I knew it was coming, I’d been getting nudges for a year or so, but I didn’t expect it to happen so fast. If you haven’t heard, we are moving. Our seemingly sudden decision to sell our home and move into a much smaller space has so many people shaking their heads. It appeared to come out of the blue, and no one can understand why we would leave this beautiful place for such cramped environs. Not to mention the decision to perhaps homeschool our kids and focus on travel. I mean, that’s just crazy talk, right? Who does that??? I don’t feel like I owe anyone an explanation, but there are loved ones who I feel deserve to hear our main reasoning, which is this:
We were spending more time and money taking care of our things than taking care of each other.
This is a tragedy, in our eyes. Our time with our children under our roof is all to short, and spending the weekends taking care of our land and barn, and cleaning up all of this square footage, maintaining material goods, was robbing us of time with the people we love most. The financial cost to live this lifestyle is not equal to the amount of enjoyment we receive from where we live. There is always something to fix, something to maintain, and something to pay for.
There are other contributing factors, of course, but conversation about the above have been in the works for months. Finally, right before Christmas, all the pieces came together and we decided to make the leap. Knowing that it was a nightmare living in our home last time we had it on the market, with all the showings and traffic, we decided to try and find a place to live and move in before we put this place on the market. We found an apartment as a backup, but last week I found us a house. A tiny, perfect house. A house within walking distance to so many precious stores and restaurants, not to mention the library and pool and rec center. A house that is a third the size of this one, with a big wide porch with a swing and huge oak trees, built in 1932. A house with a yard for our dogs, and barely just enough space for all of us. We move in next Wednesday.
This house will be listed within a week of that. The market is good, and we expect it will sell fast. There is of course a financial price to pay to have two homes, but we feel it is worth it. The market is good, and we are blessed to be able to cover the expenses. We can leave this house sitting prettily staged, ready for its new owners, and go start our new, simpler lives. Dozer was planning to do online school, but this new house address feeds into the high school she would have attended if we’d never moved into this place, and she has a ton of friends there. So, she will probably do that, despite my desire to have her travel with us. She is old enough to make this decision, and I trust her with it. We’ve discussed at length what we feel is best for Stinky at this juncture is a semester of the local online school. Sugar Biscuit can stay at his preschool, and I’m not that much farther from my church/yoga studio.
There’s still a lot of travel on the books for all of us. I have some professional opportunities coming up that excite me to no end, but will require my absence from home quite a bit. Having less space to keep clean, and less material things to manage is going to open up space for me to do work that fills my soul. Having a husband who doesn’t feel as much pressure to hit big numbers at his sales job is going to benefit us all. Living in a smaller space will automatically increase the amount of face time we get with our children, as well as our free time as parents and a couple. Living smaller lives means living on a quarter of our income, and a big fat bank account with no debt when we decide to move on, taking what we’ve learned about living spaces and land with us. We’d love to have a lot more acreage some day, but want to do it smarter.
I don’t expect freedom from challenge in this new venture. I’m already getting a lot of judgement and I know there are whispers and assumptions being made. It’s a big, sudden change that not many people would make. Our society conditions us to spend what we make, buy more than we can afford, and live large, lush lifestyles. I understand confusion from those who know us, I really do. It’s just that my husband and I are choosing different, for the time being. The fact that the doors have flown open for us at a speed that leaves us spinning makes me feel that what we are choosing is Divinely supported. We are all excited and looking forward to what amounts to a great experiment, and an even greater leap of faith.
Welcome to 2015, Our Year of Living Small-