Ugh...I hate to ask this again - Page 3 - Mothering Forums

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Old 04-26-2007, 11:07 PM
 
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Check out the book Material World to see it in action.
Actually I own that book. And from what I have read VERY few of them are happy in their circumstances. They are simply making do with what they have. If their cultural, geographical, origin of birth and financial situations were different they wouldn't live 7 in a room. There is a HUGE difference in choosing to live small and having to live small. Actually there is no comparison.

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And because we don't own...it doesn't have to be permanent...and I love that
That is the key. For many it is permanent. They know in five years they will still be in their little house with 3 kids in hardship and chaos. I think right now CDmaze the OP feels trapped in her little house, she's tired of chaos, she's tired of constantly fighting the battle to keep house with limited storage and space. And she knows right now they aren't moving nor do they have any plans to move.

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But...it's definitely do-able. We could do 3 kids there. Would it be hard? Yes. Chaotic? Probably. But do-able
Please don't take this in the wrong way. I respect you, what you stand for, I love your blog and what you have to say; however, you don't have three kids and simply can't imagine the difference in three versus one. Until you've been there, done that you really can't know. I was the same way. I couldn't imagine how much busier it could be, until i was in the midst of it. Do able and enjoyable are totally different. I want to enjoy my family life not just "do".
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Old 04-26-2007, 11:15 PM
 
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Originally Posted by MommyErin View Post
And, on one very minor point ... I think you should take the trivets down from above your stove. I have found that in my most overwhelming moments, it brings me peace to have a place to look that doesn't have something on it. And since space is at such a premium in your home, that may be the only spot you'll get!
Nah, that's what ceilings are for. They're never cluttered and the few stray cobwebs can be removed in seconds. Ceilings are my happy little reminder that an 1/8 of every room in my house is *always* clutter free.
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Old 04-26-2007, 11:24 PM
 
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CDmom, to me, it comes down to this:

The pros of moving to a bigger space have been logically outlined by you.

The cons of moving to a bigger space seem to consist entirely of your dh saying "no way, that's just like your mom" without him giving any real thought to your circumstances.

I still think the solution is for *him* to figure out how to make the smaller space work. And the answer can't be "oh, well you need to just work harder and do more." The answer can't be to simply declutter your things or the children's things. He needs to figure out how to organize and arrange the things your family needs for their various activities. If *he* chooses to get rid of a hobby, that's fine, but it's not fair of him to ask it of you when his only objection to a bigger space is that you might end up like your mother.
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Old 04-27-2007, 03:03 PM
 
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Originally Posted by mommaof3boz View Post
Actually I own that book. And from what I have read VERY few of them are happy in their circumstances. They are simply making do with what they have. If their cultural, geographical, origin of birth and financial situations were different they wouldn't live 7 in a room. There is a HUGE difference in choosing to live small and having to live small. Actually there is no comparison.
I didn't say they were happy...just observing that we in America and other countries have so many luxuries compared to the rest of the world. Just bringing perspective.


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Originally Posted by mommaof3boz View Post
Please don't take this in the wrong way. I respect you, what you stand for, I love your blog and what you have to say; however, you don't have three kids and simply can't imagine the difference in three versus one. Until you've been there, done that you really can't know. I was the same way. I couldn't imagine how much busier it could be, until i was in the midst of it. Do able and enjoyable are totally different. I want to enjoy my family life not just "do"
I totally agree. I would never WANT to live in this apt. with three kids. No way. I'm just saying that if I HAD to, I could. Our neighbor below wouldn't like it much though

Sara ::: Mama to Bella Grace & Lucy Mae Cultivate inner beauty, the gentle, gracious kind that God delights in. 1 Peter 3:4
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Old 04-29-2007, 02:56 AM
 
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I didn't say they were happy...just observing that we in America and other countries have so many luxuries compared to the rest of the world. Just bringing perspective.
Thank heavens!!!
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Kavita
I just hate to see anybody feeling like what works for one person is a prescription for how we *all* should do it
That comment is exactly what I was thinking when I started the thread about the new "keeping up with the Jones'". I think its important not to idolize anyone or their way of living. I think its perfectly OK to want bigger/better than what you have if its not working for your family. Don't feel like a failure if you can't live up to someone else's standards. Set your own. I started reading to much and feeling unhappy with my home because it was to "big". At 1500 sq ft mind you. With one full bath Then I came back to reality and realized I love my house. My family loves our home. We are happy here. We wouldn't be happy "there". The point to Carolyn is do the best you can with where you are and don't feel guilty if you want something different.
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Old 04-30-2007, 01:23 AM
 
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You've gotten a lot of wonderful advice already. Your place is really cute and I'm sure you'll find a way to make it work for your family.

