Thursday, May 24, 2012

The Basement... Living Simply in the Suburbs

 The Kitchen...
 The bathroom...
 Putting windows in and digging out the kids room...
 Aaron's in what was the porch and what is now the sunroom
 kitchen
 The sunroom...
 The kids room...
 Kids room
 Bathroom
 Bathroom
 Sunroom
 Sunroom
 Sunroom
 Sunroom
 Kitchen
 Kitchen
 Appliance garage in the Kitchen
 Murphy bed (will soon be built in and hidden) this is also in the kichen
 Kids room
 Kids room
Kids secret play space in their room 

Welcome to our new home for the next year... our basement. Yes, we realize that most of the people that hear we are living in our basement think we're crazy. You might be thinking... Why? Why would a family of 5 move into a 800 square foot space voluntarily for a year. 

Multiple reasons... 
1. Save money- As you know Aaron's working on a PhD through the University of Edinburgh, as a result we have taken on some school loans. With Aaron being a teacher and sole breadwinner, let's just say we're not rolling in the dough. We've decided we want to start aggressively paying down our house and any other debt we have including school loans so when we talked to a friend who wanted to rent out the main part of our house for a year we thought why not?

2. Live simply- We have accumulated a lot of stuff and we really like the idea of simplifying. So over the last month or so we've garage saled, craigslisted, and have given away a lot of stuff that we really don't need. At first it was hard and then it was really freeing to let go of stuff. The kids even helped by getting rid of a lot of toys they don't play with anymore. They do worry sometimes when i'm picking up their room and will say "Mom don't get rid of those toys- ok."

3. Adventure- Aaron and I are always up for a new adventure and this seemed like a good one. For Aaron he liked the idea of us being close in proximity to bond us. For me, I liked the idea of a challenge because i feel like when life's easy I naturally become more self reliant. When things are harder then I find myself relying more on God- Now i'm not asking God for trials by any means but instead hoping that this challenging year will force me to grow a little in my faith. 

The transition has had it's ups and downs. I cried a lot in the first week as there were boxes everywhere and it all felt so chaotic (tough for a control freak like myself), but now that everything's been put away and I like the way it all looks I'm a lot happier. Aaron still needs to build built in's around the Murphy bed and has several little projects to finish up but we've adjusted pretty well. Two years ago we lived for 3 months in a flat in Edinburgh, Scotland and despite being challenging we did it and it was a really rich experience for our family. We had that in the back of our head as we jumped into this project. Another thing we wanted to keep in mind was that most of the world lives in small spaces and they don't accumulate things they don't need. They don't shop for leisure or buy things because it was "such a good deal." We are totally guilty of this... but over the next year we are going to try to deliberately live simply.

We don't have a dish washer or even a garbage disposal for that matter- which is interesting. We don't have cable, we don't have a bath tub, we dont' have a lot of things but i think we're going to manage just fine. I'll keep you posted as we jump into this adventure. The kids by the way are beyond excited about their new room and the new space. 

2 comments:

Christina Suzann Nelson said...

Janay, It looks great!

Brianna Heldt said...

Okay this is amazing! It is all SO CUTE and I bet you're going to love it. I love simplifying!