Post #3: Christmas Wrapping on Our Big Box

It’s been five months since our last post and a lot of progress has been made! Not only with the tiny house, but also in our personal lives. Michael started full-time work as a firefighter and Erika returned to work, this time as a special education aide at a high school. She’s almost completed studies for her bachelor’s degree. Between all this, we’ve still managed to progress nicely with the tiny house.

First, the sheathing and house wrap were completed.

Next, we installed the marine green roof. We used a synthetic adhesive underlayment (GAF STORMGUARD). It was a pain to install, but worth the extra time spent. As we were installing the roof, the skylight was placed in. Yay!

While we waited, saving money for the windows, we installed the bedroom loft. It goes over the area where the kitchen will be. We decided to go with exposed rafters, because we want to incorporate a lot of raw wood into our final design. Therefore, we painted the plywood white before installing it. We already love the look of our skylight over where our bed will be!

Next, we ordered our custom windows and installed them! We have lots of windows in our tiny home, including a large garden window over our kitchen sink and a hexagonal frosted window in our shower.

Our latest projects have been: ordering a custom door and hardware, paint matching it to the roof, installing the secondary/office loft over the bathroom, building a frame for the tub that we found at Habitat for Humanity ($50 cast-iron Kohler! score!), and erecting the bathroom walls.

Next in our sights is hiring a plumber and electrician, ordering our exterior siding, and building a small outdoor shed over the trailer tongue. We can see the end in sight but we still have a lot of hard work ahead of us!


Our very first post!

We are Erika and Michael (and Lucy and Scully)!


Our family first started in March 2015 when Erika and Michael met in a three-month firefighting academy in North Carolina. By July 2015, they were already living together in a tiny homestead in the Appalachian mountains. Lucy, who grew up on another farm, came to join the family in January 2016 as a rescue from Brother Wolf Animal Rescue. Shortly after, Scully, our red heeler who was also believed to have come from a farm, became the fourth member of the family!

In July of 2016, we decided to sell our 500sqft 1 1/2 acre homestead to downsize even further. 🙂 We moved to Arkansas to save and build in August of 2016.

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While we were saving for our trailer, we used sidewalk chalk to create our floor plan. We also used some printed plans to help along the way.

We saved the money we needed by November 2016 and by December 2016, we were driving our 28′ custom-built trailer home to begin construction! Our first step was to stabilize the trailer and frame out our subfloor.

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First steps on our trailer!

We spent the majority of the winter planning, working, and saving for the next steps of our tiny home. Erika works full-time as a special education paraprofessional, attends school online full-time to earn her teaching degree, and Michael goes to school full-time in a Fire Science and Paramedic program and is a volunteer firefighter! Lucy and Scully spend a lot of time chasing squirrels and napping.

In March 2016, Michael completed the tiny home subfloor!

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Almost done with the subfloor!
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Another goal down! ✔️ Subfloor!

In April 2016, we also paid the sales tax and received tags for our trailer! We’re so official.

As for now, we have a plan to get the trailer with subfloor weighed, for peace of mind and to assist in planning, and then we are moving the trailer to a secure, open, and flat site for further construction. We have ordered all our building lumber, windows, and a front door. So far, we have spent ~$10,000 on our home, which puts us about 1/3 of the way through our spending for the home! Yay!