The Great Purge

We’ve lived in our house for about fifteen years now. It has been a very comfortable house to live in and we have been blessed with ample storage room. Ample storage room isn’t always a plus though and both Jim and I agreed it was time to do some serious de-cluttering.

It ties in perfectly with the beginning of the new year. It is also a great mood lifter to see one’s surroundings looking clean and sleek. Well, we’re not at clean and sleek yet, but we’re moving deliberately in that direction.

Infusing the offspring with this desire to de-clutter has been very slow going. They ignored us steadfastly for as long as they could. But as the piles of items to be shed grew and it was clearer and clearer how serious “les parents” were about this action, there has been some grudging movement.

One of our first big actions was to prune our book collections. We had books everywhere and in great disorganization. We now have subject areas throughout the house and certain shelves have Jim’s books and certain shelves hold mine. We must be shedding about 200 books and that doesn’t include Peter, Ellie and Alex. Meanwhile, Jim has built himself a young adult/teacher’s resource library in his office which will be incredibly useful to him as he moves forward.

Closets have also been purged and several large expeditions have traveled to the local Salvation Army store. Hopefully, we have divested clothing which will be well used by someone else. Having fewer superfluous clothes in closets and drawers makes getting dressed tons easier.

The basement was the big challenge. It was an unmitigated disaster. Was is the correct verb because even now it is looking vastly improved.  Some long term possessions have been shed including Jim’s amp and guitars which have been with him since college. That was a big decision for him. Our shredder is glowing hot with the task of shredding decades of old checks, statements, tax returns and investment reports. I found the receipt for the crib we bought when Alex was in utero. That was over 22 years ago.

It feels good to be getting our house literally in order. There is an aspect of taking control which is satisfying and as Jim and I hit our 55th birthdays (his was well over a month ago), the idea of shedding excess is very appealing. We will move forward with the essentials and focus on the less tangible aspects of our lives.

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2 Comments to “The Great Purge”

  1. Jenny you inspire me. Since we aren’t able to go to Florida now I’m going to try and clean out or purge at least one closet or drawer every other day and take things to The Economy Shop where they can be put to good use. 🙂
    Also am working on push ups–if I get to 1o0 real on the toes push ups a session my pride will be unbearable.
    Love
    Dawn

  2. Since you mentioned “55,” in your note, today is the day you hit the big 55! Happy Birthday, Jenny, and many happy returns!

    I am in the same process of decluttering, and it is liberating. If only I could do it faster!

    Have a wonderful birthday!

    Love, Betsy

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