village news.

The tiny house was featured in the Oregon Life section of the Register Guard yesterday! ! !  Check it out here: Living Little

Encouraging emails, invites to tiny house groups and cool stories from University of Oregon alum have already come my way from this story. How exciting! I do wish the article would have stressed the amount of people that have worked on this project. The tiny house is not my doing at all, but rather a product of the good in the human spirit. Seriously.

To give you an idea, here is a list of the hours and people that have gone into the beautiful space. In a span of two to three months.


Planning/drawing: 40 hours

Preparation/Prebuild: 40 hours

Building- total of all work, volunteers included: 592 hours

Total: 672 hours


–       Jason Reitz: Any credit or compliment I receive is doubly due to Jason. He is the brains of the project (while clearly I am the brawn 😉 ). His vision and skills have driven this project from idea to reality, with a hand in everything between.

–       Sarah Lewis Mitchem (academic friend): for introducing me to the tiny house movement! It clearly begat an obsession.

–       John Wenderoth (st. johns extraordinaire): initial building, use of property and tools.

–       Gabby and Finn: best pups ever!

–       James Druzdzel (friend): Tools that we couldn’t live without

–       Ellen Cusik (friend and design professional): advice, resource ideas.

–       Joel Herron (ex-husband): raising trusses for roof, use of vehicle for moving the start of the tiny house to my driveway

–       Izidor (neighbor): the tallest ladder known to man! As well as loads of encouragement.

–       Jason and Jennifer Brainard (neighbors): Ladder and advice. Also, a huge thanks for the ability to call them and have them shout across the street to get the attention of tiny house workers when at Lowe’s with a question.

–       Lee and Stevie Brainard, 4 and 2 yrs old: The cutest, most eager little workers you ever did see. On the first day of tiny house work, they sat diligently on their lawn across the street, waiting with bike helmets and toolboxes to help. Additionally, Lee is a professional electric kids jeep driver and has volunteered his services to move his dad’s ladder back across the street whenever we have need. We couldn’t do it without him.

–       David Gow (friend): Nailer, stapler, compressor, and encouragement.

–       Mark Thompson (high school friend): Flew all the way from Colorado, where he runs the recycle center in Durango. He donated his time, his positive and reflective energy, and his vast amount of skills for FIVE DAYS ! ! ! He was absolutely crucial to getting many, many things accomplished on the tiny house (not limited to: wiring, insulation, window installation, roofing, felting, and general ass kickin’).

–       Scott Howard and Karin Shipley (old friends): Barn wood from their basement ceiling, now the small loft floor, porch ceiling and deck, and will also be used for the inside bench.

–       Darren Faherty (roommate): Besides being the most ridiculously cool housemate a girl could ask for, Mr. Faherty also lent his metal roofing skills and painters touch. Not to mention his famous late afternoon cocktails and round the clock patience with the construction zone his living space has become.

–       Micah Brenner (friend): Bolted frame to trailer and supplied much witty repartee.

–       Ashley Roy (cousin): My beautiful 14 yr. old cousin came up for four days, allowing me to boss her around when she could have been spending her summer like most other teenagers on break. Instead, she painted, sanded, de-metaled old wood, and schooled me on the difference between finishing and framing nails. She is incredibly good at teaching me things.

–       Nick Carter (former student and friend): Nick got on a bus at 7 am to travel from Forest Grove into North Portland, worked aaaaalll day and then took the same long route home. He, and his amazingly positive presence, installed the large half moon window, the skylights, and shingled the porch ceiling!  He deserved his A’s in class, but he most certainly gets them in life too.

–       Jamie Bluhm (interior designer and friend): Advice and Ikea connection! – bed and chopping block for kitchen counter

–       Brian (“Best Neighbor Ever”): I met Brian after leaving a note on a property he was tearing down because I was interested in the wood. He came over to tell us personally that the wood was gone, but offered the use of his planer (an incredibly expensive tool), as well as help moving the 600 lb beautiful beast to our tiny “workshop”. Note: Brian enlisted his renter, who having had back surgery and unable to lift, called his neighbor who moonlights in professional weight lifting. The muscle man showed up five minutes later. What a great testament to how the tiny house, though small, has shown its long reaches: into the corners of neighbors’ sheds as well as their immense generosity.

–       Richard (next door neighbor): encouragement and daily jokes

–       Nameless (neighbor a few streets over): water filter

–       Jeff, Cathy, and Kaci Spoor (mother, stepdad and sister in-law): The best family workday I could have imagined.  Beginning at 8 am, we moved the entire contents of my attic, put the interior wall treatment on and lined the closet space with cedar. And, they brought lunch, water and ridiculously good attitudes that lasted  the entire 102 degree day.

–       Gidget Mikkelson (aunt): kitchen sink, tanks and stove torn out of a trailer destined for the dump.

–       Kenny and Angela Bennett (friend and sister/ex-student):  Besides tolerating all my tiny house talk for the last four months, a looong days work with a roller derby tough chick and her equally tough husband means a lot of stuff gets done!

–       Donations: Hava Tursky, Erin Piccolo, Janessa Datema, Eric Laukkanen, Cathy and Jeff Spoor

–       Everyone at the North Portland Tool Library: This resource survives off of volunteers and donations. And is an incredibly important model of true community- GIVE THEM MONEY. Here:

–       Green Star International:  Parent company, Viridian Wood. Beautifully responsible work:

With that said… check out the progress! ! !

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