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Jibralta
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That's beautiful!  I grew up with a small eat in kitchen in our apartment but since 1994 have only had pass through kitchens. Never owned a home, no desire to, no desire to decorate a home.  But I love good linens and towels and I love family photos (not the professional type) and artwork that is meaningful on the walls, and comfy couch and chairs (love my glider).  I enjoy seeing the "after" of my friend's homes and try to be supportive with the stress they all go through during home renovations especially during this pandemic! I don't relate in the least so I don't really get involved in the nitty gritty other than the emotional stuff -shady or unreliable contractors, backorders on kitchen hardware, shoddy work, etc.  

I do love how beautiful a lot of our apartment building is inside and out and so glad it's just there and I had no part of it. We have serious clutter though -my husband's issue far more than mine.  I keep things clean in a hygenic way.  

I'm so glad you're able to decorate and organize your own home the way that makes you happy!

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1 minute ago, Jibralta said:

Ahhhhhhhh that is so peaceful and soothing.

Thank you Jib!

 

We have a friend who is an interior designer. When I showed him my plans for the marble island in the middle he told me it was very “confrontational” and wouldn’t I prefer a more inviting and social set up to the kitchen. Definitely not! Everyone kept way back and never came round the side of my gleaming work top and I would hostess and hold court there and people would sit around the dining table on the other side of the room and be appreciative of their meal and cocktails exactly how they should be. LOL! 
 

Little commute across the yard to my husbands ex-garden office with a little bathroom. It was lovely 🧘‍♀️ I have happy memories of those sliding doors open all summer and the kids running and running outside the walled garden and then on the night, you would flip the switch and we had these lovely nickle embedded wall lights that used to highlight in a downcast way the ripple of the old render on the walls and the tree would come out in Spring, full white cherry blossom. 
 

But I was manic in that house and never stood still to appreciate any of it! Lesson be learnt! 
 

x

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31 minutes ago, Batya33 said:

That's beautiful!  I grew up with a small eat in kitchen in our apartment but since 1994 have only had pass through kitchens. Never owned a home, no desire to, no desire to decorate a home.  But I love good linens and towels and I love family photos (not the professional type) and artwork that is meaningful on the walls, and comfy couch and chairs (love my glider).  I enjoy seeing the "after" of my friend's homes and try to be supportive with the stress they all go through during home renovations especially during this pandemic! I don't relate in the least so I don't really get involved in the nitty gritty other than the emotional stuff -shady or unreliable contractors, backorders on kitchen hardware, shoddy work, etc.  

I do love how beautiful a lot of our apartment building is inside and out and so glad it's just there and I had no part of it. We have serious clutter though -my husband's issue far more than mine.  I keep things clean in a hygenic way.  

I'm so glad you're able to decorate and organize your own home the way that makes you happy!

Thank you Batya! 
 

We are currently back to the start abs renovating a big old house right now all over again! 
 

How come you have never owned? I find this very interesting! To have a good job and feel no need to acquire assets, especially property. We even toyed with buying another flat or two just to rent out. We’ve stretched ourselves financially too much now and things are risky. Maybe in the next few years.


Nothing wrong with clutter. I find other peoples clutter weirdly relaxing. I enjoy being in a scattered home, as long as it’s not my own! 
 

You would like ours, we have art and antiques everywhere. It’s still very minimal at the same time though. I think when people envisage a house filled with antiques they think cluttered and car boot but ours just wasn’t like that. 

 

x

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3 hours ago, mylolita said:

I am a certified neat freak and way uptight. This is part of our kitchen in our old house we just sold. Gives you an idea how I am even with three kids. LOL! 

 

We did design it from start to finish so it was my baby but still, get a life much comes to mind.

 

x

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You've got good taste for sure

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2 hours ago, mylolita said:

Thank you Batya! 
 

We are currently back to the start abs renovating a big old house right now all over again! 
 

How come you have never owned? I find this very interesting! To have a good job and feel no need to acquire assets, especially property. We even toyed with buying another flat or two just to rent out. We’ve stretched ourselves financially too much now and things are risky. Maybe in the next few years.


Nothing wrong with clutter. I find other peoples clutter weirdly relaxing. I enjoy being in a scattered home, as long as it’s not my own! 
 

