Posts Tagged With: moving house

Living together

About two weeks ago it completed one year of Lee and I living together, just the two of us in the same house. And what fun have we had so far.

Yes, some adaptation was required and yes, some compromises had to be made by the two of us, but hey, we survived, and coming home to him is one of the best parts of my day. I was married before, so the concept of living together was not a surprise, but people are different, so the experience was completely different again, naturally. I think I developed a little set of rules to make sure we are enjoying the best about sharing the same roof, and not engaging in stupid little bickering about small stuff that really isn’t that important.

So, below are our little rules. It’s worth pointing out that none of them were decided beforehand, they were created with time and adaptations, leaving things to fall into place naturally. I guess that they shouldn’t even be called rules, they should just be called  ‘a gentleman and a lady’s unspoken agreement’… ha!

1. How much stuff have you got?

This was the first thing he brought up, with surprise. When we moved in, it became very clear that my stuff needed a lot more room than his stuff. Oh dear. It was hard to justify the need I had to keep all I had. My reasoning was that I had already done a car boot sale and also given to charity a lot of the things that I didn’t need anymore, so what entered the flat HAD to stay. I was adamant that I would definitely need all that paperwork from 10 years ago, all the clothes that I hadn’t worn in ages and all the shoes that are kept neatly in drawers whilst I always wear my trusted pair of flats. He had to just put up with this. If I hadn’t given away so much beforehand, he would have a point, but I had already gone through that exercise and just couldn’t make myself do it twice in a space of 3 months. Oh, no no no! This, of course, ended up with me having 2 wardrobes against his one and muuuch more cupboard space. The delights of living with a woman, I say.

2. My space, your space

This one we quickly figured out. Lee and I love being together and spending time together, but we absolutely love our own space. We need it. So, quite quickly, it was established (again, without words, this just happened), that his ‘cave’ would be the spare room, whilst mine would be the front room. We didn’t initially intend for this to happen, as when we moved in we put my desk and his desk in the spare room. However, I found myself in the front room the entire time, so it made sense to move my desk there. This way, my ‘office’ is in the living room and his is in the back room. I never complained, because I ended up with a sea view. Cunning move.

3. He cooks, I wash

I’m a terrible cook. Well, I can cook to survive and I do it sometimes, but when you live with someone who does it 1000 times better than you, there is no reason why they shouldn’t take on the task. Lee is a lot more adventurous than me in the kitchen. He buys new spices, he tries different things, he has a good palate and the best thing is that I like his food. So, our unspoken agreement in the kitchen area is that he cooks and I wash the dishes. (I think  I got the best end of the bargain here!)

4. Let me do the cleaning

I’m an extremely organised person. I like to keep paperwork organised, I like to have clean and clutter-free surfaces and I hate piles of stuff that have no place to go – this doesn’t happen in my home. Lee, on the other hand, is more of a laid back type and doesn’t care if the place is messy. My ask on this one is that he just let me do it. Just let me get on with it and be my own tidy self and also tidy him up. I mean, he can easily lie down and watch a movie with lots of stuff out of place in the living room, whilst I can’t. I can only relax when there is no mess around. I’m not saying I’m pedantic, but I’m uncomfortable in an untidy place and, in a situation like that, I can’t think of anything else but getting up and… tidying it all up. Pronto.

5. I do laundry, you take the rubbish out

I enjoy separating the clothes, washing the clothes, hanging them to dry, folding them nicely and putting them away, making sure our wardrobes are always tidy (ish – ok, I’m not that much of a freak!). I refuse to do any ironing, so it’s paramount that the clothes are hung properly and, although I tried leaving the task to Lee a few times, sadly he just doesn’t seem capable enough – the same way it works with me and cooking, I suppose, so each to their own, eh? Lee retributes the favour by taking out the rubbish.

6. My food, your food

Unfortunately, Lee and I have a few very different tastes in food. For example, he hates fish – apart from tuna – and I like fish a lot. I love vegetables and he couldn’t care less about them. So, we decided that during the week, we cook our own dinners, so I can have my fish and he can have whatever he wants. Then, on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, he is my personal chef and we eat stuff we both like. Yummy arrangement.

7. Leave me alone

I think I wouldn’t be able to live with someone near me the whole time. I like to be alone. I like my own company. I like being in complete silence sometimes, just me and a book. I like to watch movies on my own, I like to write and I like to re-organise drawers – haha, I AM sad! Lee also enjoys his quiet moments by himself and this mutual respect is amazing. We don’t need to be glued to each other and the fact that we both feel the same way is pure luck.

8. You shall not become cave people

There is a balance between spending time apart and isolating yourself. Instinctively, I think Lee and I know what this time is before we become two strangers! You can’t just indulge in constant isolation and expect your partner to be there for you, just waiting with open arms. The time apart is to do your own thing. But the time together should follow suit and be constant.

