In decades past as a single person, I’ve lived in a number of small places-single bedroom apartments and even a 430 square foot free standing hundred year old house. After marrying fifteen years ago, our stuff married as well; this stuff came with us when we relocated to a new state. We paid to have two bedroom sets, a large roll top desk, too much living room furniture, and too much of just about everything else moved, and it was spendy. In the new state we purchased a new home with three bedrooms, two full bathrooms, a kitchen with forty-two linear feet of counter top, an extraordinarily large laundry room with pantry and sink, plus a large three car garage with a loft above. The married stuff did not fill the house, the loft remained empty and forgotten, and on cleaning days (which took up the entire day), I began to be aware that the new house felt hollow, and later, the thundering realization that it was just that-a house.
After this house was sold we thoughtlessly and somewhat impulsively purchased a more rurally located custom home on two acres, at the time thinking that we might like this sort of out of town living-we didn’t. After we moved into that place, we realized we didn’t have furniture enough to fill the new space, which included the space of the aforementioned house plus another bedroom, a formal dining room, and this time a huge, oversized three car garage. Did I mention that this place couldn’t even be cleaned in a single day? For many reasons we never enjoyed living there, and among these the feeling of utter ridiculousness living in that barn…
Two years later we sold this house (it too, had never felt like home on a single day) and moved back to town and into a 1665 square foot patio home on a very small, zero lot-line lot. This house at times approached the feeling of home. There we stayed eight years, all the while toying with the idea of moving back to Washington State. During this time I, along with apparently many others, began to seek out inspiration http://www.becomingminimalist.com/new-minimalist-blogs/for living a more thoughtful, simpler, and less stuff oriented life. By this time we were older, and feeling more selective about our time and shrunken resources; we were definitely ready to go back to living small.
We sold the patio home and moved into a small rental home. In the tight Western US housing market we were unable, after much searching, to find a suitably small fixer upper home. Eventually we began to entertain the idea of building a small home, and indeed purchased an in-town lot late last year in WA State.
What now? What, indeed!