>Back to Basics


After much discussion and a lot of soul searching, Jeffrey and I decided we would downsize, to the extreme, for our upcoming move. The house we’re living in is pretty roomy and expansive, the house we’re moving to is quite petite and efficient in space. Furniture we had purchased when we bought a house 7 years ago (a house that was meant to be our permanent home but was sold after 2 years instead) has been carted around and made to fit into every space we’ve rented since selling the house and it’s time to accept we are still too mobile and un-rooted to keep dragging around bulky big furniture for “some day.” We also admitted to ourselves that, when and if we buy something again, it will most likely be a condo or townhouse, so our days of big houses with lots of space or O-V-E-R and we have evolved past the need for this much and size furniture!

Plus, it isn’t fitting (ins substance or style) in the new house. No way. No how.

Once we accepted this and started giving away our furniture to friends, the flood gates opened: if we’re going to purge, let’s really purge. Let’s downsize and simplify, embrace this change and see if we can reduce down to the bare essentials, only keeping the minimal amount of stuff we want and need.

So that is what we have begun to do and suddenly nothing in our home, no material possession, is sacred or untouchable. Every piece of furniture is being scrutinized; every piece of clothing, every chachka and knick knack, every piece of dishware, pot and pan has a potential target on it. Every closet, cabinet and container is being mulled over, questioned and put to the test: Do we need it? Do we want it? Does it mean anything to us?

Of course there are the essentials: clothes, bed, TV, laptops, dishes and comics. (Yeah, comics!)

Then there are a few items we will keep for sentimental reasons or just because we love them too much to part with: Our grandfather clock, our portable faux fireplace, our hydraulic table and stool set from Provincetown, our Steve Walker stretched canvas prints and a few other smaller pieces here and there. But beyond that, there is nothing else we really need to have or keep and some things we’ll be very glad to be rid of.

Ultimately, we have decided that our life will focus on what we do and who we do it with, not what we own. People live with far less than we do and are happy and grateful for it. The less we own, the less we have to lose, care for, clean, move or make room for. Our home will not be a showcase of expensive or pretty furniture, items and baubles. It will, however, continue to be a place of safety, acceptance, comfort, and modest accommodation for ourselves and our friends and that is perfectly fine with us.

In the end, wherever we go, wherever we live, whatever we own, it will be our home because of who spends time there and what takes place there, not because of the material things we furnish it with.

And as long as we have each other and our friends, we have enough to build a home with.

This entry was posted in Friends, home, Life Lessons, moving. Bookmark the permalink.

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