Sunday, June 08, 2008
Lessening Our Footprint
Becoming minimalists has become somewhat of our mantra lately. I've been thinking heavily as of late about the footprint that I have on this earth. What sort of space do I occupy? What do I do with that space? How do I leave it, live in it, use it. As you know, our house is up for sale. We've been here five years. It's total of 1450 square feet living space plus an big basement and large beautiful yard. Bottom line? We're lazy. We don't do our yard work -- we have it done. And that is getting to us -- the fact that we're lazy and paying to have things done for us. So, we're looking around. Don't want a yard, simpler space to live in, and all of that. We've come up with a list of about 5-8 new places that would work for us. But on the top of the list right now is a fairly small one-level condominium that would have us living in only 850 square feet or so (unit 306 or 307 if you happen to explore the link). The other places are actually larger than what we have now and come with lots of stairs. We love them all. But we're especially partial to this idea of serious downsizing and leaning a bit more toward minimalism. We're actually kind of getting excited about throwing things away, gifting them upward and onward, and (quite frankly) existing on this earth with less than we have today. It's kind of a fetish, right now. We're looking at every single thing we have and wondering how we can get rid of it. It's really sort of energizing, in a twisted weird sort of way. And, I must painfully admit, I opened my jeans closet and spotted 12 pair. I felt a little guilty considering that I only have one arse and two skinny white legs with a little dark fuzz on them. It's odd how we are like goldfish and grow to whatever space constraints we have. If there's empty space, we fill it up. Seriously, I've laid awake nights wondering how we can stuff our hanging clothes into one, single 6-foot closet in the small 10x10 bedroom. And our good friend Alan spoke with us recently about a workshop he attended where they were emphasizing the use of fewer and less "things" on this earth. He was explaining how we actually live in about 20% of the space we have in our homes. The rest of it sits there nice and pretty -- waiting, wondering, gathering dust. It has to be heated, cooled, cleaned. And all without too much of a good return on the investment. And in many countries around the globe, there are many entire families living in small spaces such as the one we're considering. So, that's where we're at right now. Thinking, wondering, planning. And not just for a new home. Really more for the longer-term and in big picture sorts of ways. And, I must be honest, that as soon as this house deal is all settled and we're moved, the amount of gasoline we consume is next on the chopping block. Hybrids anyone?