I used to think that I lived a pretty minimalist lifestyle. For years, I didn't have cable TV, I always shopped for bargains, and I never have liked having a lot of stuff just sitting around. Apparently, I was just really good at being a pack rat and storing things in places where the naked eye could not see them. Places like the top shelf of every closet, the storage space under the stairway in the basement, the kitchen "catch-all" drawer, etc. Never before did I realize how much I really had until this past weekend. I have been gradually moving the past 3 weeks, taking a carload here and there whenever I had a few spare moments. I thought I was nearing the end, and I asked Mom to come help me doing some final cleaning on my house in Wayne last Saturday so we could finish up. Low and behold, we filled two cars, a pickup and an SUV with the miscellaneous items I had left, and there is STILL a trailer load of stuff to be hauled to Wisner! I couldn't figure out where this stuff was coming from!
Once every vehicle was packed so full that it rendered the rear view mirror useless, we formed a caravan like a bunch of traveling gypsies and made our way to Wisner. I unloaded the pickup first, and Mom packed things in the store room. It was then that I figured out how I fit all of that stuff into my house...I inherited my mother's gene for making it look like we didn't have as much stuff as we actually do. She managed to fit an entire pickup load of boxes onto three shelves in a five foot wide storage area. It was the most amazing thing I've seen in ages! In that little space, it didn't look like much at all, and I was feeling better about things. But, the thought was lurking that it was going to take a whole pickup load if we ever intended to move again. Then, Dad stopped in on Sunday after church, looked around, and said, "You should be a lot richer." (Meaning that I should have put my money in the bank instead of buying all of that stuff!) 2012 is definitely going to be the year for downsizing!
Last night, I started moving boxes around and organizing the store room to accommodate for more construction (fingers crossed we start rolling around February 1st). This was the third or fourth time that I've handled some of those boxes, and vowed that I would not purchase anymore kitchen appliances, pots, pans, towels, wall hangings, home decor, clothes, or anything else for that house unless I got rid of two (or four) things that I already have. Watch out Goodwill, it's going to be a busy year!
Now, I'm devoted to being a bit more like my husband who showed up on moving day with a recliner, a box of equipment manuals, his clothes, and a flashlight. (If we had a machine shed to house his tools, tractors and equipment, his move would be a different story, too.) I, on the other hand, have worn a rut in Highways 15 and 275 with two stock trailers and 20+/- car loads. I am taking a stand to never move that much stuff again. Here's to cleaning out the store room, emptying the closets, and overcoming the gene that causes me to save EVERYTHING. Welcome Home!