The Early Bird and All That

It’s 03:30am as I start writing this. Well, more like 03:37, it took me a few minutes to get up and let the dog out… For the next 21 days I’ll be waking up at 03:30 every day in an attempt to get caught back up on everything from this blog, to my tiny house planning, to my medical school studies, all of which have started to slip into the overwhelmingly behind category of my to-do list. The idea is drawn from this TED talk and an unshakeable belief that I can somehow add hours to the day. It has everything a goal needs: it’s specific, achievable, and time limited so I’ll eventually be able to say “I did it!”. We talk a lot about goal theory in medicine. After all, if our job is keeping people healthy that includes helping our patients quit smoking and resist that second doughnut. Unfortunately, we’re not always so good at applying this to our own lives, so here goes! While my dog stares at me in confusion wondering why he’s awake this long before his breakfast, here’s my first to-do list check off item: an update on what’s been happening lately with my tiny house build.

First up, on the topic of dogs, meet Whisky – future tiny house co-habitant, trtn mascot, and (wo)man’s best friend. He was born the summer I left for college and has been living with my folks since then. Over the past few months however, with them staring down the barrel of retirement and (they hope) a fair bit of travel, they’d been looking for a new home for him. In my typical act-first-think-later manner, I volunteered. Several complications and a canine transatlantic flight later, he’s all moved in. Taking on a dog in the middle of medical school may seem a little crazy but, to be honest, I think it’s one of the best choices I’ve made in a long time. Today marks four full weeks together and he’s taking as much care of me as I am of him: stopping me from hitting the snooze button each morning with the knowledge that he needs fed and let out, persuading me to start running again and do at least one long walk each weekend, and just generally keeping me company as I trawl through the seemingly endless quantity of information I need to know to become a doctor. So now all things tiny house are being designed with a 60lb dog in mind!

Whisky demonstrating one of his favorite (very comfortable, I'm sure) positions to curl up next to me at my desk.
Whisky demonstrating one of his favorite (very comfortable, I’m sure) positions to curl up next to me at my desk.

On the topic of the tiny house, there’s a lot to update. First off, let me preface that, as stated in previous posts, Pops and I have a problem. That problem is an excessive mentality of DIYism. Specifically, if we can think of any way to improve on something, we end up making it ourselves in order to do just that, and the whole project soon spirals into (almost literally) reinventing the wheel. And that, my friends, is how we have wound up designing and building our own tiny house trailer from scratch. We’ve spent most of the last month designing and redesigning to create the strongest, easiest to build on, best insulated trailer we can conceive of. In fact, we’ve gotten so excited about our design and how it solves all the little issues we’d run into with existing trailers that Pops is thinking of making a business out of it after we’ve thoroughly tested the product with my own tiny house build this summer. He’s an engineer with decades of experience manufacturing everything from aeroplanes to sardine processors, so it’s not as far-fetched an idea as it might sound, but it does mean that the trailer details are under wraps until our patent comes through. So stay tuned, more on this later.

And now it’s time I get on to the next to-do list item. Here’s to keeping up more regular trtn updates in the future (at least for the next 21 days!).


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