Taking Inventory


I have too much crap in my life….

Like this stuff from my Grandmother on my Mom’s side

Unless you are moving, how many of us really take inventory of our lives on a regular basis?  Annual Basis? Every Decade?  Only on the Tuesday eve of the blue moon in November, after the first snow has fallen, during a leap year, if your sister/daughter in law is precisely 6 months pregnant and you have won the lottery?  

I guess that means that no most of us don’t have any idea the accumulation of “stuff” we have in our lives until it comes time to move…. downsizing, upsizing, regardless- everything needs to be looked at and the decision made -Do I keep you eighth grade yearbook, holiday present from a co-worker that was shoved into the closet in the same gift bag it was given to you in, favorite stuffed toy from childhood, hefty bag full of favorite stuffed toys from childhood, cool chunk of marble gravestone from unidentifiable grave from one mischievous night during college?    

So, yes, I am in the process of taking inventory and sorting all my possessions into one of five categories.  

1- Keep and pack.  I won’t part with it no matter what it is, useful or not, even if it just continues to sit in a box in the closet until the day I die, and then some poor schmuck cleaning up after me has to make a decision and sort it into a pile of their own. 

2- Throw away…. this is the obvious garbage, stuff that does not meet the criteria of one person’s junk is another person’s treasure.  This category includes the recycling bin…. abundance of plastic hangers- recycle (I swear they multiply like bunnies in every single closet), chipped kitchen glasses – recycle, stained old tupperware – recycle……   Does anyone know if cast iron pans can be recycled?

3- Put aside and decide with significant other whether we keep mine or his or both.  Combining two complete adult households you end up with two of most things, so which coffee pot do you keep, which iron, toaster, etc….   Some of this stuff is obvious and some of it is a territory thing.  This process can truly test your ability to compromise with your partner.  Word of advice, if “it” does not matter to you put it in the “Donate-give away” pile and if “it” is that important to you put it in the keep no matter what pile and pull it out later on down the road.  If either of you are no good at making a decision, or afraid of hurting feelings just flip a coin or pull from a hat.  Or you can do it the old fashion american way and “donate” them both and go buy a brand new shiny state of the art new “it” that make you both happy.        

4 – Put aside to sell.  Stuff worth enough to put time into e-bay, craig’s list, resale/antique shop, etc…. Mostly antiques from family or collected over the years to which I have not emotional attachment to.  I would rather not give this stuff away, but in this economy who knows if it will sell at a price that would make me happy.  It is quite possible that this stuff may end up in a box to be stored and sold at a later date or for when that same poor schmuck……  

5- Put aside to donate, give to friends, yard sale, etc.   Stuff that someone else might like, will use, and won’t go to waste, like that gift from a coworker that was shoved into the closet in the same gift bag it was “graciously” received in.  

Thanks to a friend and former boss I have a very healthy attitude when I am cleaning house.  This former boss of mine had a friend who was trained in the art of feing shui.  She had her friend over the house to check things out, make suggestions, help clear her home of negative energies.  This friend asked about a particular piece of furniture in the living room, a coffee table.  It was sending off really bad vibes, not because of where it was placed in the room, but just because of it being physically in the house.  Ends up the “coffee table” was a bone of contention with her ex-husband.  It was his favorite, she hated it, but out of spite when they split she fought over it until she won it and proudly displayed it in home.  It brought so much bad energy into the home, every time she stubbed her toe on it she would swear at her ex, she was intentionally holding onto bad memories and her past life by keeping the “damn table”.  It was then that they walked around the house and purged it of all “former life” stuff, until it was pointed out to her she had no idea how much stuff was sucking her home dry of all good energy.  They had a grand old time throwing all the past life out into the yard, and planning together what needed to be replaced and what didn’t.  Once they did the energy in the house shifted to being more positive, nurturing and healing.  Life was finally able, after years, to begin anew because there was nothing dragging her back in time.  

I am fortunate that I do not have any desire nor tendency to keep stuff that has bad past life attachments.  I have been very very good over the past few years of clearing out the old to make room for the new (that is except for shoes and purses, but alas even they will have their own judgement day sometime very soon). As a matter of fact many friends at work have asked me to come clean out their closets because they are impressed with my ability to purge the unnecessary from my space.  Now that is not to say that I live minimally, frankly I do not, but I no longer have “collections” nor do I hold onto stuff that I might need some rainy day.   That is except for that hefty bag full of old stuffed toys, it’s a girl thing, right ladies? 

So that is it, I am really busy cleaning out.  I will keep you posted, but if you don’t hear from me in a bit it is because I have my hands full sorting out my life.


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