I blow the dust off this blog, look over a few things, and smile. This has been a place of meeting such great women, of new friendships birthed, of a few stories and a bit of life from my family shared, and it’s special. It’s been a good break, this year and a half of hardly posting at all, of months passing without me even logging in. Sometimes stepping away is the best thing we can do.

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It’s been a season of incredible change for us the past 18 months. Selling our much-loved cottage, moving 800 miles, renovating a little city house, having our 4th child… I wasn’t sure if blogging was still something for me. Maybe it was over, just for the season of our life at the Cottage, and since the Cottage is gone, blogging is gone too?

But I’ve still been writing. Journaling, writing down thoughts for myself, even if no one else sees them. Writing is just part of me, whether or not it’s public. I expect it’s like that for a lot of people.

And lately I’ve been wanting to resurrect this blog again. Not in the same way that I blogged before, with an old cottage, our “dream home,” of DIY’s and projects, but rather coming from a completely different perspective. We’re in a temporary house right now, small. It’s cozy, but challenging for the size of our family. It’s not our forever house, but we’ve been here a year, and may be here a while yet.

 

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The blog-world is filled with stunning homes, people’s dream homes. Their forever homes, where they have everything exactly as they want it. And I’m happy for them! Don’t we all wish for that? :)

What’s been on my heart to write about is different though… What if we aren’t in our dream home? What if we struggle to make the space work? What if a room gets rearranged 5 times and I cry tears of frustration because I just can’t make it work?! What if there are 12 steps from your front door to your back door, and your master bedroom is on the 3rd story and your laundry is in the basement? hashtag legs of steel

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All of this has been me. Sometimes still is me. But I am determined to find a place of contentment, of not just enduring, but of thriving, right here and right now. I’m guessing there are probably a lot of other women in the same place, who have amazing strength and have chosen joy and have thrived in places that others have overlooked. Women who make a tiny space a sanctuary, where sunbeams dance even in the smallest of homes, and hearts sing and are glad because of the peace that is found in the heart of the Homemaker. And there are others who have a hard time, who wrestle and struggle, and think happiness won’t come for them until they are in the place of their dreams. Or at least, a place that has a yard bigger than a postage stamp, or more than one bathroom for a family of 6! Or maybe you’re perfectly contented, and wonder what all the fuss is about. ;)

Wherever we find ourselves, I’m wanting this to be a place of encouragement, of linking arms and encouraging us to BE the women that truly make our homes what they are.

What I’ll be doing the next few weeks, perhaps months, is what I’m calling “The Little House Series.” Things I’m learning about small spaces, both in soul and practically, and sharing real parts of my own journey of choosing joy and contentment. Looking forward to chatting soon.

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31 thoughts on “The Little House Series [Introduction]

  1. Ann Marie

    Hi Clarita, you have been missed and it is so lovely to hear from you again. (Have to fess up that I checked in every now and then to see if you had been posting here. Instagram doesn’t have much appeal to me!) The direction you are seeking to take in your renewed blogging life sounds wonderful…more insightful and people centered. We are long term renters and have learnt that although we rent someone else’s house, whilst we live in, it is OUR HOME! Our wonderful, loving Heavenly Father has also been teaching me about contentment and joy in the everyday circumstances of our life here in our tiny little town in Western Australia. Our town lost 80% of the 160 or so houses in a raging bushfire in January this year. We were one of the ones that lost shed and whole back garden but are blessed to still have our home and all our personal treasures. A lot of families lost everything other than what they could fit in their car, it all happened so fast. In the midst of all heartache, devastation, stress and happenings of these past nine months, I have felt God’s presence and peace. He clearly brought to mind a verse 5 days after the fire when we still could not get back and see what had happened….. “Be still and know that I Am God”. The truth of it stopped all my fretting and frustration instantly! This season of life for you will have its’ frustrations and challenges but rest in “be still and know He is God”. A home is really about family…. the sense of love, belonging and acceptance by those who love us like crazy and are a blessings to our lives! Through all the inconveniences of living in small spaces, we learn patience, creativity, adaptability …. and to count to 10 and pray lots!! :) God bless you and your family as you do life together for Him from your little rented home, Ann Marie.

    Reply

    1. The Cottage at 341 South Post author

      Oh wow… I cannot fathom the devastation!! And so many homes, that is such incredible loss! Your heart in the midst of it is beautiful, and I’m sure you have been such a sense of comfort and love to those around you. I’m so honored also that you follow all the way from Australia! Blessings to you and your family. xo

      Reply

  2. Karyn

    This is a beautiful perspective, much needed in today’s give-me-my-dream-life society, and it’s positively refreshing. I’m excited that you back to blogging!

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  3. Cheryl

    I too have. He kefcback every nowandthento see if you have posted. I love your fresh perspective with yourself series.
    My husband and I moved ten months ago to serve in ministry and we left what was supposed to be our forever home and downsized. It’s been a challenging year personally ,as well as learning how to live in a small space.

