Smaller is……..

I have had the spacious, dual-bowled, mirror-walled, garden- tubbed, glass-enclosure showered bathroom. Now, in our little two bedroom 1973 lakeside cottage we have two very efficient little 6’X8′-ish bathrooms. And I have rediscovered the joy of ‘small’ living.

I can have an entire bathroom guest-ready in 5 minutes! Using only 6 paper towels, a can of Comet, a spray bottle of bathroom cleaner and a toilet bowl brush I can tidy up so fast even I can appear to be a model housekeeper! One paper towel for the mirror, one for the countertop and sink, one for the toilet seat and lid, and three for the floor along with a quick spritz of cleaner to the shower tile and a swish with the toilet bowl brush and Comet and I’m out of there.

How much room does one really need to take care of the day’s hygiene needs? I’ve rediscovered not much. I say rediscovered because I grew up in and lived my early marriage years in homes built in an era of small bathrooms. Most of these homes were only one generation away from homes with outhouses, when having indoor plumbing at all was a plus!

I see reports these days of homes becoming smaller again after three decades of trending larger and larger. No doubt, land and construction costs (as well as property tax and insurance costs in Florida) are behind the “smaller is better” trend.

Let me be among the first to extol the virtues of the small bathroom and, for that matter, the small house. For one who has never been particularly domestic, for whom a demanding career meant for many years a weekly housekeeper as well, my joy in homemaking now comes as a bit of a surprise.

I not only find pleasure in the quickly cleaned bathrooms, but also in doing the laundry and mopping the floors, neither of which takes as much time now in midlife empty nesting as it did in younger family years.

Smaller baths, smaller house, smaller family, smaller income, smaller budget……..but the whole is so much greater than the sum of the smaller parts! Life is more manageable and balanced now than it has ever been. What a paradox…. I’m now ‘living large’ by living smaller! Thank God!