Life Changing Events

While walking around our house one day, I intuitively felt we needed to move.
Life Changing Events
Photo by Samantha Gades / Unsplash

Intuitive Thought

While walking around our house one day, I intuitively felt we needed to move. Find a new place. I was given some guidelines for our new place. It had to be a place that wowed us! It had to be a fun place that would present more opportunities to have fun.

So I texted Jenn, and surprisingly she was in complete agreement, answering my text with “Finally”. I had no idea that she had wanted to move for some time. So we contacted our real estate agent and started to look for our new place.

Fun

What kind of place opens other opportunities and access to fun? A place that is close to a park, access to transit, access to downtown, access to a community, and was bright and sunny. Our house was north-facing, so sunlight was rare on our side of the road. During the winter months, the south side of the street always had clear driveways and very little ice, whereas our side of the road was icy, and the snow stayed forever.

Finding our Wow

At first, we were looking for a house or a condo, so we didn’t have to worry about maintenance. We had to find a place that wowed us. What does that mean exactly? I think it means that when you walk into the place, you say … wow.

We decided to look at downtown apartment condos, which would give us access to the downtown restaurants and city activities. All within walking or biking distance. Being close to downtown allowed us to take afternoon walks or grab coffee at our favourite spot. We could also use public transportation, making it easier for us to get around town.

One Car... yikes

At the time, we had a car and a pickup truck. If we moved downtown, we only needed one car. All of these things would be significant adjustments. We also had to think about the cost of living downtown. Would it be too much for us? So we looked into our finances and saw that if we moved downtown, we could save money on car payments, insurance, gas and maintenance. This was a big plus! After considering all these factors, we decided that a move downtown would suit us best.

Perfect Find

We ended up finding a place that was perfect for us. It was a two-bedroom condo with hardwood floors and a fantastic view​​. As soon as we walked around the corner from the front door, we said Wow! An interesting note to mention is that anytime we have first-time visitors, they also say WOW when coming around the corner.

Love at First Sight

It is on the 5th floor of an old school that was converted to condos. The stair access is right near our garage and comes directly to our door. We also liked the idea of having an elevator in the building, so we wouldn’t have to worry about carrying heavy items up the stairs. It was love at first sight, and we knew it was where we wanted to be.

Downsizing - Oh Boy...

Okay, so we have a place to hang our hat. That was just part of the equation. Now we had to work on downsizing from a 5-bedroom house to a 2-bedroom condo with minimal storage. We had lived in that house for 19 years and had accumulated a lot of stuff. The kids had all moved out; it was just the two of us in this prominent place with all this stuff.

When you think about it, we only used a handful of rooms and stuff at any given time. There was very little need to have all this accumulation of stuff.

So, we set out to eliminate things we no longer needed. We didn’t want to have garage sales and sell things online. We even discovered that most charities were no longer accepting donated furniture. We did not want all this stuff to go to the landfill. However, that is what often happens to estate sales after a person passes away. The family brings in a dumpster, and all the stuff we accumulated for years goes in the trash.

Need it, keep it, want it toss it

So we attacked the task with a mantra of “need it, keep it, want it toss it.” When I say toss it, I mean it has to go and not be in our house anymore. It can’t go to landfill unless there is absolutely no choice. I sold and gave away a lot of photography gear. Some stuff was specialized and was better to give away, specifically my high-end cameras. People don’t want to pay high dollars for high-priced equipment, and I had plenty of photographers in my family to relocate the gear.

When you purchase and use an item, it becomes unique to you. Or you get a dining room suite from your Mom worth thousands of dollars. All hardwood, in pristine condition. We offered it to our siblings and to our families. Tried to sell it online. No one was interested; it's too big, it's too dark, it's too old-fashioned. Everything had to go; we don’t have enough room for everything.

Auction Company

Our real estate agent recommended an organization called Maxxsold; they come into your house, group everything together in lots, photograph the lot, and then place everything into an auction. They take a portion of the proceeds, and you pay an upfront fee for the in-house team. All items start at a bidding price of $1, which is a shocking thought. Expensive furniture could go for mere dollars. Once the auction has been completed, they send their team in and arrange for the auction winners to pick up their stuff. You don’t even need to be present.

Lifespan of things

Let's talk for a moment about “things.” What is the lifespan of things? Are all your valued things available to you? Or are they in boxes in the garage?  Do you still love them? We had to really think about this.

In most cases, their lifespan was done; they had serviced our needs at the time and now weren’t loved anymore, at least not enough to keep. Look around your house; how much stuff do you feel you can’t live without? And how much is just clutter? Do you use everything on your counters enough to keep it?

We were both overwhelmed at first when we saw how small our new place was compared to our old one​​; we realized that this was an opportunity for us to start fresh. We had been comfortable with the excess stuff for so long that adjusting to the minimalistic lifestyle was hard, but we eventually felt clear. We only kept what mattered most and ended up with a much simpler and lighter living space.

We learned from experience that it’s essential not to let possessions become a burden. Living with less has made us feel liberated and free! There is something special about knowing you can pick up and go whenever you want without worrying about lugging things around.

Experiences are more fun then Stuff

We have also become more mindful of our purchases and now think twice before buying something new. Every purchase has to be carefully considered, as it will take up valuable space in our home. We are learning to appreciate the beauty of living with less; there is no longer a feeling of being weighed down by things that don’t matter. Plus it gives anyone who knows us the freedom of not having to buy us gifts. Experiences are way more fun.

Travel Light

Now, we are considering minimalism as a lifestyle choice and taking steps to reduce our carbon footprint in other areas. Since our move, it has allowed me to travel. I have learned to travel light with only what is needed. It's funny, but I now have specific backpacks. I have a backpack for my biking, one for swimming and one for travel (mobile office). At first, I put one of those trackers in my suitcase but later realized it was not important enough to track it. Now I am travelling with my backpack and a carry-on. I can buy what I need if additional clothing items are needed. Otherwise, I pack very light.

About the author
Stan Hudecki

Stan Hudecki

Stan is trying to live outside of his comfort zone. He is an avid photographer and spiritual intuitive, loving life! He has recently started a community called Global Light Connect.

Stan Hudecki

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