I spent the morning sifting through my family’s belongings (and rifling through our pantry).  Walking from room to room, picking up this thing or that, filtering back through the memories of photos, recalling who may have gifted us what and when – beautiful wooden cutting boards, baskets, serving ware, platters, a punch bowl.  We own things I had forgotten we had; I became blind to items that existed in my environment day-to-day.  Tabasco, for instance.  No one in my family uses it, yet a bottle sat front and center in the spice cabinet for who knows how long.

I was happy to have a few hours to myself this morning to do this; it’ll likely be the last time in this house that I get to wander around and look at everything on my own time.

Our house, which has been for sale, is under contract; our closing date is looming and we’re in the process of moving most of our belongings into a storage unit.  We’re going to be bunking with my parents for a few months while the girls finish out the school year and we begin the process of hunting for the perfect new home (a few of you have already mentioned your anticipation of the posts that are likely to come from what promises to be a comedic adventure – at my expense).  We’re in prime whittling mode.

The amount of belongings – and expired spices – that we can accumulate in each phase of our lives is overwhelming and, ironically, little humans compound this tenfold.

As a general rule, I enjoy getting rid of “stuff”; this move has given me the ability to offload quite a number of under utilized, no longer necessary or just general in-need-of-disposing items (expired Parsley, for instance).  As addicted as I have become to purging, I am stuck on a few things.  I have very few pieces of artwork saved from the girls’ younger years (I can hear the audible gasps of some of you from here), but I do have every doctor’s visit weight and height slip, every report card, every skating badge, every winter’s season pass, every end of ski season instructor report.  They’re all tucked away in a filing cabinet – sure to never see the light of day again.  Pockets – black holes really – of accumulation.  If I were the scrapbooking type I’d have a place for every stray piece, however I gave that up within the first year of my 13-year-old’s existence.

I’m curious – what do you keep, and what do you discard?  How do you store those things you choose to hang on to?

One thought on “Whittling”

  1. Have you read The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing? If not, you must. It provides clarity to the items you need help with. Seriously.


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