downsizing

Adventures into subdivision #2

Today, I’ve been contemplating our beautiful silver birch trees in the midst of their autumn splendour.

Will this be their last autumn?

subdivision geelong, downsizing, silver birch trees, autumn geelong, midlife, boomers, being fifty-something

Downsizing is all about letting things go.

If we go ahead with our smaller footprint plans, our trees will have to go to make way for a new build in our backyard.

And where the f!@k are the bikes going to fit?

Which all seems kind of back-to-front. I’ve decided downsizing is a totally back-to-front process.

Those following along will know that we’ve been considering an option to subdivide our house block. It’s one of several downsizing alternatives we have.

It’s very early days, but we’ve had a small win: VicRoads has granted us permission to put a crossover at the front of our property. The road our house fronts is technically a highway so VicRoads needed to give approval for an added driveway crossing.

Knowing we can provide off street parking at the front of the property means we don’t have to include a driveway from the rear to the front block, meaning we have more square metres to play with in the proposed rear block. Yay! That means either more living space in the proposed townhouse at the back, or more outside yard space. Either way, it makes the whole project much more inviting and do-able.

Now we’ve moved on to the next step: we’re deep in due diligence. And I mean DEEP.

We’ve had a parade of real estate agents marching through, providing their expert opinions on the value of our property as is, plus the likely value of the various “what ifs” we have in mind.

Our subdivision consultant, Adam, has been working furiously in the background costing up the options. There have been visits from engineers, demolition specialists and builders.

We’re looking at options for European laundries, courtyards, decks, driveways and landscaping … and that’s just for the existing house!

We haven’t even begun on plans or any real ideas for the proposed townhouse on the rear block, though we’re slowly building a “must-have” list.

Whatever path we decide to take, we know we’ll be living in a smaller home. So it’s begun … the inevitable task of sorting, stashing, trashing and treasuring a mothershipload of possessions. Another back to front process: ridding yourself of the things you’ve spent decades gathering around you.

It’s all waxing and waning, reshaping to fit the next stage.

You  get wiser with experience and understand the value of simple living (only after years of living it up).

You grow spirited, independent children who head off into the world to live their own lives, meaning you get the chance to reshape your own.

And you plant and nurture beautiful trees that need to be sacrificed to build a smaller, more eco-friendly life.

Back-to-front. Front-to-back. Left leg in. Left leg out. That’s what it’s all about.

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4 thoughts on “Adventures into subdivision #2

  1. Beautifully articulated Sheryl. Love the “waxing and waning, reshaping to fit the next stage”. It sounds as though you are well on the way to a simpler life. As you down size, you will be amazed at all the tuppeware, cooking stuff, nick nacks that you can easily live without. The important things are memories, photos and a few personal bits. But there will be a few “odd” things that you’ll want to keep just for nostalgia sake. I was unable to let go of my LP’s and singles, even though we’ve not had an actual record player for years. Just looking at the album covers takes me back to a different time and place. So good luck with your sorting out and sub division plans. I look forward to the next instalment.

  2. Thanks, Ruth. You’ve reminded me that I have a pile of vinyl tucked away here somewhere, too. I may call on you for moral support as we get to the pointy end of purging, knowing you’re experienced in the downsizing dance! 🙂

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