Monday, February 13, 2012

How Much


We are as packed as we can be, down to about 2 small boxes worth of things in the kitchen (since I'm still working at the house and need to eat there every day that will be the last thing packed).

We've been taking the opportunity to part with things we no longer need or use and passing them along to family and friends if there is still value there, but also throwing out what is truly worn out. We don't want to move anything we don't love or truly need to the new house. The boys were champions about giving up toys to their younger cousins to make room for their new love of legos and we found ourselves saying again and again "just because we are going to have more space in the new house does not mean we can keep more stuff."

We say it just as much for ourselves as for the boys. It isn't the things filling the house that make the home- it is the people and their relationships. Too much stuff to maintain takes time away from those relationships. I mean, would I rather spend my time picking up all the toys/folding mountains of clothes or being able to play games together or head outside? No contest in my mind.

Moving makes me seriously wonder why we had as much stuff as we had. We have lived in this small space for over ten years and have tried to be very careful about what we bring in, to cull what is no longer needful, and to take care of what we do have. Neither my husband or I are "keepers" by nature, but we did have things we were finally able to part with after letting them hang around for a few years (or more- I can think of at least 5 boxes that have followed us for the better part of our 11 years).

And Ginny's post was so timely for me- I have one child who very freely gives his toys and other things away but can barely part with any piece of art he's ever made (even if it's the tiniest of scribbles of the tiniest scrap of paper) and the other one who doesn't part with anything without a fight- and we're trying to be wise about how to approach it respectfully with them. I don't want to take away or throw things out if they are truly important to the boys, but at the same time we just can't keep every little paper.

We came up with a few ground rules that everyone agreed to before we started sorting and that helped us tremendously:

1. Anything broken will be thrown away.

2. Anything that doesn't have all of its pieces will be thrown away.

3. Art work is limited to your art box. Anything that doesn't fit can't stay.

4. If no one has played with it in 3 months it goes into storage. (If we don't find we need it in the next 3-6 months it goes on to a younger cousin).

If an argument came up over any little thing I could remind them of the original agreement, and it worked shockingly well. There were still some sad moments over things that were broken and couldn't be saved (mostly things that Nana had given them... nothing truly important, just the fact that Nana had given it to them made it meaningful), but overall they cooperated beautifully.

1 comment:

  1. I hope your move goes smoothly! Good luck with the packing :)


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