This is the backyard of our house. When we moved into this house in 2011 there was only grass and a chain-link fence surrounding the tiny house at the front of the lot (539 sf). We had just moved from a 273 sf floating home on the Columbia river into this house and wasted no time starting to turn the yard into an oasis. At almost double the square footage of our old place (with two people, two dogs and a cat living in it) it felt absolutely palatial.
We taught ourselves to build a cedar fence, dug out the sod in the front and back for a vegetable and bee/bird habitat garden and used the cement chunks from a broken pathway we dug up to build a moss-covered retaining wall around another side garden filled with native plants. We’ve also created our own backyard “bar” we call the Queer Steer, where we love to spend time with dear friends.
We chose this house because it met all our criteria. It was affordable enough that we could still make payments even if we fell on hard times. It was also bright and open, only six blocks from the train and near several bike and bus routes so we could live with one or even no car, wouldn’t take too long to clean or too much money to heat, had a yard for a garden, a bath tub and at least one door that we could close that wasn’t the bathroom.
The choices we’ve made have given us flexibility, like allowing Pauline to work part time so she has a higher quality of life and for me to take some time to focus 100% on healing some very deep wounds.
Someday soon (after I’m feeling a bit better), we hope to rent the place out for a year, hit the road in a camper van of some kind and drive as close as we can get to the tip of Tierra del Fuego to see where the albatross end their migratory route.