Life in the “real world”: Living in a small space

Living in a small space, you have to get creative if you’re stubborn and want to store more than two tubes of lipstick and one roll of toilet paper at a time. This is the very reason why my flashlight is kept in my underwear drawer.

For some reason, I often feel the need to stock up on things. This mother-of-10 mentality does not become a single, 23-year-old living in a tiny duplex. I have approximately two feet of counter space in my kitchen, and the Jell-O I bought two years ago is sitting on a shelf with my bowls and cup saucers (coffee cups are placed in a different location). Frugality runs through my veins in an IV of cheapness, so if I see Colgate is on sale, I secretly want to buy some, though I have a full tube at home and three other ones that are near their end.

Since moving into my new place a month ago (as of yesterday), I have already begun to successfully retrain my semi-hoarding ways. I gave a garbage bag full of clothes to goodwill (and to Herberger’s, so I could get coupons from the Goodwill Sale, which, in turn, permitted me to buy two more clothing items…); I brought some furniture back to my parents’ place because even a small end table could not fit in my living room right now; I’ve finished two tubes of toothpaste that were nearly empty before BUYING and opening a new tube (I’m trying to finish off a third tube right now); I haven’t bought anything frozen for nearly a month, and am proudly nearing an empty freezer; there are more indicators, but I’ll stop.

I didn’t have enough strength to stay away from Bath & Body Works this fall, as I had hoped and planned. Sure enough, I bought six bottles of soap in autumnal scents for $20 (that sale always gets me). I now have enough soap, including all the B&BW’s soap I’d already accumulated, to last me through 2017. That’s probably not an exaggeration.

Perhaps growing up in the country prompted this trait of preparation. Having to write long lists of things my family needed for those occasional trips to Wal-Mart or, better yet, Fargo-Moorhead to conserve on gas led me to this state. In my present situation, I can walk to Hornbacher’s to buy groceries in less than five minutes. I can drive to Wal-Mart and get there in 10 minutes. There are probably seven gas stations in a 4-mile radius – convenience at its best.

Moving out of my old apartment was a harsh reality check. I realized (as did those who helped me) that I’d accumulated far too much stuff. I also realized that when I move to another city, at some point in my life, I will have one heck of a time, if I don’t start getting rid of more unnecessaries (new word).

Living in my small abode is cozy, sweet and I love it. I wouldn’t have it any other way… though, I could go for a few more kitchen cupboards. The Jell-O is feeling out of place with the saucers.

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