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This Couple’s House Will Show You Why Living In A Small House Might Be A Good Alternative

This Couple’s House Will Show You Why Living In A Small House Might Be A Good Alternative

I grew up being something of a pack rat. I kept old school papers, any piece of meaningful mail I received, and all the toys my parents didn’t make me ship off to Goodwill. Once I moved out on my own, and then moved again and again, I realized that owning a lot of things wasn’t actually a great choice. It was hard to move a lot of heavy boxes, and sometimes it was hard finding space for everything in my apartments. Most of the time I’d have at least one closet that was stacked with unpacked boxes.

But even knowing that I owned too many pointless belongings, it’s hard to make yourself cut down. Even if you’re not sentimentally attached to anything, it just seems hard to throw things out in our culture. To help push myself towards the lifestyle I wanted to lead, I moved from a three bedroom house to a 450 square foot garage apartment with a lofted bed. This definitely made me cut down on belongings – for example, I went from five bookshelves to two! I kept only my favorite DVDs and put all of my music on the computer so I wouldn’t have stacks of CDs all over the house. I only bought what I needed for the bathroom and kitchen, and traded my couch for an armchair that could fit in the corner without being in the way. It was tough to do, but I felt so proud of myself once I downsized and lived more within my means.

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    Since then, I’ve seen pictures in the news about the popularity of downsizing to live in a small house, but this couple takes the cake! Andrew and Gabriella Morrison live in a tiny home – it’s only 221 square feet, but it has all the amenities of “big” house living! Both of them have a background in construction, so building the house was like a dream come true for them. In fact, they now own a business called TinyHouseBuild.com, which helps direct other people who want to build their own small houses. After checking out photos and a video tour of the tiny house, you just might be inspired to move out! And you can move anywhere, because many tiny houses are built on wheels, and are small enough to be towed behind cars and trucks.

    The biggest benefit of tiny homes is, of course, the financial savings. Building a tiny home costs between $22,000 to $35,000. That’s one-tenth of the price to build a single-family home in the United States, which averages out to be a cool $246,000, according to the National Association of Home Builders. That means you can have a home without having a mortgage hanging over your head. And, since tiny homes are so small, it doesn’t call for much to heat and cool them. They’re incredibly energy efficient, and since many are on wheels, you can always move them out of the sun and into the shade if you need to. Those are benefits for your wallet and the environment!

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    Besides the money, my favorite thing about tiny homes is how stylish they all look. They can have loft beds, or murphy beds, or beds with drawers underneath. The storage areas can’t be hidden in a closet, so not only do you cut the clutter, you have cool looking shelves and spaces for all your stuff. Every inch of space is used in a practical way, so nothing is wasted.

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      You can still have a full kitchen. I’ve seen kitchens in regular sized houses that don’t have this much cabinet space!

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        There’s a spacious bedroom…

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          A bathroom…

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              An office area…

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                And a dining area next to extra seating for guests.

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                  Storage space looks more stylish when you don’t have closets jam-packed with outdated clothes.

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                    It might seem like a major change to downsize from a large house with three or four bedrooms to a tiny house that is just one room with different levels and spaces carved out, but doesn’t it seem worth it? You only keep what really matters to you, you only buy what you need, and you have your spouse and family in the coziest of close quarters.

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                      For a full tour of Andrew and Gabriella Morrison’s tiny house, check out this video:

                      Featured photo credit: Gabriella Morrison via accuweather.com

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                      Last Updated on November 17, 2019

                      20 Creative Ways To Say Thank You

                      20 Creative Ways To Say Thank You

                      Saying, “Thank you,” can be difficult to do. Some things just demand a little something extra because of the magnitude of the favor or the depth of appreciation involved. But what can you do to say thank you in a meaningful way? Sometimes you have to get a little more creative than just firing off an email. Here are 20 creative ways to say thank you that your friends and family will remember and cherish!

                      1. Make a gift bag.

                      A unique, homemade gift bag with a custom label or a note is a simple but heartfelt way to show your appreciation for the wonderful things your friends or family have done for you.

                      2. Give a toast.

                      Many people fear public speaking more than death, giving this particular thank-you a little extra meaning. Composing a sincere, eloquent toast and delivering it is a nice way to show appreciation that truly comes from the heart.

                      3. Write a poem.

                      “Roses are red, violets are blue…” Uh, you could write that...but why not put a little extra zing in it? Find out what their favorite kind of poetry is: haiku, free verse, iambic pentameter, and so on. (Google them if you don’t know what they are.) Then write one that expresses why they deserve your thanks…and why you’re glad to give it!

