Not gonna lie, this blog is deep like a well, so just keep scrolling down :)

Thanks to my rad hubby I can officially say I am a stay-at-home mom (I've been an art teacher for 8 years, but made the leap to s-a-h-m) and I can't tell you how exciting that is to me...but I guess I'm sort of going to try. Through this blog.

I'm probably too sarcastic, too sensitive, too untidy, too honest, and I tend to tell people more than they care to know---conciseness is perhaps not my strong suit. The fact that I now have two blogs might also mean I'm a bit too narcissistic.

And in case you were wondering, my name is Brooke.


Monday, August 2, 2010

Home...and free solar systems

Gabe, upon making our first trip inside a certain *container* store in town yesterday: "I have no idea why some people from other countries come here and feel overwhelmed by America's abundance...So what if we have a giant chain of stores devoted entirely to selling stuff to hold all of our other stuff?" Then he and Ellis wandered off to judge some more while I just marveled at all of the previously unknown ways to organize my stuff.

I saw a guy on tv the other day who designs, builds, and lives in homes that are like 100 square feet. He had closet space for his spare wardrobe, bookshelves for his book collection, a bed/loft, seating for multiple people, a sparse kitchen with a tiny refrigerator, a water jug with a spout sitting over a sink drain, a toilet, shower, and a little front porch. Somehow, despite my American upbringing (and constant dissatisfaction with my wardrobe) his home was more appealing to me than a large home.

Gabe and I jokingly/knowingly exchange smirks when people come to our home and remark at how "cozy" it is, because we both know that's the socially acceptable term for small. I guess "cozy" is better than "snug" or "claustrophobic". Our home is cozy. And small. At least by most common standards here. We are three people (one of whom barely tops 20 lbs.) and an 8 lb. cat living in about 1000 square feet. Our bedroom serves as my studio/sewing room, Gabe's office and library, and of course our love nest. Gabe wants to stick some exercise equipment in there too, which I have always opposed. Ellis' nursery is also the guest room.

I remember coming home from building houses for some families in Juarez, Mexico years ago and sitting guilt-filled on my bed crying about how blessed I was to have my home. (I never claimed I wasn't a bit emotional and dramatic at times) How long did it take to return to the mindset of wanting more? A bigger house, a better kitchen, a car with fewer dents...Not long, I'm sure.

Anyway, I saw this guy in the ultimate "cozy" house and it was charming and respectable. How can you not respect someone who chooses to use less---resources, energy, space, self-importance---in a world that almost always focuses on more?

So, at this moment, I like our home. Our home has character and it's where Gabe and I first lived as a married couple, it's the first place Ellis lived (not counting the NICU for the first 6 weeks of her life...). Chances are we will move to another home in our lifetime, so while we're here I want to remember to appreciate what our home IS, and not worry about what it isn't.

On a slightly similar note, Gabe saw a sign near a new housing development offering "Free Solar Systems!" That. Is. Awesome. No one else is offering that. Maybe solar panels, but entire solar systems?!! Sellers are getting really desperate and generous in this housing market.


  1. Wow. Been thinking about this alot, you know? How to live well in a society that always wants "more". And tells you you're a freak for not wanting that, you know?

    LOVE your blog, B! Had no idea that this was you until I clicked on over!

  2. I have seriously read this post 3x. Just got back from a girls' weekend where I could fit 5 of my houses into some of the womens' homes...and yet, are they any happier?

    At the end of the day, does an extra bedroom and a walk-in closet make me complete?

    I think we all know the answer. And, truth be told, I miss my house where the kids shared a holds some awesome memories.

    (don't tell anyone i said that)

  3. Just found your "new" blog! Wow, I feel like I've been missing out! Love it!! I saw an episode on that guy with the REALLY small house too, I was amazed and awed by it. But, this all reminds me of my friend who recently moved into a 6000 square foot home and has continued to complain about not having enough space/closets/ect in her new house and how she has to get rid of stuff. AMAZING, I know! I keep bringing her back to reality and how life is really like for us "regular" folks! Which also reminds me of a quote Dave Ramsey had on his fb page last week. YOu know you're living the debt free way or within your means way, when people constantly question you on your NOT spending money on stuff. (or something to that effect)(sorry for my book here, I've done a lot of thinking on this subject!)