Tiny Living Laundry

I bought a Laundry Pod.

laundry pod box

I’ve been living in an RV for a while now. I was originally in my vintage Airstream part time while I was working, and I would go home on weekends. Last year, we sold the house, and we bought a much larger toy hauler fifth wheel RV, and Matt is now enjoying tiny house living as well. We really love it. We live in an RV park, which is a tiny gated community, with a pool, spa, rec center and on site laundry. You know when you were a kid and you went on holidays to the caravan park, and how you could just relax and enjoy life, and you didn’t have to mow lawns, or clean the pool, or do any hard work, you just sat around playing with the other kids, and life was awesome? Well, it’s basically that. Except we’re adults, and we drink and BBQ with the other adults. (And no, it’s not a trailer park. There’s one of those down the street.)

The only thing I don’t love about the RV is doing laundry. We actually have a space in the RV for a washer/dryer combo unit, but we’d prefer to have the closet space. Besides, the RV park has a coin laundry. It’s not so bad in summer, when it’s just the other full timers who live here, plus, you know, people who are vacationing, but in winter, it’s crazy busy. (We’re in South Texas, and in winter all the Yankees flock to the South to get away from the cold. We call them Winter Texans, or Snow Birds.) Anyway,  there’s 4 washers, and 6 dryers in the laundry room. When Matt and I go away, we generate a fair bit of laundry, but I only ever do 2 loads at a time, because I don’t want to be that asshole that hogs all the machines. Without fail though, every time I go down john deerethere, there’s an old lady who is on her phone, slowly spraying all the delicates, and hogging all four machines. It’s become a running joke. Then you have to trek up and down the park, waiting to put your laundry in. Then walk back down again to move it over, then come pick it up. I normally walk. Matt hops on the John Deere gator to go down there…. (It’s more fun than a golf cart 😉 )

I love the tiny house movement, and all the efforts people make to downsize, make a smaller footprint, and generally go green. Most of my clothes I hand wash anyway, so I decided to get a laundry pod. I’d seen quite a few different little off grid washing machines online, but this looked like the easiest to use.

I was super excited when it arrived today. (I had ordered it online) I had just put two loads in at the laundry when it arrived. It was Matt’s cargo shorts and the towels, so not stuff I would wash in the pod, but I opened it up right away and did a couple of loads of my own clothes to try it out. I’m a fan of the Meyers Clean Day laundry soaps, especially after the owner of the park said she always knows when I’m doing laundry because the scent goes upstairs. (Thankfully she said it was a good smell!) The small bottle is easy to store in our tiny space too. It’s not super sudsy, and does handwashing very nicely, without leaving a bunch of residue.

laundry podlaundry pod inside

So basically, the Laundry Pod is like a giant salad spinner. I put the soap in, added some water, added the clothes, some more water to make sure they were covered, and gave it a spin. I let the clothes soak for a while, then gave it another spin. It’s kind of a workout, and if you spin for long enough, it’s like doing cardio. When you think they’re done, turn the knob on the bottom, and water flows out of the hose, which comes out from underneath. You can tuck it away when you’re not using it. Then, add a little bit more water to rinse. Spin again, open drain, and then spin like crazy to get all the water out. Just like the spin cycle on a regular washing machine.

I hung my clothes on one of those folding clothes dryer racks. Thankfully, I can set it up behind one of the RV slideouts so nobody else can see my laundry. The other cool thing about being in a toy hauler RV is I can put the rack back there in the garage to dry clothes even in the rain.

I wouldn’t say it was easier than washing and drying clothes in the regular laundry, but it did mean I could gently wash all my clothes and hang them to dry like I prefer to do anyway. I’ll probably still do most of Matt’s clothes, and of course the sheets and towels down there. But at least for my clothes, I’ll be saving a shit tonne of water. I only used a couple gallons of water to do a load. Apparently a regular machine can use 30 gallons of water for a load. That’s a crazy amount of water. I tried it out today in my tub, but I could also do it outside and use the grey water on my plants. So double green points. It also saves me some green. Doing laundry is expensive. It’s $1.25 a wash, and another $1.25 to dry. With this, I don’t even pay for electricity. Just the water I need to quench my thirst afterwards! (and the small amount of water for washing)

It’s probably not practical for large households, but if you’re like me, and doing the tiny living thing, or need something for camping, your holiday house, or the inevitable zombie apocalypse when we all have to go off grid, this seems like a pretty useful little gadget. It’s small enough for apartments and dorms, and probably even people fulltiming on boats. I’ll have to do laundry more often, instead of letting a whole pile of clothes build up, but that’s ok. I need to cull a bunch of my wardrobe anyway.

I know, I’m easily amused, but it’s always the small stuff that makes me happy.


Tiny House Movement

Joining the tiny house movement, kinda.

