Tuesday, June 11, 2013

665 Square Feet and Recipe

Not that I need to make an announcement, but every post, no matter the topic will always end with a recipe or two. Let's face it, food is life and no matter how brilliant, boring or exciting life is, we gotta eat. Might as well share the delicious things in the world since we get bombarded with the gruesomeness and inadequacies of life on a constant basis. This is why I read the news and never watch it. I can filter at will and am probably better off for doing so. Anyway, let's focus on part of the title in today's post.

665 Square Feet. Could you live in that size space and be happy? A family downsized after the economic crisis pretty much kicked them in tush like a lot of folks. They went to Wyoming and built this charming cabin on rented land. Now, I have been very clear on my dislike of open shelving. It is beautiful for photo shoots and nothing more in my mind. In this particular design case, it makes sense because cabinets would make the room feel less airy. It is still not something I would do, but I understand the purpose of it here since it is not being done due to trends. Read about the cabin and the choice they made to move to Wyoming and what they plan for the long term on their blog Assortment.

What I admire most about this home is that people found themselves in a crap situation and figured a way out on their own. One of the best things stated in the section of "Our Story" is this:
For us, financial security was no longer linked to the size of the portfolio or the potential of real estate holdings; financial security now meant zero debt and a job well loved. Home security meant building a 665 square foot portable guest cabin, placing it on rented land, and living there while saving our cash to buy land and build a house. Life security meant adjusting parameters to ensure more time for passions, and less for obligations.

I do understand this lifestyle choice is in not suited to everyone. I am not even sure I could do it with a family of three, but I appreciate that someone out there figured out things and keeping up with the various Joneses is not what life is about.
Now let me give you a very cool, opposite side of the coin story.
We have friends that have a beautiful, stately home that resembles 'Tara' from 'Gone With The Wind',  so every time I am there I want to grab dirt in my hand and yell that "I will never go hungry again". (You would do the same thing so stop laughing.) They happen to have three two year olds, God Bless, and these little cuties all share a room. That's right. Share a room. As they get older they may want to split up and all have their own room, but right now, they share and it seems to work for everyone. Our friends who own the home both grew up in large families and one of them said, "I shared a room growing up with my brothers so I don't see the big deal." In case you want to know, besides that bedroom and the master bedroom, there are two other bedrooms on the floor and they are currently used for guests and the au pair. Here they are, in a house with more than enough space and yet, the girls have an awesome room together. I respect that big time. I also respect that at some point, our friends will have to deal with hormones, driver licenses and college all at the same time so may God be gentle with them. :)

Last night I made a fantastic stew. It had been raining all day and I wasn't sure what to cook. I have a small amount of lentils, not enough for a soup on its own, but enough to mix with something. Thanks to the wonderful BBC GoodFood site I found a recipe for Chorizo, Chickpea and Lentil stew. I used out soy chorizo from Trader Joe's and since I had no paprika I used red chili powder. My chive biscuits were great with it especially to cut the heat of the spices. Mine did not come out like the picture, but no matter, still delicious.

Have a wonderful Tuesday!



  1. Great post! Even before my hubby lost his job in the economic crisis over 4 years ago, I lived (and still do live) in a small, 18thc. house that was completely paid for. It was the pits when I bought it and I restored it over years, salvaging, garbage picking, and/or paying cash for materials, etc., as needed. Our cars were old, and also paid for. We have no cell phone or the kinds of "toys" some people seem to think are necessary. (And yes, you can live well with one bathroom!)
    I confess I would like a little security---insurance and knowing where my next meal was coming from, but even if our house sells, we have no intention of buying a bigger one, or of having a mortgage or credit cards; We'll start over and re-do a 'fixer upper' just as I did before.
    We are very happy with our lifestyle and values and feel most people are too spoiled and feel too "entitled". We commend those who make the choice to live more simply and rely more on themselves and not a lot of fancy "things" to make them happy.

  2. I have enjoyed watching what you and hubby do to improve your lovely home on your blog and so should others.
    Uncertainty with insurance or a meal is frightening and I hope that passes soon for you both. Not being able to afford a Broadway show or a brand new $50,000 car, not so much.