You would like ours, we have art and antiques everywhere. It’s still very minimal at the same time though. I think when people envisage a house filled with antiques they think cluttered and car boot but ours just wasn’t like that. 

 

x

But I do have assets -I have investments for the last 20 years and for several years prior to that I also had just less so (I had to pay off my grad school loans first).  Not real estate. And we do own a home -inherited -my in-laws' former home -in another state and it's not ready to be sold yet.  But I don't really count that. 

I have no interest in having more space (especially since my husband is a clutterer and me too but less so).  The downsides of home ownership would be triggers for me.  I LOVE that if something goes wrong in our apartment or with one of our appliances we call maintenance and typically it's done within 24 hours, almost always the same team so no trust issues, etc.  I love our amenities -business lounge, pool, small fitness center -I have entertained at the pool and in the lounge- our management team frequently has gatherings and goodies and meals for us -used to have fresh cookies pre-covid. 

I love that we get to live in the heart of everything and that's how I lived the first 43 years of my life before I relocated 800 miles away for his job.  I grew up right near, then right in the middle of a major city where we sacrificed on space to live in the middle of all things social, cultural, etc.  I still do but to a lesser extent.  

I love that when we go and travel we don't have to worry about someone tending to our home or our backyard or our lawn.  I have a backyard - (well we have a gorgeous outdoor courtyard here in our common area) we live down the block - less than 5 minute walk -from a massive gorgeous jewel of a park with multiple playgrounds/play areas, a lake, ducks, a gorgeous gazebo, hills, a splash pad and gardens.  It's the backyard we share with everyone else.

I see what my homeowner friends go through between maintenance and renovations and neighbor issues (we have neighbor issues too at times but again that's a call to management).  I grew up in a neat and tidy two bedroom apartment (well our bedroom -one I shared with my sister was a mess but you know) - my parents owned it and my mom still lives there - since the mid 60s.  I see what my friends spend on filling a large house with furniture and "stuff".  We have mismatched furniture.  Some newer like our couch and I will of course replace it should it ever need replacing.  

I do not judge at all anyone who desires to own a home. Desires to decorate a home or hire an interior designer.  My friend with an adult daughter is spending like 25k plus to renovate the kitchen in her two bedroom co-op apartment and experiencing a lot of stress.  She tells me she knows it will make her very happy to renovate her 1980s or earlier kitchen.  I love that. Good for her for knowing what makes her happy.  I fully support that and thank my lucky stars it's not me.

I realize for many it's a dealbreaker to rent. I realize for many they don't consider it a home unless it's a house and they own it and they relish suburbia.  Suburbia makes me cringe as more than a place to visit.  I have a drivers license and have no desire to drive.  My husband does and doesn't have to do much driving.  I walk everywhere and very very rarely need him to drive me somewhere.  I go months without being in a car.

I feel excluded very often in my new city on Facebook moms groups where it's implied -or expressed -that "apartment living" is for people who can't afford a house.  There's no clue that perhaps some of them do not want a house or suburban life.  I grew up in a nitty gritty kind of shady not that safe urban area.  It taught me a lot of things.  The neighborhood improved a lot (like I said my mom in her late 80s still lives there).  I would never have traded it for growing up in suburbia and cringe at the assumption that having a family =living in the burbs.  I disagree.  Thanks for listening - if I still lived in my former city I'd have lots and lots of company with people who didn't flee the city or apartment living once they had kids.  I have a thick skin so it's all good!

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11 hours ago, mylolita said:

When I showed him my plans for the marble island in the middle he told me it was very “confrontational” and wouldn’t I prefer a more inviting and social set up to the kitchen. Definitely not! Everyone kept way back and never came round the side of my gleaming work top and I would hostess and hold court there and people would sit around the dining table on the other side of the room and be appreciative of their meal and cocktails exactly how they should be. LOL!

Lol it is very austere! But that's nice, in a way. Just like you can appreciate clutter, I can appreciate emptiness. Back in the summer of 2020 I spend weeks at a time in this empty townhouse in Upstate NY and I just loved it. Granted, it was a little too empty, but there was something so relaxing about the absence of belongings. 

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2 minutes ago, Jibralta said:

Lol it is very austere! But that's nice, in a way. Just like you can appreciate clutter, I can appreciate emptiness. Back in the summer of 2020 I spend weeks at a time in this empty townhouse in Upstate NY and I just loved it. Granted, it was a little too empty, but there was something so relaxing about the absence of belongings. 

