Tag Archives: life

life in 1,000 sq ft

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A year ago this week we moved from our fixer to our new home in the city. It was a bittersweet  journey that brought both relief and sadness. While this place hasn’t been quite the fixer-upper our last one was, it has taught us the freedom of living with less. With 1,000 sq ft of room, we had to downsize from our previous 1,300 sq ft with a garage. It has been a very liberating, albeit at times frustrating, process. In the end, I love this amount of space and we have realized we could reduce it further. They key to living in less is evaluating what you really need and enjoying people and moments rather than accumulating things. I wouldn’t want more square footage if it were offered to me!

I thought it would be a fun idea to give a tour of our home, just to show what we have done with our space and some of the things that have worked for us!

the living room

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Here is where we spend a lot of our time together. We currently maintain a small and sparse amount of furniture (we are waiting to update our chair and couch until the kids are a little older). We really don’t have many things collecting here, (childproofing may have some influence on that). We don’t own a television, but our computer is set up in this area for times when we do want to watch something, as well as for home-based work. I salvaged our desk from someones trash heap and we repainted it and bought new handles. My husband made our bench in college and you can see examples of an important component to living with less space – storage!

the kitchen

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This is the space that we would change if we decide to remodel at all. It is sufficient, but lacking in counter space, something that is important to me. Here, the crucial thing again is storage! Additional cabinets could be added, although what is here is plenty for me right now.

Our last kitchen remodel went fairly well, and inexpensively, so if we decided to we could do something similar here: update the flooring, replace and add counter space from the sink area extending to the stove, and replace and add cabinetry.

the dining space

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On the other side of the kitchen area is the eating nook. It is a modest space, but sufficient even for our family of four. We have the two chairs here, and during mealtimes with the whole family we transfer our desk chair in the living room to the table for our oldest. Once the youngest has outgrown the highchair we will put our bench here for both of them to sit at.

the bathrooms

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The restrooms are more than sufficient for our family. Before we moved we had only one bathroom, and it was downstairs while the bedrooms were upstairs, so this is a huge upgrade to us!

the guest room

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This room doesn’t get used all that much. We could survive without it just fine. Here is where we put our book collection (which we are working to reduce), some storage in the closet, and the guest bed and nightstand (which was my bedroom set growing up). If we continue to live here the girls would likely transition to this room.

the kid’s room

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This space is directly across from our bedroom and provides a great space for the girl’s things. I love having them nearby and one of my favorite things about small homes is that they force families to actually spend time together, rather than everyone being off in their own little corners of the house! The girls enjoy their space and the oldest currently sleeps here with room for the youngest to join shortly! The closet, changing chest, under-the-bed vintage storage suitcases, and small toy box provide ample storage areas.

the master room

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This is a spacious, comfortable room. The youngest’s crib is still here, although it will soon be moved into the girl’s room. Not tons of storage here, but a closet and dresser provides enough.

That concludes the tour! We keep learning new ways to use our square footage efficiently. Most any space can adapt to various needs with a little imagination!

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life after a fixer

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It never goes away. That urge to change every detail to your imagining; conjuring plans for a room. Our current home has mostly been updated to the previous owner’s vision. Still, I feel the need to repaint; to tear out all the pretty landscaping and grow edible things. Maybe I am not made for move-in ready. I have to create; to shape something that reflects my imagination in a practical way. That is why I love photography and gardening.

My husband is equally driven by creativity, even more so when it comes to a house. He is the real genius behind designing and seeing building projects to completion. With his training in architecture and our passion for making things both functional and lovely, we have a hard time sitting still. I am not sure what the future holds, but we are striving to make decisions and progress that will one day allow us to encounter another venture, whether that be another fixer, or building something from the foundation up. We desire not just a house, but a sustainable homestead that will keep us busy creating and doing what we love.

I have slowly been updating details and adding more photos to the life in a fixer series. I really wish I had taken more pictures of the home the day we moved out, but we were already quite behind schedule and the lighting was not favorable. Regardless, I am sorting through the photographs and adding them as I can. Each detail recalls a memory of those special times, as well as the hardships that became a part of our journey.

life uncomplicated

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I tend to overcomplicate things; life, parenting, faith. It is a reoccurring problem that I have to keep in check. Life is better simplified. Walking by faith and God’s Word alone – aka ditching many/most of those “spiritual” books out there. (Note: because something is labeled Christian does not mean it really is.) That goes for parenting books too. Not that there aren’t a few out there that might be beneficial, but when you have to sort through all the others, it isn’t usually worth it.

All this mass of ideas and theorizing often distracts from what is right in front of us. The best thing – knowing your child; knowing God through His Word. Focusing on life. Once these things are progressing, well, things start to get clearer. I don’t know about you, but I haven’t the time to sort. I need the real stuff. The stuff to live on, survive, and thrive. I don’t want to be distracted or deceived. I don’t desire to waste my time discerning someone else’s “wisdom.” Humanity’s posturing doesn’t really lure me anymore. I am learning to keep it simple so that I can have more time for what is important.

p.s. There is one author who has written on spiritual and parenting topics that I do recommend. But that is for another post.

Next week —> life after a fixer

sifted

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I took a small break from sharing online. Sometimes I need rest from exposing my life. It is difficult to allow myself to be vulnerable in this whole blogging venture. Exposed to scrutiny and judgment, opening up my life, and my family. It is a dangerous, radical thing, especially in this season. That and we have been so busy that it becomes hard to sit down and compile my thoughts and projects coherently without consuming what little and precious time we have left.

If I don’t feel ready to speak, it is helpful to let others do it for me. Below are some of my favorite internet discoveries of the month. I plan to collect these links each month or so, and post them for whoever else may be interested.

: : The disappearance of childhood has been on my thoughts lately. I want my children to grow up slowly, enjoying a connection to nature and simpler things. Too often children skim over their best years staring at a screen or sitting and reciting things in a classroom.

: : As our family transitions to a gluten-free diet we have been loving this recipe. Great for making a large batch and eating leftovers throughout the week or freezing. If you have any favorite gluten-free recipes, let me know!

: : These 5 things are quite important, and I think I will always feel like a beginner gardener.

: : I love these thoughts on parenting and grace. I couldn’t have explained it better.