Wow! Thanks so much for visiting!


Barefootin' it!

I spend ten days away from the blog, and big things happen while I’m not looking! Thank you so much to Vision Forum and Money Saving Mom for linking to me — I am so honored that you’ve noticed my little corner of cyberspace! And now I’d better get cracking and update the blog more often. 😉

Thank you to everyone who has left such sweet, encouraging comments. I’ve really enjoyed reading through them, and I’ll answer the questions that have been posted ASAP. I’ve been too busy lately to pay attention to the blog, but I should have time next week to share pictures of our dining room (you haven’t seen the bonus new floor yet!) and to chat about some of the amazing things we’ve learned as we’ve downsized. I feel like moving out here to our sweet cottage trailer has been a re-education. I thought I was pretty frugal before, but I’ve learned just how much more you can cut back when you’re willing to do it–and without feeling deprived, either!

So lots of fun things coming–sewing projects, veggie gardens in repurposed kiddie sandboxes, and living on the land (see the bare feet?). Cold weather has finally come, which means more indoor projects and putting on socks and shoes again.

Thanks again, y’all! I look forward to lots of fun posts in the near future!



12 Responses to “Wow! Thanks so much for visiting!”

  1. 1 Jenny November 12, 2008 at 1:45 pm

    I found your site through money saving mom and wanted to tell you that you are so inspiring! I have loved going back and reading your posts and plan to continue to follow your journey!

  2. 2 monica November 12, 2008 at 5:23 pm

    Hi, Amanda…came over from MSM. I love what your family is doing to save to build in the future. Have you known any large families that have been able to do this successfully in a mobile home? I would love to know more about the time-frame of your goals and what your plans are.

  3. 3 Mrs. R November 12, 2008 at 6:18 pm

    I know this comment has nothing in particular to do w/ your remodeling adventure. I just have to ask… how on EARTH do you do all that you do??!!??!!?? I am a homeschooling mom of 5. I am not overextended in activities outside my home, yet I feel as if I do NOT have time to do all that needs to be done in our home (being a good wife, homeschooling, healthy meals, cleaning, character training, blessing others, etc.) I DO all these things that I listed, but I do not feel as if I do them well ENOUGH. How do you do it w/ 8 children??!?!?! I have enjoyed being a part of your downsizing journey. =)

    Mrs. R

  4. 4 Michelle November 12, 2008 at 9:03 pm

    I admit I just found your blog last night,and I totally love it!! I have lived in “trailers” my whole life, and we have tried to spruce ours up, but it still looks yucky. Sigh. You have done a great job! Can’t wait to see more updates. I did get a book from teh library once that was done my Christopher Lowell (I think) where ther re-did trailer houses, and it was fabulous! When I saw your pics, that is what it reminded me of.


  5. 5 Woman Interrupted November 13, 2008 at 11:17 pm

    Your blog is fantastic and I love the budget-friendly ideas. I have featured your cozy home on my blog and I hope you’ll stop by to see the ideas you sparked and the comments that ensued!

    Also, check out my friend Girly Stuff’s blog. She’s really into home decorating and many of her ideas are pulled together on a budget.

    God Bless!

  6. 6 Pat November 15, 2008 at 12:27 am

    Dear Amanda,

    I found your blog thru the Vision Forum link, and have been so blessed by it. I am a “autumn season” mom with my children grown, and a first grandchild on the way, thank God! My heart is with you, and I am so grateful that God has given you the opportunity to be with your children, bless and strengthen your husband by downsizing, and to encourage all of us!

    We have prayed about, but have not been given the opportunity to move to the country and conserve – in Massachusetts the country is to expensive to move to! I will continue to pray for the opportunity, though, as I would love our grandchild(en) to experience chickens, peepers, and sweet smelling air. The Lord knows, though, where He chooses to plant us and use us..and perhaps one day He will say we can!

    I will continue to check your blog, and each time I read it, it is as though I am having a cup of coffee with a friend, talking about making our homes beautiful and comfortable for those we love.

    God bless and strengthen you!

  7. 7 Kris November 22, 2008 at 2:52 am

    I’ve been inspired by reading your blog. Go girl!

  8. 8 Mama Hen November 22, 2008 at 2:05 pm

    I will be checking back in to see your projects!

  9. 9 queenofmytrailer November 22, 2008 at 10:01 pm

    Thanks for all the kind posts! It has been a lot of fun to share our downsizing journey here. We are learning so much (and relearning so much!). I hope to share more soon.