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  4. Cindy

    So glad you’re back to your blog! So, is your fourth child a boy or girl? How old are all the kids? How are your sister and brother-in-law doing since losing their baby?

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  5. Claude

    Oh this is just so good already! i love watching you in your little city house, thriving while trying to make it work…I can’t wait to read the rest…

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  6. Tonya Smucker

    I am looking forward to this series. I can relate to bedrooms on third floor and wash machine in basement. My midwife told me people who do a lot of steps live longer healthier lives. I say that to myself when I am going up and down those step with full arms. I have found in my small home I am constantly rearranging my rooms to accommodate the changing needs in our family. Play room becomes nursery and back to play room again. Study becomes playroom and then bedroom. Can’t wait to see your ideas for small spaces

    Reply

    1. The Cottage at 341 South Post author

      We have a lot in common!! :) And I’m sure people DO live longer lives that constantly go lots of stairs – it’s a cardio workout going three floors loaded with a basket of laundry, or carrying up tired kiddos! :) And I have rearranged the same rooms so many times, trying to make them work. I’d love to learn from you!!

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  7. Kris Turner

    So glad to see your posts! This is an excellent blog post and so relevant to my current situation. I look forward to further thoughts.

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  8. Natalie

    I was so glad to see your post in my email this morning. Your refreshing perspective and your touching way with words makes you my favorite blogger ! You have such a special talent and I’m so thankful that you share it with us and use it to glorify Jesus!
    Much love,
    Natalie

    Reply

  9. amber

    so good to see you back here again. brings memories into me too as i visit here. :)) and all you shared resonates with me~ the writing being part of you, Yes!! look forward to hearing more of your heart again. love to you, friend. xox

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  10. ChelsyRenee

    This is beautiful, Clarita. I love your heart for being ALL THERE, wherever God places you. Can’t wait to hear more on this from you in the coming months!
    Much love!
    xoxo.

    Reply

  11. Kim

    Since we women seem to often live in a “I’ll be happy when……………….” frame of mind, your topic is refreshing and challenging. Welcome back, friend, we long to hear your wise perspective!
    See that you are coming to our part of Texas soon! Would love to have your dear family over for supper……………..this grandma type person can dream…………….hope we are having some fall weather by then.
    Blessings to you.

    Reply

    1. The Cottage at 341 South Post author

      It is true, so often we feel that we can’t be happy until _____________! I know I’ve battled that myself, but that’s such a miserable place to be! I’m looking forward to writing soon and also looking forward to learning from other women who have found the secret of contentment as well! And you’re right – we’ll be going to Texas in the very near future, and are so looking forward to it!

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  12. Julie

    Wonderful to hear from you Clarita. I too have been checking back in from time to time to see if you’ve posted. You have had a HUGE year or so and you have been putting your time into your wonderful family. Your words bring so much encouragement and perspective. We also moved house earlier this year after 24 years in one home raising our 4 sons. We have rented for a while (in a tiny little “retro” home) and are now in a home with our two youngest sons (the older two are married and living nearby). This all caught up with me and I landed in a heap back in January. With God’s amazing healing and blessings, we are making this new house “home”. I am starting to feel more like my old self and look to God for guidance in this new season of life. I am really looking forward to hearing from you again. God uses this blog of yours to touch many lives – even on the other side of the world (I’m in Australia). Also looking forward to seeing your creative touch in your home too!

    Reply

    1. The Cottage at 341 South Post author

      I am so honored by your comments, and that you follow from the other side of the world!! You have also known so much change in the past year – that is no easy thing! Looking forward to interacting with you and learning from you as well! xo

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  13. Sarah

    How encouraging, thank you. I’ll look forward to reading. Struggling with being in a 2-bedroom apartment and having little man #3 due any day, and not seeing any way out any time soon. (Saving grace is two bathrooms!).

    Reply

    1. The Cottage at 341 South Post author

      That sounds exactly like us a few years ago – living in a 2 bedroom house and expecting our 3rd child. :) Our little guy was in our bedroom for almost a year, and then we had three kids in the same bedroom for about 2 years. Challenging sometimes, when they were all so wound up they could hardly get to sleep!! :) But it has made them so close as siblings, and I’m grateful for that! Blessings, and sweet grace, dear mama! xo

      Reply

  14. Eunice B

    So looking forward to hearing more here on this dear writing space from you, sweet Clarita! I agree whole-heartedly with your perspective and am learning to love our cozy “nest”! <3

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  15. shelogic

    Oh, I’m so glad you’re back! I love your desire to find joy & contentment in a place that is not your dream home. I’m excited for what you want your blog to be – encouragement is always a needed thing! Looking forward to seeing more of your city house & being inspired to make my own space a haven 😊

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  16. Jill

    Clarita, I am so glad you’re back because your blog has been such an encouragement to me! And this new direction you’re taking sounds like just what my soul needs. We are a family of 7 (our children are ages 11, 9, 6, 4 and 1), living in a 1200 sf home, and while we so long to be in a bigger space, this is where God has us right now. Thanks for brightening my little space with your perspective and beautiful photos!

    Reply

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