First week of HPMDU living

An Outline of Our 12-Month Journey to HPMDU Living

Winslow and I live according to what we call our “rolling thirty-day plan.” While some people find our ever-evolving life plan to be somewhat overwhelming and perhaps even anxiety provoking, our close friends look forward to hearing “this week’s adventure.”

In our previous lifestyles, we sometimes felt self-conscious about our “rolling thirty,” but now we find it liberating and empowering. We make the best choices possible, and if something better appears, we choose that. That’s it. We promise we’re not trying to make you crazy — quite the opposite: we’re working to keep ourselves sane.

That said, we may have lost you somewhere along the way over the last twelve months. So here is a timeline for you to poke back through in case you missed a chapter and to get you all caught up (I’ll admit I even forgot a few parts myself). It’s been a whole week now since we moved into the HPMDU full time, and we couldn’t be happier or more confident in our choice.

Our Journey to HPMDU Living

May 2015: The Official Announcement of Our Next Adventure

  • We declared our intolerance for rental applications, background checks, and credit checks and set a goal of never paying rent again, giving ourselves a deadline of twelve to sixteen months before we would be living full-time in an RV.

Jun 2015: We’re Gonna Start a Ruckus in Our Toy Hauler

  • After much research, we decided that the style of RV we would buy would be a toy hauler. This article talks about the pros and cons of different RV styles and also school buses.

Jun 2015: We Bought a Big-Ass Truck

  • Bouncin’ Betty the F700 was purchased to haul the RV and we did much investigation into which kind of tow vehicle to buy.

Betty and the trailer on Whidbey Island.

Jul 2015: RVs are Shit

  • How we can to have a nightmare day involving the ferry and shady used RV dealers and came to conclusion that we needed to build our own RV from scratch.

July 2015: Please Don’t Call It a Tiny House

  • Why our home is named the High-Performance Mobile Dwelling Unit (HPMDU).

Sep 2015: The Day We Took the 5th Wheel on the Ferry

  • A fun little day of taking Betty to Whidbey Island and back. oh, yeah, and bringing back our stripped down fifth wheel trailer, too!

Sep 2015: Laying the Foundation for the HPMDU

  • Our first step in building the HPMDU: building the floor and insulating it.

Oct 2015: Raising the Walls: The HPMDU Gets More Real

  • The part where Winslow pretty much built all the walls and frame all by himself.

Oct 2015: Put a Lid on It: The HPMDU Gets a Roof

  • The construction of our roof/water-catchment-system/upper lounge deck.

Drinking our first cider on our roof.

Oct 2015: That Warm Feeling You Get on the Inside

  • For the first time, it is possible to be either inside or outside the HPMDU. Also, we bought a front door.

Nov 2015: Our Home-Made Small House Will Be WARM

  • Insulating the interior and putting the siding on the exterior. Racing the winter rains. And in general, why what we’re building is truly four-season (unlike what the RV companies try to sell you).

Dec 2015: Our First Night in Our Home-Made Home

  • Our first night in the HPMDU, though we were pretty much camping. Paneling out the interior, more work on the exterior. Also more battling with winter rain, and pizza.

Feb 2016: We Are Officially Home-Free (Also Known as Homeless)

  • After much Craigslist-ing, garage-sale-ing, and donations to the thrift store, we launched ourselves out of Port Townsend and over to the Skagit Valley and Fidalgo Island for a few months, hopping from temporary rental to temporary rental.

June 2016: We’re Moving In to the HPMDU

  • It’s official! No more rent! Thirteen months after our declaration, we did it!


Now that we’re in the HPMDU full time, we’ll be posting at least once every week and probably even more. I’ll be sharing ideas for living small that apply to any size home you’re living in and Winslow will be sharing the technology behind all the amazing thing he has built and is in the process of building for us. Much of what he is doing can be applied to any home, as well. While small and simple is a state of living for us — small and simple can be a state of mind for anyone.

Winslow will be posting lots of info on our solar system.

Winslow will be posting lots of info on our solar system.