I spent last week visiting my best friend from high school and her husband down in St. Petersburg, Florida. It was wonderful to spend so much time with someone I’m so close with––despite living in different states (and sometimes countries) for the past eight years and pursuing own own careers and lifestyles, our friendship still has that ease and openness that comes with going through so many firsts with someone.
There was a lot of laughter, a lot of ice cream, and a lot of just being in the same room.
Staying in their guest bedroom (Yes, they have a guest bedroom!) for a week also got me thinking about how all the small, unique details of living in a specific place become so normal so quickly.
When I moved to New York two years ago I left behind a beautiful Victorian apartment in San Francisco. Found through a friend (i.e below market), the corner apartment faced a small park, had bay windows in every room, two separate walk in hallway closets, a dishwasher, and a washer and dryer. My friends and I still say that it’s the nicest apartment I’ll ever live in!
Now I live in Brooklyn and share a three bedroom with two wonderful roommates. I love our place, but the total square footage is about half of what I used to share with one other person out in San francisco. And my current place doesn’t have any of the amenities I had in SF.
Until last week, I’d forgotten how some of my lifestyle habits have changed over the past two years since moving into this smaller space. My Floridian friend and her husband shop at Costco and buy things like toilet paper and peanut butter in bulk. Even if it were easy for me to get to a store like Costco and transport back my purchases (which it isn’t), I wouldn’t have anywhere to keep all of them! My roommates and I barely have enough pantry or closet space to keep the things that we use on a weekly basis.
I’ve also become neater and more organized in a small space––not having a lot room, means I’ve become more disciplined about finding a specific place for each and every item, and making sure I put them back in those places each time I use them. Limited square footage quickly taught me how stressful and overwhelming having stuff everywhere (a glass on the counter, a sweater strewn over that chair, a bag left on the floor) can feel!
What’s unique about the place where you live? Have you lived anywhere else, and if so, which of your habits have changed since your move? How?
& one of my favorite artists Mari Andrew often draws about life in New York City. Check out this beautiful, heart-warming illustration she did!