Hello Tiny House Enthusiast!

NOVEMBER 2013 UPDATE: my budding journalism career and Film debut!

Hello everyone!  I have been writing for The Tiny House Blog which is Kent Griswold’s amazingly inspiring site.  His blog is what inspired me to get this project going.  Check out my articles: http://tinyhouseblog.com/tiny-house/tiny-civilized-life/    My friend Paul suggested a hilariously different title for my article on tiny house indoor plumbing and the pursuit of a civilized life:  “The continuing saga of fecal redistribution in compact living modalities”.  His title is way better and I have writers envy now.

Then there is the article about the nightmare of a million little orange tiles: http://tinyhouseblog.com/tiny-house/just-can-build-house/Hope you like em.

Also will be at Napa Film festival on November 15th at 9:30 pm (way past my bed time)  to see the film Tiny, which I am apparently in.  Will answer a few questions afterwards if anyone has any.  Hope to see you all there!  Ok well not ALL of you since the theater won’t hold 40,000 but the first 200 of you will be welcomed.  There are rush tickets available for $10 so don’t let them rope you into $75 for a day pass, unless of course you want to see films other than the one containing my >15 minutes of fame.  Kent Griswold will also be there.  Come meet the man that has inspired millions.  See you there.

http://www.salon.com/2013/11/14/tiny_houses_cute_environmentally_friendly_and_sometimes_illegal/
AND reportedly the film is going to play on Al-Jazeera this Sunday.  What?!

My name is Cat and I am an Astrologer and Hypnotherapist who lives in a tiny house.  It took me 3 years to design it and save the money to begin building.  We started June 2011 and have been living in it while building (which I don’t recommend to anyone) for almost 2 1/2 years now.   In that short period of time I have gotten over 40,000 hits on this site.  I do believe the whole sustainable tiny house living idea has gone viral!  Long live Gaia!

I am taking a break from building to work on expanding my astrology practice.  I have been reading charts since the mid 90’s and currently have clients all over the world: Canada, China, UK, Brazil, Mexico to name a few. I read via skype, by phone, or in person if you live in the bay area.  If you know anyone who would like an astrology reading please tell them about me. Or be the first of your friends to get a reading by a tiny house Astrologer.  For more info click here:  http://om4life.wordpress.com/

Here is a recent picture of my house 

If you want to see the building and planning process check out the posts listed in the column to the right.  Most recent posting is on the top.  Start at the bottom and watch the house grow.  More details can be found on the other pages above.

BBC INTERVIEW VIDEO HERE:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-16348594

I was recently interviewed by the BBC for this mini documentary.  If you would like to see more of my house I’m on right after Jay Schaffer who was my first inspiration to do this project.

We have run out of funds (temporarily) so building has pretty much stopped.  Luckily we got the house to a fairly comfortable livability before that happened.  We will put up new posts once the building resumes. In the meantime I’m getting the hang of living without indoor plumbing. Thank god for 24 hour fitness.

“Small rooms and dwellings set the mind on the right path, large ones cause it to go astray.”  Leonardo Da Vinci

I guess I took old Bucky literally and built me a new model.  No more crappy, over priced, moldy, noisy, substandard, apartments, ever again!  Which leads me, of course, to GRATITUDE:

Gratitude: 

I want to thank all of you for your love and moral and technical support, patience and inspiration:

Pacifico’s brother Zadig for letting us stay with him and use the warehouse.

My brother and sister in law for helping me win the hardwood floor at the craps table in Vegas.

All my alternative minded friends who encouraged me, believed in me (even when I doubted myself), and gave me great ideas.

My friend who now uses my name in an affirmation when she is doing something difficult (so cute) because she has seen me do this crazy house building thing and thinks my manifesting skills rock.  (Don’t tell her how many tears it cost me, I might fall off the pedestal!)

All the lovely folks in Napa who helped us through the rough wheel episode including the folks at the campground we never got to camp at.

The re-stores and craigslist for supplying stuff for such awesome prices.

The wonderful folks who responded to our ads online.

Our new landlord for providing Bucolic bliss for a decent price (cute cuddly Lama watch dog included)

All the amazing pioneers in the vanguard of the Tiny house movement who made me believe I could do this- Matt in Portland, Dee and Abe in Washington, Tiny house blog etc etc.

