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mickeysmateNovember 1, 2006

I'm new the forum & thought I'd stop by to say, "hi" and give a little background.

Our house is 1460 SF & we've lived here for 12 yrs raising our 2 kids (now, 15y &17y). When we were looking at houses the kids were 3 & 5 so we decided to buy new instead of a FU. As we are in the 'burbs of Baltimore that meant a TH. I've spent the last 10 yrs thinking we were going to move up to a bigger SF. Well, it hasn't happened yet & guess what? It's okay! When I stop and think about all the time I have wasted, I just kick myself! I guess age & maturity make you realize it isn't about keeping up with the Jones'.

Anyway, I've decided it is time to "live" in my house. If we move in the future so be it. If not, that is okay to. The one thing I have loved about this house is my kitchen. The first floor is very open with a sunken foyer, LR with FP & small DR. Once I figure out how to post pics perhaps you all could give me some ideas for decorating. The biggest source of pain is the closet space & bedroom space.

In the meantime, I am enjoying reading the posts & am looking forward to contributing!

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Welcome aboard! It's "good people" here.

    Bookmark   November 2, 2006 at 9:08AM
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Hi, mickeysmate--
I went through a protracted period where I felt I had to get a bigger house (mine is 1580 SQ Feet with two little boys) so my kids wouldn't be cramped in comparison to their playmates, most of whom live in starter castles.
The folks on this forum gave me wise advice--now I realize that size doesn't matter! (ha,ha) Seriously, I now realize that keeping up with the Joneses is a waste of time...most of the people I know who are living in those big homes are slaves to them. The cleaning, the heating, the cooling, the MORTGAGE. No, thanks. I'd rather be small and sane!
Have fun decorating!

    Bookmark   November 2, 2006 at 9:45AM
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Welcome, micketsmate ~ This is a great forum with alot of good folks.

"The biggest source of pain is the closet space & bedroom space."

What closet space? What bedroom space? LOL. In our case, it's the lack of a separate dining room that drives me nuts...DH not so much, as long as he's fed ;o)

    Bookmark   November 2, 2006 at 10:16AM
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Thanks for the warm welcome! I knew I was getting a "good folks" vibe for a reason. That's why I always trust my instincts!

My sister has one of those big houses & mortgages. She spends lots of time on yard work & upkeep. I personally like to take vacations to the 'happiest place on earth'and don't really like to clean. A small garden is fine for me.

Talk to you all soon.

    Bookmark   November 2, 2006 at 7:14PM
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Hello, Kathie, from another "Baltimoron." Where in the 'burbs do you live? I'm in Balto. County, just outside the City on the SW side, inside the Beltway. I feel your pain - our house is nearly 70 years old, so our bedrooms are also tiny, and the closets are almost nonexistent.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2006 at 10:34AM
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We live in northwest Balto. County - In Owings Mills at the Reisterstown line. Most of my family is between Towson and Harford County. Which are you in?

    Bookmark   November 6, 2006 at 2:56PM
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Sure good to hear from people has been quiet here in "smallville". Enjoy the board.

I still have so much to do in my home, getting there and really want to post some picks. After only a few months of moving in from double the sq. ft, I love a little house. Cannot imagine going back.

This week the kitchen got to though and I had a friend remove a set of cabinets in the kitchen for the fridge. There really wasn't anyplace for it and stood out so badly. Now I have to figure out how to either cut cabinets down to fit opening left between range and fridge or buy ones...not a big decision. I really hate to not use these cabinets as they are fairly new. Aside from the cabinets sitting in the middle of the kitchen at the moment.....I now have a good size eating area or room to put an island.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2006 at 7:03PM
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Are your excess cabinets such that you can put a top on them and have them for your island? would save you money for a base and you could be sure to have an overhang for sitting??

    Bookmark   November 7, 2006 at 8:26AM
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Kathie, I raised 2 children in a house just a little over 1300 sqft. We moved in when my son was 3 and my daughter was 15 months. Mine are all grown up now (28 & 27) and it sometimes feels like DH & I have too much room. We have a FR & a LR so we can "escape" each other if we need to....LOL.

I have a sister in Colorado that has a very large 3000 sqft home and it's just ridiculous. There are just the two of them and 2 big dogs and sooooo much space that she does nothing but complain about having to clean it all. AND they're retired but feel the house is so important that they are afraid to leave it to travel....boy are they mixed up!

This is a great forum and very good & nice people. I don't post often but when I do I feel very welcome and appreciated. So, you will LOVE it here!!!!

Marilyn in NM

    Bookmark   November 7, 2006 at 10:27AM
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Another newbie here! Hi everyone! I just love this forum...I feel I've found a "home"! Ya know, like many of you, I've been there, done that with the big house. LAST LIFE CHAPTER! Now, remarried to someone whose goals & values more closely match my own, we are remodeling his lil Fla. "bachelor home". Can't tell you all how much clarity & comfort this experience has brought! I've always HAD a real affinity for small "monopoly houses" as we called em in Pgh. Tidy, efficient, easy on the budget, a cinch to care for...a true "home"....not a museum.

My husband is a wonderful woodcrafter & persistent at that. He completely demo'd our 70's built kitchen, removing the worthless above cabinets soffit, and rebuilt new ones, out of maple, up to the ceiling height, that are just gorgeous! 11&1/2 months of pure obsession, but he DID it! That easily tripled our cabinet storage space.The cost reduction was $25,000!

Recently, we've removed the 20 plus year old carpet, and he & I will spend our Thanksgiving holiday (5 full days that he has off) laying a beautiful tile floor in the kitchen, living room, and dining room. Best of all...all of this work is being done, slowly, keeping within financial bounds, by US. In doing it this way, it's like Christmas, every month. Some kind of progress happens monthly.

