Saturday, October 4, 2008

Getting out from under my stuff

The worst thing about moving is the stuff we collect as homeschoolers which threaten to take over the house. I have all the stuff I need to function on a daily basis, however, there are dozens of boxes of stuff to sort and worse yet to put away in a nice big new colonial house which has NO built in shelves. Our old house, a medium size forty-five year old custom cape had LOTS of them.
So the boxes are in piles in the basement, which is unfinished, and a bit creepy as we have had to send down the cats for mouse duty (successfully, but guess who it their funeral director?!) Some boxes are in piles on the floor of the dining room which I commandeered, amid many protests, for my office. Like Chevy Chase in the film "Funny Farm" I came up here with the idea of having a quiet place to write my books and articles. Then I got that call from Bella's school. . .
SO the garage is still full of yet more stuff, waiting to be carried to the basement.
I am so tempted to back up another moving truck and cart this stuff to the dump. . .
but many of these books cost a lot of money and are good Catholic books you'll never find in a public or sadly, Catholic library. So I slog through stuff, week after week, finding some rare treasures I thought I had lost forever. But mostly just stuff.
Regina Doman has an excellent piece on Things she is letting go of, which you can see here.

Here is my plan for letting go:

1. I went through my entire clothing in storage (before I had a job, it took an entire day) and donated seven bags to a local Catholic church 's yard sale. I did bring back a kiddie plate and silverware for Christina, but contrary to my habit, I did NOT bring back as much as I gave away.
This is major growth, I am a pack rat!

2. I gave away my baby items to a holy mother of 10 who while only 2 years younger than I, is having her tenth baby. It hurts to admit that I will not be able to have a son, or any more than the three children I have on earth (three are already with Jesus). Again, good for me, this sort of letting go is really a sign of maturity. Or so I try and tell myself, as a tear drops down my cheek.

3. I am packing boxes to donate to my daughter's Catholic school library. The librarian told me she has no budget for new books, and there is a dearth of some of the wonderful Catholic titles we homeschoolers have come to love, so if I donate some books, my girls can still borrow them when needed.

4. I am ruthlessly going through files and burning old papers. With the neat resources online, we don't need to keep ever pamphlet we have. I am fed up with not being able to find birth certificates because we kept too many maps and nature walk guides.

5. They have this place in the village junkyard for unwanted, yet useful items. Each week as I drop off the trash, I can donate something.

6. I'll take any suggestions. . .I'm out of them!
I won't throw out stuff which can be re-used. I realize this makes me sound trendy and green, but this is just the code of conduct of a woman whose Grandmother endured the Great Depression. Someone out there needs my things, and it's my job to find them!


Elizabeth Kathryn Gerold-Miller said...

#6 is the philosophy I grew up with as well! I have a great deal of work to do in this area. I thought I would get most of it done when I sent the kids to school, but I haven't gone through half of it. I would much rather paint my picket fence than go through stuff. Your tip on papers is something I sorely need to do. I guess I could make one possibly silly suggestion, and that is to use your shredded papers as mulch in your gardens!

Jeanette said...

We hae been purging little bits at a time for the last year. It is not an easy task for me, but at the same time it is nice to have the space.