“I work smarter when I’m organized, but what motivates me the most is the peace I feel when I’m organized and when my space is uncluttered.”
I’m so excited to share this guest series, Simple (and small) Living with you. My friend, Sarah, is in the midst of the adventure of living small with her family of five, and she is going to share it with us. I get to drive to her beautiful, small house and visit over coffee; just imagine that you are sitting with us.
Hello, my name is Sarah and I am one of the two Sarah’s that Lisa wrote about in her post Our Bathroom Makeover. Lisa and I have driveways about two miles apart and even though we’ve known each other nearly ten years, her bathroom project kindled a new friendship.
I loved sitting down with Lisa in the initial planning stages and figuring out how we could redo her small bathroom making it more functional and attractive for her children.
I currently live with my husband and three children in a home that is 900 square feet. Deconstructing the problems that one faces with limited living space and storage has been a topic I’ve wrestled with for the past three years. It’s a challenge that I have truly enjoyed.
Decluttering and downsizing are topics people consider whether they live in a small home or a large one. We all love the feeling of a home that is in order and uncluttered, where every item has been chosen intentionally.
When people see my home they often assume that being tidy and keeping my home uncluttered comes naturally. I assure you it doesn’t. While I certainly crave tidy spaces I am not very good at multi-tasking, I am easily distracted, and when left to my own devices I default to monster piles. I can definitely get overwhelmed by a mess and not know where to begin.
However working as a public school teacher for 8 years, becoming a stay-at-home mom to my three children, and being married to my husband who is an efficient and organized worker all have helped me become more disciplined in organization and tidiness.
I’ve found that the less I have the easier it is to keep things in order. I work smarter when I’m organized, but what motivates me the most is the peace I feel when I’m organized and when my space is uncluttered.
I love the simplicity of being surrounded by what I need and love.
Three years ago my husband and I decided to build a home less than half the size of the one we were living in at the time. We hoped someday we could build a larger home but for now a small one would be perfect for our construction time frame and our budget.
The first stage of planning meant defining the type of space we wanted to create. I spent a lot of time thinking about what I wanted our home to feel like. My inspiration for “feel” was our small family cabin that sits on a lake a few hours away from our home. The cabin was built in the 1930’s and is stocked with only the essentials. When we stay there we pack in our clothing, bedding, and food. There are basic furnishings, kitchen supplies, a small bookshelf and some games.
I have countless memories of contentment and joy from our cabin visits and this simple uncluttered haven was my inspiration for our future home. But I don’t have to tell you that vacation and every day life are very different. We have oodles of things that are important parts of our daily life that we wouldn’t dream of bringing on vacation.
Where do we put the thousands of Legos and all of my girls’ craft supplies? I love to cook and I have specialized baking pans and of course my beloved Kitchen Aid stand mixer. Where would that fit? What about the mail that pours in daily and the papers that migrate home from school? Would we be able to have full sized appliances? There were many questions to answer and scenarios to consider.
In this Simple (and small) Living series I’ll give you a tour of my home, how I tackled de-cluttering, what I learned about myself through the process and hopefully some encouragement for anyone looking to create a fresh simplicity in their home.
Friends, I hope you enjoy this series as much as I do. Sarah will be back next week with more to teach us about Simple (and small) Living, and a special free printable just for you!
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