Yes -I have a friend who after raising a couple of kids got divorced and her own place and wanted as little stuff/furniture as possible so that when a handyman would come he'd comment "oh you just moved in?" lol.  She sleeps on the floor ,etc .  There is relaxation in emptiness, I agree!

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12 hours ago, Batya33 said:

shady or unreliable contractors, backorders on kitchen hardware, shoddy work, etc. 

Lol that's my life on a daily basis 😭

Although it's not really all that bad. I actually really enjoy construction.... It's just so damned busy these days!! But I have to make hay while the sun is shining because my industry is the first to tank whenever there's an economic downturn!

9 hours ago, Batya33 said:

I LOVE that if something goes wrong in our apartment or with one of our appliances we call maintenance and typically it's done within 24 hours, almost always the same team so no trust issues, etc.....

I love that when we go and travel we don't have to worry about someone tending to our home or our backyard or our lawn....

Yeah, these are some of the reasons why I'm 'stuck' here. And now it's so close to my job.... I'm waaaay priced out of buying anything here, but my rent is really good... I'm just stuck! Arghh!

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11 minutes ago, Batya33 said:

I have a friend who after raising a couple of kids got divorced and her own place and wanted as little stuff/furniture as possible so that when a handyman would come he'd comment "oh you just moved in?" lol.  She sleeps on the floor ,etc .  There is relaxation in emptiness, I agree!

My mom's friend did something similar. She'd been divorced for years, though. Within a year or two of her daughter graduating from high school, she downsized from a house to a condo. Then when her daughter moved out, she redid the whole place in mostly white. White carpet, white furniture. It was really nice. Quite minimal. She had beds in the bedrooms, though!

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Morning Batya!

 

This is interesting to me the reasons you give! I guess plenty of people enjoy the hustle and bustle of being central. We did too in our last house, it was a Georgian town house placed with other town houses literally on the main road leading into town. It became one of the reasons why it was so easy for me to do things on tap with the kids but also one of the main reasons we moved - the busy road being one.

 

I think the general reason suburbia is so prized by families is, especially once you have more than one child, apartment living is just too small and cramped for you all. We have three. If they all eventually want their own room, well, we’d have to have a pretty big apartment. I know you can get them but still. Secondly, people want quiet sleepy roads their children can walk out and kick a ball around on. And thirdly, when most people have a family they really value a garden that is all their own. People here in the UK really have a love affair with their garden. 
 

I mean, it’s great being able to open your back doors and let your toddlers strip off their clothes and throw water bombs at each other. It’s just one of those things. I can sunbathe naked if I want too 😆 Not that I would sunbathe, HA! I am pale as can be but, be naked? Yes. LOL! In the old house I used to be out sometimes at 1am with the lights on in a see through night slip just drinking a herbal tea before I succumbed and turned myself in.

 

I know apartments can be… so much more than people could imagine. We have a friend who lived in an “apartment” on Baker Street in London. He has since moved but, this was something else. It was a whole floor of a beautiful ornate building. Three bedroom, steam room, vast kitchen, he had a cinema room which I find very tacky and tasteless 😉 but it was I think sold for about 3 million. Anyway you get the picture! 
 

I mean, the maintenance thing as well. This is going to sound very, wow, bratty - but we had a guy for two years hired who would come once a week and just titivate and fix anything outstanding. He also did a bit of gardening for us. I don’t know what the cost of your maintenance is when excluded from your rent but he wasn’t expensive. That was very luxurious I realise most people don’t have that option but our previous house was very big and 200 years old so it did need keeping on top of. 
 

When me and the hubs were together and first married as well we moved around and rented for 6 years. I remember my father in law lecturing me every other week about the money I had “thrown away in rent” and that we could have “paid off a big chunk of mortgage and even sold on and made profit by now” which was all true but, at the time we just didn’t have the money to buy. Or, we didn’t have the business books built up yet to buy decent. We look at that time as very free, we moved around a lot, we didn’t need stability, we had no children. It was a good time, but I was glad to get settled and buy.