In the kitchen, get in there and really get them organized and put things away, and add an extra shelf if needed to really get things put up. We didn't have any pantry space so I brought in a bookshelf and used that for my food storage. Here's a picture. (I'd suggest one with doors for a less cluttered look. Maybe the IKEA Billy cabinet?) It would fit nicely at the end of your island, where the paper towel holder is currently. Your kitchen looks like it has plenty of storage if it's well utilized. Maybe you could take pictures of your open cabinets so we can see what you have and what needs to be put away in there?

I loved the suggestion of a corner booth style dining table and seating. It would add needed storage and clean up the look of that corner. We have a booster seat that attatches to the dining chair and we've used that since DS was 6 months old. That may be something to consider to get the high chair out of the way.

The sofa is really pretty, but awfully big for the space. Maybe something like this would work a little better, since it is smaller but still gives space for seating. It also has storage under the chaise which could be used for blankets, and it's a sofa bed. The space freed up next to the sofa could be used for musical instruments. A storage trunk like this would make a nice coffee table and add storage. (There is a matching trunk end table. Even more storage!)

Your entryway is outta control! How about something like thistwo door/1 drawer cabinet that could be used for shoe and bag storage underneath and keys and such in the drawer, with hooks hanging over it for coats.

Of course, you don't have to buy anything to get the place cleaned up, but perhaps furniture that was scaled more suited for the space and had built-in storage would give you more room to work with help you (and your family) keep the space tidier.
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Old 05-04-2007, 06:53 PM
 
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We live in a small, rented house with no attic, basement or garage. There is a shed with the washer & dryer in it, but the roof leaks so you can't store anything there. I have multiple over the door hook arrangements that don't take any hardware, just fit on the top of the door. One by the back door has 12 hooks, another has a storage basket & 6 hooks; there are a large variety to choose from. Also in the kitchen I use baskets that hang onto the bottom of the shelf above for various things, platters & so forth. In our bedroom & other spaces we have several wall lamps, mostly from Ikea. They are on the wall so no table or horizontal space is used, kids can't get at them & cats can't knock them over & break them. This idea came to me after a cat jumped up & turned over a big ginger jar lamp on my bedside table in the middle of the night. It sounded like a car wreck, we woke up with hearts pounding wondering what the heck was going on.

I also am constantly trying to cut back, donate, & get rid of things on an ongoing basis to keep us from going under. I sell books on ebay & they take up so much space we simply can't accumulate clutter, there is no room.

Look for hidden storage. Example: my husband refused to give away two afghans his grandmother crocheted, even though they are such scratchy yarn we can't use them. Folded up they are big & bulky & annoying hogging space in the linen closet. But spread out folded inside the sofa bed they are out of sight & no trouble. Can you get rolling bins to put under your beds for out of season clothes? Ottomans are made with storage inside, as are old fashioned piano benches.

Deneice Schofield in Secrets of a Happlily Organized Family has excellent ways to store toys, games, craft supplies & stuff like that. You might want to get the book from the library or Half.com.

Children's art work can get overwhelming. If relatives don't all live in the same town, though, they are thrilled to get a picture in the mail with a brief note from a grandchild, niece or nephew on the opposite side. This is not the same at all as throwing stuff away, but it gets it out of your house.

You really do have to pick up every night in a small house. Our kitchen table gets loaded down but now I force myself to clean it off before I leave to run errands & it's much better. It's a constant thing to remind myself to put it away, not lay it down.

Good luck! Small houses are challenging, especially with three children.
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