Throughout our lives, many of us have lived in one or two homes and others – many houses. Some small and some large. I have been lucky (although many will say unlucky) that I have lived in many houses in six different countries over the past fifty plus years. .
I grew up in the western suburbs of Sydney until I was married. My home was a typical for the 50s. A three bedroom fibro house on a quarter acre block. The bathroom and laundry attached to the back of the house.
When I was first married I moved to Melbourne with my new husband who was working there. We lived in a small “bedsit”, as they were called in those days in the mid fifties. We loved our little home across from the Melbourne Cricket Ground and close to Melbourne city.
When my husband was transferred back to Sydney, we rented a two bedroom flat in Rose Bay.
Over the next fifty years, there were many homes. A recent count, they numbered 34. Included were a large apartment on the 22ndfloor overlooking Hong Kong Harbour, a small Japanese house with tatami floors to a large four floor brownstone home in New Jersey. We – my husband and four children always managed to enjoy our homes big and small. We always managed to live with the space we had. After my husband died and the children all grew up and found their own homes, I lived in a small small apartments for many years until I retired.
I then made the rather bold decision to move to Bali to live with my daughter. I sold, loaned, and stored all my possessions. I packed two suitcases and left for Bali in 2008. It was paradise for awhile until I had a yearning to come back to Sydney to be with other family members and friends.
The problem was I had very little money and lived on a pension. With difficulties, I was fortunate enough to obtain a small studio apartment in a retirement village. Close to the city and near my children. The location was ideal. But, and there is always a but, could I live in a virtual one room space.
As I didn’t really have a choice I decided to take it and starting looking at the space for all my needs. After spending some time on the internet looking at “how to decorate a small space”, I got the idea of what to do.
Left in the apartment was a bed (albeit a single one) in a alcove partitioned off from the rest of the space by a wall of built-in storage. This gave me sufficient space for my clothes (after a large culling exercise).
I also had a reasonable size bathroom. Fortunately, gateleg table and four chairs, a two seater couch, and a coffee table remained in the house. I jettisoned an ugly TV table. There was a small kitchen and a good sized bathroom. The kitchen had a refrigerator and stove.
Now it was off to Ikea with my daughter, Lulu. Firstly, two eight-holed bookcases. Put on their side against two walls in one corner, they gave me room for storage and the TV was put across the corner. I moved the couch to the middle of the room facing the TV and a old coffee table gave me a small lounge area.
Behind the couch I placed a bookcase and a small desk for my computer and papers. This was the study area. In the corner near the front door, I placed the table with one side down and used the two chairs. This can be the dining area when I get around to entertaining. One chair was used with the desk and the other made do next to the bed to be used as a bedside table.
Fortunately I was able to rescue some art works that I had “loaned” to my children, friends and relatives when I left.
Now after a few months I have settled in and am enjoying my home. Yes it is small and a tight fit but I have every thing I need and am very comfortable. I have to make sure I do not buy anything. I have to be firm when my well meaning children and friends want to get me things. It took awhile to figure out where to put things like the iron (I had to forgo the ironing board and use a blanket on the table like my mum used to use). I try to shop every couple of days to get small amounts of food. That bargain large bag of oranges are certainly cheap but where will they go.
On the plus side, It is easy to keep clean and doing the housework takes a couple of hours at the most. Living in a small retirement complex with 32 other retirees gives me security and a sense of belonging. Coming and. going there is always a someone to speak to or a cheery hallo.
Friends and relatives drop in but I don’t feel as I have to invite them for dinner.
I certainly don’t have a desire to move into a large house again. Maybe I wouldn’t mind an extra room but it’s really not essential. So don’t backout if you have the opportunity to get your own small home. Enjoy it.
Ellen bracksFebruary 2, 2017
Great Robin I find it so good to read. And you Are a great orga niser keep it up
Roslyn DoughertyFebruary 11, 2017
Loved your story Robin. We must catch up. I was flooded out last week so that is taking a bit of organising. Ros
RobinFebruary 12, 2017
thanks for reading the blog and your nice comments. I am hoping to keep it up on a weekly or twice weekly basis.
Lorraine AllenFebruary 11, 2017
super interesting , please keep writing .
Claire QuinnFebruary 11, 2017
You could make anything look good. I have always admired you for the short time I have known you. I love your taste in your little house in Double Six… I also love and admire the way you do yourself up… Elegant lady xx
oh and the Christmas table years ago was special with what you had to work with.
Jacky AmesFebruary 11, 2017
Robyn, I loved reading your blog, thanks so much for sharing your living life story. I look forward to seeing you in Sydney in your new home. You’re an inspiration x
MishFebruary 12, 2017
I love your writing it’s inspiring. I also have a similar story and now sit in a studio apartment after years of travelling and 26 years in Bali.
MissyFebruary 12, 2017
Love the heartfelt writing. Love it. Keep writing!
Patricia ... BaliFebruary 12, 2017
Pleased to hear you are happily settled Robin… you do sound pretty content! Enjoy this phase of your life v
Shush IngramFebruary 12, 2017
Really enjoyed your blog Robyn and looking forward to many more!
sprzedam samochódJanuary 5, 2021
Bardzo lubię tę stronę, dodana do zakładek.
vardenafil no rxJanuary 7, 2021
I enjoy you because of all of the effort on this blog. Betty delights in carrying out internet research and it’s easy to see why. A lot of people hear all about the compelling form you convey both interesting and useful guidelines by means of the blog and attract contribution from other individuals about this area and my child has always been becoming educated a great deal. Enjoy the remaining portion of the new year. You’re carrying out a dazzling job.
sildenafil tabletsJanuary 7, 2021
I am also writing to make you know what a impressive encounter my friend’s girl gained reading through your web page. She learned plenty of pieces, which include what it’s like to possess an amazing helping mood to let most people smoothly know several impossible subject matter. You truly exceeded our own expectations. Thank you for offering these invaluable, safe, explanatory and even fun tips about this topic to Julie.
ABILIFY tabletsJanuary 8, 2021
I am also commenting to let you know of the helpful encounter my friend’s daughter found reading through your web page. She figured out numerous issues, not to mention what it’s like to have an amazing giving mood to have most people really easily know selected impossible subject areas. You really exceeded our own expectations. Many thanks for imparting the invaluable, safe, explanatory and even easy thoughts on the topic to Janet.