One of the bennies of a smaller home that I love, (ours is 1300 sq. ft.), is being able to put in nicer quality improvements, cause you're not doing so MUCH of it. No MILES of counter tops to do.In addition of course, the lower utility bills, ease of maintenance, all of that....I just love it! No more big houses...ever!

Thanks for all the great ideas & camraderie everyone...I'm looking forward to being a part of this great forum! Donna

    Bookmark   November 10, 2007 at 5:12PM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA to the forum here too. :-)
We live in a small cape that I believe is about 1200 sq ft. We have lived here a long time and we are in need of doing some repairs and updating and go back and forth sometimes about whether to invest in it or move. Even if we move we would still need to do some work. The house just doesn't fit our needs right now, but I have some ideas to think about.

I was pleasantly surprised to find this forum because it would seem I am not the only one in this position. :-) I look forward to visiting the forum and listening to how other people are resolving these questions for themselves.


    Bookmark   November 16, 2007 at 8:41PM
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Oh how I related to every one of your posts!
You know the ole saying, "if only I had known then what I know now".

I did the big, around 4400 sq ft or so.
The money on furniture , the draperies alone a fortune.
It never ended.

When my DH got ready to retire we realized we had alot of
retirement money in our house.
We sold it, after 15 years and made $70.000.00 on it.

It was paid for already so we took the money and paid cash for 1345 sq ft built in 1960.
We have added a Mbath, closets, had HWF refinished
all the way through , paint etc.
I love it love it love it.

If only we had done that 25 years ago.
It was just a house, thats all.
When I was in my 30's tho it was all about a big house.
My, my, how our priorities change as we get older.

I even sold my cherry dining room furniture because my DR was just not big enough for it.

Never would I have believed I could do that ! Didn't even bother me.

    Bookmark   November 17, 2007 at 1:19AM
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New is really nice...welcome. We have been fairly quiet. Most of my posts are turning into "rambling" lately. But for newbies, reading through all posts will turn up many links, pics and great suggestions for living small. We need you, so post some pics and questions to jump start the conversations again.

Marilyn, where in NM are you? I moved back to CO to be near the kids about 5 years ago. Was living in Corrales and still miss the huge NM sky. Also miss the architecture and colors, there was so much available for creative endeavors. Plus gardening, it amazed me what could be grown. My biggest surprise was artichokes the first year of planting.

    Bookmark   November 18, 2007 at 7:22AM
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In response to Love-my-lilhome's comments...I applaud you! I think we've evolved, to the realization that life is more than about the "stuff" we spend so much time, energy and $$$$ to aquire. I've too, look at the dining room set, so rarely ever utilized, and think...when we retire, I'm NOT taking this monster with us. Someone else, in their earlier years, in that phase of aquiring, will appreciate it. Cycles of life...:)

    Bookmark   November 22, 2007 at 6:51AM
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Hi everyone- I'm a newbie also! I am just learning about forums on the web ...what cave do I live in? Work!! Just never spent much time on the computer other than emailing family and friends. Grocery shopping one day, ran into old friend that told me about Gardenweb....I love it! Guess I am addicted now...did my first positing the other day:) I too, live in a smaller home 1800 sq ft tri-level...anyone have one? We are in the process of tight budget remodel.....we tore down the wall between teeny weeny kitchen and dining room. I am now trying to design a layout and move appliances around. I am fortunate to have an electrician and plumber in the family...but really haven't found someone to do counters etc. yet.
I pretty much have to do and find everything on my own (we have a pizzeria, so my husband and I work all the time)and it is hard!
Doing cabinets, counter and floor selections are driving me crazy..just don't want to make wrong choices with my tight budget!
Thanks for listening....looking forward to chatting ideas etc. I never seem to find any pics of tri-levels so if anyone out there knows of a site I could check, PLEASE let me know...My project deadline is end of April...son getting married in May:)!
I tend to ramble on, so please forgive me:)!!

    Bookmark   January 26, 2008 at 12:30PM
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Hi Kathy,
Is a tri level a split level, or three stories?

I grew up in a three story duplex, and for a few years we lived in a regular Brady Bunch style split level ranch thing. I remember how neat it was as a kid to look out the window directly into the trees, but I have to say that when I think about climbing two or even three flights of stairs several times a day, I'm very happy with our little one story. :^)

We're in the middle of deconstructing our kitchen too; actually, ours has been MOL stripped to the studs for a couple of years now...we're *VERY* slow workers, and also on a tight budget. I just keep reminding myself of Ecclesiastes 7:8. "The end of a matter is better than its beginning, and patience is better than pride."

Have you been to the kitchen forum? You'll find plenty of wonderful ideas for remodelling a kitchen floating around there.

    Bookmark   January 27, 2008 at 11:18AM
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Hello All, another newbie here, didn't know this forum existed. I live in a two story older townhouse. It is about 1700 square feet and a little larger than what I would like. I moved here four years ago and re-decorated the whole place. Almost two years ago while I was out of town, a leak in the downstairs 1/2 bath flooded the whole downstairs. My condominium insurance didn't cover all of the damage, so did the best I could with what I had and it is still a work in progress:-) I have a problem maybe someone could help me with. I have a recessed area in a little sitting room adjacent to the kitchen. I originally had a large entertainment system in it, which was damaged beyond repair in the flood. It measures app. 82"W by 36" deep. and the ceiling height is 8ft. Thinking of turning this into a computer area. Anyone have any ideas? This is getting too long, just want to say, I have read all the posts and am very happy I found this site.

    Bookmark   January 27, 2008 at 6:50PM
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