The first week of August, we were told we had essentially six weeks to pack up and move out of our home. (You can read about that ultimatum is a series that began here: The Best Laid Plans. We didn’t waste time and knew immediately that we would have to go into a smaller space, thus needed to downsize. Here are a couple of links to ways we went about downsizing:
But even after all of this…well, we still had stuff in storage. Stuff, I just didn’t know what to do with, and frankly it was stuff that we needed/wanted to keep. So now we are in our new tiny space and I’ve told you a little bit about how to are really multi-purposing the rooms so let me expand on that first. Here is how each of the 5 spaces in the apartment is being used (don’t let the number 5 throw you off, there is a total of 900 square feet here and 9 of us living in it:)
Master Bedroom/Bath – This is the twins space. The reason I chose to give them the master is because it has the smallest and by small, I mean tiny bathroom. But they do have a GIANT walk in closet. So this pace not only serves as their sleep space, bathroom space, and workspace (they have a desk,) but also as the cat’s living area, and storage for things we must keep but will not unpack here.
Kitchen/Laundry – Our kitchen is tiny. It is a squeeze for two people to be in it at the same time. But not only does it serve as our kitchen and laundry space, but it’s also where all the dog food/water is housed and where a good deal of our craft and science equipment is kept. Homeschooling at it’s best, we do LOTS of crafts and science experiments, and this is the safest and easiest to clean are to use. I think a big kitchen is the space that I miss the most.
Dining Room – I mentioned this one in my how we sleep post. We set up a card table by day and a bedroom by night. So we sleep, eat, play games and do homework all in the same 5’x6′ space. It’s tight but it does work. This space also houses one of the pieces of furniture I keep primarily for sentimental value, my dad’s old desk from when he was a boy. It’s a double desk so runs the length of the wall and for now…serves as great storage for school stuff, electronics, etc.
Living Room – This room has already been rearranged several times trying to maximize the space and how we use it. It houses the most furniture and sees the most day to day use. A computer workstation for school and fun, the tv and gaming systems, seating for 5 for our family time and Izzy’s dog crate so she doesn’t chew on everything in site when we are watching her. I’m very grateful for the double opening french doors that open to a small patio, I keep the doors open whenever weather permits and it definitely helps hold off the onset of claustrophobia when I’m feeling trapped.
Bedroom/Bath – Unlike the Master, there is a small hall with closet between this bedroom and bath so we again have great extra storage. This room/bath serves myself and the younger two. We share the closet and bath. Little Gymnast and I share the bedroom while Princess sleeps in her “private room” in the Dining Room. And my favorite, my office and a recliner for my “alone” time are in the bedroom. There is very little walking space, but we’ve been willing to sacrifice that to get the purposes and privacy everyone needs.
It’s definitely not been the “minimalist dream” I had when we started down this road. We still have too much “stuff.” We are getting closer though. And I’ve never been so glad to here…”Mom, I don’t need this anymore.” As I happily grab whatever they offer to be swiftly donated or thrown away. I long for the day when everything has a place and stays in its place when not in use.