 

Your apartment block and community sounds amazing Batya! I can see why your like it. We are renting at the moment whilst our new house is getting done up (well, air bnb) and the place is tiny and sometimes it drives me nuts and other times I love the ease of caring for this place! In our last house, 7 flights of stairs in total! In this one, ZERO! I don’t have to walk a billion years to get to a utility room, things like that. I don’t have to clean hardly at all. I still do but not anything near them scale of the last place. But are we doing it all over again? You bet. LOL! 
 

I guess my main plus of owning for myself would be, having a property or properties to hand over to my children when I die (morbid I know), having a family home with memories collected in it over the years and growing old in that home (that would be my ideal!) and having the kids come back and say oh, I remember that Christmas here when so and so dropped the Turkey in the sink… that kinda thing… 🤣 Hopefully having Grandchildren run naked in the garden my own kids crazily and gleefully shed clothes in themselves (is it just my kids or is this a general thing where they have an obsession to get nude?!)

 

Also, I wouldn’t like the idea that it’s probably not forever and your landlord can take the property back. I imagine you have a very long term lease let on your apartment Batya? How long have you been there for?

 

I can see your reasons though, and suburbia isn’t the only way to live and it is not the bee all and end all. I think once a few more kids come along, the household volume gets pretty high, in a very lively and fantastic way 🥲 but, generally, I think that’s when the shift in your thinking happens and you start wanting space and a garden, for most people anyway. But, your pool and gym sounds ah-mazing! What if the opportunity came up to buy your apartment? 😉

 

And Jibs! I get this too. I know property fluctuates. You might be able to jump in and grab somewhere on a downturn. Also, what about a doer upper? If you can get through the work to me, you really do get the ultimate bargain - a home exactly how you want it and also, putting more money onto your apartment or house for re-sale. We had big equity on our last house just because we did so much too it. It was a complete wreck. Obviously you have to bring things in on budget, erm, hard for me to do 🥲 You’ll know all this anyway with your field of work. Ever thought about building your own little glass tree house apartment? A grand design! 
 

x
 

 

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7 hours ago, Jibralta said:

Lol it is very austere! But that's nice, in a way. Just like you can appreciate clutter, I can appreciate emptiness. Back in the summer of 2020 I spend weeks at a time in this empty townhouse in Upstate NY and I just loved it. Granted, it was a little too empty, but there was something so relaxing about the absence of belongings. 

That sounds very cool Jib!

 

How come you got to hang out there for awhile? Were you with Arnie at the time?

 

I have a friend like this too! Old, Victorian villa (I guess here in the uk that is what you call a certain type of period style apartment normally comes with a cast iron balcony or veranda on the first floor) and he had hardly any furniture but thousands of books, all stacked up around the walls and beside a few chairs to make tables. It was quite empty apart from the insane amount of books which gave the place a gorgeous, papery, musty kind of smell. 
 

Sounds like we are all very interested in interiors. It’s a big hobby and interest of mine for sure. I used to religiously read World of Interiors. Oh man, I would love to post the pictures of the house as a little tour but I fear for privacy over the internet so I have to be careful what I give away.

 

I always, always want a little tour of the house. It’s really nosey I know. It could be a one bed flat but I just wanna see. I don’t need to see someone’s private bedroom but I think the way people live reveals a lot. I know most people aren’t lucky enough to live out their interior dreams. I feel extremely fortunate even to get once chance at having my dream home abs to have made it exactly how we imagined. I remember getting the keys, I was 25, wearing tweed court shoe heels. Ah yes 🤣 I remember being stood in the vast basement. One of my friends turned to me and said, “Congratulations. You’re 25 and own a massive f**k off house.” 
 

I have been very lucky. I guess with my husbands business taking a down turn, Y’know, I can’t really complain, because my reality is still luxuriously skewed. 
 

I can just picture your apartments for some reason and I am already feeling relaxed! Home is where the heart is, corny as it sounds! Since jumping around after moving house and living in two different places between November and now I have realised that we settle quick because we have our same routines and wherever the kids are, once their toys pile in and my vases with flowers get placed and your clothes are hung… it’s surprising how fast that new space becomes very attached and at one with you. 


x

 


 

 

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And wow, I’m nosey, probably very rude - but Batya, you say investments, that peaked my interest! Can I ask what you invested in? Stock market stuff? Gold bullion?! Art?! Classic cars?!
 

I’m intrigued!

