Book Extensions, book review, Sissy Goes Tiny, Something To Do

A Diverse Picture Book about Tiny Living and BIG Adventures!

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Many of us dream of downsizing and “living simple,” but one former paralegal has actively made that dream a reality. Living the tiny house lifestyle led to many positive connections, experiences, and adventures. And little did author B.A. Norrgard know, it would lead to a children’s book as well!

The idea for a picture book about a family downsizing and choosing to “live tiny” started as a “what if?” conversation between B.A. and a long-time friend…that friend just happened to be ME!

Co-authors Rebecca Flansburg and B.A. Norrgard

During a gloriously summer day in 2018, I was enjoying some much-needed catch-up time over lunch with B.A. She and husband John had moved their tiny home on wheels from their winter hangout in Dallas, Texas to reconnect with family and soak up some of the Minnesota lake life.

As we munched and chatted, the conversation soon turned to B.A.’s lifestyle of “living tiny” and how leaving her paralegal career in 2012 had led to a personal lifestyle change as well as a career within the tiny house community. As a freelance writer, I had already done several stories for magazines on B.A.’s transition to a simpler life and was blown away how deeply she’d become involved over those six years into the nationwide movement of going tiny and empowering others to downsize as well.

It was during this conversation, I pondered the question of what the process of “going tiny” might look like through the eyes of a child and how scary that could actually be. The question lead to an in-depth discussion and the idea for an innovative children’s book was born.

Fast-forward a year and we are both excited to announce the arrival of our baby book, Sissy Goes Tiny. This project was educational, nerve-wracking, rewarding, and definitely a “Bucket List” moment. Thanks to the help and wisdom of our publisher (Valarie Budayr of Audrey Press) our talented illustrator Penny Weber and the creative chops of designer, Any Meadon, this book is something we can’t wait to share with the world!

Sissy Goes Tiny by Rebecca Flansburg and B.A. Norrgard

About The Book

In Sissy Goes Tiny, eight-year-old Sissy and her parents make the bold choice to downsize their life and embark on a journey of living tiny and doing more with less. At first, Sissy struggles to get used to the idea of living in a tiny house on wheels and traveling around the U.S, but as she and her mommy and daddy learn about downsizing, repurposing, and how “stuff is just stuff,” she soon understands that a life of “living tiny” will be filled with the big adventures and learning.

While in creation-mode,  we both agreed that this book needed to have a deeper purpose and lesson beyond helping youngsters understand the importance of going tiny. We knew we wanted this book to be a captivating and fun read for kids, but we also wanted to have some subtle lessons within the pages as well. Basically, we wanted parents and kids alike to understand the process of downsizing, repurposing, and how ‘stuff is just stuff’ in a positive way.

Valuable Messages with the Pages of Sissy Goes Tiny

*The act of “going tiny” or downsizing/minimizing from a child’s perspective.
*Mommy and Daddy are excited about the tiny house lifestyle, but 8-year-old Sissy isn’t so sure. Together, as a family, they work together to support each other.
*The child in the story “loves her life” and continue to do so even when their lifestyle and living situation changes
*Touch on the process of downsizing, repurposing, and how “stuff is just stuff” in a positive way
*The underlying lesson throughout the whole story is that living Tiny has BIG possibilities and can open up life to all sorts of adventures and learning.
*When keeping things “beautiful and useful” how different that might look to a child.
*Sissy comes to realize that her family’s new tiny adventure was full of big possibilities, and wherever they went on their journey, they would always be home.

In Praise of Sissy Goes Tiny

“In a time where folks are encouraged to buy more, have more, and be more, Sissy Goes Tiny captures the idea: we can be happy with less.  Many people feel “less than” when they have to change homes, or feel they are otherwise losing ‘the big Oak trees in the yard.’  But we can learn from change… it can be good for a thousand reasons. Cheers to the authors.  This is wonderful. Sissy Goes Tiny teaches us that HOME is bigger than a space and bigger than the people who live there; HOME is where you love with all your heart, whatever shape HOME takes, whatever size… where you can be YOU with your big juicy heart, that is home.” Dee Williams, Tiny House Living thought leader and CEO of  PadTinyHouses.com

Where to Find Sissy

Sissy Goes Tiny will be ready for Purchase in July of 2019…BUT, you can secure your copy now! GO HERE to learn more about the authors, the book, and the journey to Doing More with Less.

Something To Do

Sissy Goes Tiny Discussion Questions:

  • *In the book, Sissy Goes Tiny, Sissy is coached by her parents to keep things that are “beautiful and useful.” What does that mean to you?
  • *What are some of the favorite things that you would want to keep if you were going to live in a tiny house?
  • *If you had a house on wheels, what place/city/attraction would you want to visit first?
  • *What things do you own that could be repurposed into something new? An apron? A necklace? A favorite sweater?
  • *In the book, Sissy and her parents take pictures of all of their favorites places and people in their hometown to make a memory book. What people and places are your “favorites” in the town where you live?
  • *What would be hard if you lived in a tiny house?
  • What things would be awesome about living in a tiny house on wheels?

Getting Rid of “Stuff” is HARD: Up North Parent has some great tips on ways to part with even the most sentimental things.

I Can’t Get Rid of That! | Sentimental Stuff that Threatens Simplicity and What to Do With It

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