House Tour: October 2013

Since telling people we are having another baby, I’ve been asked several times when we are moving. The answer: we are not. Yes, we live in a 700 sqare foot condo. Yes, this is quite small for the average suburban family. But, we have two bedrooms and the added luxury of two bathrooms. Would I like more space? Yes. A separate office and dining area (either in the kitchen or a room) would be spectacular. We can always want more – but we don’t really need it. At least I say that now.

Here is a three minute video showing you the “before the baby reorganization.” Our apartment is always a project in progress, I just moved a chair and filing cabinet to get some more space. Squeezing the most functionality out of every space is key. So here is where we are.

Here are some of the plans:

1) I noticed I use the word storage a lot. Like every other sentence. Once goal is to purge and generally have less that needs storing. (Maternity clothes and baby stuff I’m looking at you making an exit in the spring/summer.) There is quite a bit being stored just because we’ve never had the time to really deal with it.

2) Front hall: A new bookshelf to replace the ladder shelf. The ladder isn’t really stable (it is bolted to the wall) and I fear Simon pulling it down one day. The shelf we are ordering is a little bigger and will allow for storage of my random school things that are used daily and currently move from surface to surface.

3) My desk area: A new desk that is bigger and more stable. The ladder style furniture is great for small spaces, but really makes me nervous with kidS. Also a couple of shelves for over the new desk. Possibly getting rid of the chair and using one of the dining chairs too.

3) Behind the couch: We are getting castors so that the top part of the toolbox can sit next to the bottom and double as a behind the couch table. Possibly doing some moving of what is stored near the electronics when the new hall shelf is purchased. (Rather than a tv we have a projector which is mounted on the ceiling. We get our tv through the computer with an antenna.)

4) Dining table, purple chair, and filing cabinet tend to move from the wall they are on to the wall next to the kitchen where the trash can is at the moment. (This is where the chair was three days ago) Placement depends on my mood for a change.

5) We have a dishwasher. This makes my kitchen small but awesome.

6) Seriously need some large and pretty storage for the sewing stuff under the china cabinet and the decoration stuff above.

7) Bathroom: This will stay a half bath until children are out of diapers. Right now I can’t beat the extra storage of hand-me down clothes and baby things in waiting.

8) Kids room: This is where the big changes come in. Purging and organizing the closet is key. It is getting time for another toy purge soon, we do a pretty good job of limiting but have some things that Simon has just outgrown. And the big one – BUNK BEDS. We have figured out an affordable way to build a small size bunk bed (27 x 63). Ikea sells a mattress in this dimension for their junior beds – they just don’t have a bunk. If we can get this up by Christmas, Simon will have a few months to transition from the lower to the upper bed. Then when new baby outgrows the bassinet in our room – baby will skip the crib and sleep on the lower bunk. The only place in the room for a twin bed is in front of the window, which I’m not comfortable with (especially for bunking) And we need the under bed storage for the car seat too much to use a stroller. (we are getting the Diono Radian which folds to 7.5 inches, because two car seats + no car = crazy).

So that is the house tour and the plan for two kids. I think we can do this. I’ll keep you posted on the progress.

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11 thoughts on “House Tour: October 2013

  1. I absolutely LOVED watching that. You are my hero. I don’t know HOW you do what you do in that tiny space. Hats off to you, my friend! I am so excited to see the changes you plan on implementing to make the space more user friendly for a family of FOUR!
    I super love the book shelves behind Simon’s bedroom door. And I love that you put your function needs over what is expected of you. (By using the second shower for storage instead of its usual purpose.) That is inspiring to me. I think we often live or do things “the way we are supposed to”, even if it doesn’t fit our specific needs.
    Good for you. And good luck with the purge. I am thinking maybe I will try to sort through some things to toss as well. Thanks for the inspiration!

  2. City soul sister! You guys can do it! I’ve been terrible about updating my “house tour”–feeling kind of bummed after having some not-so-supportive comments from family relayed to me about how “impossible” it will be for us to keep living here with two kids. But we just keep purging and minimizing and it works out (though I am super jealous of the second bathroom you’ve got–we have tons of closets and a w/d but a second bathroom would be my #1 wish).

    My only hesitation would be the bunk beds. I’ve read that you shouldn’t put children under the age of 5 on a top bunk because of the risk of neuro injury if they fall. We’re doing a toddler bed (already purchased second hand and sitting in the basement!) once we move new baby into the crib from the co-sleeper, which I’m hoping won’t be before April. My S will stay in the crib until then or until he starts climbing out, whichever comes first.

    My big to-dos are rearranging bedroom furniture to make space for the new baby, getting a smaller dining table to open up the kitchen, and–like you–the kid’s clothes sorting, boxing, storing challenge. His closet is a nightmare of overflow right now that makes me shudder to look at, but it needs to wait until D’s work calms down so he and I can devote a weekend to it together.

    1. Yeah, there just isn’t room for a toddler bed and even a mini crib unless we get rid of the table which is non-negotiable because it is a custom piece. I’ve read the same about neuro injury, but because we are going to build the bunks to toddler size the top bunk is only 33 inches off the ground so not much higher than a regular twin bed. With a rail I’m not too worried. And since the baby will be in the bassinet in our room for a few months, S will be 3 before we move him up.

      And I am super jealous of your w/d. Oh that would be a luxury. And if you have a boy the clothes will be that much easier. Yours are going to be close in season.

  3. Oh, this is so familiar. Storage is also our main concern and every minor innovation we manage in the way we store things feels like a considerable victory over the small space. There are limits, of course, and purging often is necessary, but I’m starting to love figuring out ways to most efficiently use small spaces. Good luck to you!

  4. Excited to see what you do! I loved living in our city condo but the deadly combination of only 1 bathroom, a work from home husband, and a stay at home mom conspired against us with baby 2.

    1. Yeah, if we were all home all the time we’d be nuts. S goes to daycare so even on the rare day we both work from home – it works. I miss your blogs 🙁

  5. You are so cute -loved the video. We really enjoy reading you thoughts and dreams for the future. Your dad says he can build anything and will create whatever you need for future babies. We are so very happy for you and Rob.

  6. First off – LOVE your place. It is adorable and really lived in. But, ah…. makes me sad for leaving the city. Like, really sad.

    I really enjoyed seeing this, and reading your plans. I think you’ve got a great plan in place and can’t wait to see how it all comes together. Thanks for letting us into your home!

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