 

x

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Speaking of smells and homes, a friend of ours always had the most UH-MAZING smelling house. They came to stay one day and handed me this little pouch:

 

https://uk.smnovella.com/collections/pot-pourri/products/7011759

 

To say I have been addicted ever since is an understatement. The smell of this, Catholic, ancient incense is something else. The only thing I did notice is, never put it in your bathroom or loo. Mixed with other smells, it’s suddenly not gorgeous anymore!

 

Santa Maria Novella!

 

x

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1 hour ago, mylolita said:

Ever thought about building your own little glass tree house apartment? A grand design! 

Definitely.

1 hour ago, mylolita said:

I know property fluctuates. You might be able to jump in and grab somewhere on a downturn. Also, what about a doer upper?

Yes, that would be ideal. Right now, the housing market is crazy. Over the last two years, people have been moving in panicked droves from the city to the suburbs. It's driven the real estate prices sky high. It's not a good time to buy around here unless you're desperate (which I'm not). 

1 hour ago, mylolita said:

How come you got to hang out there for awhile? Were you with Arnie at the time?

The jobsite was about 300 miles away, so we stayed up there and worked 80 hours in 7 days. Then we took the next week off. It was kind of a cool schedule. Long days, though! Yes, Arnie and I were together at the time. He wasn't thrilled about it, but he was a good sport!

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21 minutes ago, mylolita said:

Speaking of smells and homes, a friend of ours always had the most UH-MAZING smelling house.

So much for that--they don't ship to the US! Too bad. I love good smells.

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On 3/26/2022 at 7:56 AM, Jibralta said:

The link took me to a "404 not found" page on a home organization website called "Organize 365." I have been trapped in a home organization hole ever since. I find this highly ironic.

I haven't quite escaped from the organizational snare, and have gone back to peruse this website and listen to a podcast or two since I posted this. This lady is really smart and a great salesman. I know better than to buy her products though (sorry, lady). I'm sure they work for her and for others, but I know myself. I would just stare at these tools while they cluttered my apartment even more!

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3 hours ago, mylolita said:

Morning Batya!

 

This is interesting to me the reasons you give! I guess plenty of people enjoy the hustle and bustle of being central. We did too in our last house, it was a Georgian town house placed with other town houses literally on the main road leading into town. It became one of the reasons why it was so easy for me to do things on tap with the kids but also one of the main reasons we moved - the busy road being one.

 

I think the general reason suburbia is so prized by families is, especially once you have more than one child, apartment living is just too small and cramped for you all. We have three. If they all eventually want their own room, well, we’d have to have a pretty big apartment. I know you can get them but still. Secondly, people want quiet sleepy roads their children can walk out and kick a ball around on. And thirdly, when most people have a family they really value a garden that is all their own. People here in the UK really have a love affair with their garden. 
 

I mean, it’s great being able to open your back doors and let your toddlers strip off their clothes and throw water bombs at each other. It’s just one of those things. I can sunbathe naked if I want too 😆 Not that I would sunbathe, HA! I am pale as can be but, be naked? Yes. LOL! In the old house I used to be out sometimes at 1am with the lights on in a see through night slip just drinking a herbal tea before I succumbed and turned myself in.

 

I know apartments can be… so much more than people could imagine. We have a friend who lived in an “apartment” on Baker Street in London. He has since moved but, this was something else. It was a whole floor of a beautiful ornate building. Three bedroom, steam room, vast kitchen, he had a cinema room which I find very tacky and tasteless 😉 but it was I think sold for about 3 million. Anyway you get the picture! 
 

I mean, the maintenance thing as well. This is going to sound very, wow, bratty - but we had a guy for two years hired who would come once a week and just titivate and fix anything outstanding. He also did a bit of gardening for us. I don’t know what the cost of your maintenance is when excluded from your rent but he wasn’t expensive. That was very luxurious I realise most people don’t have that option but our previous house was very big and 200 years old so it did need keeping on top of. 
 

When me and the hubs were together and first married as well we moved around and rented for 6 years. I remember my father in law lecturing me every other week about the money I had “thrown away in rent” and that we could have “paid off a big chunk of mortgage and even sold on and made profit by now” which was all true but, at the time we just didn’t have the money to buy. Or, we didn’t have the business books built up yet to buy decent. We look at that time as very free, we moved around a lot, we didn’t need stability, we had no children. It was a good time, but I was glad to get settled and buy.