9. My way, my way!

I think one of the biggest lessons of living together is to realise that things will not always be your way. I’m a strong-willed person and I can fight to prove a point to great extent, but living together is not always about that. Sometimes, to keep peace, it’s just easier to let go. So what if he forgets his towel on the bed sometimes? So what if he empties the dishwasher but leaves practically all the cupboard doors open afterwards? So what if he never closes a drawer completely (arghhhh!)? I suppose this small stuff is exactly that: small and not worthy of an argument.

10. The enjoyment of two

Living together is a mixture of many things. You get angry, you get frustrated, you feel selfish, you feel like you are getting/giving more than you are giving/getting sometimes. But then you watch movies together, you cook together, you get and give lots of hugs and cuddles and kisses and you have that person to talk to all the time and that’s great. Living together with your partner is like living with your best friend. It’s a huge step, because it’ll tell you black and white if you are compatible for the long run. A rule of thumb to make the decision, I guess, is this: you should only live with someone if you can’t live without them.

Oh, and also on the subject, I recently saw this advert and absolutely loved it! It’s an Ikea one about… erm, living together! Just click here to watch.

Advertisements
Categories: Home, Living together, Relationships, Rules | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

The real house by the beach

We moved! After quite a few posts about the preparations of moving from one place to another, I can now say that we have actually done it. Lee and I transferred our little lives from a house to a flat, from sharing accommodation to living all by ourselves. OOooo, I’m scared! (nah, not really).

I’m most excited about being able to do whatever I want to the place. Ok, it’s rented so I may not have all that freedom, really, but I can have it as we want it and I can do one of my favourite things: change stuff around without consulting anyone. Well, the quick word with Lee helps, I guess, but he always grunts some “fine” and I carry on.

The new place is great. It’s at the top of our budget and let’s hope we don’t lose our jobs, but we are quite amazed that we were lucky to find a place that is just literally opposite the sea and that we could afford. My new morning routine now consists of having a coffee watching the sea from the sofa before going to work, as opposed to dashing off in a hurry, and this kind of thing is what I call improved quality of life.

Now let me just say this… I’m not bragging… we have been thinking about doing this for quite some time and we had to plan and save pennies to be able to do it so, if anything, I’m proud of our little achievement and just thought I’d share my happiness here. Life is not easy nowadays and when you achieve something, however small, I reckon it’s worth celebrating!  hehe…

The strangest thing to get used to is all the different noises of the building. You know when you have been in a place for a while and know all the sounds? By this I mean all the stair noises, all the cracking when you walk around, the sound of the heating going on, etc. Small things, really. Well, this takes some getting used to and I’m still in the process. I’m naturally quite jumpy and seem to live in a world of my own sometimes, so when I hear a different noise, one I haven’t heard before, I go and investigate or kind of make a mental note of it for next time. I like to know my surroundings quite well.

The place where we live now is an old building of 8 flats that was refurbished entirely, apart from the back of it. Therefore, the old staircase of the building is still there and people still use it. In our flat, we have a door with glass panels at the end of the corridor, so if people use the stairs at the back and turn the light on, the light makes our corridor a bit more illuminated. This, in the beginning, used to make me jump and I considered blocking that door with something, but now I’m kind of used to it and don’t even mind.

Also, the neighbours above us are a couple of lovely oldies and they like their tv… a LOT. And they like to watch it as loud as possible, so this is something I have to get used to. Having lived in a house before, we are not so used to the noise, but in just a week I can tell you that I don’t mind it anymore, which I find kind of strange. It seems like this place has so much to offer that a bit of a muffled tv sound can’t really become a big deal.

I started this blog in January and at that point we were not sure where we were going to move to yet. I named the blog housebythebeach and this was because living very near the sea has always been one of my wildest dreams. How funny is it that when we actually write about it and make our goals in life very specific (and graphic), they kind of make a way to actually happen? I didn’t have any idea that I’d be living by the sea, especially not this soon. And then life kind of makes its own little movements and makes things fall into place. It’s good to feel like the universe is moving in your favour sometimes and I guess I appreciate it because I know it doesn’t happen all the time.

It’s priceless (well, not quite) to get up in the morning and watch the sea. It’s even better to enjoy a Saturday morning watching how the sea changes… we had a high tide today and it was great to watch the people walking their dogs give space for the sea to come forward and cover the ground like a blanket. And then as the evening comes, the sky changes and looks amazing with all the yellowy shades going pink, then red, then blue, followed by a dark night. I absolutely love watching the nature at my doorstep and feel quite lucky right now. And by the way, I feel quite generous at the moment too, so if you fancy a visit to Lytham St Annes, just let me know. You’ll love it, I’m sure.

Categories: Beautiful nature, Home, St Annes living | Tags: , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Good riddance…

The worst part of moving house is to decide what to take/get rid of/give to charity/fix. It’s a long process and, in many occasions, it brings up quite a diverse array of emotions. If you haven’t read in one of the previous posts, my boyfriend and I are moving from a house that we share with two friends to a 2-bed flat where it’ll be just the two of us (“Just the two of us… we can make it if we try…!”) haha! The thing is that we are moving into a smaller place. For example, in the house where we are now, we have a massive cellar where we can basically dump anything that we want to keep or anything that we are not quite ready to get rif of… just yet. It’s now the time to go to that cellar and go through boxes and more boxes to decide what we should take to our new life. And oh dear, what a torture this is.

