Minimalism to the rescue – When your Tiny House budget falls short Part I

All the signs were there but, to be honest, what good would knowing we did not have enough to finish the project have done?  Stop us from doing it?  That was just not an option.  We knew we were taking a chance, many chances as a matter of fact.

We were buying plans to build a Tiny House, on wheels, in a world where the absence of regulation, direction and general assistance was a looming presence.  But as Emerson once said “God will not have his work made manifest by cowards”.  

A few weeks ago it became apparent that there was not going to be enough and when our suspicions proved to be a reality I was not anticipating the effect it would have on my system.  I had become tired, but could not sleep, irritable and the feeling of unrest had settled over me.

It was then that my beloved had a break down.  Yes that’s right my Jeep Huck had a busted Drive shaft to the tune of $1089.00.  As I sat in utter disbelief and dismay it was then that it had come to me.  What would my father have done?

We had gone through a good many rough patches in my youth.  I remember the cheese you could get in the box downtown, weeks on end of Salmon cakes, canned veggies, day old bread from the thrift store and whatever else my parents could afford.  We spent an entire winter without electricity (in the days when they could shut off your electric in the dead of winter).

Our Cast Iron Wood-stove that would sustain us through the winter.

We used a wood stove for nearly everything.  At night my mom would heat up pots of cold water for a bath and bricks on the wood stove, place them into  a hand sewn bag and put them in bed with me to keep me warm.  Even so there were mornings when my hair had a thin crust of frost on it.

I would get dressed in bed, hand me downs with patches in the knees, and do my best to get my hair under control.  Due to my appearance I earned such names as Birdnest, Scruff and plenty of other clever names kids came up with.

This would not win me any popularity contests but it would, in times such as this, grant me a better perspective.  Help me to see clearer.  An appreciation for what others go though as well as guide me through the turbulent waters of life.

It was my parents resourcefulness and determination that would ultimately add the most value to my life.  They were Minimalists of necessity.  Despite our lack of cashflow my dad always found a way to come through for Christmas.  Never missed a summer at the beach and Mom would always have food in our bellies, especially Thanksgiving.

So it was in a flash of inspiration I’d realize that the same answer to a complicated, overextended life of consumerism and endless debt would also be the answer to my dwindling budget.  Minimalism.

I had already scaled back my clothing to a few efficient, complimentary outfits.  Rid ourselves of needless trinkets, gadgets and clutter.  We even divorced ourselves of a mortgage.  The time had come for us to apply the same minimalistic method to our spending.  It was time to draw on the knowledge gleaned from leaner times.


Out of the Darkness and Into the Light

Many days have passed since that cool early spring afternoon in April of 2012…


Never would I believed as I sat in a on my back porch, in a chair that was my fathers sipping a cup of coffee and healing from a motorcycle accident that my new found obsession would be taking shape now in the autumn of 2017.

Too numerous are the times I’ve fought that internal struggle.  The one that occurs every time I attempt to manifest the means to repay all of those dear souls who have lent a hand along the way.

Monetary compensation alone cannot hold a candle to the staggering generosity shown to Anne and I (which is apt as there is none of that at the present time).  To take upon themselves a task for no other reason than to add to another persons life, let alone provide them with a means in which to live it.

For a period of a little over a year our Tiny House has lay dormant for the most part, covered in a cloak of darkness, awaiting rebirth.  Now once again, thanks to the kind hand of others, we are coming out of the darkness and into the light.

As I sit in the master loft, looking out of the pane-less windows into the surrounding woods, a renewed sense of vigor and appreciation flooded through me.  I was glimpsing the future.  The future of what would be our home.  What would someday hold the moments and treasures of the memories of those who spent time there, loving, laughing and just sharing life.

Creamy Low Fat Mango Pepper Tahini Sauce

Mango pepper tahini sauce

Rich and Creamy Mango Pepper Tahini Sauce

This is creamy low fat mango pepper tahini sauce one of the most versatile and simple recipes to date.  Use as is for a sauce to blanket zucchini noodles or a macro bowl, use it as a dip for veggies or thin it out with a little water or fruit juice and use as a dressing.  Make it spicy or mild! uIt is as much like a blank canvas as Zucchini Noodles.

 Recently my son took me out to brunch and I stuffed this sauce along with some Salsa Fresca and a little Ghost pepper sauce into a jelly jar and took it to Ruby Tuesday’s for the salad bar and ate like a pig!
You can use fresh or frozen mango for this recipe depending on your preference.  If you have no coconut aminos and have to use another amino such as Bragg’s be sure to adjust the amount to allow for salt content.
Jade Rochelle Tornquist of The Rawsome Truth on Youtube and creator of the 25,000 member strong Raw Vegan Fruitarians 4 life facebook group not only approved she recreated it herself!
I hope you enjoy!
Serving Sizes:
Zucchini Pasta:
2 large bowls or 1 massive bowl
2-4 large salads
8-12 1/4 cup size cups
  • 1 mango
  • 1 bell pepper
  • 1/4 cup coconut aminos
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup raw unhulled sesame seeds
  • 1 tablespoon sweetener of choice or 2-3 dates
  • Juice of 1/2 of an orange (optional)
Add all to your Vitamix and blend until smooth and creamy. Pour over zucchini noodles, carrot noodles or your choice of veggies.