Minimalism in 90 Days – The Pre-Move In

For those of you who missed it, I moved from a 1800 square foot furnished townhouse to a 895 square foot condo. Since my life was going into boxes, I decided to create my own variation of Ryan Nicodemus’ Packing Party. I decided to move myself to the new place but not unpack anything until I needed it to see how much stuff I actually use and what I truly need to function and feel comfortable.

I closed on the condo on September 29th but I won’t move in until October 11th. I needed time to buy some basic furniture, pack up my life, and get it moved to the new place.

Let me start by saying, Ryan’s Packing Party is a lot easier than mine. Moving sucks. I feel like my life for the last week has been hijacked by furniture stores, delivery people, utility people, and movers.

I’m really glad I did a major clean-out of my life last year. I still had more to get rid of in this move, but it’s a lot less than what I’ve already parted with to date.

I’m writing this post from new condo on the eve of the official move-in, at my new standing desk from Ikea, while I’m waiting for the furniture guys to arrive to exchange the damaged box spring they delivered earlier this week with an un-damaged one.

The only furniture that belonged to me in the townhouse was a bookcase and my mattress so I had to go furniture shopping. Here’s what I’ve purchased so far furniture-wise for the condo: bed, box spring, 2 bedside tables, dresser, desk, desk chair, coffee table, 2 end tables, entertainment table (for the TV), and 5 lamps. The fact that I made this many selections without crying is a miracle. Anyone who knows me knows that I’m hellaciously indecisive. I have trouble ordering a sandwich. I purchased a couch too but it won’t be ready for a few more weeks so I’m sitting on a camping chair for now.

My Living Room - October 10, 2014
My Living Room – October 10, 2014

Some people may be wondering if I’m a minimalist if I’m buying this much furniture. To me, minimalism isn’t about having as little as possible. It’s about limiting myself to the things that add value to my life. It’s ok to be comfortable.

In the back and forths from the townhouse to the condo, I’ve brought over a few boxes, some oversized items that didn’t fit into a bankers box, and a few garments that I’d rather keep on hangers instead of folding them and getting them wrinkled. I brought over all my empty hangers in my laundry basket. It seemed dumb to have 3 boxes just for hangers. I cleaned out the freezer and realized the freezer at my new place is a lot smaller than the one I’m used to. I also went shopping for a few items that I knew I would need early on like a new comforter and toilet paper.

This is supposed to be the dining area, but for now it's where the boxes are going to be.
This is supposed to be the dining area, but for now it’s where the boxes are going to be.

Here’s how unpacking is going to work. The movers are going to bring my things to the condo. Everything will be placed in the great room and nothing will be unpacked until I need it. (I expect this will be the fastest move they’ve ever done.) Once an item is unpacked, it can’t go back in its box. It has to be put away, given away, or thrown away. Today, I had to unpack a notebook so I could leave a friendly note on the windshield of the truck that’s been parking in my space.  Now I need to decide where notebooks are going to be stored.

For the most part it’s been fun creating my new living space but I’m at the point now where I can’t wait to be settled in.

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