My sister Corinne and her hubby Daniel live in a 100 square foot home in a village outside of Jinja, Uganda as they pursue work at Good Shepherd’s Fold Baby & Children’s Home (Corinne is the Sponsorship Coordinator, and Daniel is a structural engineer for EMI). When Corinne and Daniel arrived in Uganda, they knew they wanted to become immersed in the culture and live as “average village residents,” which meant they had to adapt a small-house lifestyle. Corinne wrote all about her feelings about this small-house life in her blog. She references the growing trend in the U.S. toward smaller-scale living, as referenced in this Infographic from houseplans.com.
Read Corinne’s take on her tiny house here (and don’t forget to click over to her blog at the bottom to see her kitchen!) –
Fewer Walls to Separate
Christmas gift from my mom
I hear that tiny houses are quite the trend in the US these days. Although I have yet to watch any of the shows (and believe me, I fully intend to watch one whenever I can get my hands on one), I am truly surprised that these tiny houses have gone from a few pins on Pinterest to entire television series. It’s interesting to me because the tiny living that totally captivates America was widespread in Uganda long before it took HGTV. But it’s not entertainment here; it’s totally normal. And it’s nowhere on Ugandan television. Maybe it’s not considered entertainment because most Ugandans haven’t chosen to leave a 2,000 sq. ft home for a much smaller, economical 200 sq. ft living space. Or maybe it’s that the houses here tend to lack the glam that those American customized micro spaces exude.
Whatever the case, Daniel and I moved into a small(er than we were ever used to) house when we moved to Nyenga in January 2014. And by the grace of God, Daniel and I have made this little >100 sq. ft. room our home. For me, it has been beautiful experience. Limiting living space forced me to evaluate what stuff I value, “need”, and want in my life. That process in itself has opened my eyes in a very real way to the irrelevance of stuff. It is easy for me to believe that things directly influence my happiness and quality of life, but living with less has guarded me from falling into that futile pursuit. And although I still have a weak spot in my soul for shopping, it’s not even tempting to store up treasures where moth and dust destroy (Matt. 6:19) when you don’t have anywhere to put the “treasures”!
Truly, I thank God for this experience. I thank God for the opportunity to be so immersed in the Ugandan culture, growing to know the people who I serve and serve alongside in a richer way. I pray that I will always appreciate the simplicity of less as well as the convenience of having more (indoor plumbing really is a great idea). And a special shout out to my husband who makes living in tight quarters enjoyable and easy =)