasons it wouldn't work. For starters, my husband would be miserable. He hates the idea of rustic and small- the combination would surely kill him. He would never be on board with living out of a "tent"- as he calls Yurts. Never mind the fact that we are both so busy with work and school that we would never have time to put the work into it that we would need to make it happen. Not to mention neither of us know a thing about building a home or setting up off grid capabilities to a camper.

But....I still cant help but dream.