Real Life in a Small Space

I have had such an overwhelming response to the “Small Space Living for Big Families“. It has been awesome! I have had the opportunity to connect with so many other families from ALL OVER who are also making the most out of living with less. The Facebook comments have been… diverse. Most of them are extremely positive, but I did get some feedback from skeptics because all of the photos I shared were of the apartment empty. They couldn’t imagine what “real life” in 800 square feet with three small children would actually look like. For most people the concept is a nightmare.

Just to be clear, if you can afford and manage a large or even average home that’s fantastic. It’s a personal choice. Some people do it out of conviction, for us it’s necessity. Either way the idea is to find satisfaction despite what our culture says we must have. Our children don’t have to live a solemn life of deprivation, just because they don’t have their own bedroom and playroom.

For those that follow my blog, I post pictures of my family in our apartment all the time so you know we are real people and you’ve seen most of this before. For everyone else I have gone through some old photos that show how we manage year round in less than 800 square feet. Get ready for an overwhelming amount of snapshots.

We’ll start with January.

Nerf darts. I did a whole post about this and it’s even been featured on other blogs.

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We definitely go sledding and stuff, but the kids can spend hours out in this little patio throwing snowballs at the sliding door and building snowmen in the winter. It’s basically turns into a giant sandbox when it snows which means I get stay warm behind the glass!

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Here is a pic of the kids filling out their class Valentine’s.

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My daughter’s birthday is in March and I wrote two posts about how we had the ultimate tea party for her birthday.

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The kid’s share a room for now and as you can see they consider it “Fun Land”

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This is when Ezie was still in a crib and they didn’t have bunk beds yet.

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and this isn’t the best pic, but it’s the new setup. The swing chair is from Ikea. There is a small trampoline in the other end of the room. There is a toy box and a book shelf hanging on the wall with tons and tons of books. They share a closet too.

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Here is Z is posing in front of the apartment with his end of the year school project.

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Fun with food.

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Our one little bathroom seconds as a salon.

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Bubbles on the patio is always a great choice for summer.

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The guys having fun making race cars and a track out of paper.

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Living on the third floor of an apartment means lots of stairs everyday.

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Another successful birthday party. This one was camping theme! Check out the whole post with all the details here.

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Floor puzzle
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Dancing and dress up time
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Checking herself out in the master bedroom

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Building a model car with dad
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Building a pinewood derby car with dad

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Winning a trophy for pinewood derby! The suitcase is significant because my dad came in for the event and he spent the night. We have had many guest sleepover on multiple occasions!

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More playtime

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Crafts

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We are always out of town with family for Christmas so we don’t do any big decorations, but we do Truth in the Tinsel and some other fun traditions.

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Our one piece of furniture to sit on.

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Many, many meals have been made in this tiny kitchen.
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We love playing cards and  board games.

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Reading time!

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They don’t usually sleep in our bed, but there are mornings we wake up like this!

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The truth is we aren’t home that much. Thanks to generous gifts we have had annual memberships to the nature center, the sports and fitness club, and the science museum. We also frequent parks and libraries, along with play dates and road trips. So I am not trying to imply that we just love being cooped up together in our small apartment all the time. What I am trying to prove with this post is that we are a REAL family that has a lot of fun and shared memories using every last inch of our little space.

I feel like God has brought us to this place for a reason. We’ve learned and gained so much from this season of our lives. If I could change the past and give my children a bigger home and a more luxurious or glamorous lifestyle I wouldn’t do it. My dream house wish list is longer than my weekly grocery list, so don’t get me wrong I am a big fan of amenities, but for now it’s the simple life and I SIMPLY wouldn’t have it any other way. 

Free Donuts!?

I have been working hard to cut back sugar for our family this year. Each month another sweet treat is eliminated from the menu in our home and will no longer be restocked, but one thing I don’t think I will ever make completely off limits is donuts.

Did you know that National Donut Day is TOMORROW!? I didn’t, but it turns out it’s a thing.

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 Be sure to stop by your local Krispy Kreme or Dunkin’ Donuts to get a free donut Friday June 5th!

I know that Dunkin’ Donuts will require a drink purchase, but they have excellent coffee. I will be ordering my favorite, which is the cool and sweet Iced Caramel Latte with Whipped cream.

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There is a party in my tummy. So yummy. So yummy…

 Speaking of parties, a lot of the party ideas that we implemented SJ’s 4th birthday would be perfect for donut day or a variety of occasions.

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Check out the party post HERE to see how my DIY donut invitations, donut hole fruit kabobs, and donut piñata turned out.

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You can also head over to my donut party pinterest board for even Donut fun like:

Donuts for elves (they are actually cheerios). So cute!

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Or stamping colorful thumbprints for donut sprinkles.

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“If You Give a Dog a Donut”  might be fun reading material for your kids this weekend.

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There are so many possibilities! I realize we have a health epidimec in our society so maybe I shouldn’t be promoting a day that celebrates what is possibly the least nutritious snack of all time disguised as a breakfast food. But there are actually a lot of alternative recipes out there for vegan, gluten free, paleo, and keto donuts. Because regardless of your dietary needs I think every one deserves something sweet from time to time, “donut you think? “

Do you have a favorite donut?

By |2015-06-04T09:28:33+00:00June 4, 2015|Crafts, Creativity, Frugal Living, Parties|5 Comments

Our 5th Annual Cow Day

Chic-Fil-A time, cow day, dress-like-a-cow, free food, cow appreciation day- whatever you want to call, it it’s a fun time and something that is starting to become one of my favorite days of the year!

This year I was saddened when I realized Z would be out of town for cow day. I had already planned on painting the kids faces this year and almost considered changing our whole summer schedule around  the event just so that he could be a part of the action. That was unrealistic though. So instead I decided we could still dress up and take pictures like we do every year, but we would do it before cow day at my aunt’s barn.

The weather was gorgeous and the children really ate up the chance for some extra special pretend play.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Then later they ate up the free food when all but Z went in dressed like cows on July 11.

On the left is my niece for her first cow day wearing the same dress SJ wore 5 years ago on her first cow day (pictured right). It was so sweet! 



Between all the free meals we’ve gotten over the past 5 cow appreciation days, my family has ordered at least $75 worth of free Chic Fil A. That’s a pretty sweet deal. I am cheap, so I usually just get a couple kids meals and share with the kids. I don’t mind because it’s still delicious, but on cow day you better believe I get myself in full garb and I order a chicken sandwich meal with a LEMONADE all for me. YUM.

The whole experience just makes me smile! I’ve decided at this point it’s worth it for me to come up with a permanent costume. Every year I dress in white and tape black spots to myself, but I think next year will be different. Yes I am already planning for next years cow day. I am a true CFA fan. Moo.

 

 

 

By |2015-05-19T20:08:52+00:00July 28, 2014|Creativity, Frugal Living, Uncategorized|1 Comment
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