Reduce: Packing up and De-cluttering Life

Just a quick note today as I’m taking a break from packing. In preparation for our RV trip, I’ve embarked on a much less pleasurable journey: packing house. The task at hand: triage fourteen years’ worth of stuff and pack a year’s worth of stuff into a couple of suitcases.

While I was in school, for the six years from college and through grad school, I moved every few months. And although it wasn’t fun then, the difference was that I had almost nothing to my name. When I came to the U.S. to attend college, I arrived with one suitcase. Now, after fourteen years of living in the American burbs, I’m faced with the task of pairing down things to once again fit into (roughly) one suitcase…. Ah, the irony. And the challenge!

There are memories.

There are mountains of clothes – hah, so that’s where that was!

There are dishes and kitchen gadgets.

And so much decor! – Several days of packing piled up about ten boxes of books and double the boxes of decor.

Needless to say, the process is long and painful, and sometimes stressful.

We are selling our cars so we can buy a 4WD CRV, which we can tow with all four wheels down behind our rig.

We need to clean up, repaint, and list our house for rent.

The saddest part is having to leave my cat behind, in the good care of loving and gracious friends, until we return. It breaks my heart…. In her old age (we think she’s 18), she can’t be contained to her litter box. With our two dogs, this makes for a no-go situation in the tight quarters of our RV.

But there are upsides of this process:

  • You rediscover lovely mementos.
  • You get to FINALLY cross “organize the garage” off your “To Do List”.
  • You make some people happy by letting them have your still good but “I’ll never be a size XS again” stuff.
  • The house looks large and clean! And the dog now has plenty of space to chase that ball indoors.
  • You get rid of inherited flowery couches from aunt Rosie.
  • You are really forced to filter and select the necessities from the clutter. It’s cathartic.

I have a feeling we’ll need to do more purging as we actually move into the RV. Plus, we have to consider the limitations of our storage unit (weighing how bad we want the stuff vs. how bad we want to save money on storage)….

As of now, our plans are to get out of town at the beginning of June, heading to Yellowstone before going to Banff in mid-July.

Please forgive my intermittent posting while we transition to the RV life. Wish us luck!

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