Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Sift, Sort, Separate

We've begun to pack only labeling the boxes what's in them. We've affixed no address labels since that's up in the air. Boxes are piling up in our mud room (vestibule for those that have never heard of a mud room). I've started to sift through my belongings as has D., and we've sorted our things into what we want to keep (that goes in a box), what we want to yard sale, bookstore sale etc (those things stay in the apartment until they get moved or sold), what is donated clothing (a charity is picking up at the end of the month), what is recycling (the bins are overflowing) and what is garbage (I'm ashamed of the amount of landfill I'm creating this year and vow to stop unecessarily accumulate garbage. No more trips to Ikea and Winners!). The end result should be a minimalist looking apartment for open house viewing once sis puts the house on the market.

I've become ruthless in my separating of what is valuable to me and what is not. Sentimentality out the window. I can't cart around miles of possessions that I've kept around because I couldn't bear parting with this stuff. I've yet to go through my wool stash. (Knitters out there let me know if you want any wool. I will ship it to you -- julia?) Valuable is the cotton wool. Unvaluable is the wool wool. Since becoming vegan I've not been able to knit with wool. Valuable are my film books. Unvaluable are the endless pocket novels and copies of hardcovers that I've read and will probably never open again. I should look into library donation as well. Valuable is our tiny dvd collection of about 15 or so dvds. Unvaluable the endless stacks of videos. I've sorted a pile of videos to watch since I figure once i've watched them I really have no use for them. Valuable are the family photos. Unvaluable are the odd pictures of landscape shots or poorly lit cat photos and garden images that are meaningless now. Valuable are the clothes I actually wear. Unvaluable are the clothes I haven't worn in years but keep around because there might be an occasion to. Still I have this deep urge to chuck have of what I deem "valuable" as well. It's like what they say about traveling "take half the stuff and twice the money." I may need to bulk up the recycling and landfill piles.

I'm open to advice from those of you who have recently moved. I have moved many many times in my life (somewhere around 20 times) so I'm pretty good at the sift, sort and separate, but as I age I see that I move less frequently. I stayed in Victoria for five years and that was my longest stint in one place until now. D. and I have been in this apartment for 7 years on September 2nd so...I've somehow gotten use to living with more stuff.

Hmm, I need to make a note to revisit this posting at least once a month to remind me to stop accumulating.

7 comments:

Julia said...

OMG, are you moving out of Toronto?? :( You can give me any yarn you no longer want. :D

red jane said...

It's never easy. I always wonder where al th at stuff comes form since we all purge with every move. My longest stint was seven years before I moved in with L. at t yours and I got rid of a lot. Now, whenever I'm frustrated by this space I re-think the impulse to move for that very reason: the sheer terror of packing. I"ll gladly clean you out of your wares for sale, though!

Wandering Coyote said...

As you know, I've moved several times in the past year and a bit. The first move out of Ottawa was the hardest because that's when I did the most brutal purging. My advice would be to just keep being as ruthless as you can bear; if you have to pay to have stuff moved, that's a strong motivator for getting rid of as much as you possibly can, because it affects your bottom line. It's hard though; we're human and we get attached to stuff.

sp said...

Yes, we're doing a big move. Julia, the yarn is yours. I'm going through it tonight so I'll put aside a bag (or 2 or 3) for you.
Thanks for the advice, W.C. I'm being as ruthless as I can, but sometimes I get overly sentimental in my weaker moments. I'll try and stay ruthless.
RJ: we have books and books and books for you and anything else you'd like to help yourself to. Baking supplies?

Julia said...

Are you going far?? :( Will I still have someone to go see obscure horror movies with?

sp said...

Julia: We are going far -- more on this on my next posting. I don't know who either one of us are going to go see obscure horror movies with. We can at least tell each other about them.

Wandering Coyote said...

Baking supplies? Damn, I wish I were in Whoville.