So I thought I might continue on our little tour of our tiny house, our construction choices, and the outcome.
Since I am currently enjoying some beautiful summer days I thought I might talk a little about our outdoor living space.
The first outdoor space we built was our front porch and since we used plans to build our post and pier foundation based on deck plans, no front porch was in the original design. We always planned to build one but we needed to have the house built first.
Our front porch may be the smallest deck ever constructed. It is essentially a free-standing structure using just four deck blocks for stability. It is attached to the house by the porch overhang. It provides a small covered spot to take off our muddy shoes before going inside.
I encourage you to read more and see our photos of the process below.
While we like being out on the porch we wanted to build more outdoor spaces to be able to enjoy our mountain all the time. Since our land is pretty sloped we needed to build a deck so we could sit comfortably outside without being at an angle. We also wanted a space to prepare food outdoors using our Camp Chef Camp Oven and a small smoker.
The next building project was an outdoor “kitchen.” When we said we were building an outdoor kitchen I think people had an idea that we were going to do a pretty ornate set up, but really we just wanted a flat surface to cook on. So we decided to build a small table with one storage shelf.
We decided to use EZ Spikes which are sold at big home improvement stores and typically used for mail boxes or fence posts. They require a lot of brute force to pound them into the ground and they are really stable. We added 4X4 posts and leveled them in place. We added braces and a bottom shelf which is where we store our aquatainers of spring water, our camp oven, and other various outdoor cooking tools. We secured a sturdy board across the top to be the counter and painted it. We even gave the table a very slight slope toward the back so water wouldn’t collect on the surface after rain.
Because of the slope of the land the height of the table varies depending on where you’re standing. We can put the camp oven on the lower side making it easy to access and prepare in the middle of the counter which is exactly the right height. We can put a water filter with spigot on the highest point which makes washing dishes easier.
Once the table was done, we started work on our “back yard” deck. We built a 12X12 deck and, if you’re keeping score, it is actually bigger than our house. We used deck block and 4X4s for the structure and 2X6s for the deck itself. The best part was that we could buy 12 foot lumber and not have to cut anything but the posts – which was kind of a relief after building our house. The deck went up in a matter of days.
We refer to the deck as the Folk N’ Ale – a clever play on words for anyone willing to sound it out. The first party we had after moving in featured music on the deck while the rest of us sat on blankets on the ground.
When we decided to build a 120 square foot house we never intended to be confined to it. I love being inside my house, but I also really love the Smoky Mountains and I want to enjoy the natural setting as much as possible. We have a lot of future plans for building near the tiny house like a perfect tree house which I would love to turn into a bar. I don’t actually imagine a time when we’ll stop building things.
What kind of outdoor living spaces do you want in your life?
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