Beauty Of Tiny Homes

Of late I have been binge-watching the “Living Big in a Tiny House” video series by Bryce Langston. A tiny house is typically 120 sq ft or less. When I first heard about tiny houses, it did not make any sense to me. I wondered how all the furniture and appliances of an 800 to 1000 sq ft house, could fit into a tiny house. The concept did not appeal to me. However, the more videos I watched, the more I understood why so many people prefer a tiny house.

Some tiny- home owners say that it is the cost factor that encouraged them; the cost of building a tiny house is much lower than a regular-sized house. The cost of a tiny house can range from $10,000 to $150,000. The cost depends on the kind of materials used, the design and the additional features added.

For some, a tiny house is a way to diminish their carbon footprint. They don’t mind replacing a regular toilet with a composting toilet in their house. They make clever use of things that were discarded by others. Often, these repurposed materials look very artistic and impressive. Solar panels are used for electricity, to sustain an off-grid living. I have also seen a few people build marvellous systems for rain-water harvesting. Some have even created a biogas digester too. Greywater treatment systems are also incorporated by a lot of these enthusiastic homeowners. It is absolutely amazing to see the effort that they have put in to save the planet.

A large majority of tiny houses are on wheels. The house can be taken wherever you go. This freedom is another reason for the rise in popularity of tiny houses. Their love for the outdoors is so great that they are ready to make any sacrifice.

Image Of A Tiny Home From the Show ‘Living Big In A Tiny House’

The dimensions of the tiny house are very important. There are rules regulating the tiny houses but these rules vary from place to place. If someone were driving under a bridge, the height of the house becomes very important. You understand the reasoning, right?
Whatever be the reason for opting a tiny house, one thing in common: it’s important to downsize the lifestyle. This means, only the bare essentials stay and the rest have to go.

Storage space in a tiny house, I’ve noticed, are designed very skillfully. Every item of furniture or fixture has multiple functions. The seating areas have a hollow space underneath to store things. The staircase is made of a set of cupboards or they may have some other arrangement to store things. Collapsible tables and couches that can be pulled open into a bed. These are some common design elements. Almost all the tiny houses have a loft above, that is generally a bedroom space. In some cases, this is even an office space or a lounge to sit and relax while watching T.V.

Bryce Langston himself has a marvellous tiny house that he designed and built for himself. I thoroughly enjoy watching his videos. I am blown away by the creativity of some people to convert an old school bus, or a train coach, an old truck or a shipping container into a tiny home. One guy built his house, using completely reclaimed timber, tin sheets and an old trailer on a large permaculture farm.

Finally, I can say that I changed my attitude towards tiny houses after binge-watching Bryce Langston’s videos. Even though I can’t see myself living in a tiny house, I have a lot of respect, admiration and awe for those who do.

Disclaimer: All Above Images Are Taken From The Show Living Big In A Tiny House

Beauty Is Not Just Skin Deep

We have all heard the age-old adage, beauty is only skin deep. It is a way of saying that external beauty is superficial and true beauty comes from the heart. It was drilled into us when we were young and impressionable. It was taught to us, not to be deceived by the charm of a person, but we should learn to see the honesty behind the facade. We should all strive to be good-natured, hard-working, honest and loving to succeed. Then, why did I title my post as ‘beauty is not skin deep’??

As a child, I might have accepted this lesson, but in actuality, the matter is not straight forward. Beauty is not just about having lustrous skin, clear complexion, slim physique, glossy hair, perfect posture, excellent bone structure etc. These are the parameters used by many to decide on beauty standards. But, to achieve these standards of beauty, we require more strength and character than we realise. To appear beautiful and maintain this image over a while, a person needs to make an effort, both mentally and physically.

Our health and inner emotional turmoil can be kept hidden, yet they manage to find a way to reveal themself. Our eyes, appearance of wrinkles, pimples, skin texture, hair quality, weight, posture will give away our state of mind and impact our beauty. Lustrous skin that is free of acne and wrinkles is a dream for most women and men. Every time we have mood swings or stress, our skin ages by a year. Lack of sufficient water can add to skin problems. Hair fall, oily scalp, dull, lifeless, thin and damaged hair are a result of sudden stress, emotional upheavals, bad sleep and bad eating habits. While we correct our posture, the way we walk or sit can be controlled with exercise, yet close observation will reveal any tensions or depression.

With these indicators ready to give away our state of mind and body, can we honestly say beauty is only skin deep? Beauty treatments, spa sessions and cosmetic surgeries can only do so much to hide the truth. A balanced diet, stress-free mind, good exercise, proper water consumption can do more to our beauty than we imagine.

Drinking at least 4 litres of water every day keeps our body hydrated. Water flushes out most toxins and gives us glowing, clear skin. Rigorous exercise for 30 mins daily helps us sweat out toxins, burns the extra fat and tones the muscles while it gets rid of stress in the mind. Regular meditation and deep breathing techniques remove tension in the muscles and help us relax. A balanced diet with the right amounts of fat, carbs, protein and minerals goes a long way in improving our physique and posture.

