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The photo is my son and myself. Now days you can get a photo made to look old like this one. This photo was taken when this was the new look.

Harry S Truman was president when I was born and world war II had ended. I grew up in a time when lunch was put in a brown paper bag and a sandwich was wrapped with wax paper. There was no such thing as pantyhose, we wore stockings that attached to the rubbery clippy things that attached to the girdle. Convenience stores were not common and when we took a trip we packed a picnic basket because many places did not have fast food. Highways had places to pull over and stop, some with picnic tables. Read more ....

Finding Contentment

September 18, 2018

Many boxes of "stuff" has left our home. I lost count of the trips to the donation places.  The top bag sitting on the boxes is synthetic yarn.  Over the years I have found I prefer to knit and crochet with 100 percent cotton yarn or wool. So to free up space I kept only the cotton and wool yarn donated the other yarns.

If you have been following my blog you will have read that we live in a small home of 1100 square feet and basically moved out of part of our house and turned that part into an apartment. This left us with much less space to live so we had to really think about what we were going to do.  Basically we were  moving into a small apartment so we had to condense down and organize everything we own.  The part of the house that remains for us had to be completely re-arranged.

What was our bedroom is now in the guest apartment.  The bedroom and den area of the guest apartment has been freshly painted. 

The den area of the guest apartment has a new recliner, a twin bed for extra sleeping and a small kitchenette.

The guest apartment has a bath and half. 

We realize many people have no desire to live old fashioned or vintage so we respect that and added more modern things to the guest apartment such as a television in the den and bedroom of the apartment. We added a noise reduction insulation in the wall that separates the apartment from the house. This way the television will not bother Charles and I. We prefer having our house more quiet so we can read and knit and enjoy conversations with each other.

Charles and I wanted to continue with our living more like the past and keep the things we enjoy that help us to live this vintage life.

Sorting and purging books was difficult.  I had to go back through them three times to fit into our allotted space.  We have this bookcase and a thin narrow shelf by the back door.

Some may think this is still a lot of books but Charles and I are very active with gardening and woodworking, sewing, knitting and many other activities and we have a lot of resource books.  As some of you know we also do a lot of research.

We wanted to continue to live with minimal use of water and electricity.  We take washbowl baths, bucket baths and tub baths the old way.  We have this wash bowl bathing and shaving area set up in our bedroom.  The bath house has a tub and bucket bath area which is a very refreshing way to bathe.  We don't care for a shower anymore since we found this is a better way to get clean and better for our skin.  (we do have hot water in the bath house).

We made a small den off the kitchen  This area has always been difficult to place any furniture.  We finally solved the furniture placement problem and made individual sitting areas.  First time since this house was built this area is functional.

Each chair has its own space but still close enough together for conversing.

I now find contentment here in this space... There are two more chairs across from these chairs.

We have our breakfast table at the end of the bar.  The small metal table belonged to Charles Grandmother.  Charles enjoys the vintage things in our home as much as I do.  

Charles and I never need "our space"  away from each other.  We like to be close to each other.

Our bed has changed from the queen size bed to a double bed and it does not matter to us as long as we are together.  We nest here, we pillow ourselves in and talk for awhile, I may knit or read, Charles will read until we get sleepy.  

Charles and I know that one day one of us will go before the other and one will remain alone.  For now we don't want to waste any of this time we have quarreling or doing things that take us away from each other.  We not only love each other, we are best friends.

I am showing you this picture of the bed unmade because we have learned to sleep with just sheets in the summer because it reduces the need for air conditioning.  Just a sheet and a fan will keep you cool.  This is how we slept many years ago.

We had to come to terms that if I am going to continue to blog we will have some non vintage/old fashioned things in our home.  We have one foot in living like the past and part of another foot in today's time.  If I am going to do my blog I need my computer and the big computer to finish our genealogy study.  Charles needs his tablet for his work.  We need an area to charge electronics.

I have tried for several years making a computer area hidden but that has not worked out very well.  Anyone that lives like the past and blogs or does videos about it is going to have modern technology and gadgets.  So it is just something that is going to be the odd items in the home.

It is strange how foreign these electronics feel in our home since we have returned to living more like the past.

We have decided to accept the electronics that we need and we placed our two desks in the dining room, one on each wall opposite. Charles has a desk that belonged to his Grandfather and my desk is one I have had since I was a child and was built in the 1940s.  They were never intended for electronics and does look a bit odd.

I had to find a place for yarn and fabric, notions, tools for lace making and soap making or give up on doing these things. I finally made places for these things in a cabinet also in the dining room.

So our dining room is now the community room.  Still has the table where we can all eat together when family comes. We are not formal type people anyway so why not let this space have more than one use.

With all the things we have moved out of the house we find more things.  It was like opening a can of worms.  I kept going to the internet to find something, somewhere to tell me how to do this.  I could not find anything I was looking for. I had to think about what is it that I am wanting. Katherine tried to tell me she just does not know how to talk.

What I really want is to live like we used to live before all this stuff was invented!  I want our home to literally be like the past because it was better then.

Finally I told myself, you have to figure this out and do it!  So I truly had two days of just walking around and around the house, trying, racking my brain what to do. Finally I came to the conclusion that I had to part with much more. All those trips to donations was not enough.  How did we have this much?  how could we have such overflow by giving up two rooms and two bathrooms? I had to get rid of many more things.

So my plan was, force myself to do this, Keep the things we "Need".  Keep the things that are helpful.  Don't keep things because someone gave it to us or because we spent a lot of money on it.  It has to be functional ( but wasn't that what I normally did?). 

I finally started parting with items that belonged to my mother.  Things she enjoyed but did not really have a purpose for me.  I found it easier to start letting go of emotional things.  Like I have said before I am not for a minimalistic life because we enjoy being active in our home.  Our intentions are not to lay on a couch and eat potato chips and watch tv and become inactive.

We want to garden and cook homemade meals and make the things we need.  Do the repairs we can do to our home and enjoy doing the creative things such as woodworking, soap making, knitting etc. 

The large, old cabinet was moved to our new tiny bedroom. 

The big cabinet did sit here where the heart cabinet now sits.  The heart cabinet did hold my sewing fabric and notions as well as soap in the sewing room that now does not exist. This picture above and below is in the new guest apartment.

This cabinet is now ready for guests or a family member that might need to move in with us one day.

There have been many things to do to get the apartment finished.  The closet in this room had a bad closet door, they were the old sliding doors and we had removed them long ago.  Charles solved this problem by closing in one side slightly and adding a regular door.  

The apartment is complete and our side of the house is in much better shape than one week ago.  Now if only I can find a place for the laundry basket.  That would make my life so happy.

We are finding contentment once again.  We were ruffled there for awhile with all this remodeling and moving things about.  Painting is not as easy as it once was but that is done too.  We still have not decided what to do with the walls in our new tiny bedroom, paint or wallpaper but that will be decided later.

We have to go back through our kitchen cabinets again and let go of some more items there and purge again in some of our drawers.

Our homes can fill up with clutter quickly and at some point in time we have to deal with the clutter because it becomes a burden and makes our home hard to clean. Contentment comes when our home is settled whether that is because the house is clean or things are put away or the home is no longer cluttered and is now much easier to clean.

We have to move on to the Shabby Cabby next and finish putting down that new floor because as long as the shabby cabby is in disarray our overflow guest house is out of commission.  It will be getting cooler weather soon and Charles wants to get back to work on the floor.  Everything you see here is out of the shabby cabby and half the floor is torn out.  We are removing all of the floor and putting in a new floor due to a leak in the roof that has been fixed. 

Until next time... Grandma Donna

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