    Mrs. R, I was very blessed to grow up with a mother who trained me from toddlerhood to run a household. I truly believe this gave me a huge boost when I married. Mom taught all of her kids to do laundry by the time they could stand on a stool and reach the knobs (I was six), do dishes, vacuum, mop, dust, bake bread, plan and prepare meals, organize, etc. By the time I was 12, Mom rarely had to do any of the chores around the house, because we children ran it all like clockwork. We used to challenge each other to do jobs faster or better. When I got really fed up with cleaning bathrooms one year, I trained my younger sister to do it and gave her a reward certificate I had made. Then I moved on to other (harder) jobs Mom had for me. After ten years, housework was pretty much like breathing.

    Now, full disclosure: My struggle is in remembering to train my children like my mother trained us. Because housework is so easy for me, it’s easier and faster for me to do it myself. So I really have to remind myself to train my own children to do their tasks. I’ve gotten better at it over the years (especially as I’ve learned to let go of perfection and be thankful for what each child can do on his or her own level!). The benefits are huge. Now my oldest children scrub the bathrooms, wash dishes, gather and take out the trash, and run the washer and dryer. The younger children (ages seven down to four) know how to clean up their toys, make their beds, and sort and fold laundry (the four-year-old can match socks and fold washcloths–larger things frustrate her). The girls love to help in the kitchen and run to get their aprons as soon as they see me heading in to prepare a meal.

    So the key is to focus on training the children to take over. When they can take over, you get to “retire” and focus on the tasks that are too hard for the littles. The early years of child training are like boot camp for mama — you’ve got to be totally focused and manage everyone (and clean up the disasters that often follow their clumsy but sincere efforts!). But stick to it! When you round the next corner, you will stand amazed at all your children can do and how much time you have freed up to do other things (including more time to read together, start a garden, paint a room, etc.). There’s no rocket science to it — it’s just “sweat equity.” Be prepared for it to be hard work for several years, but stick to it. Scripture tells us that if we train our children when they are young, they will give us rest when they are older. It’s true!

  10. 10 queenofmytrailer November 22, 2008 at 10:12 pm


    We have known several families who have lived in a trailer while saving to build. They inspired us! One family with seven children lived in a double-wide for three years while they built debt-free. They went from 1600 square feet to over 3000 square feet with no debt–and they sold their trailer afterwards to boot! Another family of ten currently lives in a double-wide on their land while they save to build. Their goal is to get there in three more years, and they are on track. We have friends who live in a tiny log cabin with a storage building on acreage, and they plan to build in the next two years. Finally, we have a family near us who live in a tiny 1930s cottage (about 1800 sq feet) with five children. The husband began building their home (his own design) about six years ago and all debt free. The house is now completely dried in and is as solid as the rock of Gibraltar (he’s something of a master builder). Now they’re looking forward to finishing up the insides and moving in. What’s funny is that the wife confided to me that they so love their little cottage that they will be homesick for it after they move into the big house (which is about a quarter of a mile away). 😉

  11. 11 Sheila November 24, 2008 at 1:32 am

    I LOVE what you have done. You have totally inspired me. I was so pleased to see that you can tile over the laminate countertops. And I was also pleased to see that you just painted over the wall strips. I was actually considering removing them, but when I see how good it looks just painted, that is now my new plan. I can’t wait to see more of what you do.

  12. 12 nunnhall December 4, 2008 at 11:19 pm

    I am loving your blog! My husband and I are nearing empty-nest and are downsizing tremendously. We are planning a move back to our home state of Texas with the very likely reality of living in a double-wide! We want land and lots of it and are going to pay cash for that land and our last home (hopefully!). I will be referring back to your posts I’m sure once we move! Thank you for sharing!

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About the Queen…

Amanda Livenwell is the pen name of a stay-at-home mom who shares the adventure of living large on one income in, yes, a double-wide trailer! Join our family as we say goodbye to suburbia, trim down, and start saving to build our own home. We're going to talk about doing it yourself, living beautifully on less, making do or doing without, and counting it all joy in the process. We'll cover prep-work and painting, refacing kitchen cabinets, flooring on the cheap, tiling over laminate, upholstering furniture, and just rolling up our sleeves in general. If you love home improvement, this is the place for you. Let's get cracking!

Favorite Frugal Helps!

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What Inspires Me Most!

"She seeks wool and flax, and willingly works with her hands. She girds herself with strength, and strengthens her arms. She perceives that her merchandise is good, and her lamp does not go out by night. She stretches out her hands to the distaff, and her hand holds the spindle. She watches over the ways of her household, and does not eat the bread of idleness." ~ Proverbs 31:13, 17-19, 27

"Do you see a man who excels in his work? He will stand before kings;he will not stand before unknown men." ~ Proverbs 22:29

"The soul of a lazy man desires, and has nothing; but the soul of the diligent shall be made rich." ~ Proverbs 13:4

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