Living small also challenges me to live and build sustainably. There are countless articles and stories on the web about living small, and I find the most satisfaction in providing a service to folks that want a tiny house that is healthy to live in.
Building tiny houses for chemically sensitive people has taught me a lot about some of my own issues. I get migraines and would resort to a pill, a dark room, all the while hiding away from life for a day or so…burying my head in a pillow waiting for the pain and nausea to lessen. Then I started connecting the dots, when a migraine hit; what was I doing? And that started revealing a pattern linked to some building products that I have used over the years; cedar, Portland cement, treated material, solvents, oil based paints, poly finishes and other man made products.
Building tiny houses for folks with chemicals sensitivities has made me aware of how products a lot of us take for granted can and do affect others. And it reminds me of the canary in the coal mines; miners used canaries to warn them of dangerous breathing conditions, and now I view the folks with chemical sensitivities as the “canaries” that inform us of dangerous conditions in our homes and our work places. As each day passes, I see more warnings about products we used to consider “safe” for human use.
Building small has also made me realize that I do not need a lot of space to live in. The Wildflower is a magical and cozy place to live and climbing into the loft reminds me of being a child when I would hop into bed, cover with quilts and blankets. As I drifted off to sleep all the while listening to the winds whirl around the eves while the rain pummels the roof.
Regardless of the ways in which we are challenged by our space, keeping these inspired quotes in mind provide a good starting point to seeing the benefits these challenges provide.
• 1 You know you have reached perfection of design not when you have nothing more to add, but when you have nothing more to take away. - Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
• 2 Small rooms or dwellings discipline the mind, large ones weaken it. - Leonardo Da Vinci
• 3 The secret of happiness, you see, is not found in seeking more, but in developing the capacity to enjoy less. - Socrates
• 4 Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful. - William Morris
• 5 Live simply so that others may simply live. - Elizabeth Ann Seton
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