I get easily attached to certain things. Most of them don’t have any monetary value, but the sentimental one goes well beyond the scale. And my problem is that I tend to put a sentimental value into everything that I own, so getting rid of something is a monster decision that can even mean tears. Ok, ok, I’m a big drama queen, I know, but I can’t help it!

Clothes, for example. I’ve gone through my wardrobe about 3 times so far since we decided to move, and in these 3 times, I only managed to get rid of a couple of items. It’s almost a joke. Of course, there are pieces I haven’t worn in a very long time, but amazingly for someone with a bad memory like mine, I remember when I wore some things last and remember that I was with a friend having a good time, or on a trip to some nice place, etc… and then the item goes right back where it came from… just because it made me smile again.

Clothes are hard to dispose of but, when I went through my notebooks, the attachment I create with things went up a whole level. I simply think everything is important. I see a sentence I wrote somewhere and think: “Ah, this might become a blog post one day…” or “I remember when I wrote this…” and then the result? Yes, you guessed: nothing goes. Instead, I spend hours and hours looking at things and never throw anything away because of what I now call my “nostalgic addiction”. Ahhh!

It’s been hard so far, but today, however, I woke up determined. I decided to tackle this task as if I was a professional organiser of houses and nothing really belonged to me. I tried to see it all from above (this is something I like to do when I can’t find a way out of a situation). And so I spent my day filling in the bin and bags for charity with all the stuff that no longer is part of my present.

It wasn’t easy, it wasn’t easy at all, and now that the task is (nearly) completed, I feel happy for being brave and dettaching myself off things that no longer belong in my life. If it was worth it, it will stay in my memory. Of course I won’t get rid of everything, as some things are far too important to me, but it’s important to be able to differentiate the important ones to the ones that are pure physical and mental clutter.

And this is what my Sunday was like. Full of emotion, a few tears and some moments where I had an item in my hand, going to the bin and then, almost ready to drop it there, I’d take it back for a final look. Very dramatic, me. Dettaching yourself off things is a relief and makes our lives free for new memories. It can be a bit of a painful process, but very necessary, especially when the present is so beautiful and the future is right there, smiling at me.

 

Categories: St Annes living | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

A place to call home

Big news today! Lee and I decided that we are going to move out from the house we currently share with two of our lovely Scottish friends. We thought it was about time we lived just the two of us, since we are all grown up and all, hehe…

So, in early January, we told the girls and our landlord that we would be moving out and then the search began for a new pad, with the help of the very trusted and popular rightmove.co.uk. It’s very useful to be able to do the bulk of the work online, and soon we had a shortlist and booked appointments to view the places.

Now one thing that I’ll say is that the people who actually take the pictures for the estate agents (which I believe are themselves!) are not doing a very good job most of the time. In some cases they showcase the places to be a lot smaller than they actually are and in many occasions they simply forget or don’t bother taking pictures of some rooms which, in my opinion, is a big mistake. Once we established that, we decided that the best move was to actually go and see places, even if they didn’t look quite right on the Rightmove website. This paid off, as we actually liked some that we never thought we would.

We viewed about 15 flats and houses and, about a week ago, we were thinking we would have to go back to the drawing board when we went to see the last one of our list for the day. This was a flat on the North Promenade in St Annes and, when we went in, we headed straight to the lounge. The sun was shining and there was a massive reflection of the sea right back onto our stunned faces. Our jaws dropped and we were both in a trance. We looked at each other, smiling, and said: “This is it, this is where we want to live”, almost at the same time. And at this point, we had not even seen the kitchen, bedrooms and bathroom! When we did eventually move away from the balcony with sea views, we happily established that the rest of the flat was just as good and, voila! – a decision was made.

We then went back to the estate agents and paid the fee to secure the property. One point to make here is this: if you see a property to rent that ou really like, do not wait until the end of the day to make a decision, as they get snapped up really quickly and you may lose out. This is why we went straight to the estate agents and paid the fees to secure it, as soon as possible. On the week that followed, we filled in application forms and then got confirmation last Friday that the flat is ours! woohooooo!

It’s a real shame that we can’t afford a deposit to buy a house at the moment, as I know that the money we spend on rent is money that we could be using to pay towards a place of our own. However, this is one step of many in our lives together as a couple, or so I hope. Sometimes, we just need to break down the big dream into tiny little surmountable hills and go slowly, or at a pace that is right for you at that particular point in time. The main thing, in my view, is to keep moving towards what you want in life… and this little rented flat is one step towards what we want the future to be.

Categories: St Annes living | Tags: , , , | 2 Comments

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.

%d bloggers like this: