I know, I know. We had a fabulous summer away. And we’re the ones throwing ourselves into the vortex of yet another huge life change. We have no one to blame but ourselves. We are 98 percent certain we are making a good decision to sell this house and move to a tiny house in North Carolina. But the process of getting ourselves from here to next June is daunting, to say the least.
Preparing The House For Sale
We have an enormous piece of property here on the bay. It’s gorgeous. And it’s a jungle. To work in the yard, I suit up in a tank top tucked into long pants tucked into socks, a long sleeved shirt, and hiking boots. No matter how hot and humid it is, this is what you must wear if you want to avoid chiggers. Believe me, you want to avoid chiggers.
I love to garden. I do not love gardening on this property. The first two weeks of November were unseasonably hot and humid, which made the task a million times worse.
We spent two weeks bushwhacking saw palmettos in the hot sun, spreading bales of pine straw, and yanking monster vines with thorny stems (Smilax spp.) out of the trees. Those horrible vines grow one foot per week. I am not kidding. As I said, it’s a jungle here, and the maintenance is continual. I cannot tell you how excited I am to move to a tiny house with a tiny garden.
How Do We Accumulate So Much Stuff?
Other big projects included rooting out the shop and studio. This was the final frontier of detritus that we inherited from my folks, plus our own assortment of random stuff that we’ve accumulated during the past three years of ongoing home renovations. We have dozens of paint cans, as well as a spectacular collection of leftover bits and pieces from all of the furniture I’ve ordered from Wayfair that Eric has assembled…including at least two dozen Allen wrenches. Every single piece of furniture arrived with at least one of those itty bitty wrenches.
Inside the house, we Marie Kondo’ed the crap out of every closet and cabinet.
Our realtor suggested that we sell the house furnished, which makes our move much easier. We bought furniture specifically for this house, and most of it is too big for our new tiny house. As far as our personal possessions, we’ve pruned a lot…but we need to do even more to move into a tiny house.
The listing went up on Friday. We sold it on Friday to the first person who looked at it. We’re kind of stunned, and of course, very grateful, and very happy. The closing is January 4th.
We’re ready for our new life adventure. But we’re really going to miss our friends. And this view.
Between Now And Then
In the midst of all of our yard work and ruthless paring down of belongings, I started worrying about where we’re going to live between when we sell the house and sometime in June, when we can move into our new tiny house.
We have our trailer, of course. But have you ever tried getting reservations in Florida campgrounds during the winter? Hahahaha!!! Yeah. Not going to happen.
We’ve decided instead to book Airbnb’s for a few months. Airbnb’s that allow kitties, of course. With outdoor space so that Magnolia can spend time in her catio bird watching.
We briefly fantasized about flying to Oaxaca or Costa Rica or some other exotic place and spending a couple of months. And then we came to our senses. We both agree that we need time to relax and regroup, and we want to keep life simple for the next few months. We’ll plan a more exotic trip next winter, after we’re settled into our new tiny home.
Here’s The Plan
• Put a few things into a tiny storage unit we’ve rented here. Hope the humidity doesn’t kill our stuff. Move out of the house January 4th and stay with friends for several days in our trailer.
• Drive 200 miles to Gainesville, where we’ll drop the trailer off to be sold on consignment. (We’ll be buying a smaller trailer once we’re settled in North Carolina. We still have lots of traveling adventures ahead!)
We’ve always liked Gainesville (university town, great bike trails, one of our favorite nature preserves, and the Ichetucknee River, our favorite for kayaking, nearby). We’ve rented a cool little mid-century modern Airbnb for two months, where we’ll be walking distance to the historic district and parks.
• Return to Eastpoint mid-March, picking up a small U-Haul trailer on the way. Stay with friends a couple of nights. Load up the U-Haul and head to the Carolinas, with one night somewhere on the road.
• Stay in South Carolina for six weeks in an Airbnb on a farm (goats! chickens! horses!). It’s just 20 miles from Flat Rock, so we’ll be able to start doing things like ordering appliances and countertops for our tiny house. And we’ll rent a storage unit in Flat Rock to store the stuff we’ve hauled up with us.
• In May, we’ll rent a tiny house for two months in the community where our house is being built. We can oversee the final stages of the build, start ordering furniture (and acquire another collection of Allen wrenches, LOL), and choose our landscaping. Plus, we can start hanging out with our new neighbors.
I doubt anyone is interested in this much detail about our plans, but it helps me immensely to write it all down. Sorting it out has been like figuring out an enormous jigsaw puzzle. Hopefully now we can relax and enjoy our last six weeks of full-time living here on the Forgotten Coast. We’ll be back, but it won’t be to this house. It’s the end of an era for us, and we want to say a proper goodbye by loving every day that we’re here.
Happy Thanksgiving, dear ones. We’re grateful to have you with us on this life journey.
~Eric, Laurel & Magnolia