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                      4. Create your own labels.

                      There are a number of websites that offer custom gift labels. Find one that fits your personality and that of your friends and create a personalized thank-you label!

                      5. Give a gift card.

                      Sometimes choosing what to give a friend can be tough. A gift card is a good way to get around this problem. As always, be sure to include a personalized note or card thanking the recipient for their friendship and help.

                      6. Send a letter.

                      Snail-mail is a largely lost art form. Don’t worry about how long the letter is, though. What really matters here is that you took the time to put pen to paper and express your feelings sincerely and honestly!

                      7. Use social media to send a special message.

                      If someone’s done something you think the whole world should know about, why not put out a social media blast? Use your blog, your Facebook, your Google+ account, and your Twitter to spread the word about why this person’s someone your friends will want to know too!

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                      8. Make your own digital greeting card.

                      While an email isn’t always the best way to go when saying thank you, a digital greeting card that you put time and effort into creating can really brighten someone’s day! Make the card reflect the recipient’s personality and compose a short message of thanks for their generosity.

                      9. Make a YouTube video.

                      Sometimes, actually hearing someone say, “Thank you,” can make all the difference. Why not take it a step further and create a special video of thanks for your friends, family, and those special people who helped make your day so important…or who helped you through that rough time?

                      10. Deliver cookies or candies.

                      Making something yourself is a fun and delightful way to say thank you to someone. Create a sampling of baked goods or homemade candies and decorate them with a simple message, or make them so they form letters! (Think Valentine’s candies, only situationally appropriate.) Attach a thank-you note or label and surprise those special people with the gift of your time and creativity.

                      11. Make surprise gifts for guests.

                      There’s no need to wait until “later” to send a thank-you message. Why not do it at the time? Create little gift packets or bags for your guests with surprises inside. This is a great way to say thanks to the people who attended your event, and make sure they won’t want to miss the next one!

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                      12. Put together a flower basket.

                      Whether you prefer fresh or artificial flowers, assembling a flower basket with a thank-you note is an excellent way to brighten someone’s day and show you appreciate them.

                      13. Take a picture.

                      Sometimes capturing the moment is the best way to put a smile on someone’s face. Have someone take a picture of you receiving that special gift or opening that surprise package and send the giver a copy with a quick but sincere note to say thanks!

                      14. Repay their generosity by paying it forward.

                      The best gifts come from the heart, and the best way to repay a gift is to pay it forward. If your friend has a special cause they care about or something they believe in passionately, why not make a donation in their name or volunteer some of your time to the cause? This will mean more than any number of cookies, candies, or thank-you notes because you’re taking your friend’s love and spreading it around to others.

                      15. Do something special for them.

                      Take them out to dinner. (See “make a toast.”) Give them that movie they’ve been wanting forever. Cook them dinner and give them a present when they arrive. Any of these are good options for showing someone you really appreciate them and how grateful you are to have them in your life.

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                      16. Reciprocate their help.

                      Everyone needs help sometime. Whether it’s holding their hand through a particularly traumatic incident or helping them replace the alternator in their car, being there when they need it shows you remember what they did for you and how much it meant. It also shows that you’re willing to be just as good a friend to them as they were to you!

                      17. Be there for them.

                      Not every thank-you gesture has to be a grand public spectacle. Sometimes just giving them a place to come hang out when they’re lonely or showing up to offer them a sympathetic shoulder means the world to a person.

                      18. Listen to them.

                      Listening is almost as lost an art as the handwritten letter. When your friend or family member needs to talk, listen to them. Ask questions when appropriate, but just letting them know you’re there and paying attention to them to the exclusion of all else for a little while is a great way to say thank you for the times they listened to you.

                      19. Say it in another language…or two…

                      A simple thank you is great…but why not spice it up a little? Instead of just saying, “Thank you,” write or make a video of you telling them thank you in different languages. Some examples might be, “Gracias! Merci! Danke schoen! Spasibo! Mahalo!” and any other ways or languages you can think of. (The ones listed above are Spanish, French, German, Russian, and Hawaiian, in case you were wondering.) If you want to really get tricky about it, say a short phrase in each language that conveys why you’re thanking them!

                      20. Show them some love.

                      A simple touch, a hug, or helping out when they need it without being asked may be the most powerful gratitude message you can send. Offer to take the dogs for a walk, sit for the kids for a few hours, or run to the grocery store so they don’t have to. The little things are often the most important and meaningful. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t still send a note, but sometimes your simple presence and willingness to help is all that really matters.

                      Featured photo credit: Hanny Naibaho via unsplash.com

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