Tuesday, August 19, 2008

1165 Square Feet...

Preamble | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 4.5 | Original | 5

...packed with two adults, a border collie, two felines, computers, furniture, files, music, guest bed, dressers, books, bicycles, skis, camping stuff, yard equipment, a Costco membership, and all the requisite stuff of people who dabble in everything from sports to music to art....

OK, so that 1165 doesn't include the garage or the unfinished basement, but you get what I mean. It's small.

It was one of those "your house or my house or a new house?" decisions that two people have to make when they meet after having a few years under their belts. His place had more breathing room and more land, but was on the outskirts beyond some geographical hurdles. My place sported a location that fits a cycling and walking lifestyle, but it has space and layout issues.

We decided to hang out here while deciding where we really wanted to live. Initially, it was temporary, but once we started looking at other places we started reexamining our 1165 finished square feet.

What we have here is pretty OK. We've got an over-sized garage, which is a rarity in this part of town. We have an unfinished basement for bicycle and ski work and for hosing off a muddy dog when it's cold outside. We have a small yard that's a blank slate waiting for a patio and a fire pit.

From the beginning the 1165 has been enough space to live within, but it's configured in an odd way and storage is tight. So, now we're looking at how we can re-jigger spaces. Trading an attic closet for a bathroom...closing off a kitchen doorway to gain more counter space...adding an egress to the basement for a guest room. They're all great ideas, but each is one dominoe falling toward the next. Grandma's china is in that attic closet. Granddad's tool bench would be better used in the basement.

So, we reshuffle furniture and pare down our stuff. It's causing us to really examine what we need and how our perceptions and memories color those decisions.

- The feelin' Old and squished Bag

12 comments:

Fat Lad said...

The last time Mrs Fl and I moved we gave so much of our stuff to charity (and a fair amount went on Fleabay) It was embarrasing to see how much clutter we had in our lives none of it making us better in any way

Fat Lad

the old bag said...

Fat Lad, I agree. It's amazing that I can keep going back to the drawers and closets and find more things that can go...after I thought I'd sent everything I could on its way.

All that stuff should be out having a positive impact on someone's life rather than sitting inside a box in the attic.

Snakebite said...

Having reason to pair down and / or re-examine can be a refreshing and good thing. I'm in a similar situation and I'm expecting to simply throw out a bunch of crap. Good luck with your rejiggering. Before and after pictures might be cool.

bikingbrady said...

Try 980 on the main floor with a wife and 3 kids! Full basement saves us...barely...but we like it and I'll be damn if I'll move again. I'd rather put a bullet in my head than move again. Snakebite...I said that I'D put a bullet in my head so put your thoughts on hold...

Vito said...

I started in North Mpls. with about 1165 sq.ft. and ended up in the burbs. (Sucks) Bigger house means even more &%$# to accumulate. Two people, seven bikes (5 are mine), XC skis, climbing gear, snowshoes, exercise equipment/clothing racks, etc.

What scares my wife the most is she knows how much I would love the tiny cabin up on the North Shore. Providing of course there is room for bikes, skis, camping/hiking gear, etc.

Pete said...

Pretty damn close to the size of our first place. Would have been good for a while longer, but we had twins (surprise!). We outgrew that house a lot faster than we planned on...

the old bag said...

@ Snakebite -- some of the decisions are tough, but I'm all for really thinking about what's important. We'll definitely do some before/after shots.

the old bag said...

@ Brady -- man, what I'd give for another 100 feet on the main level. The foundation is just over 800. Glad you've found space to fit!

the old bag said...

@Vito -- Sounds like a tiny cabin with a HUGE garage out back! We'd love to get kayaks, but that might mean a second floor to the garage....

the old bag said...

@ Pete -- it's the second child that seems to tip the scales around here. We had a couple families move once their second was a toddler. It's hard to imagine a time when entire families were raised in these tiny houses.

Eclectchick said...

It's that time of year, isn't it?

the old bag said...

YES! AG!