As I was working at the salon Thursday night I realized that I missed the anniversary of independence yet again…meaning, the anniversary of living on my own! July 15th was the first day and night I spent living on my own. It’s crazy to think that I have been living in my dad’s rental property since the summer I graduated high school. I have grown a lot over the past three years. I remember this time last year planning to do an anniversary post, but I never got around to it. It’s even crazier to think what has happened in the last year! After two years of living alone, I am now on my second roommate and will be getting a third in the fall.
I made a short list of things I have learned throughout my three years of independence. Maybe this advice can help someone else!
1. Learn how to light the pilot light. Yeah…this was something I didn’t know how to do before living on my own. Now that I have lived on my own for three years, I have done this several times. My dad had to go over it with me a few times because I’m a wuss with fire, but now I feel successful at it. Smell gas? Ashley to the rescue! The ones on top of my stove seem to go out often with the fans on. #oldhouseproblems
2. Not having a dishwasher is tough sometimes, but it keeps you organized. My parent’s house had a dishwasher and it was actually my brother’s chore to do everything with it. So I rarely did dishes, except for working at the salon. My house does not have a dishwasher. SO MANY DISHES! I wash dishes basically every night or every other night. It sometimes sucks, but it also keeps me organized because I don’t like a ton of dishes in the sink when I have company over.
3. Grocery shopping can be a pain, but it allows you to control what you eat. Sounds simple, right? There’s so much freedom when going to the grocery store for just you. You can decide to buy a bunch of junk or buy stuff that your body will actually like you for. I have times when I’ll buy junkish things (I love my ice cream!), but I love buying tons of produce. I always pack snacks and meals for school or work because it helps save money and it’s usually a healthier options (will definitely write a blog post about my snacking habits soon!). I’m now to the point where I basically have it down what I need each week. I’m also getting better a cooking! I love to saute veggies.
4. Get a roommate or some pets. When I lived alone for the first two years having Picka & Polka saved me. It got really lonely being by myself sometimes. If I had a weekend where I spent time with a ton of people and went home by myself, I would fall into a depression and it was really rough. Just having the kitties made the place feel more “homey”. And with the addition of a roommate, I had someone to talk to after a long day. Even though roommate situations aren’t always perfect, having someone else there is really nice.
5. Invite people over. I love hosting get-togethers! Inviting others over has a way of making your space feel so intimate and peaceful. I live about 20 minutes from campus, so I am not the most convenient stop for my college friends, but I love when they all come over. Everyone seems to love the cats because most places won’t allow animals on campus, so it’s nice to see their furry faces. It’s also great to host my high school friends because I am one of the only people living on my own. No matter who comes over, we have space to either lounge in the living room and just catch up or turn the dining room into a craft-zone. I also love decorating for parties and holidays, so when I can have people over to share that it is truly wonderful.
6. It’s okay to ask for help. This basically goes back to the pilot light thing, I’m still learning on how to take care of a place on my own. I love my independence, but it’s also really nice having my parents close by. My dad is also my landlord, so he helps me a bunch with house things. It’s nice to know they are a phone call or a short bike ride away. I feel like my relationship with my parents has actually gotten better since I gained independence.
I’m interested to see what will happen in the next year since I will have graduated by this time. I’m not completely sure of my plans yet, but I should still be in this place. Here’s to another year in my little home! If you want to see pictures of the interior of my space check out the Home Sweet Home category to view them.
*The flower “A” was a birthday gift made my one of my friends & the birdhouses were featured in this post.