 

Your apartment block and community sounds amazing Batya! I can see why your like it. We are renting at the moment whilst our new house is getting done up (well, air bnb) and the place is tiny and sometimes it drives me nuts and other times I love the ease of caring for this place! In our last house, 7 flights of stairs in total! In this one, ZERO! I don’t have to walk a billion years to get to a utility room, things like that. I don’t have to clean hardly at all. I still do but not anything near them scale of the last place. But are we doing it all over again? You bet. LOL! 
 

I guess my main plus of owning for myself would be, having a property or properties to hand over to my children when I die (morbid I know), having a family home with memories collected in it over the years and growing old in that home (that would be my ideal!) and having the kids come back and say oh, I remember that Christmas here when so and so dropped the Turkey in the sink… that kinda thing… 🤣 Hopefully having Grandchildren run naked in the garden my own kids crazily and gleefully shed clothes in themselves (is it just my kids or is this a general thing where they have an obsession to get nude?!)

 

Also, I wouldn’t like the idea that it’s probably not forever and your landlord can take the property back. I imagine you have a very long term lease let on your apartment Batya? How long have you been there for?

 

I can see your reasons though, and suburbia isn’t the only way to live and it is not the bee all and end all. I think once a few more kids come along, the household volume gets pretty high, in a very lively and fantastic way 🥲 but, generally, I think that’s when the shift in your thinking happens and you start wanting space and a garden, for most people anyway. But, your pool and gym sounds ah-mazing! What if the opportunity came up to buy your apartment? 😉

 

And Jibs! I get this too. I know property fluctuates. You might be able to jump in and grab somewhere on a downturn. Also, what about a doer upper? If you can get through the work to me, you really do get the ultimate bargain - a home exactly how you want it and also, putting more money onto your apartment or house for re-sale. We had big equity on our last house just because we did so much too it. It was a complete wreck. Obviously you have to bring things in on budget, erm, hard for me to do 🥲 You’ll know all this anyway with your field of work. Ever thought about building your own little glass tree house apartment? A grand design! 
 

x
 

 

Yes that is what my friends who like suburbia would say as well! I don't relate personally to most of the desires/wants/benefits you posted and I only saw the real hustle and bustle once we went back to my home city every summer all summer the first 5 summers I had my son -then I was not happy with the crowds when I had a stroller, etc.  But -hustle bustle to me is ....just life, normal life - it doesn't feel like that at all.

We'd go down the block to the huge park with two playgrounds and fields and hills and a splash pad and a lake and ducks almost every single day from the time he was an infant till around 8-9 years old -then less so - and he could run around and play and splash and feed ducks, kick balls, ride his tricycle/bike, play frisbee, and be around other kids, etc.  I prized that experience and the park is one reason I wanted to live in this apartment (I came here a few weeks before I got pregnant for the first time after my husband accepted the job).We also have guest parking and an indoor garage spot.

On cold winter mornings when he was a toddler we'd go on an adventure -take his matchbox cars, ride the elevator to the top floor -5 - then look out windows to see what things looked like from up high, play with his cars in the various hallways, etc -it's how I met a good friend who had kids a little younger than he was and lived downstairs for a couple of years.

Yes the big downside is no running outside to play with neighborhood kids.    

I shared a room -small bedroom -the first 13 years of my life.  We lived in a 550 square foot apartment with our newborn the first 3 months -didn't feel cramped -it just "was".  I've never wanted more space -in that sense -during pandemic I've wanted more space as in a couple of feet -like if my husband checks his phone while I'm eating at the coffee table - he's one foot away from me and I want him further away since I like to have more space when I eat. 

I mean we do one year leases -typical - and I guess if that ever happened what you said we'd move but I've always rented in huge high rises and luxury corporate owned builidings so it never occurred to me.  People lose the houses the own too - but I'm sure most don't worry about it.

I also love that we don't spend much $ at all on furniture or decorations, etc - so we don't have equity and we're also not spending the 25k place to renovate a kitchen, etc.  I totally get where you're coming from and it solidifies why I don't relate plus how I totally see the benefits -to others -of suburbia.  