The suggestions I have made are not revolutionary concepts. They are not novel concepts that we never tried. Yet, we often overlook the importance of such simple activities that make a vast sea of change. I hope that I have reminded you to get back into these habits daily. I am sure many of you have many more simple tricks that help you daily. Feel free to share them with us and help others too.

How True Are Our Prayers?

“Atmasuddhi leni acaramadi ela ?
bhandasuddhileni pakamela
chittasuddhileni Sivapujalelara ?
visvadabhirama vinura Vema !”

This poem was written by Yogi Vemana. Yogi Vemana is a famous Telugu ascetic. He wrote a series of poems that spread wisdom, morality, and ethics based on the social fabric of south Indian society in the 17th-century. His poems highlighted the flaws and inconsistencies in society in his times. Sadly, they are relevant in society today as well. The above verse is close to my heart, I hope you see the wisdom in it too.

This verse in Telugu, speaks about wholeheartedly understanding and supporting your beliefs. Vemana points out the futility of your faith when your heart and mind is not invested in it. He tells that there is no sense in following the ceremonies when the heart and soul are not invested in it. It is the same as cooking a fancy meal in a dirty kitchen with soiled utensils and impure ingredients. He questions you about the purpose of all your prayers when your intentions are not genuine.

This poem rings true in most of the current situations that the world is facing. We have laws, constitutional rights, being used and abused to serve evil intents and purposes. We also see god’s gospel is misused to spread the wrong message. People are following the rule of law in word, not in spirit. We see people offer insincere apologies, offer assistance that will only hurt you more than it helps or offer a helping hand while pulling the rug from under you.

Caring For The Sick

At some point in our life, we are faced with a situation where we need to take care of a loved one who is ill. The patient could have a health problem or an accident or a disease; with a severity ranging from mild to something serious. In any case, we need to jump in and take control of things until they can get back on their feet. From some such caregiving experiences, I learnt some things. Today I want to share some ideas that can make the task of caring a little manageable.

Firstly, do not let your emotions get the better of you. Be strong. Your mental strength can contribute to or deplete your energy levels. Don’t waste time pondering about why the accident occurred or why it happened to your loved ones. Instead, keep focused on what needs to be done to improve their condition. Have trust and confidence in God. His blessing will heal the sick.

In most cases, it will be difficult to keep your life and work on hold to take care of someone else. At times, your frustration or irritation can get the better of you and create a bitter experience for the patient. Take all the help you can get from others wherever it is extended. Do not be too proud to take aid. This will help in overcoming the strain it puts on your health and time. This will go a long way in keeping you sane.

Carefully and precisely follow the doctor’s advice, down to the T. It is essential to carefully file all prescriptions, test results and reports that the doctor gives you. These things could get misplaced easily. In western countries, the doctor’s office might maintain the patient’s files. I would advise you to record all your doctor’s suggestions and advice, just in case you might forget. Discuss with the doctor about the diet and the dos and don’ts.

Generally, doctors give some specific instructions for each medicine based on mealtime or dosage. Keeping this in mind, have three boxes and label them as ‘morning/afternoon/night’ or ‘breakfast/lunch/dinner’. Arrange the medicines into these boxes accordingly. This will make the task a lot easier and you don’t have to recollect the instructions every time. Moreover, the chances of errors get reduced. In some countries, healthcare professionals offer this service for a small charge, so you can avail them based your the affordability. It saves time and effort in the overall process.

Diet for the patient needs special attention. Conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, kidney problem etc require a restricted diet. Certain foods should be avoided in each of these conditions. Discuss food restrictions with your doctor at the get-go. Keeping an inventory of items available in the pantry and refrigerator will prove to be handy while cooking and shopping. I would suggest keeping a list of food items to be avoided as well. In case of injury care, it is prudent to keep a separate inventory of dressing material, antiseptic lotions, pain relievers etc in a special box. It saves time and energy in going for things each day.

A quick tip that I found helpful at times is to keep a bottle of water or juice and a healthy snack on your bedside table. It helps when hunger strikes at all odd hours.

Another helpful tip is to always keep a baby monitor in the patient’s room so that you can monitor them. Keeping their room clean and airy also helps; fresh air improves the mood of the patient.

Be mindful of the patient’s mental state. They might say hurtful things or behave rudely. We need to remember, its just the struggle with the pain that is driving them. Be patient with them.

Through this process of caring for the patient, most people forget about themselves. When you are the primary caregiver, you need energy and rest too. Eat well and if possible, get some rest. Keep in touch with your other friends and relatives to keep your mind fresh and active; take a break from the stress.

Celebrate progress and improvement, however small it is. This will work as a morale booster to motivate the patient and yourself.

These are some things that I felt I could share with all of you. There might be many more tips that I am not aware of and did not mention. Please feel free to express your opinion in the comments section and let us know. Have a blessed day! And if you have a sick person at home, my prayers are for their recovery.