Downsize can mean different things to different people. For some it can mean moving from a sprawling mansion to a town house. For me it's an adjustment that my husband and I feel will improve our lifestyle by adding convenience, eliminating stress and simplifying the everyday.
For twelve years we've managed a three bedroom home, a yard, a pool, a dog with issues, a successful business, started another business, kept up with our sporting activities so to maintain our health and whilst none of this is remarkable in itself, we've kept said business going through several years of economic depression, been underwater on our home for most of the time we've lived in it, kept the dog alive despite himself, and I'm happy to say we are all still here to tell the tale, businesses included!
So that being said, we decided to hell with the aggravation of having to trim palm trees every year (and fined by the HOA when we don't), the endless and costly dumping of chemicals in a pool whose equipment is on the verge of collapse, snaking the main line drain every few weeks due to neighbors tree roots busting through our foundations, the weekly putting out of fires as one thing after another fails, breaks down, needs repair, is beyond repair and is driving us both crazy with frustration! Get me out of here! Ughhh!
A change of scenery is as good as a rest they say, so we are game to find out if this is true! We've decided to try a more urban lifestyle, such as it is in North Scottsdale, taking up residence in a brand-new apartment community close to our business and my other work. We're not under any illusion that it will be easy at least to start with... we'll be losing about 500+ square feet and we're already bursting at the seams, plus our own garage (where everything goes that doesn't fit in the house) as well as a front and back yard with outdoor living space i.e. more furniture. Yikes!
This move is going to be a serious purge - of things, rubbish, an accumulation of unnecessary chattels! I have the burning desire to live minimally (except for my closet of course) some things will never change! What has changed and dramatically so, is my taste in interior decor. This old house has sent me through a metamorphosis, from a lifelong lover of French country style I have emerged as a modern day contemporate and I have no idea how or why this transformation took place except that this house has shaped many things I was not expecting... or was that midlife that crept up on me?
Whatever the reason it doesn't matter because I'm happy with the outcome, with our decision to end our homeowner misery (at least for now) and to make style changes to our interior space. My large French country furniture will be downsized to smaller pieces and placed in storage, given away or sold. The new pieces will be chosen carefully to provide an effective use of our down-sized space. Yes, for the first time in years I will have walk-in closets again, brand new appliances, ultra-modern fixtures and fittings to match my new contemporary style ideas. I will have a rooftop infinity pool with a view of the Mcdowell Mountains, pool side cabanas with their own TV, a state-of-the-art gymnasium in the same building that doesn't look or smell like a petri dish and not least of all promptly trimmed palm trees and tended flower beds without having to lift a green thumb of my own!
So whilst somebody else puts out the fires, fixes the malfunctions, and tends to the real estate, all that is left to do is live our lives, focus on our businesses and keep the dog alive!
This is what downsize means to me... bring it on!
Karen Serino is a life and style blogger, sharing fashion, fitness and fun for youthful women in their forties, fifties and beyond.
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Click the picture below to see my interview with the lovely Jonet Wooten from Fabulously Chic Over 50