6 Moves in 4 Years

By Jennifer | Minimalism

If there’s going to be anything to inspire you to become a minimalist, it will be moving 6 times in 4 years.

6 moves in 4 years: one of the most tangible reasons why I became a minimalist

I recently discovered that my interest in minimalism started in 2005, but that’s beside the point.

Because I frequently forget how many times I’ve moved in the past few years, I’m going to give you a brief overview of my situation.

Move #1: California to Home, June 2013

In 2013, I filed for divorce and moved out of our new house in southern California. Because I was moving from a house—a place where I thought I’d be for the rest of my life (or at least close to it)—I had a lot of shit.

living room in California

The California house living room

Not to mention I was at the pinnacle of my crazy consumerism. I shopped on Amazon almost every day and was constantly ordering deals from Hautelook and other sites. I was getting makeup and beauty product samples delivered to the house frequently for my beauty blog and YouTube channel, too. (The YouTube channel is now defunct to avoid any embarrassment on my part.)

I got rid of a lot. I didn’t take any furniture with me. If I remember correctly, these are the only boxes I shipped back to my parents’ house in Pennsylvania.

Boxes I shipped from California to Pennsylvania when I moved

I set up camp in one of my old bedrooms (I was a spoiled only child). It was uncomfortable and a difficult adjustment. I was going from being a married adult living in a brand new house to living at my parents’ house again.

I made do.

Living at my parents' house

My makeshift desk at my parents’ house in my old bedroom

Move #2: To Natalie’s Apartment, July 2013

Not soon after I moved back to the east coast from California, I decided to move in with my best friend Natalie. She had a recently-vacant bedroom in her (super pimp) apartment in center city Philadelphia.

I moved in during Independence Day weekend in 2013. Weirdly symbolic.

I loved that bedroom! Plus living with my best friend in center city post-divorce was so fun.

bedroom in center city philadelphia

My bedroom in Natalie’s apartment

Move #3: To My Own Studio Apartment, March 2014

I ventured out on my own in March 2014 and found a sweet studio apartment in the heart of center city Philly.

This was my first time living alone—ever! And I loved it.

Studio apartment in center city Philadelphia

Studio apartment in center city Philadelphia

Move #4: Out To The Suburbs, December 2014

Later in 2014, I moved to the suburbs for a job. It was noted by my friends that I managed to have two housewarming parties in one year.

It was quite a change, moving from a studio in the city to an almost-3 bedroom two-story apartment in the suburbs.

Home office in the suburbs

Home office in the suburbs

I believe I managed to accumulate a bit more stuff in this apartment, but Beans‘ dad and I stayed relatively minimal still.

Suburban apartment

Move #5: Over to New Jersey, October 2015

When I was pregnant with Beans, his dad and I moved to New Jersey in October 2015 so we could be closer to his job (I quit mine).

This was one of the easier moves for me, because I had a pretty legit excuse not to do any heavy-lifting.

NJ house moving day

Moving day into the NJ house

We settled into the small house nicely.

Living and dining room of NJ house 2015

Living and dining room

Nursery of NJ house 2015

Beans’ nursery

Personal office loft NJ house 2015

My office loft

Move #6: Back to PA, May 2017

I moved back to PA in May 2017. Just me and my tiny roommate. Things ended as quickly as they began for me and Beans’ dad.

I found a really great apartment a few minutes away from my parents and my new (now old) job. Spacious, with lots of natural light.

living room and sofa

office area

master bedroom

Move #7: Coming Soon

Things are moving forward for me and Beans. We’ll probably be moving into center city Philadelphia in early 2018 so I can be closer to my new job. That will be 7 moves in 5 years. Phew!

I’ve been doing a lot to prep, like a Deep Declutter. Just when I didn’t think I had a lot of stuff, I found a TON of stuff to get rid of by selling, repurposing, or donating.

Most people hate moving. I never minded it a lot. But now that I have even less stuff, I don’t mind it at all. Minimalism win.

Hopefully move #7 will be it for a while!

Posted November 8, 2017


  1. Jenni

    I really enjoyed this post, and the photos! My dream would be able to pack up and move with minimum fuss, but I have a house packed to the max from four kids and living in one house for about 15 years. Thanks for sharing! Jenni

    • Jennifer

      Oh man, I can't imagine what it must be like with 4 kids and having been in a house for 15 years. Maybe someday I will be in your shoes and I will have a completely different relationship to minimalism! Still, minimalism will look different for everyone. Frequent moves with small numbers of children for one. Infrequent moves with lots of children for others! Glad you liked the post and the photos. Thanks for reading!

  2. Amy

    I just completed 3 cross-country moves in 3 years. As an Army wife, I've moved a ton. It's a huge adjustment emotionally as much as physically, to be in a new place, to make new friends, to find a new grocery store/dentist/doctor/etc. But I've learned over all these years that I can do a few things to make it easier, and decluttering and minimalism are key. Now that we've settled for a while in NC, I am determined to declutter even more and really settle into a sustainable minimalism. Your post is inspiring, to see someone else who moves often and who is able to make it work. Love your blog. Amy

    • Jennifer

      Hi Amy, wow, cross-country moves are no joke. I mean, moving across town can be an adjustment, but cross-country is for real! Minimalism definitely is key. Thanks for reading and commenting!


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