Designing a Life(style)

November 2, 2015 § Leave a comment

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After our youngest was born, we actively designed the lifestyle our family would lead.  We left Southern California and moved to a family-friendly neighborhood with good schools in North Texas.  We chose jobs that would allow us to be home at night and on weekends with our kids.  We became soccer coaches and Girl Scout leaders and we drove mini-vans.  Our lifestyle design focused on parenting, community involvement and achievement.

Fast-forward 16 years and our youngest is getting ready to leave the nest.  We’ve learned much about ourselves and our values during that time and we no longer measure our success by external achievements.

Moving is in our future.  We are looking forward to down-sizing (no need for the big family house and yard now) and are thinking about what we want our lifestyle to look like.  We have some limitations (location due to work; double college tuitions) and a lot of new wants:

  1. Walkable (at least to the local bar and/or breakfast establishment)
  2. Manageable (we don’t want to have to hire people to paint our walls or clean our gutters)
  3. Low-maintenance (after the initial move, we don’t want to spend all of our time and money on our house; ideally a lock-and-go situation)
  4. Personal (we want to live in a house that actually represents our style and values instead of worrying about re-sale value)

It’s hard to live in the present when the present no longer reflects your values.

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Minimal housing

November 2, 2015 § Leave a comment

Screen Shot 2014-09-06 at 7.04.34 AM This is almost identical to the house I lived in during high school with my single mom.  She redecorated the kitchen (smartly) with a moveable island and barstools instead of a kitchen table and added a screened porch off the back (here the right side because we lived in a tri-plex).  I personally lived in one similar before I got married — same layout only the front door was on what would be the left side of the house here.  The kitchen in that one had been updated as well.

The size was good — I remember being a little cramped with stuff — never enough places to put my stuff — but with a renewed love of decluttering, this is still a livable size for two people.  And it was only 675 sq ft.  (I know, not a “tiny home” by today’s standards, but definitely smaller than anything I’ve lived in since.)

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