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Traveling Nurse, Husband Take Tiny House On The Road

Published: July 28, 2018

Living in a 270-square-foot tiny house, husband and wife Erik Muzzey and Katie Pessin take their home with them wherever they go.

Hauling their house with a Ford F-350, the couple at the Main Street home of Ms Pessin’s parents on July 24. Harvey Pessin and Brid Craddock took photos as their son-in-law backed into the narrow drive.

A travelling nurse, Ms Pessin said, “I move to a new hospital” every few months. Prior to the tiny house, Ms Pessin would borrow a friend’s couch or find an apartment when she changed locations.

Stepping down from the custom-built sitting area that also doubles as a spare bed, she said, “This, I can park in a hospital parking lot.”

Able to live an unrooted lifestyle with his wife, Mr Muzzey, who was “fed up with 9 to 5,” Ms Pessin said, now telecommutes and works part-time as a security project manager.

Griswald, their dog, is “Running the show,” she said, as the couple travels. He scampered about on the hardwood floors, where he has his own bed and bowls in place.

Passing through her kitchen area, which is outfitted with a propane stove and oven, Ms Pessin said they got the idea for a tiny house from television and online, and they began building their own in November of 2017.

A friend and carpenter helped them build the house using maple, pine, and barnboard for counters, floors, and other surfaces. Hidden storage throughout is tucked behind panels and underneath stairs and seating. Reaching to undo latches or open cabinets, Ms Pessin revealed several additional storage space secrets. From drawers, she pulled out photographs — items that would fall during travel — and set them back in place on the walls. By Wednesday afternoon, she would put them away again as they resumed travel.

Pointing to her washing machine, laundry hamper, and the sleeping space overhead, she said that unlike an RV, “We designed this for ourselves.” Part of the space was built to fit their height. With a glance around her, she said, “It’s all the comforts of a real house,” fit into a compact space.

Using property they own in New Hampshire as a legal address, the pair travels and finds time to ski and be outdoors. “We’re really nomads,” Ms Pessin said. Mr Muzzey is “absolutely okay,” with that life.

“We once had a three-bedroom house in Massachusetts,” she said, but the 270 square feet with its sleeping loft poses few problems. A propane heater works well to warm the area quickly, and doubles to reheat a mug of coffee, Ms Pessin said.

“It’s great when you come in from skiing. We’re outdoors a lot.” An air conditioning unit set in the front wall cooled the space on a humid July afternoon in minutes.

The kitchen is just two paces away from the entryway and the several steps up to a sleeping loft. Below that is a laundry area, and small bathroom in back.

Before their house was finished, the couple was married in it in January. “It was under construction,” Mr Muzzey said.

Drawing her eyes down from the large flat screen television that she said her husband “could not part with,” her gaze stopped at the bathroom.

“We get along pretty well, but if we’re arguing, one of us ends up hiding in the bathroom,” she said.

With a look back at the television, which only gets three channels, she said, “We learned a lot from PBS.”

Anticipating his daughter’s visit, Mr Pessin had contacted The Newtown Bee to say, “As part of her travel plans, she and her husband have built themselves a tiny house. They are starting a months-long trip, leaving New Hampshire, coming to [Newtown], then onto Maryland, Ohio, and their final destination is Colorado.”

Ms Pessin and Mr Muzzey plan to work there for a time.

Hopping down from their trailered home, the couple watched people on the sidewalk glance into the driveway.

Quite often, people will stop to ask them about their house — even at inconvenient times, such as backing into the driveway.

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