Sometimes I Feel Like a Piece of Bologna

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Deal with your STUFF

I‘ve been reading about baby boomers having to deal with the hoards of stuff that their parents have been hoarding for the past 50 or more years. Stuff that our generation has the “privilege” of disposing of. It’s really hitting home with me

When my mother in law died, she had more stuff than I’ve ever seen. We’d find layer after layer of stuff, one behind the other. There were items of value among boxes or shelves of junk. Fortunately, my sister-in-law usually knew the difference and knew when to have something appraised. It took four of us three months almost full time to clean out her house. And unfortunately, in the end, we brought a lot of stuff here—and it’s still here. I keep trying to get my hubby to dispose of it. After 11 years, if we haven’t used it we probably don’t need it.

In fact, I’ve been giving a lot of thought to our “stuff” and what our kids will do with it. We’ve hit gridlock at our home, and I often joke that when we die, our kids will never speak to us again when they have to sort through all of the STUFF.

One thing I’m starting to do is take pictures of those things that have either monetary or sentimental value for us. I’m putting together a binder with the photos and the stories so they’ll know what to look at twice.

Mom-in-law had a lot of wonderful items. Depression glass, jewelry, silver. Things I had never seen. Things we didn’t know she had. Now I regularly use those things. I don’t want my kids going through my stuff saying, “I didn’t know she had that!” I would rather they say, “Oh, I remember how Mom loved this. Now we’ll enjoy it.”

And if I’m not enjoying it, I owe it to them to get rid of it.

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