Sorting and Sifting and Tossing and Boxing

The past couple of months have been some of the most stressful we’ve ever experienced. We are now in the final stretch, and soon we will be in our new home (renting), in a new state.

We sold the house and closing is in a couple of weeks.

We are packing and I have gone through every inch of this house, sorting and sifting and doing everything in my power to make sure nothing comes with us that isn’t useful, or that we don’t love. It makes moving considerably harder. You can’t just dump drawers into boxes. You have to go over every drawer and nook with a fine tooth comb, and you have to be firm and unsentimental.

We are at a turning point in our lives, and we don’t want to be weighed down with things we don’t value or need. Interestingly, Todd is having a harder time letting go of some things than I am. Why the man would want to hang onto my paintings from high school I don’t know, but I am like…NO. Off to the curb.

Funny enough, a neighbor came by and took them.  Hot Toddy feels so much better about it now.

I was talking to someone recently who had to go through her parents stuff after their deaths, and she said it was a terrible burden, to have to toss things she knew meant a lot to them. I’ve been using this stratedgy on HT, “So we’ll carry around this stuff, storing it for the next 30 years and then burden the children with having to get rid of it after we’re gone?”

He conceded.

The house we’ll be renting has much less space, so that is another incentive.

Anyway…it’s HOT out, and our current house doesn’t have AC. And it’s really only this hot a few weeks out of the year and we have window units for the bedrooms so it’s never been a problem, but we are doing hard labor. Up and down the stairs a million times. Hauling boxes to our POD, (we pack it and load it, they drive it and drop off in our new driveway, we unload ourselves. It’s much cheaper than hiring movers but it is a ton of work).

We are almost there. The attic and upstairs bedrooms, and basement and most of the garage are all cleared out. I’ve been scrubbing the bedroom floors because I want it to be perfect and clean for the new owners. All that’s left is piled into the dining room for more boxing and sorting. And I can’t really pack the kitchen yet with a couple of weeks to go. Not with special needs diets and needing to make most of our food at home. Though the kids are getting more processed food than they’ve ever had (and more TV and iPod).

Our POD is almost full.  There is a treasure trove at the curb. We made the junk collector’s day. Seriously. He picked up so much stuff in front of our house and beamed and proclaimed he could stop work early today. Also, we live in a neighborhood that values recycling. Neighbors took away a lot of stuff too. A new family across the street got Seth’s train table, and a bunch of other stuff. Other neighbors took things from the garage. Another one took storage bins we no longer need. It feels good to give stuff away to people who can use it.

I feel like we’re in the final stages of labor. We’re pushing now. We are so close. It’s all going to be worth it. But I look around feeling overwhelmed, I can’t do it! There’s no possible way! Yet somehow I know it will all happen.

We are sweaty and sore. We have BO (TMI?). We’re limping along to the finish. Yes, I’m mixing metaphors now but I’m fried so cut me some slack.


and sifting

and tossing.

And boxing things up.

Oh my.


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12 Responses to Sorting and Sifting and Tossing and Boxing

  1. Julie says:

    Just stopping by to check in…so glad things are moving are almost there!!!
    Julie A

  2. Meg says:

    Such hard work, but you will start this new season with a lightness that will be so freeing! Wish I were there to help you.

  3. Carrie Link says:

    You’re so right about lightening your load so that Seth and Riley won’t have those decisions to make. I need to spend about a month in my house being ruthless, too, stuuf I hang onto because we have the space and I have the emotional connection. Still have all my art from high school, too. That’s cute that HT was attached to it, and BTW, you’re a good artist!

    You will feel so light, in every way, when you get to Florida!

  4. Wish I was nearby to help — but I’m with you in spirit, nonetheless!

  5. Brenda Riesen says:

    Your hard work will bring you and the family great rewards.
    Remember to rest occasionally!

  6. Hang in there, it will all be worth it when you get settled in your new home. And you are smart to choose the POD – I get a ton of complaints about bad movers who damage belongings, steal stuff, charge way more than the contract states, and even hold belongings hostage. Sending hugs!

  7. You write so beautifully. I feel like saying thank you for being you! Visiting your blog after a couple of months and so glad to have caught you while you’re still here.

    All is well. All ways. Hugs.

  8. Tanya Savko says:

    I love your high school painting but totally understand the need to let it go. When I downsized last year one of the things I let go of was a poster-sized painting I did from college. I took a picture of it and it’s in a photo album. Same with another painting that I didn’t do but loved. No room in the ark.

    I like the POD idea, and mixing metaphors is always fun. Love to all of you.

  9. rhemashope says:

    Oh, I wish I could help you or snap my fingers and it would be all done! Moving is sooo much work. But you’re right, you will get through it and it will be worth it. You’re in my thoughts.

  10. Kathee says:

    I love your painting. I grew up in the 70’s with a house-plant obsessed mom. She always had giant clay pots of this same plant. According to her it is called “mother in law’s tongue” because it is long, sharp and green. Your lovely painting takes me back to that time. I am a school paper/kid art hoarder. I am starting to take digital photos of work and then pitch it. Way more organized and less clutter. Good luck with your move. It looks like this heat wave is finally letting up!

  11. kario says:

    So much work but so worth it! When we moved last summer, I remember thinking I was being absolutely ruthless when it came to purging stuff we didn’t need. Then came the day to unpack stuff in the new house and when I realized I had kept 15 coffee mugs (and moved them), I was amazed at how much more ruthless I could be. We made three more trips to Goodwill to drop stuff off after moving in because I was surprised at how much stuff we had that we didn’t need.

    I am thrilled that the house sold and hope the move goes smoothly. I know you will find the absolute right community in Fl. for you all.

    Love and journey mercies!

  12. Amber says:

    I’m so excited for you guys!

    I wish this post was like that HoneyBooBoo scratch and sniff show thingy…so I could judge your BO. I would. I’d sniff.


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