Guides and creative forces for keeping me sane and showing me how to do things I had no idea how to do

I am grateful for you all!

And the crazy thing- it turned out just like the plans!!! 

(I guess that’s the whole idea but still…..)

Here’s a final drawing I did recently that shows the modifications to the roof.  This is the house without the enclosed patio extension. The flat part of the roof is for sleeping outdoors on hot summer nights. Basically an upstairs patio with a great view.  Also a coyote-free outdoor space for our cat.

The measurements are here :feet

The penultimate design I made on Google Sketchup.  Have I told you how much I love designing in 3-D with that software.  Bless them for giving it all to us for free!

An older sketch on Sketchup below:

31 comments on “Hello Tiny House Enthusiast!
  1. lornagarano says:

    Go, Cat and Pacifico! The house looks great! -Lorna

  2. Paul says:

    is that you in the white dress? I didn’t think living there would be so formal.

  3. Kaih says:

    Big Spirit, Big Love makes perfect living space! Enjoy your adventure!

  4. Karen Wise Roselle says:

    Cat!

    I just met you today at The Salvation Army and am so excited to come and see your place. It’s beautiful and I can only imagine the blood, sweat, and tears (AND LOVE) that went into it all.

    Thanks for being you, Cat…..

    Karen

  5. artist888 says:

    I am so grateful to have found you on the Tiny House blog through Facebook. Over an hour later and I’m still on your blog. You are inspiring and funny, funny, funny. I am 55 and love that you are building your tiny house at 50. I know some day I will fulfill my dream of one. Right now, I’m letting it percolate in my head and I’m obsessed with all the blogs and photos out there. Videos were where I got my first glimpse…actually NPR did a nice story on them with photos and I got hooked on different makers of tiny house floor plans. Then like you said, it’s gone viral and now you can find yurts and more. I think I will end up being the older hippie I never was when I was younger. Thank you for this great place to hangout.

    • limacatz says:

      Oh, so sweet. Thank you. It makes my heart glow to know that I have accomplished my goal of inspiring others (especially women) to take this journey of building a home. It really is a lot of work but so very rewarding. Going out to finish my deck now. If you are ever in the neighborhood and want a tiny tour come on by. Life in my gypsy wagon is so peaceful. I wish everyone the happiness I’ve found living like this.

  6. Michele Favarger says:

    Love the curved roof. I am in the planning stages of my own tiny build and have been considering a curved roof. I would love to connect with you around any info or challenges you experienced with that particular kind of roof shape. May the manifesting continue, and it harm none.

    • limacatz says:

      Yes the curved roof is one of my favorite items too. Was almost too scared to try it. ANd it was one of the biggest challenges. Probably did it wrong but it seems to be holding up so guess time will tell. Email me if you like or come for a visit. Would be happy to discuss the whole messy creative endeavor of building a house. Basically I obsessed over it for 3 years first then it just sorta happened. Single minded focus apparently works. 🙂 limacatz@gmail.com is my address

  7. eric says:

    you should put your sketchup plans up at their new site! This is a really cool design, I’d love to look at it in more detail…. awesome work!

    • limacatz says:

      I had problems with loading sketch up on my new computer so probably won’t do that. I’m not an architect by any means so not sure how helpful my plans would be to anyone else. I was seriously winging in it then hired a house builder for a week to give me advice on how to actually implement it properly and safely. He taught me how to square up walls etc as well.

  8. Marsha says:

    Cat, I LOVE what you have done, and hope I can do something similar in Ohio! Thank you so much for sharing your beautiful life!
    Marsha

  9. Jeannie Delamater says:

    I just visited Cat and Pacifico this past weekend and was so inspired by their wonderful tiny home. It has a warm and welcoming vibe and it makes you feel happy just to be there. Thank you so much, both of you, for welcoming me into your home and even feeding me so well! Bonus! 🙂 Jeannie

    • limacatz says:

      Thanks Jeannie. Glad you liked the tiny tour and tiny meal. Wait til the deck is covered and there will be even more room for a visit. Bring your pals.

  10. Amazing home and great blog! I just started my tiny home and love your design.

    • limacatz says:

      It is a challenging and super fun journey building a home. I’ve been at it a year now and still not finished. It’s so cool to watch it evolve into being. Good luck with yours.

