Small City Spaces

When I was pregnant with M and reading The City Parent Handbook: The Complete Guide to the Ups and Downs and Ins and Outs of Raising Young Kids in the City, by Kathy Bishop and Julia Whitehead, I distinctly remember the recommendation that each room in our small city spaces should serve several functions. In our 1300-square-foot condo in a six-family building, this type of functionality is key. So M's room, formerly the dining room, doubles as the playroom; the living room is also Daddy's office when he works from home; and A's room is our room for now until the kids share a room at some point down the road.

To keep our small city space manageable, we also try to reduce our consumption, limit incoming toys to those that are smaller than a bread-box, and frequently purge or donate unused items. Here's a good article about a city mom who has found creative ways to simplify, minimize, and make her 1100-square-foot city condo work well for her family.

Now that there are five of us in our home people ask if we'll be moving to a bigger place, but we find that, at least for now, we have plenty of room and enjoy the coziness. Small homes, no parking, limited outdoor space-- these are certainly things we city-dwellers encounter, but I always think of the country song, "Little Houses" by Doug Stone in which the chorus states:

But you know, love grows best in little houses,
With fewer walls to separate,
Where you eat and sleep so close together.
You can't help but communicate,
Oh, and if we had more room between us, think of all we'd miss.
Love grows best, in houses just like this.

As M says, now with five of us life is “fun, crowded and crazy.” That about sums it up.