I think if we'd had two kids we might have rented or bought a townhouse or larger condo.  But we knew that very likely was not in the cards.  I know of a number of families with three kids who live in an apartment to avoid suburban living/driving/commuting.  And what you described!

Our maintenance is free.  24/7 for emergencies.  At my mother's apartment building the maintenance people all know her and it's generationally passed down so since the 1960s they've basically all known and loved her.  She calls, they come. For anything (she owns the apartment).  

My husband's commute is around 15 minutes, mine is 35-40 without fail door to door.  Half walking half subway.  No traffic issues, etc.  

By the time I was 12 living a subway ride from the heart of the city I was going into the city by myself for culture, theater, museums, shopping, to meet friends, etc and a few years later at night to go dancing in the clubs. No drugs or alcohol for me, ever.   I was able to do an internship at age 14 in the city that exposed me to many important people and mentors and helped me get into great schools and network and jumpstart my career.  I wouldn't trade those years for being able to run outside and play in a backyard or quiet road.

Saved thousands upon thousands by going to grad school in the city and being able to live at home during grad school as it was commutable by subway.  My husband did the same with his grad school (we grew up about 7 miles apart).

Meanwhile I have a friend who will accompany her 23 year old daughter here downtown for jury duty from the burbs to the city -30 minute subway ride -because daughter's never been on a subway.  Because my friend said she is "sheltered."  Extreme examples but this is the sort of thing.

Your kitchen -that photo -so awesome - I'd love to visit a home like that (I have, similar but it really stood out to me) -you have a great talent!

Edited by Batya33
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I've come precariously close to messaging my birthmother on Facebook a few times. I've thought of a few different scenarios, including sending a picture of Darth Vader with the caption, "Birthmother, I am your daughter." I could even send a photo of me dressed as Darth Vader from when I was five. That would be sort of like killing two birds with one stone. Here I am, and here's a baby picture.

I'm not sure what stops me. Well, I guess I know a couple things that stop me. 

  • I don't know anything about the circumstances of my birth--I could be a product of rape.
  • Or, she may have wanted to keep me and has been living with grief for 45 years
  • Or maybe its something complicated, like she didn't want to keep me but also did want to keep me. Giving up a child is probably not a simple experience for most people.
  • My birthmom could be a mooch and pester me for money--she's unemployed and on disability for some reason. Could be legit... but maybe not.
  • Or she could be just plain crazy--she has four facebook profiles and they're all friends with each other.  

Another thing: My adoptive mom will probably feel upset. Possibly other members of my family will feel confused or upset, or awkward. 

It's such an unknown situation. 

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I'm sorry you're facing that situation - she must know she can be found if she's on Facebook.  I don't know what to say other than I hope you find it within yourself to make a decision that gives you peace.

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A good friend went through something similar.  Found her birth mom and sat on the information for some time before acting on it.

She finally called her and after the first couple of exchanges she was hung up on. Turns out her birth mother was rather eccentric and reclusive. Not wanting relationships with just about anyone, let alone a child that was given up.  My friend was patient, giving this new news time to marinate.  She gave her space and after a few months reached out again by writing her a letter.  Over the course of about 10 years (?) the woman softened.  I can't recall if they ever actually met, but they did have a curious relationship of sorts. 

My friend passed away recently.  She had a certain charisma and grace and handled her end really well.  It wasn't always easy, but she is so glad she did it.  She had some great stories about their long conversations.

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5 hours ago, Batya33 said:

I'm sorry you're facing that situation - she must know she can be found if she's on Facebook.  I don't know what to say other than I hope you find it within yourself to make a decision that gives you peace.

Yeah, maybe. I really don't know what she thinks. Her profiles are all very private. Not even a profile pic on three of them, and the fourth one has a photo of a dog as the profile pic--I'm guessing it is (or was) her dog. But who knows? 

When I first joined Ancestry, I reached out to some biological relatives. I gave them my biological mother's name and explained the situation. They never responded to me. One turned out to be her niece and the other is her cousin. Dead silence for four years. So, I'm sure she knows how to find me if she wants to. 

I occasionally see her respond to posts that one of my biological cousins makes. Random, silly stuff. But that's all I get to know about her. 

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1 hour ago, itsallgrand said:

Have you talked with your family at all about this? I'm not saying you necessarily should or shouldn't, just wondering if you have. 

Yes, they know what I've been up to these last few years.

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