The weekend tends to remind me of how much livable space I am really working with. New York real estate is pricey, and with high rents, very few people like myself can afford to move. We just utilize the limited space the best way we know how.
My family of four shares a little under 450 square feet of space. It has turned out much better than I thought, especially over the last four years as our family has expanded. I have managed to accommodate all of us comfortably and thoughtfully.
The hardest of all the change was the sleeping arrangements. I got rid of a beautiful makeup station that I made, to make room for my first daughter’s crib. Then I got rid of my dresser for the second baby’s crib. It inevitably worked out, providing all the space and comfort we needed.
Bedroom and bed sharing has worked out perfectly fine for us so far. With all of us having our assigned space, we all sleep quite comfortably. Sometimes we all just get into the big bed, snuggle up and sleep together as a family. I enjoy them being so close to us.
The living room is our flex room. It is both a play space and our family room. I buy just enough toys for the girls that are stored in canvas bins and containers. If we get new toys, I rotate them. Whatever is not in great use is packed away. It makes old toys feel like new when I bring them out. It is a win-win.
I always think of storage and I use every bit of storage space—under my couch, under my bed, and under the girls’ beds among other places. With such limited space, I have to be very creative with storage in order to keep the things that we need to maintain our lifestyle. I’ve been KonMaring, before there was a KonMari method (I love Marie Kondo).
Getting the kids involved in the cleaning and organizing process is super important. I get the girls to help clean up as often as I can. Assigning them some small responsibilities like cleaning their toys helps us enjoy our space. It also builds an attitude of helpfulness and teamwork, and creates an atmosphere that really sparks joy.
My everything has a home philosophy is important to maintaining order and my sanity. Decluttering is my middle name. I am very proactive about keeping our things organized, so I try to follow a daily and weekly clean up and organization schedule. Really sticking to it makes a world of a difference. It makes finding things much easier and it really creates functionality.
I feel very happy in a clean and organized space, which is part of why this works so well. I would like to have a bigger space, but we are enjoying our space and family too much to focus on that. We’re just focusing on the memories, and when it’s time to leave, we will sure miss this old space.