I’m pretty excited to see that there’s about to be a TV show starting called Tiny House Nation on FYI channel.

John Weisbarth and Zack Giffin of Tiny House Nation

I’m a huge fan of the Tiny House movement. I also love Earthships, Eco Domes and other forms of natural building. I love the idea of being off-grid, and leaving a smaller footprint. I’m not into stuff. I don’t collect designer handbags or watches. I don’t covet expensive things. I don’t need a mega mansion. I’d rather use my money to travel, or have experiences. I’d rather collect memories than stuff that will just sit on a shelf somewhere.

I first got interested in Earthships several years ago. I was wondering what we could build down at the ranch. It’s pretty remote, and I love the idea of being completely self sustained. If there ever is an actual Zombie Apocalypse, I want to be somewhere far away, and not be relying on anyone to save me. I’ve always said if there’s ever a major glitch in the system, while ATMs are down, and everyone is freaking out about no internet, or electricity, the Hamish will be fine. Well, until the guys with guns show up and take their stuff…


The Earthship is a pretty hefty investment, and one has to live in it full time for it to really work. So then I was looking at eco-domes. I thought about building one of those, until I started an earthbag kitchen at the ranch. It’s a LOT of hard, heavy work, and the summers here are just too hot for any kind of manual labour.


While I’ve been deployed, I have been living in a vintage Airstream. I loved her. She is old, and was pretty gross when I bought her. I’ve done lots of work on her, but she’s really small.

My 23' vintage 1972 Airstream Safari
My 23′ vintage 1972 Airstream Safari

I absolutely loved living in her. She was small and cozy, and had everything I needed. It’s perfect for the dog and I. However, when Matt would come visit, it wasn’t fun. It’s got twin beds, so not so romantic. It’s also very small, and Matt is claustrophobic. He would hit his head on the door every time he stepped inside, and he grew to hate it with a passion. I think it set back my quest to get Matt to join the tiny house movement.

One day though, Matt woke up, realized that since he works from home, and could work from anywhere, while I work in a city 2.5 hrs away, he decided he’d rather live small with me, than live in our 2400 sq ft house in San Antonio without me. We knew we couldn’t live in the Airsteam together, and so we started looking at more practical options.

5th wheel toy hauler

We didn’t build a tiny house. Matt is a Texan and I just don’t think I’ll ever get him in a true tiny house. We did however end up with a 5th wheel toy hauler. We wanted something to be mobile, because we still like the idea of traveling. When I’m tired of working here, we can pick the next place on the map, and just move our house there. We love the idea of moving to Florida, but not packing boxes and unpacking boxes. We ended up getting a toy hauler, because it has the garage in the back, which Matt uses as an office. After traveling in a Class C motorhome for a couple years, we understood it was important to have a separate room for him to work. Plus, when we do finally move, we can put all our outdoor stuff back there while we’re moving.


It’s not really all that tiny either. At 44′ it’s actually pretty damn big. Probably the biggest one in our RV park! But it’s certainly way smaller than our house. In fact, it’s probably smaller than our Master Bedroom at home. It’s got everything we need though, and find we are actually way happier in it than we are on the weekends we go home to our stick house. I’ve even got veggies growing in pots down here. We’re still on the grid, but figure we’ll get off grid eventually. Baby steps. At least it’s got a big generator in it for if the power goes out. It’s even got it’s own gas tank with pumps near the back.

Lots of room inside
Lots of room inside

So now we’ve got our house in San Antonio for sale, and we hope it sells quickly so we can just enjoy being full time RVers. We love living in the RV park. No, it’s not the same as a trailer park. There’s a trailer park up the street. They are “mobile homes” but there’s really nothing mobile about them. RV parks have a great mixture of people. Where we are, there’s full timers, who are mostly retired people, and there’s a bunch of oil field workers. Then in winter, we get all the snow birds, or “winter Texans”. There’s also regular travelers who pass through for a few days while exploring the nation. We don’t have to mow the lawn, or clean the pool. Everyone is social, and people get together for pot luck dinners, or a beer after work. We pay a monthly slip fee, but it includes everything except electricity. No more property taxes, water bill, cable TV bill or trash collection fee. Being fully self contained, we got a traditional mortgage, so it’s not even a huge monthly payment for the RV. This one is high end, but my airstream was under $7k, with repairs. It was cheaper to live in that than an apartment. (Yes, I’m very frugal)

We love the RV life so much, I’m actually thinking of buying an RV park if we ever do move to Florida. Even more than that, I’d like to start a tiny home community. I’d buy some land, or an existing RV or mobile home park that has lots of green space. Then set up a tiny home park, with communal vegetable gardens. – I must sound like such a hippy!

Anyone else dream of getting rid of their solid home, and living small? Or anyone already gone off grid? Do you love it, or hate it?