    • limacatz says:

      I so wanted to build a tiny house model like I saw on your blog but couldn’t do it. Which of course made me worry that if I couldn’t build a model how the heck was I going to build the house. Then I discovered sketch up which consumed lots of time but saved my hiney. Loved your blog. I got one of those wrist magnets to hold screws. Since i’m a girl it reminded me of the ones we have for sewing to hold pins and needles!

  11. Xtine says:

    Wow you are a true inspiration! I have been in the rent rat race for 21 years, have zero interest in getting in the mortgage rat race, and AM going to build a Tiny House Community in Upstate NY!!! You are great, thank you!

    • limacatz says:

      Awesome plan. That is the only thing missing where I live- community. Neighbors are nice and making friends who live half an hour away but nothing much in the way of community where I live. That might be the next step. Keep me posted on your process of building etc. Thanks for the positive feedback!

  12. Sessie says:

    Cat! I miss your updates & photos. How are you? Are you staying warm?

    • limacatz says:

      The winter got the best of me but I stayed warm. Will finish the shower so help me god by the time my Chiron return is exact this month! Will post new photos of all the changes then. Maybe in a week or 2. Hows all with you?

  13. mdpatrick says:

    I’m very curious about your experience of doing this in the bay area. It seems like, due to population density, the laws here are somewhat strict about allowing you to live in one of these. I’m curious about both your individual experience, and also what you used as a resource for finding out what you COULD do with respect to where to park & live in a tiny house.

    • limacatz says:

      Craigslist miracle. When I almost had shell finished I put an ad in the area I wanted to live in. I was blessed by the worlds best landlord. He’s great! In fact it allowed me to move back into my home state which I had left because I couldn’t handle the high rent for mold and leaky slum living anymore. Sonoma allows alternative living like compost toilets and tiny houses. Marin does not. But if you are on a big property well who will know? Also technically you will be a trailer not a house so rules are different. Check what the rules are for living on a property in a trailer. They are usually about 6 months or so. You stay 6 months then go away for a few days and come back for another 6 months. Remember: trailer that looks like a house is still a trailer. I call myself sustainable, classy trailer trash!

  14. Tara says:

    @mdpatrick – although it isn’t about building a tiny home in the bay area – it is about gardening – you should check out the book “Urban Gardener” – something like that – it’s about a lady who moved to the bay area and started a garden in the lot next to her, with goats and turkeys and all!

  15. Gayle says:

    Hi Cat,
    I’m interested in buying land and building tiny in the Northern California area Wondering if you’ve run into any legal situations due to your home. Are you in Sonoma County and how have they handled your home?
    Gayle

    • limacatz says:

      We rent a space and so far Sonoma seems very amenable. Nor Cal loves its tiny houses. Everyone I talk to has heard about them or seen one by now. It’s gone viral for sure. When you get a place keep in touch!

  16. Love the sweet orbs on the photo of the whole tiny house!

  17. Edie says:

    I am so happy to see the porch on your beautiful home. I think big-enough-for-sitting-and-reflecting porches are So important for homes. I also love the space for your Cat! Congratulations .

    • limacatz says:

      Yes I do believe my “southern” pals have rubbed off on me. We sit on the porch and watch the deer walk by now. Quality of life is finally here! That only took 50 years to find. The stars here are awesome too. Could definitely do without racoons however. I understand why nature made them so cute and not very tasty otherwise they would be extinct by now. They have done nothing but dig up my garden despite our efforts to stop them, for 2 months! So yes, deck keeps kitty safe from them too. Kitty loves her new house. I told her for 3 years (while planning) that I was going to build her a house so she could live in the woods. I think she was starting to doubt me. That’ll teach her. Oh feline of little faith.

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We have landed and after all the struggle, adventure, drama etc it all seems so worthwhile. We are now parked in a lovely and peaceful place just north of Santa Rosa. Bucolic bliss has become a reality. I got everything on my list: well water, garden, wildlife, quiet (can't even hear airplanes!) and lovely neighbors. Thanks to everyone for the prayers, help, moral support, and patience during this challenging project. About another year and we should be finished.... Ha : )

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