My husband and I bought our home when we got pregnant. We got supper lucky and bought it right at the end of the recession. It’s a wooden structure built in 1935 (or so). The story goes that there were two built, this one and the one right next door. The floor plan never took off, being that it was literally one room. In 1956, the front porch was enclosed to make the two bedrooms, effectively sealing our front door. Our main entrance is from the backyard. And in 2003, the laundry room was built outside along side a roofed porch. Our home is about eight hundred square feet, counting the laundry room outside, and it’s sitting on about seven thousand square feet. By all accounts in our society, our home is small. It’s not tiny, but it’s not far from it. We have one bathroom, there’s not enough room in our bedroom for us to have two nightstands (it would block the door to the closet) and my daughter shares her room with my crafting area. It’s about two miles from downtown, by the highway, in a corner at a deadend. We have built a chicken coup, a bridge, Oakland (a multi-level porch around our two hundred year old oak tree), nine raised beds for vegetable growing, and we have planted seven fruit trees (it will be a while before they give us fruit), a butterfly garden and a “natural garage” for my car.
We LOVE our home.
I love the open space. I love the back porch. I love that at any point during the day, all I have to do is stand up, and I can see my daughter. I love that I can have a conversation with my husband, without having to scream, from any where. I love the natural canopy that our trees provides, just on the edges, letting in the sunlight for the beds. I love that the only mowing needed is in the front yard. I love (some) of our neighbors. I love that my daughter has a best friend two doors down.
Would I be happy with a bigger house? Not at this point in my life. Because I need to keep a constant eye on the toddler. Because I don’t want to spend more than thirty minutes cleaning, I don’t want to have an ‘upstairs’, I really don’t want to furnish anything bigger, and as I understand, the bigger the property, the maintenance can and does get very expensive!
Also, I’m not saying that bigger houses are bad, or that the people who pick them “should be more like me”. That would be ridiculous. Most people have very different family needs, because most people have different families. Also, it doesn’t mean that someday I may not want to live in a bigger house. Between the kid and the husband, I swear I spend half my life waiting for the bathroom. Plus, I’m sure that at some point the kid is going to turn around on her bed and say something like “MAMA, I’m trying to sleep. Can you please sew that in the morning?” In a cute four year old voice!
But for now, our season of growing is about to start, we need to replace two chickens (RIP Marleen Knope, and Peep, we loved you and you will always be in our heart… yeah, this happened!), we need to replace some of the beds’ siding, clear weeds, clean the butterfly garden, fix the irrigation system, set up new tomatoes cages… the list goes on and on!
Like I said: We LOVE our home!Tags: chickens, compromise, dog, hangout, homesteading, need, Oakland, porch, size, small house, space