As shared in part one here we are downsizing big time around here.
I thought I had unloaded a lot while purging over the past two years. Oh, no, that was the tip of the iceberg. I've read about the folks who get rid of up to 90% of their stuff. The downsizing, minimizing super stars who transfer a family of five from suburbia to a tiny house, for example. Rob and I are probably at 50% and counting. And I'm looking around as I type this and deciding there is still too much that I'm looking at.
Instead of buying our little 700 square foot house, we have been talking with our daughter. She is able to and good at single parenting, but she has nothing to prove to anyone anymore, including herself. Single parenting is hard. We are involved but not daily. And we have empty rooms. So we've decided to leave our upstairs, hand it over to her and the kids and turn the three downstairs bedrooms into an apartment for Rob and me.
We will share a downstairs living room and a kitchen/dining area with our daughter and grandkids. She will have an upstairs living area as well where she can have people over etc. We will build a small sitting area in our little apartment where we can go to escape if necessary and to chill when needed. Our personal space will be about 300 square feet. This is our bedroom, our private living area and a den that will be invitation only where kids are concerned. Now a tiny house is usually under 200 square feet and that includes a bathroom and kitchen so we definitely have a space luxury. Our bedroom will be big enough for my big dresser and our bed and a few odds and ends. It's 9 x 11. The sitting area is roughly 9 x 9. Rob has some space saving creative ideas so I'm real excited.
We will have someone to share the cleaning and upkeep with. She likes to clean. I do not. We will have better meals because there is one more creative cook to add to the mix and a reason to actually do sit down dinners and go beyond quick and frozen meals most nights. We will have chatter and company whenever we want it. And the dogs will have company always. Our daughter can put the kids to bed and run to Target or meet a friend and not have to worry that the kids are up too late at our place or that I'm falling asleep on her couch, or paying a teenager to sit with sleeping kids.
Last night our daughter and I went through several boxes I've been putting off. Some of it was hers, a lot of it was stuff we had purchased together or with an idea in mind. We poured through old pictures, cards, crafts odds and ends, things from our gift cupboard and drawer. We got rid of more than we kept.
We have gotten rid of so much I'm honestly feeling very much like one big dresser and one bed, two closets and two bedside tables is going to be enough space. Right now my big walk-in closet is down 75% of what was in there. My big armoire (which is going to become a living area piece not a bedroom piece) is half empty. Rob smartly built drawers in the base of our bed when he made it years ago. Those drawers are empty. Two craft closets are down to 3/4 of one. The kids happily discovered and played Battleship while we cleaned out the game cupboard. What's the point of having too many games to go through so the choice is overwhelming? My three heavy duty bookshelves have become so decluttered I'm only using one and a half and when our den/office is finished most of those will fit there.
Our daughter has three kids and three years worth of accumulation. She is purging as much as we are to make this happen.
I just can't even put into words how happy this solution makes me feel. And I'm feeling like with every item I put in a box for someone else who might need it, that I'm making room for the important things in life.
Change. I've learned to embrace it, ride it out til the end. Sometimes I'm kicking and screaming, other times weeping with my eyes clinched tight. Once in awhile I ride like a dog in a car, head out the window snorting what life has to offer. Mother to young adult children, a marriage of thirty years, and a desert to mountain to valley waltz with God have shaped me into someone I never imagined I'd be. Life is short and I want to live it. Tears, sighs, laughter and change. Every morsel granted to me. Scrambled, shaken or stirred.