Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Making It Work

This was a post that I had intended on doing several months ago, and it is one that I am doing more for my own sake than anyone who might read it.  We've been living with my parents now for almost five months.  Although I think we all secretly hoped it wouldn't be this long, our reality is that it probably will be a bit longer.  Regardless of when the opportunity comes along that allows us to move on - literally and figuratively - we remain thankful and so appreciative to both my parents, for allowing us to be here, as well as for our situation {oddly enough}, which allows us to spend some serious time with our families.  And by "serious" I mean pretty darn near every minute of every day.  That's serious, folks. :)

I wanted to record on my blog exactly how we've made it work here, having four adults and two little people under one roof.  My parents' house is large enough to accommodate us, so space isn't generally an issue; unfortunately, no matter how big their house is, it can't always accommodate the volume with which two little boys and their yelling parents can produce.

So, for starters.  
What happened to all of our stuff?  Obviously, we're using some of it, but the majority remains boxed up and stacked in the basement.  

The basement is large, and mostly unfinished, so there is quite a bit of storage space.  I (very naively) thought that we'd be able to fit everything in the basement.  Ha.  Ha ha ha ha ha.  This speaks not so much to the size of the basement but to the amount of stuff this family of four possesses.  We downsized a bit before we moved, but I do have a bit of an itch to downsize more once we do get into a new place - feeling motivated by how much we are able to live without, and the desire for more simple living.  But in regard to the remainder of our furniture and the boys' larger toys - we did rent a smallish storage unit that houses those things.  Our couch wouldn't have cleared the doorway to the basement anyway, so to storage it went.

Our sleeping quarters...

The boys are sharing my old bedroom.  Never in a million years would I have ever imagined that my children would reside in the bedroom I grew up in.  But it's kinda sweet when I think about it.  

My name is even still on the wall. :)
The beds did start bunked, and stayed that way for a few months.  At some point (I don't remember when) Drew decided he wanted to be on the ground, so they came apart.  The crib is also in their room, for when my mom is baby-sitting Addy.

Brad and I are right across the hall, in my oldest brother's old room.

Our play space...  
Toys are all over the house.  {Of course they are.}  One of the perks for my parents of having us move in was being forced to clean out their basement in order to accommodate our stuff.  Among those projects was working on the one small room down there that is somewhat finished.

 Some dry wall still needs to be replaced, but my dad purchased a carpet remnant to place on the ground, and this small room happily accommodates the bulk of the boys' toys, a couple recliners, the treadmill, and all the video gaming paraphernalia.   
The carpeted room is a bit crowded at times, so the toys usually spill out onto the basement floor.  It's limited space, considering all the boxes stacked down there, but it works.

The boys also loved to play on the porch when we first moved in and the weather was nice.  They have even tried to venture out a couple times in the cold weather.  They really like it out there.

There is a bookshelf in the hallway just outside their room that houses all of their books.

They play all over the house, like they should.  They'll roam from room to room to room, and don't seem to have any trouble finding a good place to play.

As far as my play space...
I was lucky enough in our old home to have an entire bedroom designated for crafts and scrapbooking. It's tough to accommodate all the space that's needed for my crafty endeavors, but my dad was extremely thoughtful is trying to make it work for me.

 He gave up a portion of his home office for my computer and "stacks of stuff" that tend to accumulate.

I found a small nook in the basement and took over the desk that was there for my scrapbooking needs. Since taking this picture, I have also found a place in the basement for my large table so that I have more workspace that doesn't need to be taken down every day.

Brad's easy to accommodate.  He can play anywhere. :)

The food...
The one thing that my parent's have always lacked in their home is adequate pantry space.  They have one small pantry in their kitchen and a lazy susan that is perfect for the empty nesters they once were, but now that there are six mouths to feed, extra food storage space was needed.

The door to the basement is in the kitchen, so at the bottom of the steps we placed some of our bookshelves to house the food.  It's easily accessible and works great for what we need.

Now that we've been here for a while, we seem to have adopted into a pretty good routine.  And there are some definite perks - like sharing the cooking and the housework, having baby-sitters in house, and for the boys, being able to see their grandparents every day.  With Brad home to help with the boys, as well as my parents, I've been able to work on a few projects and I'm able to run errands by myself (some of the best alone time, I tell ya).  There are difficulties too, and while I don't care to dwell on them here, they are the things that one might think are the difficult things when a grown woman moves back in with her parents, bringing her husband and two children along with her.

All in all, I think we've made ourselves comfortable here.  And while my parents have done everything they can to make us feel like this is "home" --- we are only visiting.  And we remain anxious and hopeful for what God has in store for us.  

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