I recently took a short trip to a friend's cabin. This trip taught me some things, mainly about what I want for my homestead.
First, the popular micro housing is not for me. The cabin was approximately 400 sqft. Two adults and two children would fit comfortably...for a few days. A week tops. I tried to envision my family living there, but we would not make it without several other structures. 3 out of 4 family members require an amount of alone time to function well, which usually takes place indoors. Plus, I have mild claustrophobia. I now think a minimum of 1000 sqft is right for me, even without children.
One surprise is that ample running water is now on the must have list. The cabin is on spring water, so use is limited. Military style showers. If it's yellow, let it mellow. And forget soaking in the tub with a good book! This isn't to say a natural source of water isn't in the cards. However it gets there, I prefer a lot whether or not I choose to use a lot. I will still insist on some sort of water source nearby for emergencies. That's just common sense.
The biggest shock was how much I missed people. Maybe it was because we were on vacation and didn't have any chores or projects to tend to. Whatever it is, and I expect it to change back and forth through the years, I think it would be wise to be within 15 miles of town and give focus to social outlets. I find it easier to feign seclusion than feign a decent population.
I loved the setting, which was completely unseen from the road. Nothing but woods, fields, and a creek. It has been a dream since childhood, in fact, to have a completely hidden house.
A lady lives on one corner of the property with 8, yes 8, dogs. My friends Jeff and Amy have been trumped. She lives alone and is very self sufficient. She lives on the same water, uses solar energy, has an impressive garden, and raises bees. In addition, her house is mostly repurposed materials and handmade. It is truly beautiful, and I did not take a single picture unfortunately. She also has 2 micro houses for visitors, which she has often. One is about 600sqft with a lovely screened in porch. The other is in progress, about 150sqft. It has a loft for a queen bed, and the rest is just like a European studio. No electricity or plumbing.
We had a great little break though! I was really happy to get a clearer picture of what I want, what is practical, and what others are doing.