Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Truly An Empty Nest Part II Packing To Go

Our move was fast paced and intense.  We had the bright idea of doing it ourselves.  After all, we'd decided to dispose of fifty percent of our belongings:  paperwork, books, furniture, clothing, etc. to expedite the process.  We figured it would be a snap.  Boy, were we wrong!  Fifty percent of eleven years in the same place is a whole lotta crap!  The house was 3200 sq ft with a 3/4 attic and a garage which served as our basement because it was full of stuff.  We parked our cars outside.  No room.  About once a year, my husband would clear out space in the garage and go to the dump.  But we always filled it up again.

Library reading nook
So here we are, calling auctioneers to review the antiques.  It took 3 tries to find someone to take them on consignment which tells you the value of our antiques...not much.  We called Habitat for Humanity but they were on overload from other folks giving them things.  We boxed clothes for various churches and thrift stores and gave almost new furniture to friends.  And then there were the old things nobody wanted, the 20 year old couches and upholstered chairs beaten down by kids and shredded by the cat.  They really weren't even good enough for my younger sons' college friends badly in need of furniture.

Ahhh, the dump, our refuge and saviour.  Hated taking anything there but it was the place of last resort.  The dump store took our small appliances and the dump took twenty years of income tax ppwk and memorabilia. They took our books as well.  Second hand book stores want books with covers or they say they won't sell.  The school library was filled to overflowing.  I mean, what does it say when nobody even wants a full set of encyclopedia?

Living Room with furniture & books to go!

The gleaming kitchen
And the move itself?  Back breaking work for my husband and younger son.  They worked long hours.  It took three solid weeks.  We were still packing two days before closing but we got it done.  The morning we closed, my husband and I drove to the house to gaze one last time at the home we created.  It had been thoroughly cleaned, carpets shampooed, kitchen sparkling and the sun shone through the floor-to-ceiling windows in our living room.  We held one another and thanked God for the happiness we shared in this incredible place with our children and pets and friends.


View from the Living Room

And off we went, down the hill, away from our old life, headed for the new one.

For other photos of our home, see below and/or go here.


Baino said...

I still want to know why you left such a gorgeous spacious home! I dread moving. It's amazing what you accumulate and I've been in my house for 25 years! I'm also amazed that people don't want old stuff, even if it needs recovering or mending. We just put things down on the kerb and someone nicks it within minutes! Enjoy your new arrangement and have a lovely Christmas!

California Girl said...

Baino: My husband became disabled in 2006. He was unable to work for a year and diagnosed with several different problems. When he began to recover, a year later, our dog took out his kneecap and all ligaments in a freak accident. He was operated on and that took another year of recovery--very serious injury. Once he was recovered in '08, he was unable to find a job and we have been living on savings, his severance, etc. The upkeep of our home was just too expensive and we felt it best to get out if we could. Every time we get in a tight spot, something eventually comes along to help us out, thanks to God and His kindness to my family. I don't kid myself that life is fair. It isn't. But we've had our unfair share of good things happen after bad so...no complaints.

Nancy said...

What a beautiful home! I know how hard it is to leave. I've left more than one that hurt. But the next phase of your life is about to begin! And that can be exciting. Best of luck with the new living situation. It sounds like a good plan, if it works.

Tanna said...

The view is breathtaking. So is your attitude. Knew I liked you for some reason. ;-) May God rain kindness and blessings on you and yours.

I'm very intrigued by the reducing "stuff" by half. I have been brooding over the idea of seriously simplifying and reducing some clutter areas myself. I think it could be liberating.

Brian Miller said...

like i said yesterday, we have moved wuite a bit...each time shedding memories for space...i am glad (after reading the comment) that you stayed grounded through it all...new memories to be made...

Marguerite said...

What an enormous task, it must have been! Hope you are having a nice holiday drink, by the fireplace in your new home. Cheers and a very Merry Christmas to you and your family!