…(air quotes) obsessive compulsive…
…. and an admitted perfectionista.
Aldo, my fiance, is quite the contrary. He’s impetuous and nothing has to be perfect for him.
My tiny house blog question of the day????
How can I plan and prepare healthy, from scratch, gourmet-ish entrees for two with only 5 ingredients & 2-3 dishes in a small kitchen on a tiny budget?
Currently, we live in a 900 sq ft, 2 bedroom (his and hers) apartment. We only use about half of our space; even though my old 600 sq ft studio was too small for us. Co-living, building, dining, and now blogging in a <1000 unit chunk of space is proving to be a challenge.
I hope to work out those challenges here with the rest of my new tiny house community.
A History Lesson
My passion….ahhh, my passion since I was 8 years old, my passion has been houses. Being a young, black girl in a small town in the middle of Texas in the late 70’s/early 80’s, I had no idea what real estate was. All I knew was that I loved buildings (way more than people) and that I wanted to design floor plans and build big buildings & audacious neighborhoods. Sure, we had real estate agents, but I only knew of one (I still know her name today). As my mother puts it, “back then well off black women were only school teachers or nurses”. We were all impressed by the one African female physician.
As I aged – 10 years old – I realized while reading my grandmother’s gilded, dark green and ivory leather bound set of Encyclopedia Britannica (oh, yes I did) three things. I wanted to learn to play tennis, I wanted to master golf, and I wanted to be an architect. No four, I wanted to study architecture in Paris, France one day. Back then, the information on architecture as a career seemed like it was what I was looking for – the chance to design buildings. It wasn’t until the early 2000’s that I learned that the occupation was actually called real estate developer.
With my mother’s encouragement and prodding, I graduated high school (with my almost 1 year old daughter), and enrolled in an architectural drafting and design associate’s degree program in central Texas. I did NOT finish. Too many years of school, too many late nights at the dorms, and too many boys led to extreme distraction from higher education. I left school and went to work instead as a telemarketer. Then on to administrative assistant. Then trial entrepreneur. Then real estate company receptionist.
It was at that Austin real estate company where I realized that I did not want to become a real estate agent. They were just glorified paper pushers (the majority of the job). After 6 months, I decided to move to the Nation’s Capital with my boyfriend. I got a job within the month as an apartment manager. I figured “if I’m going to one day build an apartment complex, I at least want to know how one operates”. I loved it. I love all the administrative, “socialness”, and financial analysis that comes with on-site property management. For some reason, that entrepreneurial bug bit me again, and I became a real estate agent. I learned a lot – including the fact that I do not like real estate sales. I also learned to play golf, and attempted tennis to my dismay. Check 2 things off my girl-hood list. I loved real estate leasing, however. So I determined that my foray in the world of real estate development would be in the realm of leasing, particularly special populations. But real estate development was a far off dream for me still.
Fast forward…2011, my daughter out of high school. I always said I’d go back to school when she graduated. I didn’t realize ‘that’ day was actually here until April 2011 – her 12th grade year. I sat there on my friend’s couch, unemployed, and disgusted with the east coast life and real estate market. I said, “Tami, we’re going back to school”. By August 2011, I had moved back to Texas and began working towards obtaining my associates degree in Architectural Drafting and Design – again, and yes, at the same school – this time with all A’s and a definite track to Texas A&M’s College of Architecture (my high school dream).
…I sit here before you, a pending AAS graduate (this April), a pending wife (this spring), a grandmother (last year), a future TAMU Arch – Urban & Regional Planning BS student (2014), and a tiny house lifestyle developer and builder (NOW). Still a Christian, still obsessive compulsive, and still a perfectionista.
The 3 latter traits are important for you to know about me, because ever since my fiance and I agreed to start this tiny house building company, I have worked tirelessly everyday, staying up until 4am, 5am, 7am (last night I slept only 30 minutes). And I have prayed almost as much, asking for answers as to why I am so obsessed with this tiny house development venture that all I do is dream it, think it, and work it all day.
What have I been doing, you ask? Good question.
I’ve been gathering photo inspirations, reading tiny house blogs, web pages and .pdfs my city has on development within the city, sketching property site and floor plans,etc. I have laid out my first 4 tiny house plans and preliminary site plan in AutoCAD.
My personal desire is to transition from the typical architectural floor plans into a tiny house cottage (or two) that suits both of us on our own land, while we build sexy, smart, eco, grid-free tiny/small dream homes and communities for all of you.
Sidebar: Editing this blog post for unneeded words is very much like editing my floorplans for underutilized floor space.
- 5 Totally Cool Tiny Houses (bargaineering.com)
- 10 Tiny Houses & One Video. (elephantjournal.com)
- John Foster: Accidental Mysteries, 11.11.12: Tiny Houses (observatory.designobserver.com)
- Living Small: 11 Tiny Houses With Huge Style (weburbanist.com)
- Tiny house could be sign of bigger trend (sj-r.com)